Warner Stellian and Bosch teamed up last month to offer one lucky winner a brand new iPad.
Bosch is one of those brands that comes out with just the coolest technology, like the InfoLight that projects a red beam on the floor so you know when it’s in use (because the dishwasher is actually that quiet). So we thought, what better to give a Bosch customer than a fancy new iPad?
And Mary Lou of Edina ended up being the exact sort of person you’d like to give an awesome prize to.
(I’m sure you’re not supposed to say stuff like this, but who cares…I liked her.)
According to Google, inquiring minds want to know*: what’s the best dishwasher?
Well, if you read “leading consumer publications,” you already know.
Bosch Ascenta dishwashers were awarded the top rating and also called the best value in 2012 (speaking of value, Bosch dishwashers ARE 10% off in June — all of them).
But the cool thing about Bosch dishwashers is all that performance comes packaged in an award-winning design that also is recognized for its excellence in conserving water and energy (more on that next week).
A vacuum cleaner from 10 feet away is 70 dBA and a watch ticking is 30 dBA. A three-decibel increase is the auditory equivalent of running two washers at once, according to Bosch.
For just $599, that dBA level is unheard of (get it?). Usually this fully integrated, European-engineered dishwasher is $699.
But this month at Warner Stellian, you’ll save $100 instantly on this dishwasher.
Bosch’s quietest dishwasher is 39 dBA, but all Bosch dishwashers are 10% off so you can save on whichever model sounds best for you (more puns, sorry).
AND Bosch is giving away an iPad to a lucky Twin Cities winner! Enter at the the Warner Stellian website where you can also browse our selection of Bosch dishwashers and — if you’re not ready to replace — learn helpful tips from Bosch on how to use your dishwasher better. We’ll announce the winner of the iPad in July.
Sure the house has a smart design and is constructed from reused and reclaimed materials, but you can also learn tips to improve the house you have: increase the energy efficiency of your home with an energy audit, incorporate composting and recycling systems, improve indoor air quality and install eco-friendly kitchen surfaces and appliances.
And if that doesn’t get you going, there are backyard chickens on the patio, covered by part of the now-defunct Metrodome roof (and a super pretty natural gas grill from Warners’ Stellian).
If you’re intersted in improving the energy efficiency of your home, you’ll be introduced to the best resources for financing your energy improvements, from loans, rebates, tax credits, or grants.
My camera ran out of batteries before I could take pictures of the STUNNING kitchen, with its blue-green colored reclaimed cabinets and recycled glass counter tops, but I can show you the smart and sexy appliances we chose to showcase this year:
The architects on this project specifically requested Liebherr, and we couldn’t have agreed more. Liebherr goes beyond being super energy efficient (27% over federal standards) to become the most sustainable refrigerators; its refrigerators are manufactured in the greenest way out there. Plus, its two compressors ensure premium food preservation. Basically, your fresh (local?) foods will last way longer because the dry air from the freezer won’t disturb the humidity in the refrigerator.
Elements on this Electrolux induction range automatically detect the presence of magnetic cookware, activate the induction field and adjust it to the exact size of the pan. This means that no energy is wasted heating anything else but the cookware holding your food. Induction is 20% more efficient than electric and 70% more efficient than gas, though it boasts the same power and responsiveness that cooks love.
Buying in bulk to save money doesn’t just apply to food and household goods. If you’re looking for cheap appliances, kitchen appliance packages offer some of the best prices available.
Plus, new appliances mean your kitchen immediately becomes better looking and harder working. If only we offered the same deal for your significant other 🙂
Here are some examples of appliances packages, from entry level, to high end. Keep in mind that any group of appliances can be “packaged,” but the ones shown online are some of our most popular combinations.
Through July 20, you can buy this Frigidaire kitchen appliance set for as low as $1,299 in white, black or bisque.This kitchen appliance package comes with a 18 cu. ft. top-freezer refrigerator, a 30″ freestanding range – gas or electric, an over the range microwave and built-in dishwasher!
I stress to customers the importance of selecting a product based on individual personal needs, rather than simply following Consumer Reports or a friend’s suggestion.
These sources can help validate a decision, but ultimately, your lifestyle is not your friend’s lifestyle — and I’m sure it’s certainly not Consumer Report’s lifestyle.
Saying that, I think it’s interesting to know what we sell the most of in each category. And in dishwashers, it’s the Bosch Evolution 300 series (models SHE43P02UC white or SHE43P05UC stainless steel).
