Second Dishwashers Fast-Track Kitchen Cleanup

A second dishwasher in your kitchen, or even a dishwasher drawer, can carve hours off cleanup chores. You’ll probably have to sacrifice a base cabinet. But you’ll gain a real kitchen helper that adds value and appeal to the most important room in your house.

Second Dishwasher Location

Large kitchens have stations for cooking, food prep, and dishwashing. The main dishwasher sits to the left or right of the main sink, beneath cabinets for plates and glasses.

Place a second dishwasher strategically to accomplish your dish flow objectives.

  • If the second’s main job is cleaning glassware, locate it near stemware storage, perhaps in a butler’s pantry where crystal and china live.
  • If you keep kosher, put the second dishwasher where you store either your meat or milk dishes.
  • If dish control is your objective, install the second in the island prep station.

Second Space

Most dishwashers are at least 24 inches wide (32 to 34.5 inches high), though you can find 18- or 30-inch models. Your choice should be based, in part, on how much cabinet space you’re willing to sacrifice. If you’re doing a total remodel, integrate the second dishwasher into your design. If you’re giving your space a facelift, then sacrifice your least-used cabinet.

Second Installation

Second installs are the same as first:

  • Tap into the water supply.
  • Hook up drain lines to waste lines.
  • Wire to the electrical source.

These tasks are accomplished by snaking plastic and copper tubing and armored wire behind cabinets and sometimes under floors to the new dishwasher. Figure on spending $200 to $300 for labor.

Dishwasher Prices

Dishwashers can cost anywhere from $250 to $2,500. Two-drawer dishwashers, where upper and lower sections can run independently, cost about $1,300. Single-drawer washers — a good option for limited space — cost $700 to $1,000.

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