Is Your Dishwasher Stepping Up to the Plate?

In a challenging economic landscape, it can be tempting to quick-click your way to savings and source equipment and supplies from the internet, or bag a bargain by picking a domestic machine that you hope will ‘get you through’. Here, Katie Horan, Catering Product Manager at JLA looks at the dangers of choosing ‘false economy’ domestic machines or substandard commercial models that aren’t fit for purpose.

“We supply a lot of customers who come to us after their domestic machine has let them down, or when they discover that their ‘low-end’ commercial machine isn’t living up to its promise. Either the equipment itself breaks or if it does work, it doesn’t work at the capacity or performance required. In many cases, people tell us that they have to wash items by hand after a dishwasher cycle to clear food residue, so they end up paying for labour at the sink while also meeting the cost of running a machine that isn’t doing its job.

Many dishwashers simply aren’t built to cope with heavy use, or fulfil an acceptable lifecycle.

Care homes generally need to process anywhere from 4 to 20 cycles per day, and must do so hygienically to meet guidelines. This will put enormous strain on the cheaper, lighter-weight components that make up an off-the-shelf dishwasher, but a commercial machine that is built to high specifications, with robust and durable parts, will cope effortlessly with daily demands for around 8 years. By their nature, commercial dishwashers also work harder on plates and cutlery, with more powerful jets and more efficient drainage leading to more effective cleaning. We know that time is of the essence in every care home, and infection control is a big concern – but this is often overlooked in favour of cheap price tags.

As for practicality, a domestic machine can take 2 hours to clean items, without reaching the temperatures required for decontamination. In contrast, a commercial model can offer thorough cleaning in a matter of minutes – with features such as thermal disinfection that kills bacteria such as MRSA, Norovirus and other common threats.

My advice would simply be to make sure you know what you’re buying. Look beyond price, think about the process of dishwashing as a whole and work out the total cost that you might have to meet over the next few years.”

Don’t pay a high price for choosing the high street…


Cycles take upwards of 2 hours

Intensive cycles from a minute

Not WRAS compliant

WRAS compliant to Category 5

Inconsistent washing – poor drainage and lightweight design may force ‘emergency washing up’ by hand which takes up valuable time

Drum, spray arms and features designed to work harder on plates and cutlery. Also more flexibility to wash gastro trays and larger utensils which will not fit into domestic baskets

Low-cost parts – not built to last as it is in the Manufacturer’s interest to sell replacement machines regularly

Hi-spec components designed to meet rigours of daily commercial use, and last for 8 years

Warranty void when used in commercial setting

Available as part of a ‘Total Care’ all inclusive service and supply package form JLA, with 7-day breakdown cover and 8-working hour engineer response guaranteed


Get in touch or call free on 0800 048 4186 for more information.