Dishwasher choice for small household (2 adults)

l.i.tJuly 1, 2013

We just built a house and bought a bosch ascenta dishwasher (our previous was a bosch, but about 20 years old). Our problem is that it doesn't seem to get much clean.... For instance, after washing, we will still find 'sticky' things on our dishes or utensils....only after the wash, it's just dried sticky. We usually scrape and do a lite rinse before putting our items in, but it seems that now we pretty much have to fully wash our dishes in the sink in order for them to come out clean in the dishwasher. We have checked all the pumps, sprayers, etc, water pressure, drain function, and found nothing. We use finish tablets (have even used one in the dispenser and one resting on the top rack...but to no avail)

The other part that really bothers us is that our dishwasher always seems to be 'wet' and will actually grow mildew. That takes a LOT of work, as we live in the desert ;-)

Some of the problem may be because our house is only two people big - and we wash dishes about once or twice a week - no pots, a few ceramics, and mostly melamine and glass dishes, tupperware, and utensils. So things may get dried on, and consequently difficult to get off. And not a lot to retain heat to help the drying process. We are not the 'typical' family.

Sooooooooooo.......we, who are used to the super cleaning ability of dishwashers from the past, are ready to trade in our energy efficient 5mo old bosch, for something that will better suit our needs - aka, just get our dishes clean. Noise doesn't matter too much, and energy efficiency isn't paramount since we really don't wash often - and washing twice or thrice doesn't seem to be very efficient to me.

Does anyone have suggestions. I've read so many comments and reviews, but am really thinking that we might need suggestions from people with washing frequency and habits like ours. Thank you so much in advance!!!!!


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The Bosch Acsenta D/W is a good unit but it sounds like you may have some kind of drain blockage based on your complaint. Have a servicer check it out for you before just replacing it.

    Bookmark   July 1, 2013 at 12:50PM
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I also use my dish washer only two or three times a week..... and put pots and pans in it, that may have set in the washer for three days. Is your water hot enough? Can you check the water temperature going into the dish washer OR check the heating unit in the washer? Since your dishes are not clean and your dish washer is molding, I am betting that your water temperature is the problem. After you have checked the temperature, try using Finish Gel Caps. We have and are using the Finish powder/gel/red ball tablets but prefer the Gel Caps. Let us know.

    Bookmark   July 1, 2013 at 1:50PM
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I agree, that sounds like a drain blockage and/or water heat issue, or possibly it's a lemon. Don't give up on the Bosch. Have you read the troubleshooting stuff in the manual and had a repair person out?

    Bookmark   July 4, 2013 at 5:01PM
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I'll refrain from comment except to say that I believe part of the problem is the word "Bosch".

    Bookmark   July 4, 2013 at 9:32PM
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Have you tried using the cycle with the hottest wash and rinse temp? That might help compared to Normal. I would try another detergent also, and be sure you have jet dry in the dispenser and check the setting for that . Might need to bump it up a # or two.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2013 at 1:29AM
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I would have had a repairman out there immediately if the dishes are not getting clean. Something is obviously wrong. We are 2 adults, use our Kitchen Aid usually about 3 times a week, do not pre-wash the dishes/casseroles/pots and pans, use all cycles including normal most often, and the entire load comes out spotless. I do always run our water out of the faucet to be sure it is HOT before turning the dw on. What temp is your hot water heater set to? I can't imagine putting up with this in a new expensive dw for 5 months and thinking of buying something else without complaining to Bosch. It's their problem to fix.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2013 at 12:02PM
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Thank you for all the suggestions. I did test out the drain and it appears to be working. Not sure about the temperature, though - the washer basically backs up to the mechanical room with the hot water heater in it (set to 135 degrees), so there shouldn't be too much 'lag' in hot water getting to the dishwasher. And we have tried every 'heavy duty' setting possible along with the extra dry settings.

We should call the Bosch people (sigh). We are just so frustrated with the quality build and function of our new appliances - sad, but we would love to go back to all our old appliances, and do without all the added 'features'. It just seems like nothing is nearly as good as the old ones - maybe it's the energy efficiency, maybe it's because everything is built in China...who knows.

Thank you guys for all the help!!!! I'll let you know what they say!

    Bookmark   July 6, 2013 at 12:02PM
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Well, the Bosch Ascentas are manufactured in North Carolina, but that is still of no comfort,

One other thing to check, which is something I found on a friend's dw which had a similar problem. Check the water line to the DW and make sure the installer hooked it to the hot water line and not to the cold supply.

Also, does the dw drain line run through an air gap? Since you had a previous Bosch, you probably have one, but it is worth checking. If you don't know what an air gap is, you can find a picture in your manual. It is on page 11 of the installation instructions which came with my Bosch dw, and they seem to be generic instructions for all models. if your paper copy isn't handy, you can download the manuals in pdf format.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2013 at 3:03PM
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Run a load of dishes. Turn off the heated dry cycle. When the dishes are finished washing, open the door of the washer. Does heat and steam come out? Are the dishes hot to the touch? If not, then the water is not hot enough. Make sure the installer hooked the DW up to the hot water supply....NOT the cold water supply. I would call the installer or Bosch.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2013 at 5:05PM
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