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At one time, people had no choice but to wash the dishes by hands. The days of the dishwasher were something futuristic, almost hard to imagine. Today, most homes have a dishwasher and the thought of trying to get by without one is a nightmare. In fact, it is estimated than more than 50% of homes in the United States alone have dishwashers.

If you already have one, then you know from first-hand experience how much time and effort they can save. However, if you have never had a dishwasher and considering one for your home, you are in for the treat of a lifetime. Not only will a dishwasher provide a huge convenience for you, but it will also ensure your dishes and cutlery are sanitized, and a dishwasher uses less water than washing your dishes by hand.

Typically, when buying a dishwasher for the first time, there are two considerations - space and money. Keep in mind that you could easily visit your local appliance or home improvement store and pay as much as $800 or more for a top of the line model. However, if you simply want a good, reliable dishwasher that will get the dishes clean, you can find an excellent brand for as little as $200. Even if you want something that has a few more features, you should be able to find a number of excellent choices from $300 to $600.

The decision that is more difficult is space. Again, if you have not had a dishwasher that means your home has not been designed with the appropriate space. Therefore, the kitchen cabinets and countertop space would need to be modified to accommodate. In this situation, you would certainly not be alone in that about four million kitchen remodeling jobs occur each year around the country.

You could consider a portable dishwasher that would be rolled out of the way when not in use and then when you needed to wash dishes, it is rolled to the sink, hooked up to the faucet, and turned on. This is not a bad option and is a good solution if your kitchen were small. The one drawback is that generally, you have quite a few less features than you would with an under the counter style.

The good news for consumers is that with such a high demand for dishwashers, manufacturers are constantly coming up with new looks, features, and of course, cutting price. For these reasons, you can find upscale models that are very stylish, blending in perfectly with your kitchen. You can choose from a number of fronts to include your traditional steel that comes in off-white, white, black, and so on, or you can choose fronts that look like wood or have a wood cover, stainless steel, and many others.

One of the most important things to consider after the obvious cleaning ability is how quiet the dishwasher runs. With kids running in and out of the house, dogs barking, the doorbell and phone ringing, and all the other noises of daily life, the last thing you need is to hear the kitchen dishwasher running, creating yet another distraction.

The designs available today are generally very quiet. They are built with quiet water pumps and motors, often so quiet you forget it is even on. Because so many families prefer a quiet machine, manufacturers are working hard to be the best in this area. To accomplish this, sound dampening insulation, vibration absorbers, low-noise pumps and motors, and sound-absorbing washtubs are being offered.

Finally, you want a dishwasher that will be both functional and economical. With such high utility bills, why make it worse when you do not have to. With the new energy efficiency regulations imposed by the government in the early 1990s, most of the dishwashers on the market use up to 50% less energy than the dishwashers of the 1970s. Other benefits include less water usage, better filtering systems, and powerful sprays strong enough to clean even the dirtiest of dishes.
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