Skip to main content
The Best Third Rack Dishwashers Credit: Reviewed.com / Jackson Ruckar

The Best Third-rack Dishwashers of 2022

Recommendations are independently chosen by Reviewed’s editors. Purchases you make through our links may earn us a commission.

The Best Third Rack Dishwashers Credit: Reviewed.com / Jackson Ruckar

Why trust Reviewed?

Reviewed's mission is to help you buy the best stuff and get the most out of what you already own. Our team of product experts thoroughly vet every product we recommend to help you cut through the clutter and find what you need.

Learn more about our product testing
1
Editor's Choice Product image of Miele G 5266 SCVi SFP
Best Overall

Miele G 5266 SCVi SFP

The G 5266 blows most other dishwashers out of the water. If your budget can accommodate its premium price, it's one of the best models you can buy. Read More

Pros

  • Impressive cleaning power
  • Third rack and adjustable upper rack

Cons

  • Nothing significant that we could find
2
Editor's Choice Product image of Bosch SGX78B55UC

Bosch SGX78B55UC

This Bosch is one of the best dishwashers we've ever tested. It gets dishes clean and dry, quickly, and is ADA-compliant. Read More

Pros

  • Excellent cleaning power
  • Gets dishes dry
  • Tons of features

Cons

  • Minor issues with redeposit
3
Editor's Choice Product image of Bosch SHPM88Z75N

Bosch SHPM88Z75N

This high-end Bosch dishwasher can remove tough stains and get all of your dishes (including plasticware) completely dry. Read More

Pros

  • Dries plastics
  • Stellar stain removal
  • Quiet operation

Cons

  • Nothing significant that we could find
4
Editor's Choice Product image of Samsung DW80R9950UT

Samsung DW80R9950UT

This feature-filled, high-performing dishwasher comes in a Tuscan stainless steel finish that is sure to elicit jealously from your neighbors. Read More

Pros

  • Short cycles
  • Third rack
  • Fingerprint-resistant stainless steel finish

Cons

  • None that we could find
5
Editor's Choice Product image of Bosch SHPM65Z55N

Bosch SHPM65Z55N

This feature-filled Bosch dishwasher offers a quiet cleaning experience with a lot of adjustabilities to ensure dishes of all sizes can get clean. Read More

Pros

  • Quiet
  • Great cleaning ability
  • Gets dishes dry

Cons

  • None that we could find

The best third-rack dishwashers vastly improve the cleaning experience by better using the limited real estate inside dishwashers.

These sliding trays are mainly for silverware and larger utensils, such as ladles and spatulas, but some third racks can also fit smaller bowls and ramekins. Using a third rack also frees up space on the bottom rack by reducing or eliminating the need for a bulky cutlery basket.

In the nearly 15 years we’ve been testing dishwashers here at Reviewed, we’ve found that one of the most important factors in the best dishwashers is usability, something that a third rack adds.

After testing the best third-rack dishwashers on the market, the Miele G 5266 SCVi SFP (available at Abt for $1,649.00) was our favorite because it can fit both utensils and larger items on its top rack, which also can be minimized so you can wash taller items on the second rack.

While the G 5266 is expensive, our list also has third-rack dishwashers that will fit most other budgets. Here are our the best third-rack dishwashers we tested:

The Miele dishwasher installed in a modern kitchen. Its door is partially open, revealing it's fully stocked with clean dishes.
Credit: Miele
Best Overall
Miele G 5266 SCVi SFP

The Miele G 5266 SCVi SF dishwasher’s third rack can accommodate both utensils and larger items, such as ladles. Additionally, it can slide its left half under itself, making more room for taller dishes on the upper rack, which is also adjustable. The upper rack can be tilted at an angle to help with loading and unloading, as well.

As far as cleaning, this dishwasher delivered nearly spotless dishes during testing, with no redeposit. Its Normal cycle also is nearly 30 minutes faster than average.

Except for its premium price, there’s a lot to love about the G 5266, a great high-end dishwasher that does an excellent job cleaning, has a sleek design, and great functionality.

Pros

  • Impressive cleaning power

  • Third rack and adjustable upper rack

Cons

  • Nothing significant that we could find


Other Third-Rack Dishwashers We Tested

Product image of Bosch SGX78B55UC
Bosch SGX78B55UC

The Bosch 800 Series SGX78B55UC/13 has the extras you expect in a high-end dishwasher, including a traditional third rack that fits oversized utensils.