It makes sense for the value. This European dishwasher is packed with features for $600 (stainless costs $100 more):
Energy Star qualified
Engineered to be super quiet (52 dBa)
14-place setting capacity, with adjustable upper rack for taller pots, etc.
4 wash cycles, including 30-minute Quick Wash
OptiDry for spotless drying
NSF Certified – Eliminates 99.9% of Bacteria
Of course there are a ton more features, but I’m only highlighting the ones I found most interesting.
And some features require more explanation, mostly because they’re branded (note the ™) with names that don’t really explain what they do, like AquaStop™.
So, for those keeping score at home, AquaStop™ detects leaks in the solid molded base of the dishwasher, shuts down operation and automatically pumps out water before contact with floors. Some won’t understand why this is important. And the rest of you had to replace an entire kitchen’s worth of hardwood floors and cabinetry due to leaking. Trust me: it’s important.
The Flow-Through Heater™ warms water (up to 161 degrees) more efficiently by having it flow through a heating chamber. Other manufacturers use conventional heating elements where water falls randomly onto a coil, warming it inefficiently. This is bad.
And, for the smart feature with the stupid name win: EcoSense™. Standard dishwashers constantly bring fresh water into the dishwasher, which could be completely unnecessary — the water might not be that dirty. So Bosch, being the energy efficient thinker it is, put a sensor in that checks to see how clean or dirty the water is and decides whether a fresh water refill is necessary and will customize the selected cycle to the individual load of dishes.
Again, this might not be the dishwasher for you, but there are a ton of different Bosch dishwashers so perhaps you might find that works best for you.
OK, so I couldn’t actually say this phrase in Portuguese, but I sure asked to look at plenty of European’s refrigerators — in English.
I spent the last couple weeks in Portugal visiting a friend (we also traveled to France and Italy), and along the way I invaded the privacy of every kitchen appliance I came across; Rita’s friends wondered why I was so interested in their dishwashers. Why wouldn’t I be?
My apologies for the lack of photos, but I don’t own a camera and decided snapping cell phone pictures of near strangers’ kitchens could wear out my welcome.
So here’s what I learned about Europe, through the lens of appliance blogger.
“Dryers are for emergencies”
That’s what my friend Rita said when showing me the Bosch laundry pair installed under the counter in the kitchen of her house, which would be considered a condo in the states. Nearly all the clothes I washed during my trip were hung on the balcony to dry and later ironed — even the towels! All over Lisbon, clothes hung from lines strung out windows and across balconies. It was quite the sight.
In my world of Midwest blizzards and crumpled clothing, irons are for emergencies and a steam Electrolux dryer a lifesaver.
Food must be fresh
Rita’s mother went to the market nearly every day for produce, bread, fish and queijo fresco (“fresh cheese”). The 24-inch wide refrigerator gave little space to bottom freezer compartment, which contained frozen vegetables and soups used — again — “only for emergencies.”
At least in the houses I visited, going to the market often was part of the culture. (Then again, so was double parking on busy metropolitan streets.) But without a built-in icemaker (one Siemens brand refrigerator had smart vertical ice cube trays built-in to the front of the freezer drawers) or water dispenser, there’s more room in the refrigerator for eggs. The Portuguese cook with A LOT of eggs, I learned. My favorite use of egg yolks? Pastel de nata.
I often feel like I eat more out of my freezer than my fridge. I love frozen veggies and meats for stir-fry that don’t have to be prepared within days of a grocery shopping trip. Plus, I grew up in a house freezer jams, soups and casseroles. Most of my fruit sits on the counter.
Cooking fits in a small footprint
“Standard” American cooktops and ranges are 30 inches wide. Proud owners of pro-style cooking products, however, enjoy a cooking space up to 60 inches (yes, that’s 5 feet).
Most of the cooktops and ranges I saw were a slim 24 inches, or “apartment-sized” in Warners’ Stellian store speak. Still, I enjoyed multiple-course dinners that — had I not already given the kitchen a good up-and-down — I would’ve never guessed was prepared in such relatively cramped surfaces.
I regret now not asking whether a whole turkey could fit in the oven, easily the benchmark for cooking capacity concerns here in America. Then again, being blond-haired and blue-eyed got me enough strange looks in Portugal.
I do have a devoted love to the kind of appliances I grew up with — the kind my grandpa and dad and aunts and uncles sold. But I can appreciate the way that Europeans do things differently, sometimes even better, maybe.