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Best KitchenAid Dishwashers For 2020 (Reviews / Ratings / Prices)

Steve Sheinkopf  |  June 18, 2020  |  7 Min. Read

Dishwashers  |  KitchenAid

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Last year, the most popular dishwasher sold was the KitchenAid KDTE334GPS.

It was the quietest at 39 DB, had the bottle wash to power out the gunk out of your sports bottles, and all the important cycles.

KITCHENAID KDTE334GPSKitchenAid Dishwasher KDTE334GPS

 

At $749, this dishwasher was competitive with other brands' $1000 dishwashers

After years of playing third best to Bosch and Miele, KitchenAid again was arguably the best dishwasher to buy at least under $1,000.

Now they are completely changing it with new models in the next few months.

In this article, you will learn whether it's still a good dishwasher to buy with comparisons to both Miele and Bosch for features as well as reliability.

In the end, you will learn the three best KitchenAid dishwashers.

But first a brief history of KitchenAid and the evolution of your home from 1990 to now.

KitchenAid 

KitchenAid-DishwashersFront Control KitchenAid Dishwasher 

 

Thirty years ago, you bought a KitchenAid for a premium dishwasher. That was your choice.

GE was the less expensive brand with Maytag as the reverse loading middle price dishwasher, and KitchenAid firmly in the premium position.

KitchenAid was manufactured by Hobart, a commercial dishwasher manufacturer. It was a heavy, solid, reliable dishwasher.

Whirlpool bought KitchenAid in the late 80s to brand it as a whole appliance line instead of emphasizing the dishwashers.

Then as lifestyle opened the kitchen to the living spaces, people wanted quieter dishwashers. Even today, you will probably first inquire about quietness before features.

At the same time, in the 1990s, Bosch, Asko, and Miele started importing their quiet dishwashers into the US. They also had stainless tubs and better cycles.

dishwashers-at-yale-appliance-in-hanoverEuropean Dishwashers at Yale Appliance in Hanover

 

In a matter of three years, the loud, porcelain tubbed KitchenAid was no longer premium against the quieter stainless tubbed imports.

It stayed that way until recently.

KitchenAid is now competitive with any brand.

In 2020, they are introducing a new dishwasher line with brand new unique features. However, they are eliminating some of their better features from this year.

Let's first compare KitchenAid with the other brands for reliability based on real service data.

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Is KitchenAid A Reliable Dishwasher Brand?

Dishwasher Reliability for 2020

  Service QTY Shipped QTY Service Ratio
Asko 103 190 54.21%
Jenn-Air 188 493 38.13%
Bosch Benchmark  25 70 35.71%
Fisher & Paykel  56 193 29.02%
Miele  185 903 20.49%
Maytag 2 10 20.00%
Gaggenau  16 104 15.38%
Thermador 126 872 14.45%
KitchenAid 90 688 13.08%
Café Appliances 3 25 12.00%
Bosch  398 3573 11.14%
Samsung 134 1297 10.33%
LG  5 81 6.17%
Cove 2 44 4.55%
Ge Appliances 1 37 2.70%
Whirlpool 38 1471 2.58%
Grand Total  1377 10166 13.55%

KitchenAid has always been average and behind Bosch for overall reliability. They narrowed the gap considerably to an almost statistical tie.

They have been more reliable than Miele at least last year. Mieles' issues were noisy solenoids, which are easily replaceable.

KitchenAid and Bosch are both made in the US. Miele is manufactured in Germany.

KitchenAid Dishwashers 101

The new KitchenAid dishwashers can be explained in these four hard to understand graphs.

KitchenAid-Dishwasher-Consumer-Benefits

KitchenAid-FreeFlex-Third-Rack

KitchenAid-Dishwasher-Advanced-Clean-Water-Wash-System

KitchenAid-Dishwasher-Fan-Enabled-ProDry-System

New KitchenAid Dishwasher Features

1. More Robust Third Rack

KitchenAid-Dishwasher-New-Third-RackKitchenAid Dishwasher Third Rack 

 

Miele was the only one with a third rack for 15 years. Now even Samsung at $450 has a third rack.

KitchenAid allows you to fit more, plus they added a rotating concentrated spray in the middle.

Miele still allows you to easily remove their rack so you can place your fine silverware in the drawer more easily.

The silverware basket is also more "form-fitting," so the silverware is not scratched during the wash.

2. KitchenAid Wash System

KitchenAid-ProWashKitchenAid Pro Wash, Wash Arm, and Filtration System

 

KitchenAid may now have the best wash system with four levels of wash action top, the rotating rods in the third rack, under the middle rack, and at the bottom.

I have always assumed dishwashers wash dishes. You probably have as well.

However, with a large third rack, more sprays, especially from above, is probably better.

Bosch and many others only have two levels, but with basic third racks. Miele has three with one on the top, middle, and bottom.

Miele-Dishwasher-Wash-ArmsInterior of a Miele Dishwasher with Two Wash Arms

 

Of course, we will be testing the new KitchenAids' when our testing center reopens.

3. Water Filtration

On the bottom, KitchenAid now employs two filters plus a new system to ensure fresher water is cleaning the dishes.

Many companies have one filter, but now KitchenAid has more. In theory, this should work better.

However, it increases the noise level from 39 DB to 44 DB. 44 is still the minimum level of quiet, but 39DB is probably the quietest without spending $1999 for a 37DB.

4. Drying Fan Assisted Pro Dry

KitchenAid-dishwasher-controls-with-prodryKitchenAid Integrated Controls Featuring ProDry

 

KitchenAid recesses the heating element, so it provides better drying and doesn't warp plastics on the bottom rack.

