Tips for Buying a Used Commercial Dishwasher


Commercial dishwashers consume a lot of energy and water. When faced with rising utility and food costs, restaurant owners, especially new restaurant owners, try to save money any way they can. One way to save money on dishwashing is to purchase a used commercial dishwasher. There are several benefits to buying a used commercial dishwasher, but you need to do research before buying.

Purchasing Tips

When shopping for a used commercial dishwasher, there are several things that you want to check out with the particular unit before you decide to spend your money.

  • Thoroughly inspect the unit. Inspecting the unit in person will be hard if you’re shopping online or at a restaurant equipment auction, but it is still highly recommended. The best case scenario is to go to a used equipment dealer with a showroom. Either way, be sure to check that the spray arm nozzles aren’t clogged and rotate freely.

  • Look for signs of corrosion. Even with online photos, you should be able to see if the stainless steel is discolored or corroded. This is a sign that the machine has not been well-maintained and could indicate future service issues, so stay away from units that show signs of corrosion.

  • Call the manufacturer with any questions. The manufacturer is your best source for machine-specific questions. They can tell you what may go wrong with the used dishwasher and how much repairs can cost. The used equipment salesperson may not volunteer information that could lose them the sale.

Is it Safe to Buy a Used Commercial Dishwasher?

As long as the machine was well maintained, you should be alright with purchasing a used commercial dishwasher. However, the older the model, the more likely it is to leak water or not be as efficient at cleaning dishes, so try to find the newest model possible.

Benefits of Buying a New Commercial Dishwasher

The bottom line is that new commercial dishwashers are far superior to used. They may cost more initially, but they are more reliable and usually more energy efficient than used models. Whatever extra money you spend in purchase price, you’ll most likely recoup in energy savings and lack of repairs. Here are a few more benefits to buying new:

  • Green Incentives. Since you’re going with new, you might as well look for the best of the best in energy efficiency. There are a number of ENERGY STAR® rated commercial dishwashers that use less water and electricity than their non-rated counterparts. Your local utilities company may even offer rebates for going the energy efficient route, so be sure to check into that.

  • Efficiency. Along with reliability comes better efficiency, because nothing is worn out and everything is at its peak working level. Furthermore, new commercial dishwashers are more efficient than used because of technological improvements, like better spray patterns from the nozzles, that make newer models superior to older ones.

  • Capacity. The number of racks per hour is the most important specification on a commercial dishwasher, because it tells you how many dishes the machine can wash in an hour. You might not be able to find a used machine that suits your capacity requirements. On the other hand, you will always be able to find a new commercial dishwasher that can keep up with the demands of your kitchen.


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