The Top 5 Small Dishwashers for a Small Space

best compact dishwashers

For a small kitchen space, a compact or slimline dishwasher (18 inches) is the best way to get your dishes done for you while saving on your electricity and water bills.

Small (apartment-size) dishwashers save space, are energy efficient, and use less water – when taking care of those mountains of dirty plates after mealtimes.

Are small dishwashers any good?

A slimline dishwasher is not necessarily any less capable than a full-size dishwasher, but you need to shop wisely, which is what we’re here to help you with.

👉 In a hurry?

Here’s a short comparison table. Below you’ll find the pros and cons of each mini dishwasher.

DishwasherBottom LineDimensions/CapacityBest Price
Farberware Portable Dishwasher
Best table dishwasher
No water hookup necessary!
4 place settings
17'' x 16.5'' x 17"
$287 on Amazon
hOmeLabs Compact Countertop
Best Portable Mini Dishwasher6 place settings
17.2" x 19.6" x 21.6"
$339 on Amazon
Frigidaire 18" Built-In Dishwasher
Best Built-In8 place settings
17" x 23" x 32"
$698-$735 on Amazon
Danby Portable Dishwasher
Best on Wheels8 place settings
26" x 17.7" x 36"
$435 on Amazon
Edge Star Portable Dishwasher
Most Energy Efficient6 place settings
21" x 19" x 17"
$495 on Amazon

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Small Dishwasher Dimensions

small dishwashers dimensions and capacity

Dishwashers come in a variety of dimensions – the standard full size dishwasher size is 24 x 35 inches.

Small dishwashers are defined as smaller than 24 inches wide.

They can be built into cabinets, and attached to the sink via hoses, and there are countertop models (table dishwashers) as well.

Most Slimline dishwashers measure up to 18 inches in width.

The smallest dishwashers are 16-inch dishwashers.

You can also go for under-sink, in-sink, and single-drawer versions that come in varying dimensions.

👉 Want to save more space in your kitchen? see the Best Compact Microwaves of 2024!

The Top 5 Compact Dishwashers (Countertop/Slimline)

There are different types of compact dishwashers:

  • Built-in (cabinets)
  • Countertop (portable/table dishwashers)
  • Under the sink
  • Freestanding

We know how challenging it can be to find the right kitchenette dishwasher for small spaces.

The great news is:

We’ve done all the research for you (and us) and below you’ll find the 5 best space-saving dishwashers on the market.

1. Farberware Portable Dishwasher – Best Table Dishwasher

best small table dishwasher

  • Size – 17″ x 16.5″ x 17″
  • Place settings – 6
  • Wash Programs – 5

😍 Pros – quiet, doesn’t require a water hookup, leak protection, sanitize option

😣 Cons – some labor with filling up the container, relatively expensive

$287 on Amazon

While most apartment-sized dishwashers require hooking up to a faucet (which means you can’t use the sink for hours) and others are complicated to install, the Faberware portable 17″ dishwasher has a built-in five-liter tank and doesn’t require a water source or a hookup.

(But it still offers this option if you want)

And if that’s not enough, the Farberware table dishwasher is pretty enough to leave out on the counter or table (with its see-through door to watch the cleaning) and is big enough for 12-inch dinner plates!

farberware portable dishwasher review

This practical apartment-size dishwasher requires no assembly, and once you’ve filled up its 5-liter tank, you are ready to go.
Choose from 5 wash programs (normal/rapid (40 minutes)/ baby care/glass/fruit wash), and after 2 hours your dishes come out fully clean and dry – without soap spots or leftover food.

And, this one is so quiet you’ll probably forget you turned it on for the first time.

The Babycare program sanitizes baby bottles using steam, and you also get a fruit basket to wash your fruit with the fruit wash program.

The Faberware maxes out at about 2 glasses, 8 pieces of flatware, and one storage container – it won’t be enough for a household with more than 2 people.

We tested it with the normal load program (which takes s a little over 2 hours) and found that the silverware and other items were thoroughly cleaned with no residue from the detergent tablet, and even a very dirty plate came out perfectly clean. 

Pros

  • Very quiet – won’t interrupt those important kitchen conversations 😉
  • Doesn’t require a water source or hookup – a true table dishwasher
  • Sanitize option in baby care program
  • Leak protection mechanism that prevents water damage

Cons

  • requires filling it 3 times with a 1.8-liter pitcher (included), sometimes it’s hard to not miss the mark without some splashes
  • You’ll need to run the exit hose to the sink – below the dishwasher
  • You still have to hand wash your pots and pans – that won’t fit inside.

Available on Amazon ($287)

👉 Farberware Alternative

tiny countertop dishwasher
Comfee Countertop Dishwasher – view on Amazon

Consider the Comfee Countertop Dishwasher, which is the same size and capacity and also doesn’t require hookup but has 6 programs (with an air freshener program to speed up drying).

