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How Long Do Dishwashers Last, and How Can Mine Last Longer?

[Updated: Nov 16, 2020 ] May 02, 2020 by Maurie Backman
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When you buy a home, your hope is that its components will last as long as possible, thereby minimizing the amount of money you need to spend on repairs or replacements. And one potentially large expense you might encounter as a homeowner is replacing your appliances.

Though some appliances may last longer than others, none are designed to last forever. And if you rely on your dishwasher a lot, you may be wondering how long you can count on it to keep running. Here's what you need to know.

How long do dishwashers last?

A typical dishwasher should last about 10 years, according to Consumer Reports. But that doesn't mean you won't need to spend money on repairs during that time. In fact, Consumer Reports surveyed its members and found that 30% of all newly purchased dishwashers are likely to have issues within five years of installation.

How much does it cost to replace a dishwasher?

HomeAdvisor (NASDAQ: ANGI) reports that the average new dishwasher costs $970, though it's possible to get a cheaper model. And if you want a higher-end model (say, one with more capacity, a quicker cleaning cycle, or minimal noise), you could pay a lot more.

Knowing how much you might spend on a new dishwasher, coupled with a dishwasher's basic life expectancy, can help you determine whether it pays to sink money into repairing your current unit versus removing it and getting a new one.

Imagine you're looking at a $300 repair to fix a five-year-old dishwasher. That's probably worth doing, since there's a good chance you'll get another half-decade out of that appliance if you spend the money. But if you're looking at a similar repair when your dishwasher is nearly a decade old, you may want to spend the extra $700 and just get a new one.

The good thing about getting a new dishwasher is that it'll generally come with a warranty that lasts at least a year, and possibly two or three. You may also be able to buy an extended warranty at a modest price that protects you from having to spend money on repairs for a good number of years following that purchase.

How to make your dishwasher last

By not abusing your dishwasher, you may be able to prolong its useful life. For one thing, make sure to remove debris from plates and bowls before loading them into your dishwasher. Small chicken bones, for example, can clog your dishwasher's drain hose or damage its other components.

Also, aim to use your dishwasher as sparingly as possible, as doing so will help it last longer. If your machine is half-full, wait until you have more dirty dishes to run it. But don't overload your dishwasher, either. If you do, your dishes may not come out clean, and once that happens, you'll risk having to run your dishwasher again. Do that repeatedly, and you may decrease its lifespan.

Many people rely on their dishwashers, and understandably so. The good news is that if you buy a new one, there's a good chance it'll last 10 years, especially if you treat it properly. And if you're buying a home, it pays to ask how long ago its dishwasher was installed. That way, you'll have a sense of when a replacement may be in order.

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Maurie Backman has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.