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Household chores like dishwashing can be a real pain – wasting you that invaluable time and precious moments with your loved ones. Having the convenience of a dishwasher, although it may feel like a luxury, doesn’t have to come with the price tag of an expensive indulgence. An affordable dishwasher can perform the job just as well – in just under $300.
However, when you decide on the best dishwasher under $300, there are a few important features to keep in mind. For the price, you can find a nice and compact countertop dishwasher that, however, will not be able to accommodate lots of dishes. Nevertheless, we searched the market to find the best options for the price. We’ve looked at the dimensions of a dishwasher, since you’ll need to be able to place it right into your kitchen, and its capacity, to tell how many dishes it can wash at a time. The number of cycles and heating power were also significant, since they influence the effectiveness of a dishwasher. And the overall water consumption will reflect your water bills after installment and use.
More features: 52 dB, 120°F inlet water capability
Designed for the family of six or more, the EdgeStar can fit up six standard place settings and goes right onto your countertop, without any type of permanent contract required.
Almost one and a half foot in size, you can easily slide the dishwater into or under most cabinetry in your kitchen.
As an energy-saving dishwashing machine, this dishwasher uses only 200 kilowatt hours per year, which is around 60 percent less energy than other portable dishwashers. It’s an extreme saver – with electricity and water.
For whatever situation, you also have the freedom of choosing up to seven different wash cycles so you can choose which one is best for your dishes and time.
The EdgeStar is designed with a stainless steel interior, built with a powerful spray arm and a built-in rinse agent dispenser that maximizes the clean and minimizes the water spots. This dishwasher also has an internal water heater and the heavy wash cycle that can get up to 149 degrees Fahrenheit.
This countertop dishwasher quickly connects onto the faucet with an adapter and 5’ hose. Built with easy-to-use electronic controls and a digital display, you can easily get those dishes done.
The entire package comes with a dish rack, cup shelf, and cutlery basket.
More features: 52 dB, 120°F inlet water capability
The hOmeLabs portable dishwasher is the perfect small and convenient machine, especially if you’re on a budget. Because of its small size, it can easily sit up perched on the countertop or tabletop, giving you more space to work in the kitchen and less space to use cleaning and drying dishes.
This dishwasher comes with a simple control panel and light indicators that make each program easy to select and use. With six different wash cycle options, from heavy to normal, from ECO to glass, and from speed to rinse, you can choose the perfect cycle or program for your situation.
From our kitchen to yours, the hOmeLabs dishwasher is easy to connect and assemble with accessories already included that make it that much easier. An inlet and drain hose and a faucet adapter make it possible to connect right to the water lines.
If you’re in a rush, you can simply click to the rinse aid dispenser, which can dry your plates, mugs, and glass quickly without extra water marks or streaks.
The dishwasher fits six standard place settings and is one and a half feet tall, which is perfect for a small apartment or a small amount of kitchen space.
The water heater can get up to 120°F and is Energy Star Certified, which means excellent for you and your wallet and the environment.
What we liked:
Six different wash cycles
Gets up to 120°F
Includes cup rack, detergent dispenser, cutlery basket, and spray arms basket
What could be better:
Connects to the water line, which means you have to have one in the area
With a small weight and size, SPT SD-2224DS is a great addition to any compact kitchen or short-on-space area. With a small, compact design yet full-sized power, this dishwasher offers the best of both worlds – convenience and performance.
This dishwasher is only 17 inches in height, sliding easily inside cabinetry in your kitchen or resting, hardly noticeable on most countertop areas.
Even though it is miniature-sized, it still fits up to six standard place settings inside, allowing you to wash as much as you please after every meal.
The dishwasher has an automatic detergent and rinse-aid dispenser which makes washing and cleaning dishes as easy as pressing a button on the LED electronic controls. While you’re going about your day, the LED lights stay on, displaying how much time is left of the cycle and which cycle is running – so you know what’s going on at all times.
SPT SD-2224DS quickly connects and adapts to most kitchen faucets, which means a very easy installment process. You don’t need to deal with plumbing or permanent installation.
You also have the option of choosing from seven different wash cycles, from heavy to normal, from light to mini-party, from rinse, to speed and soak, you can choose the one that adheres to the time or job at hand.
You can also relish in the delay-start feature, which means you can automatically start it in two, four, six or eight hours – well past dinner in case you forget or are leaving the house.
The dishwasher also comes with an automatic detergent and rinse agent dispenser and multiple featured indicators.
More features: Energy Star certified, hot and cold water connection
Designed with compact living in mind, SPT SD-2201S is perfect for small-sized apartments and office kitchens that want to invest in a convenient and performance-high appliance.
Standing at only 17 inches, this dishwasher can easily slide into any kitchen cabinet or stand atop any free kitchen counter space. With all of this interior space, you can fit up to six standard place settings.
SPT SD-2201S is always extremely easy to use. With machine top controls and a durable stainless steel interior, you can rest assured that it will save you time and last you a long time.
You can get the heat up to 148°F, which can take care of most of that crusty food leftover on the plate. The appliance also comes with a spray arm within the interior to make sure that you get the cleanest clean with every wash.
It is also easily installed, adaptable for any kitchen faucet and eliminating the need for direct plumbing or permanent installation. Your faucet just needs to have a removable aerator. If you don’t you might expect some water coming out of the connection because of the line pressure.
The dishwasher comes with a dish rack and silverware basket, an automatic detergent and a rinse agent dispenser.
What we liked:
It gets up to 148°F with the water heater
It comes compatible for six standard place settings with a dish rack, silverware basket, and detergent
What could be better:
It is incompatible with a side sprayer
It is built with a plastic tub design
Things to Consider
Your kitchen is the beating heart of your home – especially if you have hungry bellies under your roof. You need everything to be ready to work and working properly. Having a quality dishwasher is a great investment in your kitchen and your home, making your life and your housework that much easier. To help guide you through the buying process, here are some features to look for when choosing the best dishwasher for your budget.
What to expect from a dishwasher under $300?
Since you’re on a budget, you should know that no matter how high of a quality your dishwasher is, it’ll still lack in capacity when compared to a full-sized dishwasher.
More expensive dishwashers – those with a price tag over $300 will be able to hold more dishes at once and can fit right into a kitchen furniture dynamic. Unfortunately, dishwashers under $400, and even the best dishwashers for under $500 on the market will be small and compact – holding fewer dishes than integrated ones (with the price of around $1000) and normally shimmied directly onto the countertop.
Key features to look for in a dishwasher under $300
Some of these features can make or break your dishwasher investment. Whether you have a small kitchen space available, you have an extra-large family that uses a huge amount of dishes, or you need to look out for the electric or water bill, these might all be factors that you need to put into account when choosing a dishwasher under $300.
The size of your dishwasher – especially when buying one under $300 – can tell you a lot about the investment. Not only do you have to pay attention to its actual size to gauge how well it will fit in your kitchen, you also have to take into account the possibility that you might have to fit it on top of your counters.
Most of the dishwashers in this guide, like hOmeLabs HME010033N, are 17.5” in height, which is around 1.5 feet. This fits right into most kitchen cabinetry.
This doesn’t just refer to how many dishes a dishwasher can fit into its tines but how it fits into it is also crucial. Normally, these are measured in “place settings”. A place setting refers to the dishes that are normally used for one person during a meal, including tea and possibly a soup appetizer. It consists of a large dinner plate, a small snack plate, a saucer, a bowl, a coffee cup, a drinking glass, a knife, two teaspoons, a dinner form, and a small salad fork. However, the way it is arranged inside the actual dishwasher will help you see how much it fits.
Number of Cycles
The different types of cycles can help you measure the overall efficiency of your dishwasher machine. If you are comparing one dishwasher appliance with another, the number of cycles one has can surpass the other – making it much more efficient, especially if you need to quickly wash your dishes before setting the table for the next meal.
Most dishwashers often have different cycle options like normal, express, and auto. Normal takes care of a full load of dishes on a daily basis. The express option can run through and clean lightly dirty dishes or small loads in a quick amount of time. Auto can automatically sense how much needs to be cleaned.
You can also pick out a dishwasher with these options, as well – heavy, China, rinse only, and efficiency cycle. Depending on the brand you’re investing in, the names of these cycles may change from dishwasher to dishwasher. A heavy cycle is usually reserved for those pots and pans caked with food. China can change to low water pressure for fragile dishes. Rinse uses only water to wipe those dishes clean, and the efficiency cycle reserves water and energy. It takes longer than normal but is better for the environment.
Some portable dishwashers actually have an automatic timer features, like SPT SD-2224DS, which can be set to a later 2, 4, 6, or 8-hour turn-on.
Hot or cold water connection and water heating
Depending on what your water bill on a monthly basis may look like, you might want to consider the type of water connection and water heating that the dishwasher takes. You might want to invest in a dishwasher that is highly efficient in energy or one that only runs on cold water – saving you money when it comes to water heating. Most dishwashers are rated with the estimated energy use and cost per year – right on a yellow tag at the front of the machine.
Especially when it comes to dishwashers that are cheaper on price because of their size, they might also save you some money on water consumption. For a full-sized dishwasher, on average, the appliance uses only about 2.6 gallons of water to wash about the same amount of dishes per day that a human would spend 2.77 gallons of water washing. This means that overall, dishwashers are more water efficient than human labor. It is not only great news for an excuse to put down the sponge and invest in a dishwasher – buying a dishwasher for under $300 means that it’ll be smaller than the full-sized dishwasher, meaning it will use even less water.
Just like with any other appliance, the warranty that it comes with is also a critical factor when choosing which dishwasher to invest in. You’ll want an appliance that not only gets the job done but also is safeguarding your future of dishwashing with a couple year warranty before it begins to break down. HOmeLabs HME010033N seems to have the longest warranty, with two years on parts.
Safety and care
Maintenance of your dishwasher is also important to factor in. For example, cleaning your dishwasher after every use means more water consumption. If this is necessary with the dishwasher you invest in, you might want to reconsider.
If you have small children running around the house, having some sort of child lock or a system that takes your children’s safety into consideration is also a great investment.
Before you invest in a dishwasher, you might have a few questions to sort out the details. Finding the perfect dishwasher for your situation is a carefully measured out practice. Even though you’ve finally picked out the best one, you might still have some questions – and you’re not the first! Since we often get these same inquiries, here are the answers to our most frequently asked questions:
It all depends, of course, on what type of model you get. Each of these dishwashers work in their own unique way. You have to invest in one that makes the most sense in your situation. If you’re working with an open-styled kitchen, you might be able to get away with getting a portable dishwasher that hooks right into the main water line. SPT SD-2201S model will be one of the dishwashers you’re looking for and our advised-based choice for this situation. However, you might not be so lucky with your kitchen design and have to invest in a portable dishwasher that connects to your kitchen faucet. If you find yourself in this situation, you’ll want to invest in SPT SD-2224DS, or a model just like it.
Depending on the model you get and if it connects somehow to the main water heating line, it’s possible that you can get a dishwasher that is self-heating, like EdgeStar DWP62WH, which gets up to 149°F. Everyone knows that when it comes to cleaning dishes and getting bacteria out and gone for good, you need to blast them with a little hot water. Although highly efficient in getting dishes clean, hot water also racks up the water and heating bill. If you can’t or don’t want to foot that kind of bill, you might want to consider getting a dishwater that works with room or cold temperature water – or one that has no self-heating feature, whatsoever.
Normally, under your kitchen sink are loads of pipes and various tubes and inner parts that get your sink to work properly. Even if there is space to fit a garbage, for example, under there, it might not necessarily mean that there is space for a portable dishwasher. However, here it is all about the size. If you make sure to take the measurements carefully beforehand, you might be able to hunt a portable dishwasher out that can fit the size requirements to be able to slip in under the sink – finding the space, however, is up to you.
When trying to find the perfect dishwasher for you, your family, and your space, you can easily pick from any of these three options.
EdgeStar DWP62WH is the best one overall, fitting up to six different place settings with seven different wash settings. You’ll find the perfect setting and space for whatever situation you may be in. It’s also large enough and energy- and water-saving.
If you still want to have the luxury of a dishwasher without dishing out all the extra cash, you can pick hOmeLabs HME010033N, which is our best budget pick. Without minimizing the quality, you can get your dishes clean, quickly, for less price.
Especially if you are not tech savvy, SPT SD-2201S is our most user-friendly dishwasher. Not only does it fit right onto the countertops with easy installment, it also comes with machine top controls that are simple to press and easy to navigate.
You can’t go wrong with choosing any of our options. However, if you’re in a hurry, those our top three best dishwashers under $300.