Are Bosch dishwashers still THE dishwashers to get?

My current dishwasher, I’m assuming, is probably original to the house. That puts it at about 20 years old. It’s done a good job, however, it’s been going downhill for the last few years and the last few months it’s been going downhill even faster. I have a feeling at some point between now and who knows when, the motor is going die. It’s time for a new one so I’m doing my research.

For the past few years I’ve heard nothing but good stuff about Bosch dishwashers. So I’m looking at Bosch dishwashers and reading some reviews online. They’re not that great. I’m trying to figure out if it’s just the normal thing where they sell 25,000 units and the 100 people that are annoyed are the loudest or if there’s really a problem. There’s an even amount of good reviews but even the good reviews are sometimes mixed.
I’m reading things like:
-The handle breaks…a lot, it has to be replaced every few months
-It smells horrible, it has no heated dry so you need to prop it open between cycles to get rid of the standing water.
-Problems with the shelves/tines/wheels being plastic and breaking
-No food grinder so the filter needs to be cleaned regularly (sometimes related to the smell)
-And some other odds and ends like that, these aren’t all applicable to all the models, but it’s the gist of what I’ve been reading.
I’m also seeing reviews where they say Bosch isn’t doing a good job honoring warranty issues and their customer service isn’t that good. In fact, I even noticed that for some of the dishwasher they have say there’s a $xx rebate right on the page, but if you click on it (and some people might not), it’s long since expired.

Bosch seems to have 3 sub $1000 models. The 800 series, 500 Series and the Ascenta and they get pretty much the same comments. Also, if you look a the star ratings on Amazon, it’s pretty much split between 1 and 5 stars.

So, I spent last night researching these (well, the 800 mostly, haven’t spent much time with the other two yet) and for all the years I’ve been hearing about Bosch dishwashers, I’m wondering if it’s still the right way to go or if I’m better off saving a few bucks and go Kenmore or GE or Whirlpool or some ‘regular’ brand (FTR, haven’t even looked into those yet, I really just started this last night).

Any thoughts?

One last thing, my current dishwasher is a Kenmore QuietGuard2 (Model 665.17009400). I have attempted to get in there and clean the filter, chopper assembly and the little recirculating check valve, however, to gain access to that, after about 900 other screws I ran into one that not only did not come out, it was made of plastic and I was starting to chew it up pretty good*. My fear was ruining it and not being able to get it back on. Further more, of all the odd noises this thing has been making, there’s really only one moving part, the one motor, and it’s about $200. I’ll buy a new dishwasher before I sink $200 into 20 year old one.

*For those of you playing along at home, here’s a diagram. Part #11 is plastic and has to be held back while the bolt (part #12), which is recessed inside of it is turned. For that reason, you can’t hold the plastic part with a ratchet and because the entire thing is set inside of another thing, Part #9, you can’t get any type of wrench of pliers on it straight/flat so it constantly slips off, ruining it a bit more each time. Now that I think about it, I could probably figure out the correct size and get some time of offset/angled/swivel box wrench, but even if I gain access to that area, it doesn’t mean I’d find anything. I was really just troubleshooting. There’s videos on how to do this, but they’re on unused dishwashers and the parts are clearly pre-loosened. I’ve even seen people suggest the easiest way it just to cut/break the plastic part off and buy a new one.
Anyways, that’s neither here nor there.

I have a vague recollection when we looked that Bosch were impossible to find repairmen for – but that may just be our area. But I’d check out who does repairs on whatever manufacturer/model you consider.

So far as the health department is concerned, there is nothing better than a “commercial dishwasher”! And a home dishwasher will not do so far as public health goes.

Search for commercial dishwasher. They are not cheap!

I’ve had two, for a total of nearly fifteen years. Other than that the one I bought for this house has a “fine toothed” set of racks to hold all of Grandma’s china and is harder to load with normal stuff because of the close-spaced tines, they’ve been wonderful.

