Sunpentown SD-2201W Review

Updated April 25, 2016
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Bottom Line

If a built-in dishwasher won't work -- for example, in a small kitchen or rental apartment -- the Sunpentown SD-2201W countertop dishwasher (also known as the SPT SD-2201W) can rescue you from the drudgery of doing your dishes by hand. Dishwashing performance is excellent, especially in the heavy duty cycle, and it's a miser when it comes to consuming energy and water. The capacity is small, however, so it's best for singles or couples, and it will take up some precious counter space.

ProsEnergy efficient, Good dishwashing performance, Easy to install and useConsSmall capacity, Takes up counter space

Breaking it down

Performance

A tiny powerhouse. Reviewed.com subjects the Sunpentown SD-2201W countertop dishwasher to the same battery of tests it uses to evaluate full-sized built-in dishwashers, and comes away impressed enough to give it a Best of the Year award. "While it couldn't clean up after a dinner party for twelve, the little Sunpentown held its own, leaving dishes cleaner than many built-in units—and certainly cleaner than you could ever get them by hand," reports Keith Barry. Things are only so-so under the dishwasher's normal cycle, however, as it struggled with stains on dishes in the back corners. On heavy duty, however, the SD-2201W blasts through everything short of some cheese on messy lasagna pans. "That's nothing a little pre-washing wouldn't cure, though," Barry says. Users are just as impressed, with most owners saying that the SD-2201W cleans as well as any other portable or built-in dishwasher they've ever owned. The Sunpentown is Energy Star certified and its annual operating costs are estimated at $24.

Ease of use

A tight fit. If there's a downside to the Sunpentown SD-2201W it's that its capacity is severely limited. The manufacturer claims six place settings, but Barry puts the capacity at four. There's only one rack, along with a removable basket for silverware. Some users say that loading can be a bit challenging, as is fitting in larger plates and platters. The dishwasher needs to be located near a sink for its intake and drain lines, and a faucet adapter and quick connect coupler are provided for the task. There are multiple wash cycles to handle most tasks, but not a lot of options. There's also no delayed start function, though one is available on the step up Sunpentown SD-2202W (Est. $240). The manual is said to be very helpful and includes guides as to how long each cycle takes to run, which many owners appreciate.

Noise

Not bad, not great. Most inexpensive portable and even built-in dishwashers don't excel when it comes to keeping noise at a minimum. The Sunpentown SD-2201W is no exception to that, but with its 55 dBA rating, it's actually fairly quiet for such a small, independent unit. We saw few user complaints regarding excessive noise, which is certainly a plus. Barry notes some hard to miss noises during operation or when water is being pumped out to the sink drain. Still, he says, "it's quieter than your significant others complaints about the dishes piled up in the sink."

Appearance/durability

Comes in two colors. The Sunpentown SD-2201W is about as utilitarian as you could expect a countertop dishwasher to be. This model is white, but if you want something a little snazzier, you can opt for the Sunpentown SD-2201S (Est. $230), which comes in silver. As we noted earlier, it does take up a good bit of counter space, but most people say it's worth carving out a niche for it for the time they save. We read very few complaints about durability, most say it's still going strong after months or years of use.

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SPT SD-2202W Countertop Dishwasher with Delay Start, White
Buy from Amazon.com
from Amazon.com
New: $309.00 $219.25   
In Stock.
Average Customer Review:  
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SPT Countertop Dishwasher, Silver
Buy from Amazon.com
from Amazon.com
New: $285.00 $206.99   
In Stock.
Average Customer Review:  

Buy from Amazon

Our Sources

1. Reviewed.com

Sunpentown SD-2201W Review, Keith Barry, Feb. 4, 2012

Reviewed.com is one of the few organizations that tests portable dishwasher, including the Sunpentown SD-2201W. It is subjected to the same tests as full-sized machines and acquits itself quite well for a portable machine. Keith Barry says it's great if you have limited space because, "It's small, energy efficient and actually gets your dishes clean." He also names it a Best of the Year selection.

2. Amazon.com

SPT Countertop Dishwasher, White, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of April 2016

The Sunpentown SD-2201W countertop dishwasher -- known as the SPT SD-2201W here -- earns an overall rating of 4.3 stars out of 5 in more than 1,300 reviews. The vast majority love it, saying it cleans dishes very well and is much more convenient than hand washing. Quite a few wish they'd purchased a portable dishwasher earlier. Some say it doesn't clean well or leaves a soap film, while others note that it takes up quite a bit of counter space.

3. Walmart.com

Sunpentown Countertop Dishwasher, White, Contributors to Walmart.com, As of April 2016

In more than 110 reviews of the Sunpentown SD-2201W it earns a 4.4-star rating, with 89 percent saying that they would recommend this countertop dishwasher to a friend. Most are very pleased, saying the Sunpentown is a top performer and has saved them much time and effort.