Drawer-Style Dishwashers and Frameless Cabinets

Tips on fitting drawer-type dishwashers into frameless cabinets. December 7, 2008

I have to start building the base cabinets for a kitchen that will have a drawer style dishwasher - only a single drawer. I build frameless, and this is the first dishwasher of this type a customer has asked to include in their kitchen.

I normally turn my top rail horizontal for a normal floor base DW (3/4" face exposed). I do not yet have the specs for this DW, but need to know if I turn the 2" face out or as normal tne 3/4" face of the top rail. Also are there any other "watch out for's " I need to be aware of in a drawer style DW? It is mounting under a granite top, and will have a regular drawer under it with side mount KV slides.

Forum Responses
(Cabinetmaking Forum)
From contributor D:
Do you know what brand the dishwasher is? I have installed several Fisher Paykel units, and they were easy to install and gave great specs. If it is a KitchenAid, I would be careful, as one gave me a lot of trouble which I haven't fully sorted out yet. That said i won't be using a KitchenAid again. We always do a drawer under them, on Blum drawer glides and have never had a problem. Are you doing custom drawer fronts on the unit?

From the original questioner:
KitchenAid is the brand. The upside is they are sticking with the stock drawer front. She black dyed cabinets with some rub through distressing, and all black from appliances. Thanks for the reply. Hopefully the install will go smooth.

From contributor D:
Links to specs are on the KitchenAid site. We've done a lot of F and P but not a K-aid yet. It looks a little screwy. Unit spec 24" depth, cut out 24" depth, drilling for drains and water on the side? It does look like you need a full shelf or floor under it. It also looks as if you could eliminate the top rail if you want to. You should probably get the unit and fit it in your shop.

From contributor T:
We've not yet worked with the KitchenAid but we've done a lot of Fisher Paykel drawer dishwashers. The Fisher Paykel requires a 10mm gap at the top for heat escapement. This wasn't obvious the first time we designed around it. You might want to check the Kitchen Aide to see if something like this might apply to it.

From contributor G:
I agreed on the Fisher Paykel. It’s always been a joy to work with but not so on the KitchenAid. Double and triple check those.

From the original questioner:
Thanks for the help guys, and especially the idea of fitting it in the shop and a vent area.

From contributor D:
I would definitely recommend having the unit in the shop. The issue that we ran into with the KitchenAid was that the spec’d opening width (23 1/2") ended up being too small. The dishwasher measured 23 5/8" width at the bottom. Has anyone else run into this problem?

From contributor B:
I have done many of both the Fisher Paykel and the KitchenAid units, which are basically the same with the exception of the badge cutout if you are using an integrated panel (Fisher Paykel makes the Kitchen Aide unit).

From contributor D:
KitchenAid has actually started manufacturing these for themselves, Fisher Paykel is no longer making the units for them.