Convenient and compact, the dishwasher comes of age

Electrolux was the first company to launch a compact countertop dishwasher. The original motivation was often based on the labor-saving aspects of the device. Marketing information from the time claimed a family of four could spend 45 work-days every year on doing dishes by hand!

Pre-electric inventiveness

The late 19th century saw several ingenious attempts to create a dishwasher. One of the most colourful inventors was Chicago socialite, Josephine Cochrane. Annoyed that her fine china was getting chipped and broken when the dishes were done by hand, Cochrane invented a machine to do the job.

In 1886 she took out a patent and started to manufacture her dishwasher: the first to be commercially successful. However, what was needed for a truly effective appliance was electricity and an effective, modern drainage system. The first electric dishwasher came on the market in 1929, however in private homes it only really started to catch on after WW2.

A new era rolls in with The Round Jar.


In 1959 Electrolux launched its first dishwasher, the countertop model D10

In 1959 Electrolux launched the D10. It was not only their first dishwasher but also the world’s first countertop model. Easy to install in the modern kitchen, it rapidly earned the nickname, “The Round Jar”. The dishes rotated and were sprayed with hot water and in eight minutes it could do all the washing up for a dinner for five people. Over 50,000 were sold on the Scandinavian and German market. It may also be one of the earliest products to be pirated, with copies sighted in the former East Germany (German Democratic Republic).


Pirate copy of the D10 countertop dishwasher from East Germany

The innovations continued and a floor-standing model came in 1966 which did everything at the press of one button: pre-wash, wash and drying. It became a standard component in the Electrolux kitchen.

Quieter, more energy-efficient and intelligent

During the 1980s, Electrolux made considerable progress in reducing both the water volume and the energy use of dishwashers. They were now more adaptable to different kinds of tasks and settings and could be programmed according to the load: glasses, pots, porcelain etc.

All Electrolux’s hard work has paid off. In 2014 the Stainless Steel Dishwasher with IQ-Touch™ Controls received the highest possible points from and was described as “The nearest to perfection.” A modern dishwasher uses ten litres of water, which is considerably less than washing by hand. The ComfortLift Dishwasher, which raises the lower basket to a comfortable height for efficient and ergonomic loading, won the prestigious gold IF Design Award in 2017.