Types of Dishwashers


Door Dishwashers

A door dishwasher is a stand-alone machine with a tall door that pulls down to start the washing and sanitizing process.

The door has three connecting sides, which slide down the machine after the dish rack has been loaded and placed inside.

How Door Dishwashers Work

Door dishwashers use a dump-and-fill system, which means the tank is filled with fresh, clean water at the beginning of the wash cycle, and once the wash cycle is over that water is discarded through a drain.

This kind of commercial dishwasher is typically used in conjunction with a soiled and clean dish tables. The soiled dish table allows a space for scrapping dirty dishes and the clean dish table is where clean dishes can dry. Dishes must have any remaining food particles removed before being loaded into the dishwasher. Otherwise, all those leftover pieces of food get swished around the tank. And that is simply not sanitary.

How Many Dish Racks per Hour will it Wash?

A door dishwasher will clean between 50 – 125 dish racks in an hour depending on the model. Commercial door dishwashers are a great fit for any food service provider serving 300-1,500 covers in a day.

Undercounter Dishmachine

When a unit is called a “dishmachine” this means it only sanitizes and does not actually wash the items put inside. A “dishwasher” does both sanitizing and washing. If this is what you need, do not purchase a dishmachine.

An undercounter dishmachine is specifically for sanitizing and is good for glassware, flatware, and dishes. This type of machine is about the same size as a home dishwasher, but that’s really the only similarity the two machines have in common. A two-compartment sink should be used with an undercounter dishmachine, but a three-compartment sink can also be used if you have dishes that need to soak for a period of time.

What’s the Benefit of Having an Undercounter Dishmachine?

An undercounter dishmachine is good for small cafes, juice bars and commercial kitchens where a door dishwasher will not fit.

How Undercounter Dishmachines Work

Like the door dishwasher, an undercounter dishmachine uses the fill-and-dump operation where fresh water and sanitizer is pumped into the tank, then discarded through a drain after the sanitation cycle is complete. The door opens like an oven, exposing the chamber that holds the dish rack. Because an undercounter dishmachine does not wash, all dishes, glasses, and flatware should be washed beforehand.

How Many Dishracks per Hour will it Wash?

Expect to wash about 35 racks per hour, or up to 520 covers per day, with an undercounter machine. A commercial undercounter dishmachine is perfect for bars, small cafes, juice and smoothie shops, small restaurants, day care facilities, churches and more.


Glasswashers are undercounter dishwashers that are primarily used in bars. These come in several styles including undercounter door-type, pass-through conveyor style, and carousel types. Carousel means the machine is equipped with a spinning conveyor and separated by metal or plastic dividers. There are three compartments that the carousel spins through. The first is where you place the dirty glasses, the second is the wash compartment, and the third is where the glasses get sanitized. This type of operation is convenient for loading and unloading glasses at any point during the washing and sanitizing process.

Glasswashers have lower water pressure to prevent breakage. In a busy bar, the last thing you want is to pull busted glasses out of the washer during a crowded happy hour rush. Glasswashers are also capable of washing up to 2,000 glasses per hour, so you never have to keep your customers waiting.

Conveyor Dishwashers

Conveyor dishwashers are used in commercial kitchens that serve up to 1,500 meals during a rush. This type of washer can clean up to 400 dish racks per hour, making it perfect for university kitchens, hotels, and other large kitchens.

A conveyor dishwasher can have up to three tanks, one for the wash, rinse, and sanitizing cycle. Most conveyor dishwashers use hot water sanitation, though there are a few models that work with chemical sanitation and lower temperatures.

Flight Dishwashers

Flight dishwashers are the Hulk of commercial dishwashers. They are a conveyor machine, but dishes are placed directly onto a moving belt without a rack. Flight dishwashers are usually custom built for each customer, so make sure you have exact specifications when ordering.

A flight dishwashers is best used in large establishments such as hotels and resorts, universities, corrections facilities, banquet halls and hospitals, as they can wash up to 14,000 dishes per hour.

Pot & Pan Dishwashers

Just like the name says, pot and pan dishwashers get those hard-working pots and pans clean. Built with high-pressure wash systems, pot and pan dishwashers can get caked-on food off without the need for multiple washes. Most of these dishwashers come with a pull-down door, however, select models have a pull-out door.

This type of dishwasher is good for busy bakeries, catering companies, and any foodservice business that uses a lot of large pots, pans, and cooking utensils. If you’re interested in this kind of dishwasher, be sure to measure the largest pan or pot you have to make sure it fits in the wash chamber.

Pot and pan washers require higher voltages to run properly, so double check that your electrical system can handle this kind of machine.


About Author

Rachael Niswander

Rachael is a writer in Denver, Colorado with an affinity for food and all things food-related. When she isn't writing or doing other foodie things, Rachael enjoys reading, hooping, tattoos, dancing, learning about herbs and natural living, and spending time with friends, her husband Michael and their two cats, Tip Toes and Pippin.

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