For many who live in a place where they can't install a built-in dishwasher, the Danby DDW1899WP may be the next best thing. At $400, this portable dishwasher costs the same as -- or more than -- some built-in models, but most owners say it's worth every penny. The unit gets high marks for cleaning ability, ease of use and quiet operation. Some complain of leaks and mechanical failures, but most find this machine well built and dependable.
Cleans as well as a built-in. For those who consider the performance of portable dishwashers sub-par to built-in models, the Danby DDW1899WP defies expectations. That's according to many owners posting to a variety of retail websites, who report that its cleaning ability rivals that of installed models from major manufacturers. One user says, "It does an excellent job of washing and rinsing anything," while another says, "This dishwasher works like a dream." Others describe great results even with dishes that have baked-on foods. However, we did read a number of complaints, some of which involve dishes coming out dirty and some of which involve breakdowns. In some cases, the machine arrived broken. Some also note that this unit doesn't dry dishes well, and some complain that cycles run as long as three hours. Nevertheless, the model earns an Energy Star rating, which several users consider an important plus. In the words of one owner, "My energy bill arrived with no unpleasant surprises."
Manual could be clearer. The Danby DDW1899WP is widely regarded as a convenient dishwasher -- easy to load and easy to operate. Owners posting to retail websites say its casters are easy to roll and the faucet attachment hooks up easily. Most find that the interior is sufficiently roomy, and most say it accommodates all their dishes as well as pots and pans, although one user finds that it is not big enough to hold "American sized" dinner dishes. That user comments that the machine is better suited to smaller salad plates. The biggest complaint we found, however, concerned the user manual, which owners call "horrible," "atrocious" and "the worst manual [for] a major appliance I've ever seen." They explain that the manual does not answer basic questions or clearly describe the steps needed to get the machine to work. Some say they had to resort to posting queries online or reading reviews to find answers. Other complaints involve the absence of a time-remaining indicator; in addition, one user complains that the hose is too short, and another finds that neither the hose nor the power cord retract as expected.
Surprisingly quiet for a portable model. Many owners express surprise at how quiet the Danby DDW1899WP is, noting that they would have expected a portable unit to be much noisier. One user comments, "Only the toaster beats it for sound," while another says it's possible to run the dishwasher at night and still fall asleep -- even with the bedroom close to the kitchen. Another user finds that the model is extremely quiet except for when water drains during a cycle. "We've gotten used to the water draining but the first couple of times it happened it caught us off guard," this owner says. We did find a few reviewers who insist that the machine is noisy, or noisier than expected, but these complaints are in the minority. One owner reports hearing a screeching sound emanating from the machine, but it was due to a loose spray arm and disappeared when the spray arm was tightened.
Energy efficiency is a nice bonus. Owners consider the Danby DDW1899WP reasonably priced, and they applaud the unit's efficiency. Many report examining their electricity bills after purchasing this Danby model and finding no "unpleasant surprises" in terms of increased energy usage and higher energy costs. Some users note that the model's cycles tend to run long, so they anticipated increased electricity bills -- yet such increases didn't materialize. As one user puts it, "$400 + $30 in energy per year to run is great." Because the machine has an Energy Star rating, it may qualify for rebates from local utilities, although not all utilities run rebate programs. The model carries a one-year parts-and-labor warranty, which is the same as that accompanying many built-in models. While we found some reports of mechanical breakdowns, we did not find any complaints about machine maintenance.
Nearly 420 users post about the Danby DDW1899WP on Walmart.com, with about 87 percent handing it a rating of either 4 or 5 stars. In addition, 90 percent of owners would recommend this model to a friend. The vast majority of users say it cleans very well, handles easily and operates more quietly than they would have expected, with several saying it is a value at the price. A fair number, however, report mechanical problems or leaks, and some complain that cycles take too long.
Review: Danby 8-Place Setting Energy Star Portable Dishwasher, DDW1899WP, Contributors to Walmart.com, As of July 2013
Nearly 100 users post reviews about the Danby DDW1899WP on Amazon.com, awarding it an average rating of 4.3 stars out of 5. Most say it's a well-built machine that is easy to use and performs nicely, with some commenting that it cleans as well as high-quality built-in models. Some say, however, that its interior is smaller than they expected, with one complaining that it cannot accommodate "American sized" dinner plates, and some report leaks or mechanical problems.
Review: Danby DDW1899WP 8 Place Setting Portable Dishwasher - White, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of July 2013
The Danby DDW1899WP portable dishwasher garners almost 40 owner reviews on HomeDepot.com, earning an average rating of 4.2 stars out of 5. Most owners find that this model cleans well, operates quietly and is easy to use. A few complain, however, that the user manual isn't clear enough, and one owner says the power cord and hose don't retract as expected. A small number of owners report that their model broke down or didn't work from the start.
Review: Danby Portable Dishwasher in White, Contributors to HomeDepot.com, As of July 2013