The SGX78B55UC/13, which has strong cleaning abilities, is ADA-compliant, meaning that it has enhanced accessibility features. It is a bit smaller, which is something to be aware of if your kitchen cabinetry is designed for a standard-sized dishwasher.

Overall, this is an excellent dishwasher that adds ADA accessibility features without sacrificing performance found in other Bosch 800 series models, including the CrystalDry technology, which left dishes perfectly dry during testing.

Pros

  • Excellent cleaning power

  • Gets dishes dry

  • Tons of features

Cons

  • Minor issues with redeposit

Product image of Bosch SHPM88Z75N
Bosch SHPM88Z75N

The Bosch 800 Series SHPM88Z75N features a MyWay third rack, which fits utensils, ladles, and small bowls. This dishwasher’s upper rack also adds versatility—it can be adjusted to three heights and even can accommodate vases without issue.

This dishwasher excels at washing dishes. Also, like other models in the 800 series, the SHPM88Z75N features Bosch’s CrystalDry technology, which uses zeolite to dry your dishes.

With a sound rating of 40 dBA, the SHPM88Z75N is what we expect from a Bosch dishwasher: quiet, efficient, and stylish.

Pros

  • Dries plastics

  • Stellar stain removal

  • Quiet operation

Cons

  • Nothing significant that we could find

Product image of Samsung DW80R9950UT
Samsung DW80R9950UT

The Samsung DW80R9950UT has it all, including a customizable third rack and adjustable tines on the upper and lower racks so you can fit oddly-shaped dishes in the dishwasher.

In addition to adjustable height, this dishwasher’s third rack has a column at its center that can be lowered for oversized utensils. While we like the third rack’s overall build quality, we didn’t like that it could wobble while sliding on its rails.

This dishwasher has top-notch cleaning abilities, with Normal, Quick, and Heavy cycle options all able to remove more than 97% of food stains during our testing. The DW80R9950UT also has minimal redeposit and near-perfect drying.

If you’re looking for a user-friendly dishwasher loaded with features, it’s worth considering the DW80R9950UT.

Pros

  • Short cycles

  • Third rack

  • Fingerprint-resistant stainless steel finish

Cons

  • None that we could find

Product image of Bosch SHPM65Z55N
Bosch SHPM65Z55N

The Bosch 500 series SHPM65Z55N dishwasher’s third rack is designed so that the bottom edges of its sides can be lowered to make space for deeper bowls.

This dishwasher’s other racks also add functionality—both have tines that can flip down, and the middle rack has wine glass holders that can be reoriented—so you’ll be able to wash many different sizes and types of dishes. And you’ll be able to hold on a conversation while this dishwasher is running, because the SHPM65Z55N is whisper-quiet.

While this Bosch’s cycles are on the longer side, the cleaning results are worth the wait. It blasted through our test food stains during the Normal cycle and removed nearly all of them on Heavy. The Auto Air function, which opens the dishwasher door after a cycle has ended, also is effective at drying dishes.

If you want a Bosch dishwasher but don’t have the budget for a dishwasher in the 800 series, the Bosch 500 series SHPM65Z55N is a great option.

Pros

  • Quiet

  • Great cleaning ability

  • Gets dishes dry

Cons

  • None that we could find

Product image of Bosch SHSM63W55N
Bosch SHSM63W55N

The Bosch 300 Series SHSM63W55N dishwasher has a third rack, adjustable upper rack, and foldable tines, and it delivers the cleaning prowess, design, and quiet operation the brand is known for.

During testing, the SHSM63W55N removed nearly all of our food stains during testing of its Heavy cycle, and while this 300 Series dishwasher isn’t as quiet as some other models, it’s worth every cent.

Pros

  • Great cleaning performance

  • Drying feature that works

  • Third rack

Cons

  • Drying option extends cycle times

Product image of KitchenAid KDTM404KPS
KitchenAid KDTM404KPS

The KitchenAid KDTM404KPS dishwasher’s third rack is one of the deepest we’ve ever tested. In addition to a divot that can hold small bowls, cups, and mugs, it also has rotating spray jets to make sure everything gets clean.

In part because of the third rack, this dishwasher can fit more up to 16 place settings, making it a great option for big families. The KDTM404KPS does an excellent job cleaning dishes on its Normal and Tough cycles, and it’s quiet too, with a sound rating of 44 dBA.

Pros

  • Attractive exterior

  • Powerful Normal cycle

  • Well-designed top rack

Cons

  • Slow cycles

Product image of Café CDT875M5NS5
Café CDT875M5NS5

The GE Café CDT875M5NS5, a beautiful high-end dishwasher, has a third rack that will fit oversized utensils and silverware.

