If you're hunting for a new dishwasher, you definitely want to go for the best; however, everyone appreciates a good deal at an affordable price. This is why there's plenty of research and different tests done to compile and give you the best dishwasher under $500 that can reliably get the job done. The best of these budget dishwashers will efficiently clean your utensils at an energy-efficient rate as quietly as possible while you attend to other matters.
Whether you're looking to splurge or working within a budget, you should be able to snag an amazing quality dishwasher model for any budget. The right dishwasher will definitely save you a lot of time and effort in always keeping the dishes and cookware in your home clean, and a good reliable one doesn’t have to have you breaking the bank.
Is A Dishwasher Really Worth it?
A dishwasher is a machine you'd use to clean dishware and cutlery after use automatically. It cleans and rinses used utensils. You'd have to load the dirty dishes, add some detergent, set your preferred washing cycles, turn it on, and voila!
Practically, a reliable dishwasher will clean more efficiently and more hygienically than you would, using your hands. This is especially beneficial if you have a young child or taking care of a patient. The NSF / ANSI 3 standard requires dishwashers to eliminate at least 99.999% of bacteria and microorganisms where the surface of the dishes must be exposed to 160°F for roughly 10 seconds and a final rinse temperature that's at least 180° for sanitization.
Other than the fact that the dishwasher thoroughly cleans and dries automatically and you won't have to hand wash a pile of dirty dishes waiting for you in the sink, comes the added advantage that its also a safe cleaning option to teach you, kids. Primarily, the benefits of using your dishwasher are pegged to the extra safety, thorough cleaning, and added convenience, especially if you are busy or dealing with a large household.
Finding a high-performance dishwasher at the best price will take some research, but to save you the time and a lot of money that undoubtedly comes with appliance shopping, here are some highly-rated affordable dishwashers to help you keep your kitchen utensils clean.
Best Dishwashers That are Quiet, Energy-Efficient and Only Cost $500 or Less
1. hOmeLabs Compact Countertop Energy Star Portable Mini DishWasher
- A convenient and small Energy Star certified dish washing machine...
- With simple to use control panel and light indicators. Program...
- Features a quick connect assembly with accessories including...
- Using the rinse aid dispenser, you can dry your plates, mugs, and...
- This counter top appliance measures 17.2 x 19.6 x 21.6 inches...
The hOmeLabs compact countertop portable dishwasher ranks high on the portable dishwashers list. It is small and conveniently makes it easy to fit in small kitchens or countertops to help you clean the dishes after dinner.
The control panel has user-friendly controls and light indicators to alert you once the dishwasher has completed its wash cycle. In addition, it comes with 6 wash cycle options that you can choose from, including the ECO, speed, glass, rinses, normal and heavy cycles to meet the different washing needs ideally.
It also comes with streak-free drying features that dry clean dishes without leaving marks or streaks, making this portable dishwasher even more convenient. This feature also works really well with rinse aids that are purposely designed for an automatic dishwasher. Additionally, it comes with an indicator light that alerts you when to refill the dispenser.
2. Farberware FDW05ASBWHA Complete Portable Countertop Dishwasher
- QUALITY CONTROL NOTE All dishwashers are factory tested to ensure...
- COMPACT DESIGN: This convenient dishwasher can fit a variety of...
- NO HOOKUPS NEEDED: If you want the advantage of portability and...
- FIVE WASHING PROGRAMS: You'll get full size dishwasher cleaning...
- STEAM: Steam generated during the Baby Care cleaning cycle can be...
Another reliable and portable dishwasher comes in a compact design that fits under most kitchen cabinets and is ideal for small kitchens. Unlike most portable dishwashers in a compact size, it can wash dishes that are up to 12 inches in diameter placed at an angle,
It also comes with a fruit basket to help you clean fruits and vegetables, an extra feature that makes this a deluxe dishwasher in a perfectly compact size. An internal heater and steam feature in the normal cycle makes this suitably ideal for families with a baby. It also comes with a Baby care cleaning cycle that’s meant to sanitize baby bottles fully.
The built-in tank lets you fill the dishwasher with water, so you don’t need to use a water hookup when using it.
3. Magic Chef Energy Star 6-Place Setting MCSCD6W5 6 Plate Countertop Dishwasher
- 6 Place Settings, 6 Programs
- Electronic Controls with Digital Display, Detergent and Rinse Aid...
- Up to 24H Delay Start, EZ Clean Removable Filter
- Stainless Steel Interior, Residual Drying System
- Indicator Lights, Inlet and Outlet Hoses with Quick Connect...
The Magic Chef MCSCD6W1 is a compact dishwasher that will fit perfectly well even on the smallest counter space, making it ideal for small apartments or motor homes. It measures 21.7 inches wide, 17.2 in height, and 19.7 inches in depth. It comes with a clean, elegant design with subtle curves that impressively complement any modern kitchen space.
It has a fairly standard interior with a stainless steel finish for durability and great energy efficiency. Its single removable rack should comfortably accommodate a 6 place setting with a silverware basket and rack space for glasses and cups. In addition, the rack should hold plates that are up to 10 inches wide.
Cleaning larger plates will need you to remove the cutlery basket so they can fit in. It also comes with a user-friendly push-button control panel placed at the front of the unit, comprising 3 buttons and 7 indicator lights.
This front control dishwasher is reasonably quiet at 55 dBA thanks to its noise reduction technology incorporated. Overall, it is the best portable dishwasher under $500.
