Thread Number: 80779  /  Tag: Modern Dishwashers
WSJ Editorial Board: Make Dishwashers That Clean Again
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Post# 1047683   10/14/2019 at 11:29 (1,600 days old) by stricklybojack (South Hams Devon UK)        

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Sources close to the situation report what the insiders reveal...it ainít right!


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This post was last edited 10/14/2019 at 16:13



Post# 1047715 , Reply# 1   10/14/2019 at 19:16 (1,600 days old) by Frigilux (The Minnesota Prairie)        

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Let me throw the first grenade. Every modern dishwasher Iíve had has cleaned very well using relatively little water and energy. Brands include Frigidaire, Maytag, LG, GE and my current machine, a portable low-end Whirlpool. In fact, due to the racket it makes, I use only the 1-hr cycle and it does a bang-up job, even on pots/pans.

Having said that, I fully understand the complaints about 2 hour + 40 minute normal cycles. Iíd also argue that drying is more of a problem than actual cleaning with some of todayís dishwashers.


Post# 1047723 , Reply# 2   10/14/2019 at 20:23 (1,600 days old) by lakewebsterkid (Dayton, Ohio)        
Ehhh

...I agree to an extent. My Bosch is more efficient than my Whirlpool in both electricity and water when using the Normal cycle. The Bosch also cleans better when using that cycle. It isnít just water and energy values but more of a design factor. Older KitchenAid DWs were great, but not in EVERY way possible. So a machine, like my Bosch, would clean better if it were allowed to use higher wash temps or more water to allow for greater spray pressures. However, newer detergents rely so heavily on enzymes that long wash times would still be necessary. Iím not saying I wouldnít like it, but Iím just not sure it would make that big of a difference in a normal cycle. Now a 1 hour cycle is a completely different beast.

Post# 1047734 , Reply# 3   10/14/2019 at 22:11 (1,600 days old) by Tomdawg (Des moines)        
Let me add to this

Make washers and dryers clean again!
Iím not impressed by whirlpoolís new design.
If they made a quality machine, I would buy whirlpool again. Until next time.
(IMO)


Post# 1047742 , Reply# 4   10/15/2019 at 01:59 (1,599 days old) by MattL (Flushing, MI)        
Uninformed or user error?

Do some people not know how to use modern equipment?  All my current generation equipment well out performs TOL  stuff it replaced - all while using much less power or water.  I'm coming up on 2 years with my KA dishwasher and can count on one hand the items that I took out that were not spotless.  MY WP Duet washers get everything clean, and have gotten spots and stains out that my previous LK TL couldn't budge.

 

Really get tiered of hearing that "new" stuff is crap.  Learn how to use it.


Post# 1047748 , Reply# 5   10/15/2019 at 05:43 (1,599 days old) by DADoES (TX,†U.S. of A.)        

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Yes, consumers are loathe to change their habits to fit how "newfangled" machinery works.

For example, habitual prerinsers impair the performance of dishwashers with soil sensors ... causing the cycle to be shortened AND heating temperatures reduced.† Many also get in a tizzy about those long cycles (on both washers and dishwashers), choosing the shortest "Quick" cycle regardless of load size and/or stain/soil level (which particularly comes into play for laundry).


Post# 1047759 , Reply# 6   10/15/2019 at 08:13 (1,599 days old) by Helicaldrive (St. Louis)        
Phooey on the naysayers

My Maytag dishwasher that is a couple years old cleans better than all my previous machines and itís virtually silent. It just took a little experimentation to learn how to use it. First off, it cleans best with the longest Power Scrub or whatever the cycle is called rather than normal or auto. That was true of my older DWs too. That adds a couple more rinses which makes all the difference. It just took a little experimentation to figure out the right dose of detergent. Second, it doesnít take anywhere near the 3 or 4 hours it says itís going to take if you turn on the kitchen faucet and get the water hot before starting it, which everyone should know to do with any dishwasher new or old. Capacity is smaller than my Newton, IA Maytags, but the build quality of the door and racks is infinitely better.

And my HE FL washer gets clothes cleaner than my old school full fill TL Maytags and SQ ever did. And it gets stains out first time every time with no pre-scrubbing. Just need to bleed the water line hot before starting, and learn how to load and dose detergent properly. Iíd never go back to using all that water and detergent in the old TLs. All the people complaining about no cleaning and unwet clothes are grossly overloading and over or under dosing detergent, and/or using too much fabric softener.

