Just like its pricier cousin, the 12833, the 12793 has Kenmore’s 360° PowerWash Plus motorized wash arm and TurboZone high-intensity spray jets. Unlike the 12833, we’ve found this beauty at sale prices for as low as $1,100. That’s an incredible value for a machine of this caliber.

The fanciest hinge you can buy

There’s a lot to like about the Kenmore Elite 12793. The stainless steel door features a useful display to let you know if your current cycle is washing, drying, or done. The touch-sensitive controls are laid out in a row at the top, and hidden under your counter when the door is closed. The control panel also has a text display that guides you through selecting a cycle.

The 12793’s door uses torsion hinges, which means it stays put in any position. No need to worry about it slamming shut on your fingers or crashing to the floor. Its interior is identical to the 12833, which includes the red spray jets, motorized wash arm, and cleverly-designed handle for adjusting the top rack. It even shares the same cutlery basket, which splits conveniently into three parts.

There is one row of tines that can be folded down on the bottom rack, and two on the top rack. Between the adjustable height of the top rack and the flexible cutlery basket, this dishwasher has plenty of ways to hold cookware of different shapes and sizes. There’s even a separate knife holder for steak knives. We were able to fit ten standard place settings and one serving setting inside the 12793’s tub.

Highway to the TurboZone!

The 12793’s list of cycles and features is also identical to the 12833. Even though they’re dressed differently on the outside, they’re practically twins on the inside. You get a choice of six cycles: SmartWash, Pots & Pans, Normal Wash, 1 Hour Wash, China Gentle, and Quick Rinse. The wash customization options are also the same, with High Temp and Sani Rinse to adjust the water temperature, and the mighty TurboZone spray jets to blast tough stains off your dishes.

The only difference is the 12793’s delay feature, which is a little more robust: You can postpone the start of your next cycle for 1-12 hours. Other than that, everything is the same as the more expensive Elite. You even get the option to shut off the dishwasher’s sound if you don’t like listening to it beep.

You can't rush perfection.

The 12793's overall cleaning performance is impressive. Our only gripe is the length of the cycles, the Normal wash taking 2 hours and 14 minutes, and the Pots & Pans cycle taking close to 3 hours and 30 minutes. Still, if raw cleaning power is all you’re looking for, the 12793 certainly delivers. Most people wash dishes overnight anyway, so speed isn't a major concern.

If raw cleaning power is all you’re looking for, the 12793 certainly delivers.

The Pots & Pans cycle gets special mention for earning a nearly perfect score on our stain tests. Considering that we use heavier stains for our tests than a normal user would leave behind, that’s no small feat. Although three and a half hours is a long time, you’ll likely be running this cycle overnight after dinner, and nothing beats the assurance that you’ll be greeted by clean dishes when you open that door in the morning.

If you do feel a need for speed, though, the 12793’s 1 Hour Wash cycle has you covered. Clocking in at 65 minutes, its cleaning performance was almost as good as the Normal cycle, except it has a little bit more trouble with thick, oily stains. Using more than twice the amount of water as the Normal wash, we like to think of the 1 Hour Wash as the faster, thirstier version for when you need immediate results. In total, we estimate a utility cost (water and electricity combined) of $29.01 for a year of running this dishwasher—on the right side of efficiency.

For in-depth performance information, please visit the Science Page.

If you see it on sale, buy it.

The 12793 certainly earns its Elite badge, along with our recommendation. Design-wise, we were impressed by its trick hinge, flexible racks, and cool LCD screen. We were just as pleased with its performance. Yes, the MSRP is on the high side, and it's only available through Sears, but we found sale prices in the $1,100 range. If you are looking for a high-end dishwasher and are willing to wait for a sale, this should be one of your top choices.
With high-end appliances, it can be hard to tell if the extra money you’re spending is actually getting you a better product, or just more buzzwords. The numbers don’t lie, though, and when we put the Kenmore Elite 12793 through our lab tests, we found it's definitely worth the price.

The Pots & Pans cycle is very lengthy, but very thorough.

The 12793’s Normal cycle did an impressive job removing stains. Although not perfect, barely any dirt was left behind when the cycle was done. More importantly, there were virtually no instances of redeposit, which is when food gets washed off of one dish only to stick on another. Even with a cycle time of 2 hours and 14 minutes, we were happy with how well the Normal cycle cleaned.

The Pots & Pans cycle is meant for the toughest, nastiest loads, and it delivered a serious bruising. Milk, meat, tea, egg, oatmeal—nothing was safe. There was barely any trace of the burnt sugar or burnt cheese left behind, and the baked-on lasagna test came out spotless. Clocking in at 3 hours and 27 minutes, though, this was a long cycle that needed time to work its magic.

The 1 Hour Wash cycle makes up for that. Taking only 65 minutes, its results were very similar to the numbers from the Normal cycle, except with lower milk scores. Still, since this cycle was designed to quickly take care of light soils, we were satisfied with the results.

Very efficient, even with a monstrous Pots & Pans cycle.

The 12793 proved to be a very efficient machine. The Normal cycle, which you're expected to use most often, only used 2.88 gallons of water and 0.69 kWh of electricity. We estimate a cost of about 11 cents each run. Pots & Pans takes nearly three times as much water, using 8.14 gallons and 0.85 kWh of electricity. The cost is around 20 cents, but we expect most buyers would be using this cycle sparingly. The 1 Hour Wash used 6.44 gallons of water and 0.42 kWh of energy. Our estimated total annual cost for running this dishwasher is $29.01.

The splittable cutlery basket is a neat feature.

We were able to fit ten place settings and one serving setting inside the 12793. Although there are only a few foldable tines, the cutlery basket can be split into three parts, letting you make better use of the space on the bottom rack. Other neat racking perks include a separate holder for steak knives and a handlebar for easily raising or lowering the top rack.

Meet the testers

Johnny Yu

Johnny Yu

Staff Writer

@ReviewedHome

Johnny Yu writes news, features, and reviews for Reviewed.com. He graduated from U-Mass Boston with a Bachelor's in Social Psychology and spends much of his free time expanding his gaming horizons. Sometimes, he does his laundry at work.

See all of Johnny Yu's reviews
Johnny Yu

Johnny Yu

Staff Writer

@ReviewedHome

Johnny Yu writes news, features, and reviews for Reviewed.com. He graduated from U-Mass Boston with a Bachelor's in Social Psychology and spends much of his free time expanding his gaming horizons. Sometimes, he does his laundry at work.

See all of Johnny Yu's reviews

Checking our work.

We use standardized and scientific testing methods to scrutinize every product and provide you with objectively accurate results. If you’ve found different results in your own research, email us and we’ll compare notes. If it looks substantial, we’ll gladly re-test a product to try and reproduce these results. After all, peer reviews are a critical part of any scientific process.

Shoot us an email