"Double Dishwasher" Kitchens are Going Viral — Here's Why Both Organizers and Designers Love Them

A professional organizer and kitchen designer give their thoughts on the trend for doubling up on dishwashers

a kitchen with a dishdrawer dishwasher appliance
(Image credit: Matthew Delphenich, courtesy of Fisher & Paykel)

There are many features I'd want in my dream kitchen — but I may have just found a new contender for my perfect space in the 'double dishwasher'. This idea is doing the rounds on social media right now as the solution to one of everybody's least favorite chores - unloading the dishwasher - and proponents of including a second appliance in the kitchen swear it will transform your life.

I know what you're thinking — and yes, as someone with a small kitchen myself, adding in another dishwasher isn't a luxury I can afford in my home's compact square footage. However, if you've got the space to play with, is doubling up on dishwashers really a good use of space?

I asked both a professional organizer and a kitchen designer, expecting to be met with some resistance to the idea but, as it turns out, they think it's a great idea for a modern kitchen too. Here's why.

Is the "double dishwasher" trend a good idea?

a dishwasher in a green kitchen

(Image credit: Sharon Hughes. Design: BLDC Design)

I take most viral ideas with a pinch of salt, but when it comes to the double dishwasher kitchen, it seems the experts are in agreeance that it's actually a great idea.

'I have two in my house, and I love that I basically always have clean dishes, and the dirty ones are in the dishwasher,' says professional organizer Nicole Gabai, founder of B. Organized, and the author of The Art of Organizing: An Artful Guide to an Organized Life. 'This is especially useful when you have a dinner party — even with just four guests; it makes clean up so much easier and quicker.

Professional kitchen designer Gabrielle Fabbri agrees. 'I personally love the idea of two dishwashers and have done this with many clients,' she tells me. 'Two dishwashers are ideal for clients who entertain a lot and those with larger families.'

But is the double dishwasher a good idea for every home? Possibly not. 'It's a huge help to large families or someone who likes to entertain a lot,' Nicole agrees, 'but I am not so sure that I would prioritize having a second dishwasher over having another lower cabinet. It really depends on how big the kitchen is, how much kitchen storage space you already have, and what you actually need most.'

The good news is that your decision can be made pretty much on that basis, rather than cost: 'Depending on the appliance you select the cost can be equal to or less than another base cabinet,' Gabrielle explains.


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How to use two dishwashers in a kitchen

a kitchen with a large fridge and two drawer dishwashers

(Image credit: Matthew Delphenich, courtesy of Fisher & Paykel)

Many of the viral videos surrounding the double dishwasher suggest that by having two appliances, you don't really ever have to unload the dishwasher: you can take what you need from the clean dishwasher, and fill up the dirty one. However, given that we don't use everything in our kitchens at the same frequency, it might not quite work like that — yet that doesn't stop it being a great way to keep on top of mess.

'Of course, the dishwasher is the best place to put dirty dishes, however, its not always possible,' Nicole Gabai says. 'As soon as the wash cycle is complete and dry (and not too hot), then it's time to put everything away.  Ideally, you want your dishwasher to be ‘ready to load’ as frequently as possible.' 

The best ‘holding place' I have found for keeping the ‘dirty’ dishes until it is time to empty out the dishwasher to re-load is to rinse them off and stack them neatly in the sink, waiting for the current wash to be complete and the dishwasher emptied,' Nicole adds. This means that the best dishwasher placement in a kitchen is generally on either side of your sink for easy loading.

Nicole has one last tip for keeping the clutter of dirty dishes at bay. 'For an ‘easy fix’ of the unsightly mess, try placing a large cutting board over the sink in the meantime. Having that second dishwasher is a wonderful luxury if space and budget allow!'

How can I get the 'double dishwasher' effect in a small kitchen?

a kitchen with a dishdrawer dishwasher appliance

(Image credit: Matthew Delphenich, courtesy of Fisher & Paykel)

We've already decided that two full dishwashers isn't a great idea for a small kitchen, however there are some ways to get the effect to consider, according to kitchen designer Gabrielle Fabbri. 'When fighting for space in a kitchen there are ways to do this without sacrificing too much,' Gabrielle explains. 'My first thought would be to explore other areas such as a pantry or wet bar. Perhaps we could sneak the appliance in there.' 

'I would also consider using a dishwasher drawer; these are great for washing all your glassware and smaller plates, and you can fit another drawer underneath,' Gabrielle says. 'This allows clients to have a bit of storage with the appliance.' Fisher & Paykel are perhaps the best-known makers of this style of dishwasher with their iconic DishDrawers.

Luke Arthur Wells
Freelancer writer

Luke Arthur Wells is a freelance design writer, award-winning interiors blogger and stylist, known for neutral, textural spaces with a luxury twist. He's worked with some of the UK's top design brands, counting the likes of Tom Dixon Studio as regular collaborators and his work has been featured in print and online in publications ranging from Domino Magazine to The Sunday Times. He's a hands-on type of interiors expert too, contributing practical renovation advice and DIY tutorials to a number of magazines, as well as to his own readers and followers via his blog and social media. He might currently be renovating a small Victorian house in England, but he dreams of light, spacious, neutral homes on the West Coast.