Earth Notes: On the Electra C1845W freestanding slimline dishwasher: Review

Updated 2021-01-10 21:16 GMT.
New brand, more efficient, better delay control, no pointless app/WiFi!
C1845W controls
This site has now outlasted several major kitchen appliances, which helps show what improves with time. Changing brands now allows a more efficient and grid-friendly wash at last, without expensive, unnecessary and risky baubles...

Review

Initial review on its way...

Out With The Old

dishwasher slimline domestic Electra C1845W 1 DHD

The Zanussi ZDS2010 was replaced () with the Electra C1845W.

(The Zanussi expired 2020-11-26 and the Electra was finally correctly installed 2020-12-11. Here is my spreadsheet of options.)

The Electra feels a bit more flimsy than the Zanussi. But it beats the Zanussi on many parts of the spec, including energy use. There is also a half-load button, and a remaining-time indicator. Possibly best of all, there is a start delay incrementable in hours to 19h. I expect to make good use of the flexible delay to hit 2am-ish to minimise grid impact.

I'm also liking the 'pause' action that makes it easlier to check that everything is OK briefly without a splash of water escaping, or worrying that I am damaging something. Am I the only person who checks that the rinse has done its job on a particularly full load before moving to the main event? Maybe I am!

I could not find the manual on-line before the machine was delivered, which these days is unusual. The paper manual is fairly bland and generic, and titled Electra EN Dishwasher / User Manual and then C1845W / C1845DS / C1845B.

The Turkish manufacturer Vestel now uses the Electra brand. I am told that Vestel manufactures TVs for many of the leading [] brands including Toshiba, Hitachi and even low cost Panasonic ones. Seems like they're doing a reasonable job in the TV world anyway.

The Electra nominally holding 10 place settings to the the Zanussi's 9. However, the top rack feels more cramped with less headroom. I tried lowering the top rack to its other position. But then the upper spray arm was striking our dinner plates. Will need more getting used to.

Dishes Ex Machina

As we get to understand the soul of our new machine, I'll update this review.

Maintenance

The manual does not specifically mention regular maintenance washes, but says:

Oil and grime may build up in your Dishwasher over time. If this occurs:

  • Fill the detergent compartment but do not load any dishes. Select a programme which runs at high temperature and run the Dishwasher empty. If this does not clean your Dishwasher sufficiently, use a cleaning agent designed for use with dishwashers. ...

2020-12-11: Fitted, Finally

One of the services that we paid AO for was fitting. We had four AO visits in total. Three were attempting to fit a machine: all failed. (One was unannounced to take away the too-deep Candy machine. Though even that might have been made to fit with a minutes' work.)

I've had to twice call out a separate sensible tradesman that I know. One was on Sunday afternoon. All to do what the AO folks should have done.

The last AO visit two days ago, bringing the Electra back (with a dent in the side and the front panel deformed) was not a success either. The installer was seemingly in such a panic to get to the next job that he failed to connect the water feed, and tried to claim that it wasn't needed... His colleague and I eventually convinced him to. But he certainly did not then spend the few minutes it turned out to require to inspect the space, adjust the machine feet and get the device properly in so that we could use the adjacent kitchen drawer again.

That has now been done by me and the sensible tradesman. So we are finally where we should have been over a week ago.

2020-12-17: Observations

C1845W 20201217 ECO cycle consumption in whole house Enphase chart

The top rack seems less roomy than in the ZDS2010, and the foldable space for very small plates is probably the basis for the claim that 10 place settings can be held. I think in fact that the usable capacity is slightly lower than the ZDS2010. In any case I shall need to unlearn some old tricks for making best use of the available space, and learn some new ones.

The ECO cycle is 198 minutes long. Like the ZDS2010 ECO cycle, there are two main bursts of demand. In the ZDS2010 they are about 60 minutes apart, in the C1845W about 90 minutes apart. This means a longer period of sustained sunshine would be needed to cover both.

The C1845W manual makes a fleeting reference to a non-existent pre-wash detergent chamber, but does exist in the C1745W and looks a lot like that in the Zanussi ZDS2010.

2020-12-19: Delay Until 2am or 3am?

20201219T21:30Z BRMS screenshot

When setting up an overnight run with the ZDS2010 I would wait until a little before bedtime (~10pm) and select the fixed 3h delay. Thus the cycle would start at 1am, drawing the first significant (heating) load about 20 minutes later, and another heating burst ~40 minutes after that (~2am).

