Dishwashers have become an inseparable kitchen appliance in a modern kitchen. It reduces the bothersome work of doing dishes manually every time you have a meal. Not to mention, it also makes the kitchen look sophisticated and stylish as well. 

Along with time, dishwashers have evolved too. Brands have upgraded their old models with different designs, new configurations, etc. for your convenience. Currently, there are two prominent types of dishwashers namely top control dishwasher and front control dishwashers, in the built-in dishwasher category (Yes, there are more including stand alone and countertop dishwashers). They both do the same job of cleaning the dishes, but the only difference lies in their designs and few features. And that’s the first aspect of difference for top control dishwasher vs front control dishwashers. The control placement and handle configuration are some of the biggest contributing factors to the look of a dishwasher. This may of course create some confusion among those that are buying a new dishwasher for their home.

So, in this article, we will have a thorough look at top control dishwasher vs front control dishwasher differences and help you narrow down on the one that will match your kitchen aesthetics and convenience.

Top Control Vs Front Control Dishwashers – Similarities and Differences

What is a Top Control Dishwasher?

top control vs front control dishwasher

The dishwasher controls are hidden on top of the panel of the dishwasher door in front-control dishwashers, which becomes invisible when closed. And, as the name implies, it is the primary distinction between top control and front control dishwashers. It gives the dishwashers a modern, minimal appearance. You will notice a sleek and seamless appearance with a top control dishwasher. This is due to the lack of bulky knobs or control system on the outside or in plain sight.  

What is a Front Control Dishwasher?

front control vs top control dishwasher

Front-control dishwashers have an outer operating system on the front of the dishwasher’s door. This is a prevalent and traditional type of dishwasher. Unlike top-control dishwashers, the buttons are visible when the dishwasher door is locked. The door is generally held closed and locked by a pocket grip on the outside. When compared to top control dishwashers, front control dishwashers are slightly less expensive. One of the best things about these models is that they can match any type of kitchen furnishing. Since there is no handle, you don’t need to match it with any of the kitchen appliances or the decor scheme of your kitchen.

What are the Upsides of Using a Top Control Dishwasher?

1. Seamless & Minimal Appearance

The top control dishwasher’s minimal design is stylish and elegant, giving your kitchen a trendy and modern look. And since the buttons and control systems are located on top of the dishwasher, they are usually smaller and more compact. As a result, top control dishwashers are considered a high-end option, and they can be found in some of the most well-designed kitchens.

It also results in a better visual even when it is open. The appliance is easy to clean, smooth surface finish and lacks front controls. The sleek front complements almost any kitchen design, and the front of the dishwasher isn’t packed with buttons, lights, and controls.

2. Flush Installation

Integrated dishwashers are approved for flush inset installation that blend in with your cabinetry using custom panels and hidden components. 

It gives a sleek and elegant design to the kitchen. When the dishwasher is sticking out of the cabinet, which is often the case with front control dishwashers, it doesn’t look all that appealing to the eye. Further, you are also likely to hit a toe on the corner, stumble upon it unconsciously or any other accidents might happen. Front control dishwashers that are approved for flush installation are increasingly becoming the norm for modern kitchens.

3. Protected Buttons

With the buttons hidden at the top of the dishwasher door, the kids are much less likely to mess with them while you’re cooking dinner. It reduces the chances of possible accidents when a child is playing around, near the dishwasher. But since top control dishwashers don’t really have visible controls, this will never occur.

It also eliminates the possibility of inadvertently pressing the buttons while cooking. This situation may likely require washing your dishes twice, wasting both water and electricity. Furthermore, the smooth finish and lack of front controllers and lighting make the appliance appear very attractive and elegant.

What Are the Upsides of Using a Front Control Dishwasher?

1. Accessible Controls

Front control dishwashers have a timeless design and easy access to cycle settings. The controls are accessible without opening the door. The buttons with a front control dishwasher are right where you can see them. This feature creates a flawless, simple, and efficient design that everyone can operate. This style of dishwasher is normal and conventional. It’s not Together with the controls on the front, there is usually some type of countdown which will allow you to know whether the system is in the process or not. 

2. Budget Friendly

Keeping a budget range in mind will guide you in narrowing down your options. Front control dishwashers are the best option if you’re on a tight budget and don’t care that much about the aesthetic of the kitchen.

When it comes to dishwasher prices, the size of the dishwasher, designs and augmented features will cause significant price variation. Front-control dishwashers, on the other hand, will be less expensive than top-control models in general. It is a traditional dishwasher with old or new features that are less sophisticated. For a few thousand rupees, you can get a decent, basic dishwasher with controls on the front of the door. 

3. Classic Look

The placement of the buttons and controls on the front of the dishwasher creates a classic appearance. Even though the control systems have evolved from buttons to touch screens, it’s still helpful to know where to look and how to operate your dishwasher. Since the appliance’s introduction to the general public in the 1950s, this has been the standard dishwasher design. Front-control dishwashers have a classic look and provide quick and easy access to the machine’s settings. Whether you are considering a kitchen renovation or replacing the old broken dishwasher, it is comforting to know that it will never look out of date.

4. Convenient Monitoring of Wash Cycles

In addition to the controls on the front, there is generally a certain type of countdown that will tell you where the device is in the operation through cycle status indicator lights or a digital time remaining display to show the progress of a cycle. The ability to stop the dishwasher in the middle of a process is one of the great attributes of a front control dishwasher. All you have to do is open the door a smidgeon and the cycle will come to a halt. To restart the cycle, most of the time you must press Start before closing the door.

Related Read: Why does my dishwasher smell like rotten eggs?

Is a Top Control Dishwasher Costlier than A Front Control?

The price of front controls vs top controls totally depends on the brand and other functionalities included in the dishwasher, such as quiet operation, waste disposal mechanism (implying if the unit has a hard food disposer or a filtration system), etc. However, front control dishwashers are considerably less expensive than top control dishwashers since the manufacturer and components of your dishwasher will have a significant impact on the price. Top control dishwashers are strictly reserved for higher-end manufacturers and functions, so they are a little more pricey. Front controls, on the other hand, do not always appear inexpensive, and they can be more efficient if you want to know what process is working and how long it really has left for the process to be over.

Verdict | Is A Top Control Or Front Control Dishwasher Better?

At the end of the day, both the types of dishwashers work for the same cause. There are many aspects to keep in mind before choosing one of them, like if you are remodeling your kitchen in a contemporary design, then you should definitely go for a top control model. Or if you have children and are concerned about their safety, a top control dishwasher is the ideal choice. 

Otherwise, if you are tight on your budget, or want to have easy access to the controls and don’t care about the aesthetic of the kitchen, a front control dishwasher would be the best. 

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