HAVA R01 Review: An Impressively Roomy Countertop Dishwasher

Sized for tiny homes or micro apartments, we put this compact dishwasher to the test.

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HAVA R01 Countertop Dishwasher

Margaret Badore / Treehugger

A compact countertop dishwasher that doesn’t require a plumber to install has appeal to a range of users, from renters whose apartments don’t come outfitted with an existing dishwasher to the designers of tiny homes who are looking to squeeze the most utility into the smallest space. 

Many countertop dishwashers need a standard faucet to serve as the water inlet, but the HAVA R01 promises even more flexibility, because it can also be filled manually using a pitcher or jug. It just needs somewhere to drain, and a standard wall outlet (120 volts). 

HAVA provided me with a test unit to try out myself. Read on for the full review, as well as a look at the product’s sustainability profile. 

Setup

Before you buy, it’s extremely important to measure the space where you might put the unit. Although it is compact, it’s still considerably bigger than most countertop kitchen appliances. 

It fits snugly under most standard cabinets (about 18 inches), but this placement will block access to the manual inlet, so you'd need to use the faucet inlet hose to supply water. If you plan to use the manual inlet (supplying water from the water tank), be sure that you have plenty of space above the unit to be able to hold a pitcher and pour the water in. Treehugger initially had to change testers because the first member of our team couldn’t find a position in their kitchen where the unit could fit. 

Once we got the HAVA to its second test location, it was extremely easy to set up. You connect the drainage tube and place it in the sink; there’s a small suction cup to help it stay in position. If you plan to use the manual fill option, you can unscrew the reservoir cover and plug the unit in—you’ll want the HAVA to be connected to power while using the manual fill, because there’s a sensor that tells you when it’s full. 

The HAVA's drainage tube can be held in place in a sink with the small suction cup.
The HAVA's drainage tube can be held in place with the small suction cup.

Margaret Badore / Treehugger

If you plan to use a faucet to supply water, you’ll connect the inlet hose to your tap only when you’re ready to run the machine. The inlet line needs to stay connected to the faucet while the machine runs. In both setups, it’s a good idea to disconnect the HAVA from power when it’s not in use. 

If you want a more permanent installation (perhaps for a tiny house or RV) you can connect the drain hose directly to a sink drain or sewage outlet under the countertop, although this requires a hole in the countertop to thread the drain hose through. 

Using the HAVA R01

I used the manual fill option to test the HAVA R01. The HAVA uses 1.3 gallons (5 liters) of water per wash. Using the included pitcher, it’s three to four pitchers. I also used my faucet’s pull-down arm to fill the machine, which worked well. There’s a small chime that sounds when the reservoir is full enough to run a load, and you’ll get an error if you try to start a wash cycle without enough water. 

A pitcher pours water into the HAVA compact dishwasher.
Using the manual fill to add water to the HAVA dishwasher.

Margaret Badore / Treehugger

The HAVA has intuitive controls on an LED touch screen, so there are no raised buttons to clean. There are five wash cycle options: normal, speed, soft, baby care/heavy, and fruit. All of the cycles are followed by a 1-hour warm air drying cycle except for the fruit setting. 

You can use any standard dishwashing machine detergent in the HAVA, including pods, liquid, or powder. I’d recommend choosing powder or liquid over a pod, since you actually can use less detergent than the pre-portioned amount that’s sized for a bigger dishwasher. 

An unexpectedly great feature is the clear front door. Not only can you easily see how full the machine is throughout the day, but it’s oddly satisfying to be able to see if it’s running. With spray arms on the top and the bottom, it’s a little bit like looking out the car’s closed window while driving through a car wash. 

The operation is pretty quiet, and the chimes are pleasant and not startling or shrill. 

The Results

Basically, the HAVA does everything a full-size dishwasher can do, just on a smaller scale. 

In the HAVA’s user manual, it says it’s designed to hold just two place settings, however, this feels like too small an assessment. I was impressed by how many dishes it really could clean at once. In our four-person household with three adults and a baby, we could fit in all our dinner dishes, plus a handful of items from earlier in the day, into one load.

Like any dishwasher, playing around with the arrangement can help you get more in. I found it useful to sometimes re-position the cutlery basket, depending on what I was trying to load in. A typical load for us consisted of 4 small bowls, 5 standard dinner plates, 1 additional small plate, 2 glasses, 3 mugs, and several big handfuls of utensils. 