However, it is a bit noisier (58 dB) than the Faberware (51 dB).

2. hOmeLabs Compact Dishwasher – Best Countertop Mini Dishwasher

best short dishwasher for countertop

  • Dimensions – 17″ x 19.5″ x 21.5″
  • Place settings – 6
  • Wash Programs – 6
  • Noise level – 50 db.

😍 Pros – efficient wash cycle, easy set up (a few minutes), simple display, quieter than average

😣 Cons – loud beep when finishes, no rinse-only option

$339 on Amazon

The hOmeLabs small countertop (& portable) dishwasher is great for small kitchens or office spaces.

This lightweight dishwasher has a six-place setting rack, and no tools are needed for assembly – thanks to the quick connect assembly with accessories included.

With the hOmeLabs compact dishwasher, you get everything from an impressive 6-place setting capacity to 6 different wash cycles.

It fits perfectly on the counter next to the sink and it’s so effective we didn’t need to wash anything for the second time – for all dishwasher-safe dishes.

homelabs countertop dishwasher review

Pros

  • The controls are user-friendly.
  • Efficient wash cycle – only 3.1 gallons of water are used in each cycle
  • Easy setup, takes only a few minutes
  • Portable – you can take it with you when you move
  • Does not require any extra tools for assembly
  • Seamless digital display, just 4 small, white in-keeping buttons

Cons

  • No water softener
  • No rinse-only option
  • Constant beep when finished

Available on Amazon ($340)

3. Frigidaire 18″ Built-In Dishwasher – Best Built-In 

frigidaire 18 inch dishwasher

  • Dimensions – 17″ x 23″ x 32″
  • Place settings – 8
  • Rack Style – 2 Stainless steel racks
  • Wash Programs – 5
  • Noise level – 52 db.

😍 Pros – with a stainless steel tub, highly durable, high capacity but energy efficient, adjustable upper tray, quiet

😣 Cons – hookup kit not included, front drain outlet, expensive

$698-$735 on Amazon

Made with a stainless steel interior and exterior, the Frigidaire narrow (18-inch) durable dishwasher has a sleek and modern design that we love and no less than 8 place settings.

It offers 5 wash cycles, a 24-hour delay start, easy-to-use electronic controls, and a heated drying system, and is a highly efficient cleaner.

A powerful yet time and money-saving dishwasher from a well-known American brand.

frigidaire 18 inch dishwasher review
Inside

Pros

  • Highly durable dishwasher, with a stainless steel tub
  • High capacity, yet energy-saving
  • Sanitize option – operates at a higher temperature to fight bacteria and enhance drying results.
  • You can choose between heated dry or energy saver (no heat) dry option

Cons

  • Requires a hookup kit that is not included and has to be bought separately,
  • Not the quietest one – Noise level is 58 dBA

Available on Amazon ($698-$735)

4. Danby Portable Dishwasher – Best on Wheels

danby 18 inch portable dishwasher on wheels

  • Place settings – 8
  • Dimensions – 26″ x 18″ x 36″
  • Wash programs – 6

😍 Pros – portable, relatively high capacity, water saving, simple and easy hookup

😣 Cons – short power cord and water hose

$435 on Amazon

The Danby portable, free-standing dishwasher measures only 17.7 inches wide but can accommodate up to 8 place settings and comes with easy-rolling wheels that make it easy to move around and store.

It uses up to 3.5 gallons of water per wash and offers 6 wash cycles, including intensive, economy, normal, glass, soak, and rapid.

danby portable dishwasher review

Pros

  • It can hold around 8 plates, 8 bowls, and 20 utensils, with a top rack for cups and glasses.
  • Stainless steel interior
  • Water-saving
  • Large capacity for an 18″ dishwasher
  • Easy hookup, takes a few seconds to connect

Cons

  • You’ll need an outlet close – the power cord is only 5 feet long, and the water hose is 3 feet long.

Available on Amazon ($435)

5. Edge Star Dishwasher  Most Energy Efficient

edge star portable countertop dishwasher

  • Dimensions – 21″ x 19″ x 17″
  • Wash programs – 7
  • Place settings – 6
  • Rack Style – Cup shelf, cutlery basket, and dish rack
  • Noise level – 52 db.

😍 Pros – saves water and money, easy to operate and set up, kills bacteria, good accessories

😣Cons – May leak if not assembled properly

$495 on Amazon

The Edge Star short dishwasher uses only 200 kilowatts per hour (about 61% less than most countertop models) and uses only 2.85 gallons of water per wash.

It fits under most kitchen cabinets, and most under the sink spaces as well, and comes with a drain hose that you would place in the sink for it to drain.