So what if these machines run 2 hours. Multi task and do other things.

Life is good.

Sure I love the glitzy chrome styling of the old appliances and cars. But theyíre not necessarily better.


Post# 1047768 , Reply# 7   10/15/2019 at 10:01 (1,599 days old) by Kate1 (PNW)        

I donít think modern dishwashers are that bad. Itís clothes washers I have most issue with. Iím convinced the recent scent additives and highly scented detergents are a result of modern washers being unable to fully remove stink from clothing and instead of fixing our machines weíre being told to douse our clothing in artificial fragrance to cover the stench up.

Post# 1047770 , Reply# 8   10/15/2019 at 10:42 (1,599 days old) by IowaBear (Cedar Rapids, IA)        

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I think products have become highly scented because it's now cheap for manufacturers to make them that way and people actually prefer them (or equate highly-scented with "more powerful.")  The original Tide liquid is P&G's latest victim.  Over at the Tide website there's plenty of outrage and all P&G will say is that most consumers prefer an "intense" fragrance.

 

The Tide Powder with Bleach is still lightly scented but I now expect it to be turned into unbearable perfume at any time and any box I buy could be my last.

 

As far as energy efficiency goes, appliance manufacturing is now in the hands of a few global corporations.  A temporary pause in the USA's standards isn't going to change much, if anything.

 

 


Post# 1047783 , Reply# 9   10/15/2019 at 15:01 (1,599 days old) by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
My dishwasher cleans well.

It just takes 88 minutes as opposed to an hour or less than my 90's single motor and pump type.

Post# 1047792 , Reply# 10   10/15/2019 at 16:08 (1,599 days old) by kskenmore (Kansas)        
Drying

My parents have a new Bosch dishwasher that is very good! It holds an incredible amount of dishes and runs totally silently. It has a ding ding ding at the end so you know it is finished. However, it does not dry at all. It has no heating element. So they have to leave it standing open for about 12 hours to allow most of the dishes to dry. They always mention how they love it, but hate that it doesn't dry.

Post# 1047793 , Reply# 11   10/15/2019 at 16:50 (1,599 days old) by DADoES (TX,†U.S. of A.)        

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Lack of a drying heater is not unusual nowadays.† Models as such rely on a heated final rinse for drying heat and require rinse aid for proper moisture evaporation.


Post# 1047800 , Reply# 12   10/15/2019 at 17:43 (1,599 days old) by lakewebsterkid (Dayton, Ohio)        
Wow

I am very shocked we all seem to be in agreement!
However, washer and dryers are another beast. I wanted to discuss that, but figured I would save some hair pulling. Looks like we are headed there anyways! New machines should have a water factor of at least 3.2 and use 105F degree water for warm and tap hot for hot settings on normal cycles! Cleaning would soar, and additive usage would be minimized by the Ďuneducatedí/ignorant.


Post# 1047822 , Reply# 13   10/16/2019 at 02:09 (1,598 days old) by SudsMaster (SF Bay Area, California)        

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Flash drying - at least that's what I recall the owner's manual for the Bosch SHU43C sez.  Frankly I think it dries well enough. The only water left behind is that caught in the concave bottoms of certain items like cups and wine glasses. Simple enough just to tip them over, and maybe wipe a little off with a clean towel.

 

Then again, I chose the longest and hottest cycle (pot scrubber) so when the cycle is over, there's a cloud of steam if you open it right away. I'm not sure if things dry faster with the DW open or closed.

 

As for cleaning, it's rare that everything doesn't come out spotless. The only time I had trouble with it was when the drain pump needed replacement. Before the Bosch I had a Frigidaire which was a nightmare. It lasted about five years, and I picked up the Bosch as a customer return at Sears. No regrets.


Post# 1047849 , Reply# 14   10/16/2019 at 14:10 (1,598 days old) by golittlesport (California)        
long dishwasher cycles?

golittlesport's profile picture
I don't really get that complaint. Are they waiting for the dishwasher to finish so they can serve dinner on the clean plates?

I typically turn the dishwasher on when I go to bed -- doesn't matter if it runs 30 minutes or 3 hours -- I wake up to spotless dishes. I agree with the majority here that modern dishwashers are more efficient, do a superior job and are much quieter. I remember my mom having to turn the dishwasher off when she would get a phone call.

I believe unsatisfied customers are probably not using the machines correctly and have not read the instruction books that came with their machines.


