A Brief dishwasher history and how it affected our lives

The dishwasher is a fantastic labor saving device; it gets our dishes cleaner and uses less water than hand washing. If our dishwasher stops working for any reason, we quickly realize how much we rely on it, and scheduling a repair becomes a priority. But, when was the dishwasher invented, and how did it evolve into the machines that we use today? Let’s take a brief look at the history of the dishwasher and how it has changed our lives for the better.

The Earliest Dishwasher

We have to go back to 1850 to see the first ever patent for a dishwashing appliance. This machine was invented by Joel Houghton, when the machine was turned on water would pass through wooden channels and spray dishes in a rack. This early device was extremely basic, but the idea was expanded on in 1887 when Josephine Cochrane displayed her more advanced dishwasher at the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair.

Josephine Cochrane’s Dishwasher

This machine was far more advanced than Joel Houghton’s dishwasher, which was made entirely with wood. The Cochrane dishwasher had its own copper boiler with a wooden wheel inside, and this was powered by a hand driven pulley system. The dishes were placed in a series of wire framed compartments and place in the machine. Then the hand driven motor was used to spray the spinning dishes with warm soapy water. At the time, this was revolutionary, but we had to wait until the 1920s to see significant advances in dishwashing technology.

The Evolution of the Dishwasher

The next major dishwasher evolution occurred in 1924 with a dishwasher which looks similar to the types of machines that we use today. This machine has a rack system for dishes and a rotating water sprayer to clean the dishes. But, this machine required an indoor plumbing system, which was not in wider use at that time. So, the only people that could afford to purchase and run a dishwasher had to be wealthy. Given this severe drawback, we would not see dishwashers in widespread use until after WW2. Advances in indoor plumbing in the late 40s and early 50s opened up a world of new plumbing fixtures and appliances, including the latest dishwasher designs.

The Modern Era

Due to a number of factors, the dishwasher was a luxury appliance up until the 1950s. The designs evolved significantly from that point, and by the 1970s, dishwashers were in wider use amongst people that only a few years earlier could not afford to buy them. This trend continued up until the present day, and now approximately 75% of Americans own and use a dishwasher each and every day.

The modern dishwasher is far easier to use when compared to those earlier affordable appliances. We now have pre-soak cycles, efficient rack storage, removable trays, better filters, and more efficient rotating sprays. The latest dishwashers truly are a modern marvel that we take for granted, and yet they have changed our lives for the better.

The EPA has revealed that the latest high efficiency dishwashers save energy and water. This is equally true when they are compared to older dishwasher models and washing dishes by hand. This helps us to preserve our natural resources, and our dishes are sanitized using a more thorough method. It’s clear that the modern dishwasher is here to stay and it’s likely that we will see further improvements in the years to come.

If your dishwasher is no longer delivering sparkling clean dishes, you can rely on the expertise of a home appliance technician. An experienced technician can evaluate your machine to check for underlying issues and provide a repair solution.