There’s a lot to love about this dishwasher, including overall cleaning ability, but the CDT875M5NS5 did struggle with the most stubborn stains during testing. Given its price, the inconsistency is a concern.

The CDT875M5NS5 is beautifully designed, does a good job drying dishes, and has the features you’d expect in a high-end dishwasher.

Pros

  • High-end aesthetics

  • Third rack, bottle jets, and smart features

Cons

  • Inconsistent cleaning

  • Not the best value at its current price

How We Tested Third-Rack Dishwashers

Two white bowls covered in pureed spinach sit in the top rack of a dishwasher
Credit: Reviewed

We test a dishwasher's Quick, Heavy, and Normal cycles by challenging them to clean dishes with baked-on food stains—milk, spinach, egg, oatmeal, meat, and more.

There are three major parts of the dishwasher experience—performance, features, and usability. During our testing, we focus on those factors to find which dishwashers offer good value and which should be avoided.

Performance factors include stain removal, redeposit, cycle length, and drying. To assess stain removal powers, we test each dishwasher on three cycles—Normal, Quick, and Heavy—to see how they clean dishes with food baked on. When testing, we don’t pre-rinse dishes, either.

Dishwashers need to be able to wash and dry dishes, which is why penalize models when any dish comes out wet. We also take note of redeposit, when food debris from one dish gets stuck on another, and how long wash cycles take.

Features and usability go hand-in-hand. A third rack offers you the advantage of having somewhere to stow serving spoons, long knives, skewers, and other kitchen utensils that don’t fit in a dishwasher’s cutlery basket or can potentially fall out of the upper rack—no one wants a chef’s knife impaling their foot. It should slide smoothly and allow for an optimum wash.


What You Should Know About Dishwashers With Third Racks

What is the Third Rack in a Dishwasher for?

Third racks allow people to more efficiently use the vertical space in their dishwashers by fitting items above the upper rack, including silverware and oversized utensils.

Most third racks also can accommodate smaller bowls and ramekins. By washing utensils in the third rack, you can create more usable space on the bottom rack for dishwasher-safe pots and pans, as the third rack often reduces the need for a cutlery basket.

In general, third racks are not best for heavily soiled dishes, as they typically don't have spray jets and rely on water from the washing arms at the bottom of the appliance.

How to Load a Third Rack Dishwasher

Most of the dishwashers with third racks that we reviewed have dedicated spots for silverware that prevent “nesting.”

When loading your dishwasher, oversized utensils, such as mixing spoons, spatulas, and ladles, can be placed in a single layer on flat portions of a third rack.

If your third rack has tines for cups and small bowls, be sure to not overload the tray.

Is a Third Rack in a Dishwasher Worth it?

Until recently, a third rack was a premium feature only available on high-end dishwashers. Now, they’re more frequently seen in less expensive models. Third racks make good use of a dishwasher’s space.

Although third racks are more common, you may have to pay more money for a dishwasher that has one.


Meet the testers

Mark Brezinski

Mark Brezinski

Senior Writer

@markbrezinski

Mark Brezinski is a senior writer with over ten years of experience reviewing consumer tech and home appliances.

See all of Mark Brezinski's reviews
Jonathan Chan

Jonathan Chan

Senior Manager of Lab Operations

@Jonfromthelab1

Jonathan Chan currently serves as the Lab Manager at Reviewed. If you clean with it, it's likely that Jon oversees its testing. Since joining the Reviewed in 2012, Jon has helped launch the company's efforts in reviewing laptops, vacuums, and outdoor gear. He thinks he's a pretty big deal. In the pursuit of data, he's plunged his hands into freezing cold water, consented to be literally dragged through the mud, and watched paint dry. Jon demands you have a nice day.

See all of Jonathan Chan's reviews
Julia MacDougall

Julia MacDougall

Senior Scientist

@reviewed

Julia is the Senior Scientist at Reviewed, which means that she oversees (and continually updates) the testing of products in Reviewed's core categories such as televisions, washing machines, refrigerators, and more. She also determines the testing methods and standards for Reviewed's "The Best Right Now" articles.

See all of Julia MacDougall's reviews

Checking our work.

Our team is here for one purpose: to help you buy the best stuff and love what you own. Our writers, editors, and lab technicians obsess over the products we cover to make sure you're confident and satisfied. Have a different opinion about something we recommend? Email us and we'll compare notes.

Shoot us an email