Double Dishwasher

April 5, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
When it comes to buying a new dishwasher, are the double-drawer ones a good option? Manufacturers claim they offer more flexibility, for example, by letting you wash pots and pans in one, while cleaning fine glassware in the other.

Kenmore's elite drawer dishwashers claim they are "ready for what life dishes out."

Consumer Reports wanted to see just how ready. Testers evaluated two double-drawer dishwashers, one from Fisher and Paykel as well as Kenmore's elite drawer dishwasher.

Bob Markovich, Consumer Reports, says "These dishwashers are pricey. Both retail for a thousand dollars or more."

Consumer Reports' tests of three of the Kenmore double-drawer dishwashers found problems. Sometimes there was standing water left in the bottom of the washer. And when the washer did run properly, it didn't do a very good job cleaning.

"There were visible food particles left on the cups and plates. Some of the dishes felt gritty to the touch," says Markovich.

On the other hand, the Fisher and Paykel dishwasher did an excellent job cleaning. However, it's noisy.

And among dishwashers, Fisher and Paykel has had reliability problems, with 25% of its dishwashers purchased over the past few years needing repairs.

Testers found the double-drawer dishwashers came up short in another area.

The Kenmore can't fit large plates. And while most other washers can easily hold platters over twelve inches, double-drawer washers have difficulty.

For a good old-fashioned dishwasher, one that does an excellent job cleaning, testers recommend a top-rated Kenmore, model 1374. At %650, it's a Consumer Reports best buy.


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