Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It turns out drying your dishes could really be harder for your dishwasher than removing the dirt. Crockery and cutlery and glassware have multiple nooks and crannies that may collect dishwater stopping it from drying out, thus as your appliance cools water condenses out of the humid air.

Dishwashers also utilize a variety of different approaches to get your plates dry. Certain models will have a heating element to heat up the inside of the dishwasher and assist the water to evaporate, some warm the water to a higher temperature approaching the end of the cycle, some have a fan, and certain models use a mix of all of these. There are thus a variety of reasons why your dishwasher could not be drying dishes fully and a number of things you can do to rectify 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 seeing whether the drying issue is related to the material rather than the machine.

If your dishwasher isn’t drying properly you can enlist the help of a dishwasher repair service or first employ this troubleshooting guide to figure out what the problem is and with any luck fix it.

Top Reasons Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Crockery and Cutlery

There is nothing more irritating than a home appliance that doesn’t work as it’s meant to, whether that’s a smartphone that really isn’t being that smart, a washing machine that’s churning out dirty clothes, or a dishwasher that is either not cleaning or drying your plates. If you open your dishwasher to discover wet plates there are a few troubleshooting tips to help you figure out why.

Not all makes and models are created equal and you will find that some dishwashers do a better job of drying your dishes than others. But if if your dishwasher has always dried your plates in the past one of these areas may be the problem.

Have a Look at How Your Machine Has Been Loaded

Sometimes there is nothing actually wrong with the machine. Before assuming the machine is not working you should first check that you haven’t overloaded it or accidentally stacked items one inside the other. It’s also worth noting that plastic items are more difficult to dry than metal, glass or ceramics.

Inspect The Rinse Aid Dispenser

Your machine needs rinse aid to properly dry your plates therefore, if you’ve forgotten to top up or the rinse aid dispenser is not working this can mean wet crockery and cutlery at the end of the cycle.

The best thing to do is inspect the rinse aid dispenser for damage and check that there is rinse aid inside.

Have a Look at The Heating Coil

Without enough heat your plates will not dry so a not working heating element might be the reason your appliance is not working as it should. If your crockery and cutlery aren’t hot when they come out of the machine this can be a good indicator that the heating coil is broken.

To check the heating element first unplug the dishwasher, then locate the heating coil, you could need the instruction manual to do this, then check for continuity using a multimeter.

Check the Thermostat

The thermostat prevents your machine getting too hot, adjusting the heat of the water and air during drying. However, if it’s faulty this can mean your appliance doesn’t heat up at all.

If the heating coil appears to be in working order but your machine isn’t getting hot, then the thermostat may be the problem. Once again you can make sure with the help of a multimeter.

Check The Drying Fan and Vent

Many dishwashers will employ a fan and vent to remove the warm moist air from the appliance. If either of these elements are faulty then the hot air will remain in the dishwasher preventing the plates from drying.

You can use your instruction manual to find out if your dishwasher has a fan and locate it. Don’t forget to make sure the machine is unplugged before attempting to access the fan.

You can look at the fan and vent to ascertain if there is anything lodged that might prevent it from functioning correctly. And again testing for continuity using a multimeter.

Tips to Increase Drying Capability

There are a number of methods you can use to boost your machines drying ability and prevent you needing to dry them by hand as infrequently as possible.

  1. Don’t overload the machine. Overcrowding the dishwasher stops the flow of both water and air decreasing the effectiveness of your machine when it comes to both cleaning and drying your dishes. It could be appealing to stuff everything in but you will get better results if you leave sufficient space so that water and air can circulate freely.
  2. Employ rinse aid. Some dishwasher tablets include a rinse aid but even if the brand you use says it does, adding a separate rinse aid to the machine won’t hurt. Rinse aid helps reduce spotting and gives your glasses a streak-free shine but it also breaks the bond between water molecules and your dishes helping the water to run off them and consequently allowing them to dry faster.
  3. Open the door at the end of the program. Some newer machines do this automatically, but if yours doesn’t, opening the dishwasher when the program completes can help allow the water to evaporate thus stopping water droplets forming as the dishwasher cools down.
  4. Have a look to see if your dishwasher has a heat feature and make use of it. Setting a higher temperature will result in better drying times and you could be able to choose which points in the cycle you add more heat.
  5. Think about how you unload your dishwasher. 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 plates below.

If you have checked all the above it might be time to call in an engineer or even upgrade your dishwasher.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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