Post# 1047851 , Reply# 15   10/16/2019 at 15:00 (1,598 days old) by Iheartmaytag (Wichita, Kansas)        
Cleaning ability is not my major concern

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With modern appliances.  It's their planned obsolesce.  There used to be a day when 15-20 years was a good life for a water using appliance.   Many real Kitchenaids have lived 30 or more years. 

 

Now if you get five, you have  quality machine.


Post# 1047852 , Reply# 16   10/16/2019 at 15:28 (1,598 days old) by Frigilux (The Minnesota Prairie)        

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The problem for me with super-long cycles is that two loads usually need to be run when I have company. I try to do a load of cookware before the meal, but that doesn’t always play out. Back at the house (and the warehouse apt.) there could easily be three or even four loads when making big meals for 8+. It’s in those cases where cycle time can really add up.

And to answer the question I know is coming: Washing anything by hand is cheating!!

Now that my life has been downsized, there are no more 2 or 3 entree buffets with multiple sides + desserts.  We usually just go out to eat if there are more than four of us, LOL.


Post# 1047855 , Reply# 17   10/16/2019 at 15:43 (1,598 days old) by murando531 (Augusta, Georgia - US)        

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I actually have some faith renewed seeing that most don't agree with this misinformed opinion article. I've now had three of Whirlpool's current platform dishwashers in this house since late 2015: the WDT920 that has become YouTube famous and has several threads on this site with peanut butter glasses in the corner of the top rack and the scorched on foods tests, and is now living at my grandparents' house because I wanted them to have something sleek and modern and silent in their new kitchen, then the KDFE104 that I adored but ended up letting HD return it because it had been damaged in shipping on the back, which made the upper ball bearing rack glides seem "off" during the 6-7 months I had it, which resulted in the WDF520 that I have now that will stay with the house when we move, that also has beyond impressed me considering it's a much more mid range model than the TOL quality of the 920 and KitchenAid, yet cleans like a beast while running all wash levels. I even have some video clips of it posted after I swapped in the third level wash manifold, and it's about as close as we can probably get on the market today that resembles the "hurricane in a box" of the PowerCleans and old KitchenAid's.

All of these machines have "pond pumps", they all have normal cycle times of 2-2.5 hours, and all use around 3-4 gallons on a normally soiled full load, and they all, each and every time produce perfect results, and I've yet to have any sort of odor or more than a tiny speck every once in a blue moon. And after I modified the 520 with Noico sound mastic all over the outer surfaces and inside the door, it's as silent as both the other 46db rated machines.

Also, as much as I revere the PowerClean as one of the most well designed and bulletproof dishwashers to ever grace this earth, all of these modern machines outperform it in overall cleaning, quietness, and efficiency. I adored the PC but because of its rapid cycles with today's enzyme based detergents, I frequently would pull out a stray spoon or bowl that would still have a bit of dried goop on it.

And this is just based on WP's platforms. There are many brands and designs being offered today that easily compare in performance, though build quality and "feel" are arguable in my opinion.

And laundry is a whole other rant with the same idea, after I've now owned two HE top loaders and the front load I've had now for 2 years.


Post# 1047857 , Reply# 18   10/16/2019 at 15:46 (1,598 days old) by henene4 (Heidenheim a.d. Brenz (Germany))        
4 loads a day

That's like saying you need a SUV just because one of the roads you commute on goes through a forest IMO.



Yeah sure in those situations yes you might need something else.

But, like, how often is that?

And can you justify such a major difference in overall design for those rare cases?




I'm 99% certain that the savings outweigh the additional usage of a couple of sinks worth of water.







And on durability:

So, a 80s KA was how much back then? 300-400$?

That's close to 1000$ today. Just as a perspective...


Post# 1047859 , Reply# 19   10/16/2019 at 15:47 (1,598 days old) by murando531 (Augusta, Georgia - US)        

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I've also mentioned this before in other threads, but I will never understand the hang up over cycle times. It would be one thing if these machines had to be hand operated, but jeez, all you have to do is set your options, click a button, and walk away, and when you come back when it's done, the whole operation has been finished. That's the whole point of an "automatic" washer or dishwasher!? I can't imagine being someone pacing in front of the machine, biting their nails in distress because they're waiting for the exact moment they can pop that lid or door open. There are thousands of things a person can do in the time that machine is doing its job completely on its own. Go watch a movie or something, lol.