4. Frigidaire 24" Stainless Steel Top Control Built-In Tall Tub Dishwasher
- Polymer Tall-Tub Interior W/ Nylon TufRacks
- 8 Wash Cycles
- 12 Place Settings Capacity
- OrbitClean Technology Provides 4 Times More Water Coverage
If you're prioritizing on a budget, the Frigidaire control built-in dishwasher is designed for you. Thanks to its tall stainless steel tub design, the dishwasher can give up to 12 place settings. In addition, this lustrous 24 inches built-in, freestanding tall tub dishwasher comes with integrated controls that make use of the special OrbitClean Spray Arm technology.
The technology provides 4X better water coverage since this wash system uses multiple spray arms to clean and rinse the dishes. Its well-heated dry system ensures that you won't need to towel dry your dishes before putting them away. Additionally, its high capacity to control water pressure guarantees you a perfect wash that suits your needs.
It also comes with an integrated console with Ready-Select controls to easily select your options with the simple touch of a button.
5. Bosch SHXM63WS5N 24" 300 Series Built-In Dishwasher
- Stainless Steel Interior W/ FlexSpace Tines
- 16 Place Settings / 5 Wash Cycles / 4 Wash Options
- Flexible 3rd Rack With Fold Down Sides
- Dimensions (WHD): 23.56 X 33.87 X 23.75
Like other Bosch products, the Bosch 300 series is a reliable dishwasher built using stainless steel, including the third rack for extra loading capacity. In addition, the third rack can be used as a small utility rack.
It also comes with InfoLight beam lights on the floor to alert you when the dishwasher is running. In addition, this stainless steel dishwasher comes with 3 different heights and 9 rack positions you can work with.
The 5 different wash cycles come with 4 options and an LED clock to let you know the remaining time for the current load. This built-in dishwasher also integrates a Speed60 feature in its quick cycle to give the dishes a less than one-hour quick wash and an extra dry feature that will dry the dishes more effectively and faster than other dishwashers.
What's more, the Bosch dishwasher comes with a sensor that can sense the number of dishes inside for the dishwasher to choose the appropriate wash temperature automatically. At the same time, Bosch’s AquaStop leak protection keeps your dishwasher leak-free.
Factors to Consider to Buy the Best Dishwasher Under $500
A) Washing and Drying
Among the most important dishwasher features to consider is its cleaning power in washing plates and general utensils. No matter how bad you want to get that affordable dishwasher on sale, the dishwasher's cleaning performance is the main determinant on whether it's a good reliable dishwasher or not.
As you consider its wash function, also consider how well its drying process works. Some might occasionally leave some water, but high-quality modern dishwashers will dry your dishes to the last drops, which also reduces the chance of spotting.
B) Wash Cycle
Note that one dishwasher’s normal cycle might actually be 3 hours, while another’s normal wash cycle could be about an hour or an hour and a half.
C) Quiet Operation
A quiet dishwasher is ideal for most families, especially if you have children who might be asleep or simply need to work around the kitchen. Experts recommend looking for a model that clocks in at 45 dBA or even lower. Since the dishwasher’s noise level is usually measured in dBA units, the higher the dBA, the noisier the dishwasher is. However, most modern dishwashers give you reliable options for the quietest dishwashers.
D) Energy Efficiency
The dishwasher's performance is also pegged to how energy efficient it is. Dishwasher manufacturers will always indicate the Energy Star rating of the dishwasher to help you alleviate the environmental effects of using one.
E) Cycle Options
The best will offer different dishwasher cycles to give you the ideal wash options suited for your needs. Standard options include a quick wash, normal wash, and heavy-duty wash for tough food stains. Even with most budget dishwashers, you may equally want a machine that cleans pots and pans, does steam clean, has an extra rinse option, can handle delicates/fine china, and/or has sanitizing controls.
Steam cleaning is also another popular feature in dishwashers that works in different ways. Some brands will include it in place of pre-washing since it also uses hot air to remove the residual food leftover before washing dishes. Some dishwashers even have steam-only cycles designed to clean the delicate dishes carefully.
F) Control Panel
This depends on whether you prefer a touch panel or buttons. Arguably touch panels look sleeker; however, the downside is that some dishwasher touch panels are so responsive that you could accidentally start cycles by simply brushing against them.
While some touch panels can be so insensitive that you must click on them a couple of times before they work correctly. Therefore, before purchasing, read the user's reviews on the ease of use or try the touch panel physically to give you a feel for how much you’ll have to press to start the cycle.
G) Fit and Finish
This largely depends on your preference; however, the most popular fit and finish dishwashers that are modern come with is minimalistic, sleek, and modern to fit in your kitchen decor. Some come with a stainless steel exterior, while others have either stainless steel tubs or plastic tubs.
Frequently Asked Questions on the Best Dishwasher Under $500
1. How long should the dishwasher last?
According to Consumer Reports, a typical dishwasher should last you roughly 10 years. However, that also does mean that you'll need to maintain it through those years properly.
2. Should I repair my 10-year-old dishwasher plastic tub?
Generally, dishwashers should last you 10 years; however, according to Consumer Reports, roughly 30% of dishwashers will require some form of repair within their first five years. So, if your dishwasher is a decade old and has served you well, it might be time to consider replacing it with other affordable dishwashers instead of trying to repair it.
3. Should I run my new dishwasher empty?
You probably want to get your dishes done right away, but it is recommended that you run an empty load first. The rinse cycle will help ensure that everything is correctly installed and help show whether there are any loose pipes. Plus, this gives you a chance to get a grip on how everything works.
4. Can the dishwasher run with no hot water?
The best dishwashers will work perfectly fine even without hot water. This is because the heating element in a reliable dishwasher takes normal water and heats it by itself. Generally, it will require water at roughly 120 F (48.9°C) temperature; then, the machine will heat it to 140-150 F (60-65.6°C) for better cleaning.