Countertop Dishwasher : Small in Size but Big on Results.
A Countertop Dishwasher has to be the supreme example of getting the most out of a small package. In a space as big as a microwave oven you can wash up to 4 place settings of dishes, effectively and efficiently. It is truly amazing that so many features found in normal sized dishwashers can be squeezed into such a compact kitchen appliance - but it is true. If you simply don't need to wash large numbers of plates, bowls and pans all at once then a countertop dishwasher can be the perfect solution. Typically only 17 inches tall, they sit on a kitchen work surface, fitting nicely under an overhead cabinet. They can clean a whole load of dishes using about 2 gallons of water, far less than someone would use manually washing them.
If you've never seen or heard of countertop dishwashers then you may be skeptical that such tiny appliances can really work. Read on, and you will see that they not only work, but do a fantastic job. Just think of them as small, compact versions of the typical full-sized built-in dishwasher that you find in most kitchens today. Unbelieveably, almost every feature that you might wish to find in a normal dishwasher is also available in the countertop models. Plus you will see that they have quite a few unique benefits over the bigger dishwashers. Some can manage to handle plates up to 11 inches wide, so don't be too quick to cross them off your list.
How Does it Work?
Functionally, there is no difference between a countertop and a full-sized dishwasher. They clean dishes by blasting them with a series of very hot water jets. This is combined with detergent designed specifically to dissolve the food and grease found on plates and bowls. Apart from size, the only real differences appear when you look at how the water gets in and out of a countertop dishwasher.
Instead of being permanently plumbed into the sink and drain underneath a kitchen work surface, a countertop dishwasher is usually placed on top of the counter. Then it is simply connected to the sink faucets through hoses that you attach before using it. Everything else depends upon the particular brand or model that you buy. Some have heaters that get the water super hot (140 - 160 F), others rely upon the temperature of the hot water that comes from the kitchen faucet. Some have food grinders, others rely more upon filters that you clean regularly. There really is a large number of features that you must understand before you buy a countertop dishwasher.
Instead of the features available, the decision to choose a countertop dishwasher is most likely to be based upon the other factors that are described below.
Is a Countertop Dishwasher a Good Idea?
The obvious reason for buying a countertop dishwasher is that you do not have the space for any other kind. Even the portable dishwashers or compact dishwashers still take up quite a lot of space in the kitchen. Cleaning dishes in a countertop appliance is very convenient and only takes a minute or two to connect up and be ready to wash. For the sake of a little space on your work surface, you can avoid having to dedicate one of your cabinets to becoming a dishwasher, or having to remodel your kitchen.
A perfect example of this situation is living in a rented apartment where you typically can't just redesign your kitchen area even if you did want to. Another advantage here is that, when it is time to move you just grab the dishwasher and take it with you to the next apartment.
Another time when the extra small size is useful, is for those people who own a RV. Perhaps the epitome of the idea of portable dishwashng! Being lightweight also means that the countertop dishwasher can be stored somewhere in the RV and only brought out when needed.
Even if you do have space for a built-in dishwasher in your kitchen, you still have to think about how you will use a dishwasher. If there are just one or two people who rarely cook then you may just not need a full-sized version. If you are really only looking at a couple of breakfast bowls, 1 or 2 place settings and some coffee cups every day then a countertop dishwasher may be all the size that you need. This is important to understand and evaluate because a countertop dishwasher can save you money on both water costs and electricity. Over the years, these savings can be significant.
In fact, the cost savings alone are a good reason why some people have a countertop dishwasher in addition to their built-in model. Some households only have large numbers of dishes to clean at certain periods. For example, a working couple may only manage to cook big meals at the weekend. Others might only have larger meals occasionally. Most of the time they only need the small dishwasher.
There Must be a Downside
Yes, there are downsides that have to be considered before you buy a countertop dishwasher. The main one is price. Although very small, and usually less expensive, they do still cost a decent amount of money. If you are going to be spending money on a countertop dishwasher and a built-in model is only a little bit more money then maybe you should go for the larger model.
This is where you might really have to do some homework and figure out what the cost savings will be between the countertop dishwasher and the other versions. You will also have to honestly evaluate your real requirements about a dishwasher and how you will use it. This website will guide you how to do this but it is only you who can make the final decision. Look through the DishwasherGuru articles for advice.
It is worth noting that many full-sized dishwashers today have a feature that allows you to clean the dishes in only the top rack. This can give you the same water and energy savings that a countertop dishwasher can give you. So you could have the benefits of the smaller type of dishwasher, yet have the option of using the entire dishwasher when you want to.
The 'biggest' issue that you will probably have is the capacity of the dishwasher. Although, you would buy a countertop dishwasher specifically for small loads of dishes, you have to accept that you might have items that just won't fit. This is okay if you are prepared for this. Make sure to check that all of the items you will clean regularly can be accomodated.
Buying a Countertop Dishwasher - More Things to Think About
This appliance is going to sit on top of your counter. This means that there won't be anything to stop any noise it makes from bouncing around your kitchen. So find out at a store or by reading the sound ratings just how noisy it will be.
Manufacturers are aware that some consumers aren't too thrilled about having a dishwasher sitting out in plain view on their work surface. Some design the appliance to resemble a microwave oven. Since they are a similar size this can be a very effective way to 'hide' it.
Remember that you are going to have to connect up the hoses and power cord every time you use it. For most people this is a minor irritation but worth keeping in mind.
Buying a Dishwasher Online
Consumers today have a huge benefit when it comes to buying a dishwasher, they can shop online. This can be a particular advantage when you are looking for a countertop dishwasher because not every store is going to stock any. Even if you do find a store that has one, the range of choices might be very limited. However, online you have 'every' store available to you.
The internet also gives you other advantages. Some online stores offer extra deals to enice you away from the local stores. For example, you might find - good finance deals, no sales tax, free shipping, or extended warranties.
Compact Appliance is a top 500 internet retailer which was created to provide distinctive home appliances that offer maximum functionality in a minimal amount of space.
Buy a great Countertop Dishwasher from Compact Appliance.
AJ Madison is based in Brooklyn, NY and has an enormous presence in the online world for home appliances. They have a very large range of dishwashers and handle most of the big brand names. They are backed by the Better Business Bureau and have great customer service that can help you through the purchasing process.
Check out a Countertop Dishwasher at AJ Madison.
Sears is the leading home appliance retailer in the US with over 2,500 stores.
They have won many industry awards including the 2011 ENERGY STARŪ Retail Partner of the Year. Sears have many of the top brands of dishwashers including their own range of Kenmore appliances.
Look at the large selection of Countertop Dishwashers from Sears.
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