It requires no permanent setup (comes with a quick-connect adapter that fits standard-sized kitchen faucets) and is super easy to operate.

edge start portable dishwasher review

The Edge Star includes essential accessories: a dish rack, cup shelf, and cutlery basket – all you need to optimally organize your dishes and utensils.

Pros

  • Saves a lot of money on your water and energy bills
  • Super easy to operate with a digital display
  • Built-in rinse agent dispenser to minimize water spots
  • Water temperature is raised up to 149 F to kill bacteria
  • Highly rated by Amazon buyers
  • 1-year warranty

Cons

  • You have to be gentle when you screw the hoses to avoid leaking

Available on Amazon ($495)

How Do You Choose a Compact Dishwasher?

1. Size and Fit – make sure the height of the countertop dishwasher fits between your countertop and upper cabinets.
Consider the width and depth to make sure it fits your kitchen.

2. Capacity – look for the number of place settings the dishwasher can accommodate, typically ranging from 4 to 6 place settings.

3. Ensure the interior dimensions fit your typical dish sizes and quantities.

4. Performance and Features – check for features like energy efficiency, wash cycles, drying performance, and noise level.

5. Look for models with certifications like Energy Star to ensure energy and water savings.

6. Portability and Installation – check if you need a freestanding, built-in, or portable countertop model based on your kitchen setup.

7. Consider if the dishwasher requires a water hookup or can operate with a self-contained water tank.

Which Dishwasher Uses the Least Amount of Water?

Here’s a comparison of water usage of all 5 compact dishwashers in this list:

small dishwasher water usage

As you can see, the Faberware countertop dishwasher uses the least amount of water per cycle (only 1.3 gallons).

The Frigidaire 18-inch built-in dishwasher uses the most – 4.2 gallons per cycle.

Why Are 18-inch Dishwashers More Expensive?

You may expect to pay a little less for a smaller dishwasher, but featurewise, they are in line with the standard-size ones, and you buy them to save space while having the same efficiency.

Also, slimline dishwashers are not as common as the standard 24-inch models, which means less competition on the market and higher prices because they are less produced.

Can You Put a Countertop Dishwasher in a Cabinet?

No, you cannot put a countertop dishwasher in a cabinet. It is not intended or designed to be fixed inside a cabinet or under the counter.

It can only be used and installed as instructed, mainly because the heat needs to be exhausted as it was designed.

In some cases, you can put it in a cabinet, if there is enough clearance around the dishwasher for proper ventilation and the cabinet is strong enough to support its weight.

What is a Portable Dishwasher?

A countertop or portable dishwasher has a hose that can temporarily attach to your kitchen sink’s faucet.

However, this will only work if the sink faucet contains a threaded faucet spout.

For instance, faucets that contain built-in sprayers do not possess threaded faucet spouts.

These dishwashers are an excellent choice if you wash small loads of dishes daily.

How Long Does a Small Dishwasher Take to Run?

The standard run time of dishwashers is up to 2 hours.

It can also sometimes be less, or more, according to the model type.

On some models of dishwashers, you can even see the timer display.

Is an 18-inch Dishwasher Too Small?

Although 18-inch dishwashers are relatively smaller, they can take care of all the functions that full-sized dishwashers can.

The only difference is that these dishwashers can take up fewer loads of dishes at a time while also taking up less space in the kitchen.

How Far Can a Dishwasher Be Away From the Sink?

Most dishwashers come with a drain hose around 6 feet long. Manufacturers typically allow for extensions to a maximum length of 10 to 12 feet.

Exceeding this can cause drainage issues.

Similar to the drain hose, standard dishwasher supply lines are around 6 feet long.

Extending these is also possible, but consult a plumber to ensure proper installation.

While you can extend these hoses, we recommend keeping the dishwasher close to the sink for convenience and to minimize the need for extensions.

In kitchen design, there’s a concept called the working triangle which emphasizes efficiency by placing the refrigerator, stove, and sink close.

A dishwasher far from the sink can disrupt this workflow.

Overall, while there’s no hard and fast rule, keeping the dishwasher close to the sink is ideal for functionality and avoiding complex plumbing modifications.

The KM Team

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2 comments
  1. Generally, a person who needs a portable dishwasher has almost zero spare counter space. In that situation 4 out of the 5 you recommend will not meet most needs or queries. I would like to see more options for freestanding dishwashers that can be rolled and hooked up to the sink when needed.

  2. Interested in these countertop dish Washers
    For individuals who don’t have a dishwasher
    Old house and older person! And a couple
    who live in an old APPARTMENT with limited space! Need dishwashers that are space-saving and eagerly efficient! This is not
    for me but for others I know! So I’m inquiring about them.

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