Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It may not be the primary function but getting your dishes dry may really be more difficult for your machine than cleaning them. Crockery and cutlery and cups have multiple crevices that may trap water stopping it from drying out, plus as your machine loses heat water condenses out of the steam.

Different machines also utilize a variety of approaches to dry your dishes. Certain models will employ a heating coil to warm the inside of the dishwasher and assist the water to evaporate, some warm the water to a higher temperature near the end of the cycle, certain models have a fan, and certain models use a mix of all three. There are consequently a variety of explanations why your dishwasher could not be drying dishes optimally and a number of things you can do to improve the situation.

Plastic is less likely to dry fully than glass or ceramics as it cools down more quickly hindering the drying process, so it’s worth taking note whether the items that aren’t drying are predominantly plastic items.

If dishes are coming out wet you can enlist the help of a dishwasher repair service or first utilize this troubleshooting list to figure out what the issue is and with any luck fix it.

Top Reasons Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Dishes

There is nothing more annoying than a home appliance that isn’t working as it should, regardless of whether its a tv, washing machine or dishwasher we expect them to do the job they were made for. If you open your dishwasher to discover wet plates here are a few places you can look to help you figure out why.

Not all dishwashers are created equal and you will find that some appliances perform to a superior standard compared to others. However, if you notice a change in how effectively your machine is working one of these issues might be the problem.

Have a Look at How Your Machine Has Been Loaded

Sometimes there is nothing actually wrong with the dishwasher. Before assuming the dishwasher is broken you should first check that you haven’t overfilled it or accidentally stacked items one inside the other. It’s also worth noting that plastic items don’t dry as well as metal, glass or ceramics.

Have a Look at The Rinse Aid Dispenser

Rinse aid plays a key role in drying your plates and so if you have run out of rinse aid or the rinse aid dispenser is broken this can mean wet crockery and cutlery at the end of the cycle.

Visually check the rinse aid dispenser for damage and ensure that there is rinse aid inside.

Have a Look at The Heating Coil

Without enough heat your plates will not dry so a broken heating coil may be the explanation your machine is not working as it should. If your dishes aren’t hot to touch when they come out of the machine this can be a good indicator that the heating element isn’t working as it should.

To check the heating coil first unplug the dishwasher, then find the heating element, you may need the instruction manual for this, then check for continuity using a multimeter.

Have a Look at the Thermostat

The thermostat stops your appliance getting too hot, adjusting the heat of the water and air during drying. Therefore, if it’s not working this can mean your dishwasher doesn’t heat up at all.

If the heating coil appears to be in working order but there’s still no heat, then the thermostat may be at fault. Once again you can test this using a multimeter.

Inspect The Fan and Vent

Many dishwashers will make use of a drying fan and vent to remove the warm moist air from the appliance. If either of these elements are broken then the steam will condense on the plates instead leaving them wet.

You can use your manual to check if your machine has a fan and find its location. Again you need to double check the appliance is unplugged before attempting to access the fan.

You can visually inspect the fan and vent to check if there is anything lodged that could prevent it from working correctly. If there is nothing obvious you can then test for continuity using a multimeter.

Ways to Increase Drying Capability

There are a number of things you can do to boost your appliances effectiveness at drying and ensure you need to get the drying up cloth out as little as possible.

  1. Don’t overcrowd the machine. Overfilling the appliance limits the flow of both water and air making cleaning and drying your plates harder. Although it’s appealing to try and cram everything in, your appliance will be more effective if you leave enough space so that water and air can circulate freely.
  2. Use rinse aid. Some detergents include a rinse aid but even so, adding a separate rinse aid to the dishwasher will do no harm. Rinse aid helps reduce spotting and gives your glassware in particular a streak-free finish but it also breaks the bond between water molecules and your crockery and cutlery helping the water to run off them and therefore speeding up drying times.
  3. Open the door at the end of the program. Some newer models do this automatically, but many do not, thus, opening the door when the cycle finishes can help allow the water to evaporate thus stopping water droplets forming as the machine cools down.
  4. Check if your machine has a heat feature and make use of it. Setting a higher temperature will mean improved drying times and it could be possible to choose which points in the cycle you add more heat.
  5. Think about how you empty your machine. This is simply because cups and glasses that are upside down on the top shelf often have a concave bottom where water can pool. Emptying the bottom rack first stops you spilling this water onto the crockery and cutlery below.

If this trouble shooting guide hasn’t worked it might be time to phone the professionals or even buy a new dishwasher.

More Dishwasher Problems:

  • Dishwasher Being Loud
  • Dishwasher Not Turning On
  • Dishwasher Not Draining
  • Dishwasher Leaking