A full load of dirty dishes inside the HAVA R01 dishwasher.
A full load of dirty dishes inside the HAVA R01 dishwasher.

Margaret Badore / Treehugger

Everything came out shiny and clean looking, without any pre-rinsing. I tested a range of different types of food remnants, including coffee stains, tomato sauce, and the dry dregs of soy milk and cereal (my least favorite thing to clean by hand). I never found any stuck-on gunk afterwards. The baby care/heavy is particularly nice for small bottle and breast pump parts that I wouldn’t want to put in a standard dishwasher because I’d worry about them getting lost, but fit nicely on the HAVA's upper rack.

Left: Dirty dinner plate with tomato sauce. Right: The same plate is now clean after being washed in the HAVA dishwasher.
Left: Plate with tomato sauce. Right: The same plate after being washed in the HAVA dishwasher.

Margaret Badore / Treehugger

The 60 minute Dry mode works well. Much like a full-sized dishwasher, there may still be some water pooled in any rims or wells of your dishes at the end of the cycle. Most of the time, however, I decided to switch the unit off and let everything air dry by opening the door to save energy. You also have the option of running the Dry mode on its own.

Sustainability 

There’s a good amount of research that shows dishwashers use soap, water, and energy more efficiently than washing dishes by hand. One European study found that households with a dishwasher used 50% less water and 28% less energy per item cleaned than households without a dishwasher. A big caveat is that this research was conducted in households will full-sized dishwashers, but I think it's fair to conclude that using any dishwasher is going to have a lower environmental impact than dish washing by hand in most circumstances.

HAVA is particularly water efficient. You’d be hard-pressed to wash the same sink full of dishes with just the 1.3 gallons of water HAVA requires to run a load, considering that many kitchen faucets deliver up to 2.2 gallons of water per minute.

If you wash dishes with hot or warm water, there could also be energy savings with less water being heated. Since it’s an entirely electric device, if your home runs on clean energy it can be operated without fossil fuels. Like any dishwasher or washing machine, a full load is most efficient.

One way to save energy when operating HAVA is to switch it off when the Dry mode kicks in, and open the door to allow the dishes to air dry, or use a towel to dry them if you’re in a hurry. Unfortunately, there’s no way to opt out of Dry mode when you start the wash cycle, so if you don’t want it to run you have to be around to shut it off. The option to turn the Dry mode off would definitely be a sustainability improvement. 

Finally, when we’re talking about buying anything new, we also need to acknowledge that there’s upfront carbon emissions (also known as embodied carbon/embodied energy) associated with manufacturing. That takes into account all the water, energy, and materials that are needed to make things. In order to really get the benefits of a device that promises to conserve water or energy, you need to actually use it for the product's full lifetime and then recycle it properly. Otherwise, it's better not to buy an appliance that won’t be used regularly for many years. However, if you use it daily, the HAVA will hands down save you time and effort, which is the primary reason anyone buys a dishwasher. 

Final Verdict

The HAVA R01 is a great compact appliance, and while it’s an investment, it’s less expensive that nearly any full-size dishwasher on the market. It’s very water efficient, and does an excellent job of cleaning dishes. It’s a great choice for renters or tiny house dwellers, because it doesn’t require any plumbing to install and can be filled manually. 

HAVA R01 Countertop Dishwasher

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HAVA R01 Countertop Dishwasher

HAVA

Specs
Product Name  R01 Countertop Dishwasher
Brand  HAVA
Weight  28.7 pounds
Dimensions  17 x 17 x 18 inches
Power  950 watts
Warranty  12 month warranty, lifetime technical support

Why Trust Treehugger?

Treehugger has covered the tiny homes movement for more than a decade, and strives to provide readers practical small-living resources as well as inspiration. 

Associate Editorial Director Margaret Badore tested the HAVA R01 in her NYC apartment under real-world conditions. She has over ten years of experience reporting on sustainability, climate change, and green living.

View Article Sources
  1. Richter, C.P. “Usage of dishwashers: observation of consumer habits in the domestic environment.” International Journal of Consumer Studies. DOI:10.1111/j.1470-6431.2010.00973.x

  2. Bathroom and Kitchen Faucets.” Building America Solutions Center, Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy.