dishwashers without food grinders

ellenandcoFebruary 23, 2013

Question first: Do quality dishwashers without food grinders even get the bits of broccoli or pasta or peas bits left on children's plates? We're building and I've specified the KUDE50 (I want the front display, not integrated) which has no food grinder.

I read so much about folks only cleaning their traps quarterly or monthly, I want to make sure I'm not in for a surprise having to clean it out daily.

Backstory: The house we're renting has a Kenmore Elite dishwasher (and a Viking range...go figure!) that has no food grinder. I understand that this is not a top of the line dishwasher. I use cascade or finish tabs. I have to clean out the food trap after every wash or two. It is gross. There is also gray green slime that is deposited along the bottom near the hinge, but that's another gross factor unrelated to the undissolved food chunks. At least the dishwasher is quiet.

This post was edited by ellenandco on Tue, Feb 26, 13 at 9:36

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The food grinder is not a garbage disposal, it's kinda a joke really.

Sounds like you need to scrape your plates better before put them in the dishwasher - even those with a grinder. If you have to clean your filter every couple of washes, you are putting too much junk into it in the first place, sorry. It's not a trashcan or garbage disposal and the grey line is further evidence of too much material. Bits are ok, whole peas , florets, and noodles are going to cause problems. Do not rinse the dishes though.

I clean my DW filters about once a year, maybe.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2013 at 11:18AM
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Fori is not pleased

It's not too bad--we're terrible scrapers and have to clean the filter every few weeks. Most people do much better. And it's just a knock the filter on the side of the trash can a few times kind of deal.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2013 at 12:26PM
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thanks fori for the real-life input.

xedos, sometimes it takes writing and reading my own words to realize "DUH!" Table-to-dishwasher is not working for us and I should scrape our dishes. Our other homes have had dw with a grinder and never rinsed or scraped. From what I read here I thought I could just keep that up. Guess not, at least with this dw.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2013 at 2:03PM
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ellen - you probably can - if you're able to find a kitchen aid / hobart dishwasher from the 60-70's that is running and will last another 10 years.

Problem is , new DWs have been engineered to to meet stricter water and electrical requirements and regulations and as a consequence their food eating ability has disappeared.

So, people have had to change their behavior.

The new detergent formulations have also caused a stir in the past year or two, causing yet another behavior change and design/engineering response.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2013 at 5:40PM
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I've had the KUDE70FVPA, purchased for its quiet rating, for nearly three years. I've let the filter cleaning go for months at a time, although when I get to it I do note the slime you refer to. Yes, it's rather gross but it doesn't seem to impact the performance or the apparent cleanliness of the dishes.

Make sure you've got the drain path setup properly/optimally on installation. Once I noticed water pooling in the bottom after a cycle, and it turned out that food debris was plugging up the drain line at the air gap (so the smaller food chunks to egress and don't all end up as slime on the filter).

I've since stepped up the reminders to the teenagers in the house to scrape their dishes into the trash a bit more thoroughly.

The dishwasher is wonderfully quiet and does a pretty good job with the dishes. I don't miss the grinder function.

BTW, we went with the model we did with the control panel on the top of the door in order to put a cabinet-matching face for the front panel. It really disappears into the cabinetry, even when running, because it's so quiet and camouflaged :-).

    Bookmark   February 24, 2013 at 6:40PM
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I just ran a load in my Bosch today that included around 25+ peas and pieces of corn.

Some visuals ;-)


    Bookmark   February 25, 2013 at 12:51PM
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I clean the filter occasionally. Mostly not because it's dirty but because I'm rather anal about my appliances.

And 79 minutes later:

    Bookmark   February 25, 2013 at 12:54PM
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wow...that visual is striking! anyone else up to the before and afer challenge? I took our dw apart this morning and am trying a vinegar wash. I hope scraping and this cleaning will help keep the slime away.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2013 at 9:35AM
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I am in the process of researching dishwashers too.
Kitchenaid KUDS301XSS has a food grinder and is 49 dBL. I am debating between that one and the KUDE201XSS without a grinder but is 46 dBL

Here is a link that might be useful: Kitchenaid dishwasher comparison

    Bookmark   March 2, 2013 at 5:26PM
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Just an update on our situation. I tried several detergents and additives and machine cleaners and found a routine that keeps the dishes and machine clean, shiny, scale and slime free. For our water and machine, finish quantum with finish power up in the prewash chamber brings success! The only caveat? Be sure to rinse the sippy cups or your toddler will quickly be drinking curdled milk. My guess is there is a lot of citric acid in one of the formulations and it doesn't quite rinse off plastic.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2013 at 2:46PM
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