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Tub Capacity and Materials

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Courtesy of GE Profile

A stainless steel dishwasher tub is durable and stain-resistant.

When it comes to performance, the dishwasher's interior should be tops on your list. There are several options to consider when purchasing a dishwasher.

 

Tub Capacity

Choosing the size that best fits your needs will save you money in the long run.

  • A standard tub in a 24-inch dishwasher should fit about 10 or 12 place settings in one load, or eight place settings and six serving pieces.
  • A super-capacity or tall tub in a 24-inch dishwasher should fit 14 or even 16 place settings in one load. A tall tub dishwasher fits in the same space as a standard tub model even though its interior is larger top to bottom. The extra room allows it to hold dishes and pots in a wider range of sizes and shapes.
  • A compact tub typically fits eight place settings.

 

Materials

Tubs, regardless of their size, typically come in one of two materials:

  • Stainless Steel: The more expensive of the two, stainless steel is more durable, doesn't spot or stain, resists hard water and retains heat better than conventional materials.
  • Plastic: The cheaper choice, plastic is more common and still quite durable.


Stacks and Racks

The new generation of dishwashers has a multitude of configurations designed for different dishwashing needs:

  • Adjustable or removable racks and shelves can be rearranged to accommodate large or unusual-shaped items: tall stemware, baby bottles and sippy cups, cookie sheets or tall pots and pans. In most instances, the tines can be lowered or removed to allow for more flexibility.
  • Cutlery baskets are fairly common. They are used to hold most kitchen utensils, sit in the bottom rack and can be moved as necessary.
  • Stemholders can be added as an extra line of protection when washing wine glasses.
  • Some manufacturers are adding a third rack to the dishwasher. The third rack can be used for anything from cutlery to an extra set of dishes.
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