Kenmore Elite 13923 Review
The Kenmore Elite 13923 is affordable, but it lacks versatility and space.
While dishwashers tend to be wallflowers by design, the Kenmore Elite 13923 is especially average—if such a thing is possible. Its design won't win any awards and it lacks any specialty features. Efficiency and capacity are pretty standard, if a little unimpressive. It's the chain restaurant grilled chicken of dishwashers—inoffensive, fairly satisfying for what it is, and very commonplace.
We usually have nothing against the humdrum, but in this case, maybe you should live a little. If performance is as unexciting as the edifice, you'll want to keep on shopping.
Design & Usability
At least it has stainless and a fancy spray arm setup.
Some dishwashers put their controls on the front without ruining the appliance's overall aesthetic. See the Red Dot Design Award-winning Asko D5434XXLS as a perfect example. By comparison, this Kenmore's front controls just look cheap. A matchy-matchy silver plastic console isn't fooling anyone, and it seriously disrupts the stainless exterior.
Inside, there's room for only nine place settings, which is just a little more cramped than other machines we've tested. A stainless interior speeds drying and makes for a quieter wash, while a unique spray system called TurboZone fires water from the back of the washer to try and do a more effective cleaning job on heavily soiled dishes and pans. The upper arm fires water up into the cups, glasses and dishes on the top rack. Both the top and bottom arms are curved, which allows more water jets to fit into the width of each one.
This appliance offers a limited selection of cycles, with no china or glassware modes.
The Kenmore Elite 13923 offers a rather limited selection of cycles, with no delicate wash or glassware cycles. This seems like an odd omission, but there are enough cycles for most users.
There are no options for customizing the cycles: you cannot change the wash level or heating levels. In fact, the only additional wash option on offer is a four hour delay. You can’t change the length of this delay, nor can you add extra rinses, sanitize, or any of the other options that some washers offer.
There's a direct correlation between cycle length and cycle performance.
The Kenmore Elite 13923 favors performance over speed, so the cycles are generally on the long side. The exception to this is the 1-Hour Wash, but that had rather poor performance. The Normal cycle did a pretty adequate job, although a third of our test load still wasn't clean enough for reuse. A three and a quarter hour Pots & Pans cycle may have taken its time, but it did a decent job getting tough stains off our test load.
When it comes to efficiency, we calculated that this washer would cost about $36.29 a year to run, which is pretty average for washers of this size and type.
There's absolutely nothing outstanding about this dishwasher.
The Kenmore Elite 13923 fits into a very competitive price range, that sweet spot between $600 and $800 where dishwashers start to show off high-end features. It’s noticeable, then, that the Kenmore doesn’t have a hidden control panel, customizable wash cycles, a delicate/glassware cycle, or even enough room for 10 place settings. It’s even more noticeable that it doesn’t do as good a job cleaning as some of its closely-priced competitors.
For the same price, you could get a dishwasher that's better looking, more efficient, and more effective. Another reason to hold back on this dishwasher: Kenmore appliances are only sold at Sears, so it's $999 MSRP is pretty much etched in stone unless Sears has a sale. If they do, the price usually gets knocked down to about $799, and even that's not very inspiring.
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