Post# 1047860 , Reply# 20   10/16/2019 at 15:55 (1,598 days old) by murando531 (Augusta, Georgia - US)        

murando531's profile picture
Needing fast cycle times during company is a valid argument, but at the same time, during my 29 years of life and all the holidays at my grandparents' and aunt Robin's, both being the "adults" I've always looked up to and admired, I vividly remember that when the kitchen was busy and they were the showrunners delegating tasks, ALL the pots and pans, bake-ware, and large items like huge mixing bowls and such, were all washed by hand as we went. And I do that to this day. All the dinnerware and small stuff goes in the dishwasher, so long as none of it is wood or nonstick. Even having a 15 person Thanksgiving as recent as last year, we didn't have a back up of dishes or a shortage of anything, and the dishwasher ran twice the whole day, fully packed. I myself dislike handwashing dishes, but when it's all large items, it kinda cuts down on the time, versus if you had all the little utensils and silverware and cups to deal with.

Post# 1047866 , Reply# 21   10/16/2019 at 16:42 (1,598 days old) by LordKenmore (The Laundry Room)        
I will never understand the hang up over cycle times

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I'm one of the ones who has commented more than once about long cycle times. My thought (and I'm not alone in this): I don't like leaving an appliance running fully unattended. I won't hover over it, of course, but I want to be around in case something goes wrong (like screams of mechanical anguish, or the sound of water running when it shouldn't). Perhaps I'm too conservative or paranoid...

These long cycle times may or may not work with a particular schedule.





Post# 1047867 , Reply# 22   10/16/2019 at 16:50 (1,598 days old) by LordKenmore (The Laundry Room)        

lordkenmore's profile picture
I also have commented on long cycle times for entertaining. It's possibly valid to think of a situation outlined above of a family gathering where people might be recruited to do dishes. (Indeed, I've heard this before--one dishwasher detractor I know chirped cheerfully that the only time I'd ever have lots of dishes is for family gatherings, and everyone will pitch in to clean the kitchen!) But this doesn't apply to all families, and it may not apply to other entertaining one might do.

As always, a lot hinges on the person and his or her circumstances...



Post# 1047868 , Reply# 23   10/16/2019 at 16:50 (1,598 days old) by LordKenmore (The Laundry Room)        

lordkenmore's profile picture
Of course, there are ways of working around the problem of long cycle times for entertaining. One very obvious solution: if it was a huge problem regularly, one could get a second dishwasher. (Not that anyone here would want a second...or third...or fiftieth dishwasher. LOL)

Post# 1047871 , Reply# 24   10/16/2019 at 17:25 (1,598 days old) by appnut (TX)        

appnut's profile picture

No hand washing is allowed at my house.  I'm one of those "strange" people that won't use anything unless it's been washed in the dishwasher.  In the process of preparing things for a company meal, or something similar, I have been known to "sort" dishware and give first priority any/everything that can be washed with simply using the 1-hour cycle.

 

The one time I haver used the delay start feature was two years ago.  When I awoke the next morning, that was when the diverter/distribution valve decided to tank.  I'm too skiddish to tempt fate again and have that happen all over again.  I just don't fall asleep very easily knowing the dishwasher is still running.  I've ceased using the dry cycle most of the time as it's just about finished with the final rinse by the time I'm ready to go to bed.  That way I can open the door and let everything flash/steam dry over night.  


Post# 1047874 , Reply# 25   10/16/2019 at 17:29 (1,598 days old) by mark_wpduet (Lexington KY)        
@iheartmaytag

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I agree with you. Cleaning, cycle times are no issue. It's the fact that they are designed to die in a much shorter amount of time that bugs me to no end. Especially since the USA is always professing how we can limit environmental impacts by being more energy conscious and yet they cut corners or design these machines to live a much shorter life and we end up having to replace them more frequently. It makes ZERO sense with environmental impact in mind. I think proper maintenance helps some... but my refrigerator is designed to fail just the way it's built, no matter how clean I keep the coils.

Post# 1047885 , Reply# 26   10/16/2019 at 19:51 (1,598 days old) by brisnat81 (Brisbane Australia)        

Just buy a machine that has a quick or a fast Option.

The Miele defaults to 2-2.5 hours on the normal auto cycle and completes the cycle in less than 2 Gal of water, using spray arm alternation and gentle sprays.

Add the Short option and you still get the same cleaning capability, but its all over in 1 hour, including 12 mins of drying time. This uses around 4 gal of water. Both arms run at once and the spray pressure is higher.