I woudn’t buy anything else, but I would look at their slightly better ranges and not the lower priced one. Check AJ Madison and Appliance Direct online for fabulous prices.

Moral: compare the close models for “number of dishes” and buy one with a lower number unless you use 12 plates, 12 salad plates and 12 butter dishes at every meal.

I did some research last year when I was pissed at our present machine. There was a Bosch model at the top of most reviews. I didn’t end up buying one.

What I did end up buying was a Sears extended warranty program (which I may have mentioned somewhere). Very reasonable and has already paid for itself for several years to come with the repair of the washing machine touch panel, a $500 part, not to mention what the labor cost would have been. They cover all major appliances in the house, regardless of where purchased, and do a free HVAC system check twice a year.

We bought a Bosch Ascenta a few years ago to replace a Whirlpool. Love it. Super quiet, no problems.

Like you, I often go down the rabbit hole researching before buying, and I do think people who are dissatisfied are more likely to leave reviews, so I tend to take them with a grain of salt now.

I have put Kenmore Elite dishwashers in my last 3 houses and really loved them. I wanted ultra quiet, and they all delivered. No real repair issues. I would suggest waiting for a sale at Sears to pick one up. Last time I was able to get one at 40% off.

We bought one in 2009 and used it for five and a half years, until we sold that house. There was definitely a learning curve, going to it from a much older Maytag. You needed to use half the detergent and twice the rinse aid, basically. Other than that it was fine.

The touchpad, which is mounted on top (talking about a dishwasher), is one of the things I’ve heard can go bad on some of these machines because water can drip on it (though you’d think there’s a membrane over it). I can usually fix anything myself, and I typically eschew warranties. However, a warranty that covers everything in the house sounds intriguing. The warranties that I’m seeing at Sears are about $600/yr plus a $60 deductible. For that price, as long as it makes it though the year, the warranty doesn’t seem worth it. Is there a different one than one of these?

I’ll look into those.

That’s good to know.

One thing that’s nice is that I have an acquaintance that has some kind of connection with open box stuff from some of the big box stores in the area so I put a bug in his ear. I have no idea (since I’ve never asked) what kinds of deals he gets. 10% off isn’t worth it to me, but if he can get me a $900 dishwasher that I’m interested in for, say, $400, that might make me say “well, if it breaks in a 2 years, I can live with it”.

After researching I bought a Bosch Ascenta in January, because we never use heated dry cycles anyway (since it tends to warp anything plastic) and there are just two of us so I wanted a small dishwasher that would be full enough to run daily. The dishes come out sparkling and I’m very happy with my choice.

If you want a larger dishwasher the 500 series holds a ton of dishes and is more adjustable, plus I liked the idea of the full size shallow top tray for odd shaped stuff like tongs, spatulas, graters, small containers, etc. I will probably buy one for our summer place since we entertain a lot there and need a bit more capacity occasionally.

All the Bosch models use condensing to dry rather than heat elements, as long as you use rinse aid it works well, but it is different.

thoroughly local, and may not be of use to you, but here is a testimonial from a slightly different perspective.

for the past two months, I’ve seen a lot (perhaps most?) of the local developers and builders in my area installing a lot of thermador brand and bosch brand dishwashers into their new construction and remodels as well. However, those are all pretty much the higher end models too, $1200 up to $7600

Other than the 3 Bosch series mentioned by the OP, there is also a 300 series, which is slotted between the Ascenta and 500 series.

I know this because we are having a Bosch 300 delivered tomorrow. I’ll report on it after using it a couple of times. We are going with a Bosch because every other dishwasher brand we have had, in any house, has been loud enough to wake my wife. If the Bosch is quiet enough to not do that, it will be worth every penny.

Boschs are not only silent when new, but don’t get noisier with age. Ours in CA was almost ten years old when we moved, and could just barely be heard running in the next room. It was silent as a grave for the first five years.

Point being, there are some equals for a few years, but for all the good qualities AND longevity of them, it’s Bosch. Also - zero repairs in fifteen years.

