Fisher and Paykel DS-603 24 inch Built-in Dishwasher - No Bending and So Quiet!

Feb 19, 2012 (Updated Feb 20, 2012)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Washes well; no bending over; quiet; 2 separate drawers; holds stemware

Cons:Does not hold tall pots

The Bottom Line: Looks attractive and spendy in a kitchen and cleans well also.  No bending over and can wash lights loads without using a whole dishwasher.  It is so very quiet.

As a realtor and Mom, I was skeptical when the house I showed my daughter and son-in-law had the Fisher and Paykel DishDrawers® after reading so many negative reviews.  Upon home inspection, the dishwasher leaked which only led to my skepticism about this product.  However after they won the bid for their home and an appliance repair person repaired the problem I must say I love this dishwasher and they do as well.  I only live 4 minutes away from my daughter and have had the opportunity to have used this product a lot.

About the Product

The Fisher And Paykel DishDrawer® is made in New Zealand.  As per the Fisher and Paykel manual, the  “DishDrawer® allows you to mix delicate crystal and heavily soiled baking dishes all at the same time, washing the delicate glassware and crockery in one wash unit on the delicate cycle, with pots and pans in the other wash unit on a heavy duty cycle.  Environmentally Outstanding DishDrawer® is kind on the environment, minimizing water, energy and detergent used, so it costs less to run. It introduces the economical, guilt free small load, by using as little as 7.5 liters of water per unit. A single unit of half a load means you save half the energy, water and detergent.  Superior Ergonomics DishDrawer® is ergonomically superior, incorporating the familiar kitchen sliding unit concept into dishwashing, giving the user easier access, improved visibility and less movements to open, load and close. Now you can open and close the dishwasher just like every other kitchen unit.”


24-inch built-in
Digital Control
LCD Electronic Display (shows progress and time remaining)
9 Washing Cycles include:  Quick Wash, Normal, Fast, Eco, China/Crystal, Heavy Duty, Delicate, Rinse Only
4 Temperature Settings
Single touch programming
Flexible Racking System
Delay Start up to 12 hours
Child Lock and control key lock option
Rinse Aid Dispenser
Energy Star Rated
Uses up to 7.5 liters of water per unit
Intelligent load sensing for optimum performance
Quiet fan dry
Clean indicator aka Wash Program Progress Symbols from "Dirty" to "Clean"
Sound insulation (48 dB noise level)  

My Experience

The Fisher and Paykel DS-603 is a 24 inch built-in dishwasher with 2 DishDrawesr® which run separately.  The best way to describe this is having two half dishwashers each pulling out like a drawer that offers their own controls and run independently of each other.  The top drawer requires no bending over whatsoever and is the main one that is used on a daily basis with the exception of weekends and holidays when more and bigger meals are cooked.

This model has the LCD controls on it and holds wine stemmed glass ware perfectly without feeling it is going to break or get caught on the rack.  Each DishDrawer® uses half the soap, energy and water for its load.  Each unit offers a cutlery basket as well as a flip top on one side for cups to be loaded on top of it and on the bottom of it in one unit.  These are very well organized and thoughtfully laid out.  This unit makes a kitchen look impressive.

I am surprised how easy these units are to operate.  The controls that change the type of cycle you want are located on the right inside of the drawer.  You would just press the pad to increase the settings from HEAVY to NORMAL to FAST to DELICATE to RINSE.   Each of these cycles is available in an "economy" setting where the temperature of the water is not as hot and the drying blower fan does not come on.  The Normal cycle generally runs for about an hour and with this cycle we just rinse the loose food off the dishes before placing the dishes into the DishDrawer®.   I love the fact that there is absolutely no bending over to load the top drawer and it fits nicely one meal’s worth of dishes. 
According to the manufacturer, you are only suppose to use powdered soap in the dispenser and then a simple touch on the outside starts the cycle. Another touch can also stop it.  

As the dishwasher washes, it is so quiet, much like a Bosch.  You need to walk up to it to actually know that it is washing.  You can also watch the countdown symbols on the LCD display as it progresses thru each cycle as well as watching how many minutes are left to complete it entirely.

Their DishDrawers® are located on top of each other but you can also elect to have them installed one on each side of the sink or have 3 DishDrawer® for larger families.

When my Amana dishwasher bites the dust, I will definitely look into this product or the European Bosch that I love as well.  I really miss having a quiet dishwasher and these wash just as well as the Bosch does.  The only fault so far that I can find with this is that I do use my dishwasher for pots and pans that are not Teflon and the DishDrawers® are not tall enough to accommodate my largest Stock Pot, however my daughter and son-in-law hand wash all pots and pans and do not find this to be a problem.  

I have read reviews that even having two of these drawers do not accommodate their needs, however we have had holidays at my house using my Amana dishwasher and holidays at their house and their dishwasher actually holds more than our regular dishwasher.  It is how you load them.  Do not let some negative reviews deter you from looking into this dishwasher.  I love it and it is great for my back for both loading and unloading it.

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