Post# 1047888 , Reply# 27   10/16/2019 at 20:14 (1,598 days old) by Frigilux (The Minnesota Prairie)        

frigilux's profile picture

Every dishwasher I’ve had in the last 10 years has had an impressively effective short cycle. That really keeps things moving in multiple/consecutive loads situations.  

 

I used to entertain 2-3 times a week—often with multiple entree buffets—so the dishwasher had to do multiple loads frequently.  An effective short cycle (usually 45-75 minutes) was an important feature.


Post# 1047890 , Reply# 28   10/16/2019 at 21:02 (1,598 days old) by iheartmaytag (Wichita, Kansas)        
That's close to 1000$ today. Just as a perspective...

iheartmaytag's profile picture
And a new Kitchen aid will cost you upwards to $1500 today, and still be designed to fail in five to eight years.
Perspective: the year my mom bought her first dishwasher, you could get a decent slightly used car for $1500.

I just think for a grand or more the dishwasher should outlast the main course.


Post# 1047893 , Reply# 29   10/16/2019 at 21:32 (1,598 days old) by IowaBear (Cedar Rapids, IA)        

iowabear's profile picture

A TOL KitchenAid was advertised for $499 in 1980 in my local paper.  That would be just over $1500 today.

 

For a long time I've been of the opinion that paying more often just gets you more features, not more reliability.  But who knows?

 

I would love to see a real parts breakdown and reliability study of the various WP models today:

 

Cheap $300 Whirlpool

Mid-range $600 Maytag

High-end $1500 KitchenAid

 

And see what lasted longer.

 


Post# 1047897 , Reply# 30   10/16/2019 at 21:55 (1,598 days old) by Tomdawg (Des moines)        
Dish drawer?

For those of you who have multiple loads to run, would the fisher paykel dishdrawer be a better option? I guess the idea is run more often with smaller loads..
not sure if some of you guys out there that have dishdrawer and donít really have this problem.
We run into this problem... mainly because the wife or I forgot to run the dishwasher the night before. So sometimes it runs twice in one day.


Post# 1047899 , Reply# 31   10/16/2019 at 22:26 (1,598 days old) by Lordkenmore (The Laundry Room)        

lordkenmore's profile picture
>I would love to see a real parts breakdown and reliability study of the various WP models

It would be interesting.

I can't qualify as any sort of expert...but I have thought that a more expensive appliance may not buy anything past more features. Performance and lifespan might not be much different vs. a lower end model (at least as long as one isn't at the rock bottom "it's cheap because it's cheap, not just because it costs little" level). Actually, reliability of a lower end model might be better: fewer features=less stuff to break.


Post# 1047907 , Reply# 32   10/17/2019 at 02:58 (1,597 days old) by mark_wpduet (Lexington KY)        
Yep

mark_wpduet's profile picture
I've thought of this. Buying the very expensive TOL appliance may not yield any more longevity than the BOL which is SAD!!!

Is a water heater an appliance? Anyway- we just got a new one. I noticed that the BOL had a 6-year limited warranty but the TOL had a 12-year limited warranty. So maybe TOL does get you better build quality? I don't know. I just assumed mostly today the TOL got you more features, or larger capacity - but pretty much the same build quality underneath.


Post# 1047908 , Reply# 33   10/17/2019 at 03:22 (1,597 days old) by chachp (North Little Rock, AR)        
More Money = More Features and/or Better Build Quality

chachp's profile picture

 

I don't think we can say this is true across the board with all manufacturers but it's been my experience that it's usually true.  

 

My most recent experience of this was when I was shopping for a dishwasher.  I noticed that just in the BOSCH line alone those machines that costs less had racks that were not as adjustable as those in the higher cost models (feature) and noticed that the lower end models had a plastic bottom while the higher end were all stainless (build quality?).  Does this matter in the long run?  Each person will have a different answer because we all use different criteria to evaluate.  I wanted the third rack, etc. so I had to pay a little more to get it.

 

Another example for us last year was when one of our door openers went out.  Since both were almost 20 years old we decided to replace both which is not an inexpensive endeavor (and I'm a little OCD and wanted them to match :) ).  I did a lot of research and found big differences in the features and build quality among the lower end models through to the higher end.  In the end I went for the better warranty (I got ten years), what is supposed to be a better drive mechanism and had the WiFi abilities I wanted.  I also was able to purchase from a local Overheard door franchise which I try to do whenever I can.  And because it wasn't a big box store I was able to negotiate a better price since I was buying two instead of one.  I try to support local when I can vs. the big box stores.