On this side of the pond, it’s Miele who are top of the tree.

I bought a Miele last fall, and I’ve been very happy with it.

It’s $39.95/mo (for our plan), or about $480/year. If you need to cover things like spas or hot tubs, the fee increases. We had an existing problem, which they covered and which paid for the first year’s premiums. The only reason I called them was because the washer was purchased at Sears and I wanted to have them fix it. She said sure thing, but are you aware of our home warranty program? There’s also a flat $60/visit charge per problem (regardless of how many times they have to come back). The warranty not only covers appliances, but also electrical and plumbing problems like your water heater, valves, faucets, electrical panel, etc. If you have an older home and older appliances, it’s not a bad plan. And of course it can be cancelled if it turns out to be something that’s not worthwhile. But just the two HVAC visits each year nearly pays for the contract, assuming they do full diagnostics. I also have an oven that is off by 25 degrees, and I plan to have them come fix that.

I hated the Bosch dishwasher we had. It was quiet, but it never cleaned the dishes well and I also really disliked the lack of a heated dry cycle - plastic things stayed wet forever. Several service calls never resolved the issues with its poor cleaning ability.

Our model was also subject to a recall and needed to have some of its wiring replaced (apparently there had been some fires). The lower rack was also very touchy and would slide off its track very easily.

After having it for about 8 years, the instrument panel crapped out and I was SO glad to see it go. What an expensive POS that was.

We now have a GE Profile which has been great. It’s a titch louder, but still very quiet, and it does have a heated dry cycle, which means the plastic stuff finally gets dry (and I’ve not noticed any problems with warping, though I always put that stuff in the top rack as per the directions in the manual). There are also some other bells and whistles, like a timer and a bottle-washing function, but I’m just glad it actually CLEANS.

Those are exactly the type of things I’m reading.

I read about one person complaining about that, however, since it was determined that since it wasn’t the panel that crapped out but rather the wiring to the panel, it wasn’t covered (for whatever reason, I didn’t read into it).

Timers, not so worried about, I ‘manually’ time it for when I want it to run. A heated dry cycle I’m pretty sure I like. I mean, if their product testing shows it’s not needed, great. I don’t care if it runs for 3 hours instead of 2, but if stuff still isn’t dry or it needs to be propped open, that’s kind of an issue. As for plastics, I’ve always shoved just about everything in my dishwasher, with a heated dry and rarely, if ever, had anything warp, top shelf, bottom shelf, even that reusuable tupperware stuff.
I really wanted a Bosch, but maybe it’s time to look elseware. I don’t have a Consumer Reports subscription (I’ll have to see if there’s a username on bugmenot) and I keep hearing this word ‘Library’ but I don’t know what it means). Whenever I’m in the market for a new appliance (or anything expensive), it’s tough to tell which sites are legit. I mean are dishwasher-review.top10reviews . com or bestdishwashers . reviews . com real sites or are the just bogus sites to attract visitors like me and the dishwashers and reviews on them are useless?
Funny thing about the board going bad. My first thought was “big deal, I can replace a circuit board, I can fix anything else” Then I thought “Why should I have to? I shouldn’t have to take a screwdriver to a new dishwasher for at least 10 years, that’s a bunch of BS”.

Broke my heart when I left a Bosch at my old house. My new house had a Bosch within a week installed.

Dishwashers of today are not the same as in the old days. They now use very little water, and they wash 2x as long–2 hours. Today’s dishwashers use the hot water to heat the dishes and they don’t have internal heater/dryers. They all use a silicone type liquid that sheds the water droplets off the dishes–and letting them come out mostly dry.

Many dishwashers on the retail market look good, but they’re not as high quality as their stainless steel finish appears. I continue to love my Bosch dishwasher, and on sale it was no higher than the competition in price.

Check your owner’s manual. European dishwashers aren’t allowed to have a heated dry cycle, and sometimes there is an “effective heated dry cycle” that is labeled something else.

The folks I know who are really into this sort of thing really love Miele for dishwashers.