Can I forego installation of an airgap with my Kitchenaid dishwasher? LA City


I am in the midst of a kitchen remodel and counter guys are coming tomorrow to do templates which means I’m at the point where I gotta decide what’s gonna stick out of it faucet-wise.

My contractor says if I have a Bosch or Miele dishwasher that I do not need to install an airgap. I cannot find this exception anywhere. I also cannot find LA City plumbing code on-line.

I have looked up the installation instructions on my current Kitchenaid dishwasher and according to the instructions it can be installed with a high-arc loop and into my garbage disposal and this, essentially, would work the same as an air gap.

I did see on one website something about a gravity drain. Is a gravity drain an alternative to an air gap? Is that something that comes as part of Bosch and Miele dishwashers? Is it something I can get to hook up to my Kitchenaid?

I love my dishwasher and it seems super dumb to spend $1200 on a new one just to avoid having a chrome cap up on my countertop. However, if I can avoid the chrome cap AND keep my dishwasher that’d be awesome.

Also, I am not having this job inspected. Can an airgap be installed later if we ever sell this house and are required inspectors to do so?


Jill, I have no idea what specific requirements your municipality may require. I would think your plumber would be able to advise you best. However, I think you’ve already got your answer. “Installed per manufacturers instructions…”

You would have to go to the building and safety department and apply for a variance for the installation. The code is clear.

CPC 807.4 No domestic dishwashing machine shall be directly connected to a drainage system or food waste disposer without the use of an approved dishwasher airgap fitting on the discharge side of the dishwashing machine. Listed airgaps shall be installed with the flood level (FL) marking at or above the flood level of the sink or drainboard, whichever is higher.

Instead of installing the normal R2D2 type air gap, if the counter is on an exterior wall, just have one installed through the wall. They are quite common especially with granite or custom countertops.

Hi Jill

An air gap is to prevent water in the sink from backing up into your dishwasher.

Some dishwasher models do include a check valve built in , so if you go with one of those models , be sure to follow manufacures instructions.

Personaly after spending 6 years installing the things I can tell you that a high reverse trap, which means securing the hose up as high as it will go ,meaning to the underside of the counter is just fine,in my book.

Water seeks its own level and that would do the trick.

My bigger concern would be that you make sure he attaches or secures the two front tabs on the unit into the counter with screws.

Sometimes the space is to shallow for a big unit however and strapping a 2x4 across the top of the unit is ok as long as it is secured in place with screws.

Also make sure he does not tie it into the disposial switch.

Last but not least have him use a copper water line rather than a cheap plastic line which can bust.(seperate shutoff).

Or they make these combo units. Soap dispenser / air gap, or others. See this link:

I would have to agree as a former Kitchen Remodeler,Kitchern Designer and Granite and Solid Surface Fabrication Manager in NY and PA for 7 Years . We never installed the antique Vents in the countertop The loop on the drain fastened to the uppermost part of the back of the cabinet will suffice. Altough I dont have any knowledge of CA regualtions.