Post# 1047912 , Reply# 34   10/17/2019 at 05:04 (1,597 days old) by DADoES (TX,†U.S. of A.)        

dadoes's profile picture

Part of the cost increase on higher-end models IS for the increased warranty coverage, if that's a touted benefit.† Consider Speed Queen's toploader line -- TR3, TR5, TR7.† Each higher model has a longer warranty (3 yrs, 5 yrs, 7 yrs ... notwithstanding their current promotion of 10 yrs on all), and more features which are just more options enabled on the electronic controls.† The mechanical operational components are otherwise identical from one to another.


Post# 1047918 , Reply# 35   10/17/2019 at 07:05 (1,597 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        
Most Reliable and Longest Lived DW in WPs lineup

combo52's profile picture

Would likely be the $299 machine, the highest end models differently have many more problems.

 

Likewise the lower end Bosch DWs are considerably longer lived and less problem prone than their high end models, however Bosch DWs are much flimsier than WP built machines, the number of broken handles, rack wheels and even bent doors we see on Bosch DWs shows that they are not a good choice for rentals and student housing situations, LOL

 

With appliances like water heaters , furnaces and central A?C units the more expensive models will generally last longer and cost less to operate.

 

Garbage disposers are a good example of getting what you paid for, aTOL ISE disposer will cost 3 or 4 times as much as a Bager but will last 2-3 times as long and will not clog your drains.

 

Range hoods are another good example of getting a much better product if you pay more.

 

John L.


Post# 1047920 , Reply# 36   10/17/2019 at 07:21 (1,597 days old) by henene4 (Heidenheim a.d. Brenz (Germany))        
Bosch DW wheels

Yeah, those are the worst part on these machines.

For some reason, they always break when used heavily, the clips on them just snap...


Post# 1047986 , Reply# 37   10/17/2019 at 21:57 (1,597 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
my experience with modern dishwashers

I have the Kenmore dishwasher model 13222 with thE powerwave wash arm. It does a great job of cleaning dishes. The door is the heaviest out of all the dishwashers my family has owned. It's running as I speak now. I always use smartwash, high temp wash and heat dry as well as cascade detergent and rinse aid. You can hear the sheer force of the water jets when it is empty. it alternates wash arms like Bosch would. It seems that American manufacturers are learning from the Europeans, starting with Frigidaire when it comes down to washing. One time, I ran it with the door open, and water shot across the room when the bottom arm operated. I don't care about long cycles anymore because I do other things, like laundry or TV. just my thoughts. it depends on how jets operate too.

Post# 1047989 , Reply# 38   10/17/2019 at 23:41 (1,596 days old) by SudsMaster (SF Bay Area, California)        
Water heater longevity...

sudsmaster's profile picture

It's my impression that warranties on water heaters have mostly to do with the number and quality of the anode rods in the heaters. More anode rod means less corrosion of the glass lined steel tank, and a longer tank life.

 

There may be other bells and whistles, of course, to go along with a higher price.

 

I'm keeping my 40 year old water heater going by replacing the anode rod every 10 years or so. I also flush it out every three or four years. It's probably due now. Seems to run fine. The only hiccup in the last 20 years has been the pilot got plugged up and the entire thing stopped producing hot water. That was about two years ago. There's no sediment trap in the gas line to the heater, which means some gunk got into the pilot circuit. It wasn't hard to fix once I figured out what the problem was, and it's been running fine since. Nope, haven't put a sediment trap in the line yet. Lazy.

 

I did add another layer of insulation to the tank, and some foam insulation on the hot water pipes under the house. I think it helps. We'll see.

 

Better water heaters have two or more anode rods. One as a free standing one, which is basic. The other one is incorporated into the cold water inlet (a long pipe called a dip tube that puts cold water to the bottom of the tank, so it gets heated faster without unduly cooling the entire tankful). Although on my water heater, the dip tube is plastic. I know that because I replaced it at one point.

 

There are also two types of anode rods. The most common around here are magnesium, and they have a little raised dot in the center of the anode rod attachment nut at the top of the water heater. The other type is aluminum, and has a flat nut. I think the magnesium ones are better, but in some locations aluminum is used because the magnesium isn't as well suited to the water quality. And aluminum rods are cheaper.

 



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