We found it on sale for around $600, so it's not only a reliable dishwasher, but an exceptional value as well. Of course, there are still some downs to go with those ups.

Most of our complaints stem from the machine's actual construction; some elements are unintuitive.

For a machine with a front control panel, the 's design is surprisingly tasteful. We tend to prefer interfaces located on the top of the door, but this simple front control panel is subtly integrated into the stainless exterior. The interior seems somewhat haphazardly designed, though, and handling is therefore a bit frustrating.

Rapid removal or insertion of the rack caused the wheels to come off track.

Beyond the fact that the six rows of vertical tines in the lower rack are not adjustable, they were placed in such a way that made for an inflexible loading pattern. This reduced its overall capacity and made loading large or bulky dishware more difficult. We also noticed that rapid removal or insertion of the rack caused the wheels to come off track, which is frustrating when trying to start a cycle in a hurry. The upper dish rack was much more user-friendly, even though it also lacked adjustability. The layout design was just more responsive to loading glassware, mugs, and small bowls, even if the rack itself was a bit shaky.

This appliance hosts a standard array of extra features and wash options—not surprising, given the low price.

In addition to the basic 1-Hour, Normal, and Heavy cycles, the features an Eco wash that conserves water and energy, as well as a Sensor cycle that gauges the amount of food stains in the wash tub and uses a corresponding amount of water and power to clean them. The customizable wash options include a Hi-Temp Wash, Sani Rinse, Heat Dry (Eco or High), and a Delay of 2, 4, or 8 hours. There is also a lock to keep those family members who don't help out with the dishes from interrupting a wash cycle. Each of the wash options can be added to a given cycle, though some restrictions do apply.

The is by no means a quick dishwasher, but its wash performance is admirable.

The true gem here was the three hour long Heavy wash, which aced all our tests. However, the considerable amount of time, water, and energy this cycle demands means you should save it for the filthiest of loads.

The true gem here was the three hour long Heavy wash ... save it for the filthiest of loads.

For everyday dishwashing, the Normal wash will usually suffice. We have few complaints, and it took a lot less time than the Heavy wash. If you're looking for speed, there's Whirlpool's 1-Hour Wash. Like most quick cycles, it sacrifices energy efficiency—and sometimes cleaning power—in favor of speed. That said, its performance was somewhat better than others we've tested.

A great bargain buy, as long as you don't mind a less-than-perfect interior layout.

With strong performance across its three main wash cycles, the is a pretty nice deal for something with an MSRP of just $749, and sale prices below $600. It includes just enough features to satisfy most alternative washing needs, and it’s also pretty efficient.

If you want a great value, you should definitely take a closer look at this Whirlpool.

Our main concerns are with its usability and general design, as some aspects of the machine were clunky, which made for a difficult dish-loading process. Still, those complaints seem trifling when comparing this dishwasher's price with the competition. If you're in the market for a new dishwasher and you want a great value, you should definitely take a closer look at this Whirlpool.

With fairly even performance, this bargain dishwasher definitely gets the job done. It's not particularly fast, but it's roomy and unusually efficient.

The darling of this machine is the Heavy cycle, which scored perfectly on our burnt sugar, egg, and margarine tests.

While our dried tea stains proved difficult to remove on the lengthy 144 minute Normal cycle, the minced meat and oatmeal tests performed well. We also tested the Normal cycle with the Sani Rinse option and found it reached a peak temperature of 157.1ºF, which is sufficient to kill bacteria. The 1-Hour Wash struggled on our dried spinach and burnt milk tests, but it did much better on our dried oatmeal and meat stains—such that it surpassed most competing quick cycles.

The Normal cycle with the Sani Rinse option reached a peak temperature of 157.1ºF, which is sufficient to kill bacteria.

The darling of this model, though, was the (somewhat inefficient) Heavy cycle, perfect in our burnt sugar, egg, and margarine tests. On the second pass it nearly aced each stain category—save for spinach, lipstick, cheese and lasagna. It was especially impressive on protein-based stains such as meat, egg, and milk. Don't plan on taking your dishes out quickly, though: this beast can last for 195 minutes.

In terms of both electricity and water consumption, this is one of the most efficient dishwashers we've tested.

While it's a fairly efficient machine overall, this dishwasher's high rating stems mostly from the Normal cycle’s bare water consumption. While the 1-Hour Wash and Heavy cycles consumed a considerable amount of hot water—5.08 and 7.71 gallons respectively—the Normal wash used a mere 2.84 gallons. This makes for an average water cost of only 3 cents per wash on the Normal cycle.

These numbers point to a yearly operating cost of $27.61.

In terms of electricity consumption, our tests revealed that the demanded 0.72 kWh on the Normal cycle. This figure went up to 0.84 kWh on the Heavy, and down to 0.36 kWh on the 1-Hour Wash. In all, these numbers point to a yearly operating cost of $27.61 based on a total cost per wash of 11 cents on the 1-Hour and Normal cycles, and 20 cents on the Heavy.

This is standard capacity, but with a somewhat frustrating rack layout.

We were able to fit 10 place settings, including a serving setting, into this appliance. While the lower rack was somewhat frustratingly designed, with limited flexibility and no adjustability, this is still a very average score.

Meet the testers

Tyler Wells Lynch

Tyler Wells Lynch

Contributor

@tylerwellslynch

Tyler Wells Lynch is a freelance writer and journalist whose work has appeared in Vice, Wirecutter, Gizmodo, The Rumpus, Yes!, and the Huffington Post, among others. He lives in Maine.

See all of Tyler Wells Lynch's reviews

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