They use a fan to circulate the heat and pull the humid air out and draw cooler, drier air from your kitchen.

Miele has a similar system. It allows air to the side of the dishwasher where the warmer air is attracted to the cooler side and dissipated as water.

Bosch developed its CrystalDry. They pack a volcanic element called Zeolite at the bottom of the dishwasher to add heat and reduce moisture - and it works.

However, you have to spend $1100 and more for that feature.

All stainless steel dishwashers still recommend JetDry to help with drying your dishes, whether it's Fan Assist or CrystalDry.

What Could Have Been Improved 

1. Wi-Fi

KitchenAid-Appliances-Wi-Fi-and-ConnectivityKitchenAid Appliances Wi-Fi Connectivity App 

 

KitchenAid dishwashers do not have Smart functionality. I am not sure Smart is important in a dishwasher as it is on a range or cooking product.

I wash my dishes before I go to bed. I do not need an alert at 2 AM telling me the cycle is done.

Wi-Fi could be a decent feature if you wash during the day. The dishwashers are so quiet sometimes you open a dishwasher while it's running. An alert system would prevent that.

Smart could be a better feature in the future. An alert with service prompts or automatically adding detergent to your shopping could be a convenience.

However, Wi-Fi is not the reason to buy or not buy a dishwasher, at least not yet.

Most of KitchenAid's competitors offer Wi-Fi, including Bosch, Miele, Café Appliances, and Samsung.

2. Bottle Wash

KitchenAid-Bottle-WashKitchenAid's Bottle Wash in a Dishwasher

 

KitchenAid no longer markets this feature. This may be a mistake because that residue at the bottom of your 50-ounce sports bottle or your baby's bottle never seems to be clean after a wash without a dedicated spray.

Then again, I had a baby and was an avid biker when they started marketing the feature. Maybe it's just me.

3. Paneled Dishwashers

KitchenAid dishwasher still protrudes from the cabinets, so they look like a dishwasher with a cabinet front. Instead of the more seamless look of fitting within the cabinet and looking like a cabinet.

This was a big missed opportunity. For the best paneled dishwashers, you should buy a Bosch or Miele because they do not protrude from the cabinet.

4. Glass Doors

KitchenAid Dishwasher With WindowKitchenAid Dishwasher Glass Door 

 

For a price premium, you can see your dishes being washed. It's unique, but you probably would rather trust the dishwasher is doing the job and save the money.

Best KitchenAid Dishwashers For 2020

KitchenAid Dishwasher KDTE204KPS - $749

KITCHENAID KDTE204KPS

This dishwasher is similar to last year's most popular dishwasher. At $749, it's still one of the least expensive KitchenAid dishwashers like last year. It's still 39 DB like last year.

It has its old, third rack, but lacks the bottle wash capability of last years.

Eight hundred and fifty-nine is a competitive price. Miele doesn't market a dishwasher below $999. Bosch markets their better dishwashers at $1,049.

KitchenAid's only real competition is from a new line called Beko with identical 39 DB, Wi-Fi, and a whole bunch of specialized cycles.

Their "M" designated models have newer features.

KitchenAid Dishwasher KDTM604KPS - $999

KITCHENAID KDTM604KPS

This model has the Pro Drying capability as well as its new freshwater filtering system. Their bold new third rack is also in this model, along with greater rack flexibility.

KitchenAid Dishwasher KDTM704KPS - $1,399

KITCHENAID KDTM704KPS

The KDTM704 adds the better ball bearing racks to glide out even when laden with a ton of heavy dinner plates. Bosch has this on their better models as well.

You also have a light inside as well as an extra silverware basket.

Have questions? Click here to check out our Learning Center.

Best KitchenAid Dishwashers: Key Takeaways

KitchenAid-Dishwasher-and-AppliancesKitchenAid Dishwasher and Appliances 

 

Should you buy a new KitchenAid dishwasher?

In many ways, they may have outthought themselves with the new third rack. It's questionable whether you will use it as they intended.

Their filtering story is different. Most dishwashers, even the cheap ones, wash the dishes.

Their biggest missed opportunity was their lack of a seamless panel model. You don't want a dishwasher to stick out in that application.

However, at $799-999, KitchenAid is certainly worth considering.

Its washing system is probably the best. It has good drying capability as well.

Additional Resources

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WHY SHOULD YOU TRUST US?

A few review sites have placed this at the bottom of their articles. So here is our take: Our mission is to find reliable products for you to buy. Other review sites may say this as well.

However, we don’t love every product. Quite frankly, it costs us way too much money in repair costs to support less reliable brands.

In fact, we sell fewer brands than most appliance stores. Here is why:

We feel it is our responsibility to repair your appliances after you buy them.

We now have 30 service technicians, each averaging 8-10 calls a day Monday through Friday, plus another 110 on Saturday. That's over 30,000 service calls logged in one year.

The labor rates of fixing an appliance do not come close to the true cost in any product’s warranty period.

That is why no major retailer has a service department. It costs too much labor, money and time.

Our Blog is a bit different than most others you will read. We cannot write glowing reviews of unreliable products.

Hopefully, the bloggers and organizations who write such glowing product reviews for every brand consider servicing these products first. Only then they will understand the consequences of their marketing.

Steve Sheinkopf

My goal has always been simple: I want Yale to be the best retail experience anywhere. I have tried to create a compelling environment for customers and employees alike.

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Pricing on this blog is for reference only and may include time sensitive rebates. We make every attempt to provide accurate pricing at time of publishing. Please call the stores for most accurate price.

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