Love the dishwasher, hate the manual.
The KitchenAid KDTM804KPS is the third KitchenAid dishwasher we've had over the years. For a long time we had a "Superba" model that was very good, but eventually declined. After that was a Bosch 800 (liked the capacity and design, but it didn't clean well for us), a lower-end KitchenAid with front controls (pretty good) and a GE with top controls (miserable layout held few dishes). The KDTM804KPS hits all the right notes - it fits more of our dishes than any previous model we have tried, washes extremely well, is very quiet and has great features. How great? So much so that KitchenAid doesn't even tell you about some of them!
Let's start with that third rack. Lots of dishwashers have one, but this KitchenAid does it right. It is shaped to allow reasonable size glasses and cups and has two spray arms that turn back and forth, like an oscillating sprinkler, to make sure that everything in that rack gets sparkling clean. There's also a large flatware tray.
The middle rack can be positioned up and down, and it is also shaped such that (with some care) it doesn't hit larger plates on the bottom rack. The tines are set to allow lots of realistically-sized dishes to fit, and the tines can be folded down or at various angles as needed. This rack also has five flip-up clips to secure stemware in place, but I have to ask - why five? Six would fit and would make much more sense.
The bottom rack is also cavernous and the tines are spaced just right so that, again, lots of our dishes fit. Another flatware rack is here - identical to the one in our older lower-priced KA - but it's fine.
There are LED lights for the interior, but we turned those off as we usually leave the door cracked open. Another undeclared feature is a funky-looking triangular rack clipped to the left side of the bottom rack, intended for kitchen knives (Chef's knife, etc.) This is mentioned nowhere in the specs or the manual, and even the KitchenAid customer service reps had no clue what it was initially. Thankfully it just pulls off, as we'd never run such knives through the dishwasher.
The filter at the bottom is one you don't have to clean after every load, though you should check it. The heating element is recessed but exposed.
This model has many cycles, and features a fan-forced drying cycle that vents out a duct below the door. It offers delayed atart and the heated dry can be set to either run for an extended time or not run heated at all (which is our preference.) You can even tell it to wash only the top two racks - handy if you have lots of glassware and no plates.
Here's another feature they don't tell you about: when the dishwasher is running, that black panel above the handle is actually an LCD display that tells you which cycle it's in and has a bar graph that shortens as the cycle progresses. (See pictures I attached.) When done, the panel displays "CLEAN" (that turns off when you open the door.) I chose to install it so that I could also see the time-remaining display on the top.
Installation was fairly typical. I was very impressed with the sound insulation batting, which was heavier and more extensive than any dishwasher I had previously seen. The batt even extends down the back of the unit. Underneath the tub was another unannounced surprise - a drip tray with a float switch! This catches any leaks from the water supply or the tub, and if the level gets too high it shuts down the dishwasher and sounds an alarm. I was also impressed with how integrated the chassis seemed, with higher quality components than I am used to seeing. My only real gripe here was the use of plastic leveling legs on each corner that were hard to reach while installing and required a larger wrench (1 inch?) than I had at hand. I really loved the Bosch system that used a screw you turned from the front that adjusted the back legs. The unit has rubber gaskets on sides and top to go against the cabinet.
Performance is simply excellent, both washing and drying. We tried the standard fan-forced "Pro Dry" and it worked as advertised, blowing warm moist air out the duct and getting all the dishes, including plastic containers, quite dry. In operation it is extremely quiet.
Unlike many dishwashers in this price range, this model does not have Wi-Fi and doesn't connect to an app. That's fine with me.
Now about that manual. As is common in the appliance industry, this is an unbranded manual that covers multiple models from multiple Whirlpool brands, but it's not always clear whether a step or a feature applies to your model. Worse, the use instructions are spread out across three different documents.
I do want to call out one section of the manual as especially horrible. This is "User Interface Customer Settings", where it tells you how to change: 1) How much rinse aid is dispensed, 2) Whether sound is on or off, 3) whether the tub lights are enabled, and 4) Whether "Kosher Friendly" mode is enabled. What is "Kosher Friendly" mode? The manual doesn't say, but the KitchenAid web site says it is what other brands call a Sabbath mode, where the controls and lights are disabled. All other appliances that have this automatically disable it after 72 hours (or thereabouts), but I see nothing here to suggest that, suggesting that you have to set and unset it each time. And there's the rub...
The manual's instructions for how to change these settings are simply wrong. Some of this is trying to combine instructions for models with and without a numeric display, but even so they're wrong. So here's how it works.
1. Press and hold HI TEMP. The LED by HI TEMP will flash for a few seconds, go out for a few more, then come back on. When it comes back on, immediately remove your finger from HI TEMP and press START. The display will read A if you did it right; if not, press CANCEL and try again.
2. Press NORMAL to step through the setting categories. The display will read A for Rinse Aid, S for sound, L for light, K for Kosher and the last option is r for Factory Reset.
3. When you get to the category you want, press START. The display will then add a digit to tell you the status of that option. For example, S1 means sound is on, S0 means sound is off, etc.
4. Press NORMAL to cycle through the choices for that category.
5. When you find the one you want, press START to save it. (The manual doesn't tell you this at all.) The display will then turn off. If you don't want to make changes, press CANCEL. (The manual says hold for three seconds, but I didn't find that necessary.) It will also time out after 30 seconds if no other action is taken.
You have to repeat the whole sequence for each setting you want to change.
One last thing I'll note is that the manual says that if you turn the sound off, you still get an end-of-cycle sound. I did not find that to be the case.
To quote my wife, "This one is a keeper!" Rich feature set, superb rack design, great build quality. We love it!
Easy to Clean, Easy to Install, High Quality, Looks Great, Lots of Features, Nice Design