Aren't they amazing? Load it up and away you go... until you're cleaning a nasty spill up and calling a repairman to bail you out. I love my portable dishwasher, it does the job and rolls away when we don't need it, and it also serves as a worktop in our small kitchen.
Anything with moving parts needs the occasional maintenance, and dishwashers are no exception. My own dishwasher recently started making a crazy loud buzzing noise due to differed maintenance, but a little know-how goes a long way! Turns out it was the impeller (spinning thing at the mouth of the drain) was jammed with a broken chopstick, a pretty common issue with dishwashers. It was just a matter of taking apart the filter inside the unit and clearing the debris, and poof good as new.
Honestly, I'd rather spend my time doing other things rather than maintenance (I know, shocker!), but if I were more diligent maybe I would've caught the problem before it became an issue. Properly working appliances start with regular cleaning. Be sure to wipe away dirt and grime from the filter(s) and clean the door seals to ensure the unit doesnt leak, and more importantly keeping the dishes hygenic. Dirty dishes can indicate you NEED to clean your dishwasher. Dont wait for scum to build up, you should be clearing the filter of bits of food after each use, and deep clean at least once a month. if you use your dishwasher on a daily basis, consider a deep clean twice a month.
Make sure the drain hose has a "high loop" in it that's higher than the drain in your sink. This not only prevents cross contamination (something you really want to avoid) but also keeps the pump and motor from having to work extra, a missing "high loop" is a defect that will kill your dishwasher after time.
Dishwashers don't need a whole lot of maintenance, in fact they practically clean themselves, just be aware of your unit and how it works and pay a little bit of attention to it from time to time and you'll have a reliable appliance that'll serve you and your family for years.
Brent Whelan has been in the construction industry for over a decade and has worked for one of Halifax's top renovation companies and Canadas largest restoration firm. He's a Certified Professional Inspector and holds a Red Seal Endorsement in carpentry.