Minimum GB grid demand is more like betweem 3am and 5am. Aiming to consume then minimises grid infrastructure demands. It also flattens the daily load curve. It is nominally about lowest carbon intensity then also. There has been little or no coal burn at that time, looking at the stats for the last couple of days.

C1845W 20201220 ECO cycle consumption in whole house Enphase chart

Tonight I have set up the ECO wash shortly after 9pm, when I remembered and it was convenient. I set a 5h delay, which should start the cycle at ~2am, demanding significant energy soon after, and also at ~3:30am. On reflection maybe I should have gone for a 6h delay (3am start) to push a bit further into lowest grid demand.

(The first significant consumption can be seen in the Enlighten graph to be 2:15 to 2:30. The last is 3:45 to 4:00. So up to 1h later would be good.)

In future I think that I should aim for a start around 3am, not before 2am.

2021-01-01: just right for another 5h delay tonight, starting at 21:45.

2020-12-23: Energy Measurements

Today I am starting to take some energy-consumption measurements. I am using my Maplin N67HH plug-in meter.

I will update this table periodically as I take more.

The N67HH sees consumption at "off" as 0.5W after being turned back off. Load while sitting at a programme position but not set up nor started, 1.4W.

Today I'm starting with rinse (prewash).

Measured Electra C1845W energy consumption.
Programme Feature(s) Duration (m)
[1]
Energy (kWh) Date Water (°C)
[2]
Comments
prewash 15 < 0.1 2020-12-23 13 Cold rinse. Too low to register total kWh on meter, so showing 0.0. Programme run time seems about right. Power factor was ~0.95+ during rinse, but nearer 0.35 during final drain. Peak power draw was 131W. Final "resting" draw with selector left on prewash and when turned "off" was 1.4W. Opening the door and leaving it ajar dropped the power draw to 0.5W.
quick 30
eco 198
36s "20210106 Electra C1845W dishwasher ECO sample" Uploaded . Download stereo MP3 clip 784kB (may not be available in data-saver/lite mode), download low-bandwidth mono MP3 clip 206kB, hi-fi stereo lossless clip 3162kB.
half-load 170 0.7 2020-12-24 12 109W during prewash, ~30W during drain and then 8.4W while refilling afterwards. ~2.2kW as the wash starts (~246V / 9A), mains cable slightly warm, 0.4kWh metered by the end of the first burst of water heating with ~138 minutes left. At 90 minutes remaining, 0.7kWh has been metered, and the machine is drawing 1.3W. Programme duration as display, final draw before door opened 1.3W, peak draw 2244W, total energy 0.7kWh. (Separate observation suggests that the main wash is finished after ~90 minutes, and rinsing starts.)
super 50' 50
intensive 114
hygiene 124
  1. Duration is that shown on the machine's display at the start of the cycle, unless otherwise stated. The display time seems to be fairly accurate.
  2. The mains water temperature when measured. This affects energy consumption of any cycle that heats the water.

The C1845W manual is coy on these details, and not available on-line. However, I deduce that the following apply from looking at the manual of the similar C1745W:

  • Max total power 1900W, of which 1800W heating, 100W pump, 30W drain pump.
  • Wash temperatures (°C): prewash cold, quickwash 40, eco 50, super 50' 65, intensive 65, hygiene 70.
  • Wash energy (kWh): prewash 0.02, quickwash 0.72, eco 0.73, super 50' 1.31, intensive 1.45, hygiene 1.5.
  • Wash water (l): prewash 3.8, quickwash 10, eco 11.0, super 50' 10.5, intensive 17.6, hygiene 15.
C1745W programmes excerpt
Extract from Electra C1745W manual.

2020-12-24: ECO Half Load

C1845W 20201224 ECO half load cycle consumption in whole house Enphase chart cropped

The half-load option with ECO cuts the running time from 198 minutes to 170. It seems to be shortening the main wash and/or the following cold rinse to do that.

The two demand spikes seem to be ~45 minutes apart (cycle starting ~11:30) rather than over an hour. This would explain some of the 28 minutes saved.

The load wasn't particularly small, but it wasn't heavily soiled. Everything seems to have been cleaned well.

2021-01-06: Sound Of ECO

I recorded a sample of the dishwasher running on the ECO programme overnight. It may have been in the wash or the rinse part.

36s "20210106 Electra C1845W dishwasher ECO sample" Uploaded . Download stereo MP3 clip 784kB (may not be available in data-saver/lite mode), download low-bandwidth mono MP3 clip 206kB, hi-fi stereo lossless clip 3162kB.

IN PROGRESS