More dishwasher than we need, but we love it

Nov 25, 2009
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Energy efficient
Quiet, very quiet
Spacious interior
Easy installation
Easy controls

Cons:Minor issues with handles on the upper and lower rack.
Minor issues with installation.

The Bottom Line: Miele has an excellent reputation for its dishwashers. This one makes the dishwashing process seem almost effortless. It's so quiet, uses so little energy, yet has such a spacious interior.

We installed our Miele G851-SC+ dishwasher ourselves three weeks ago, replacing an ancient Kitchenaid that was OEM when our house was built in the late 1980s. We bought it on the recommendation of a family member who works for a high-end appliance distributor. All of the people he works with have Miele dishwashers, which should say something.

What I love about this dishwasher is that it is very, very quiet. I am not exaggerating when I say it's quieter than our refrigerator. When I ran it for the first time, I thought something was wrong with it because it wasn't making any real noise. We chose this brand primarily for its quietness and energy efficiency. So far I've also found that it is very economical in terms of detergen usage, requiring little more than one to two tablespoons of detergent for each regular load.

Another thing I like about it is that it is large inside. Now, ironically, this might be a bit of a problem for my wife and I because we just don't create enough dishes in any given day to fill the dishwasher. The racks inside the dishwasher are very well spaced so that we can put nearly all our dishes in it, and we own a lot of dishes. The upper rack, primarily for cups and glasses, is not quite as efficiently laid out, but the tines do hold the glasses vertical without any wobbling or sliding around.

Because the unit can hold so much, we've taken to running half-loads using the "top solo" and/or economy modes. The top-solo mode lets you stack items in only the top rack and concentrates most of the cleaning power there. I've found that the top-solo mode does a perfectly adequate job of cleaning some items that I stacked on the bottom rack also (they just don't get the full force of the jets).

The interior is stainless steel. This looks nice, but I'm not convinced that the steel interiors are any better than the plastic interiors. The door is counterweighted so that it will stay put at whatever angle you open or close it to (e.g., if you want it to be open half way, it stays half way open).

Installation was very easy with only a few minor glitches. Those glitches had more to do with the design of our house than the design of the dishwasher. No special tools were needed. Miele has been very generous in providing 4'-5' water supply and outlet hoses. The water supply hose also includes an leak-detecting shut-off valve. I found the installation to be very easy, but then I consider myself to be very handy and confident with this kind of job. Others might want to consider having a professional installer handle the job, but this is true for just about any dishwasher.

We only encountered one significant problem during installation. The bracket that supports the toekick (the panel below and slightly behind, the door) would not fit in its designated slot because the level-adjusting screw that lowers or raises the foot was slightly askew. The problem actually required grinding down part of the bracket on a bench grinder. I'm sure this isn't common, and it was an easy fix for me, but it could have been a significant annoyance for others. The instructions for the toe-kick installation appear to have been an afterthought and the toe-kick's materials and design seem strangely uncharacteristic against the the precision engineering of the rest of the dishwasher.

So far, I've found there's only one very minor thing that I dislike about this dishwasher, and I do mean "minor". The top rack has a "handle" that hangs down in the front of the rack, and the bottom rack has a "handle" that sticks up beside the upper rack's handle. I put "handle" in quotes because I am only assuming that that is what they're for. So far, I've found them to both be superfluous, and they tend to get in my way when stacking dishes.

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