Why is My Dishwasher Not Draining?

Although it’s never a welcome sight to open a machine and find out it is still full of water, don’t panic just yet. You could have the means to solve the fault before you have to call a plumber or buy a new dishwasher.

Standing water in your machine may have multiple of causes some of which are straightforward to resolve. Therefore, in advance of calling a dishwasher repair service here is a selection of potential issues you can identify by yourself. A number of which aren’t even a fault of the dishwasher itself.

Ensure the cycle wasn’t cut short

If you’re lucky the fact your dishwasher hasn’t emptied may not be a problem at all. Rather, the cycle might have been stopped mid-way.

The program could have been interrupted for multiple of reasons. Little fingers pressing buttons, inadvertently pushing against the buttons, a power surge or opening the dishwasher mid-program may all interrupt the cycle and mean your machine doesn’t drain.

If you believe this might be the circumstance, or you just want to be sure it’s not the issue run your machine again on a quick cycle.

A number appliances might have an empty capacity so it’s well worth having a look at your instructions or consulting google to make sure.

Examine the waste disposal

If your dishwasher is plumbed into the garbage disposal examine this first as an obstructed waste disposal will prevent your dishwasher from emptying. Run the garbage disposal with lots of water to make sure there are no blockages.

If you do uncover an issue drain un-blocker or a plunger can be employed to clear the obstruction and so this might deal with the fault.

Check the sink waste for clogs

If you kitchen sink is draining reluctantly this could suggest an issue with the plumbing instead of an error with your machine.

In the case that the kitchen sink is emptying reluctantly you can try putting a little bicarbonate of soda and vinegar down the plughole, leaving it for a few minutes and subsequently flushing it through with hot water.

A plunger might also be employed to attempt to remove the blockage.

This could be enough to let the machine to empty so run a short cycle at this point. If this hasn’t sorted the issue you may remove the standing water by hand using a jug as well as a towel and check the next few possible issues.

At this point make sure you unplug the machine to stay safe.

If while you are carrying out one of these checks you suspect you have discovered and solved the fault there is no need to continue to the next issue. Just complete an empty cycle to check the dishwasher is fixed.

Check and clean the filters

Corn Kernels, paper from food jars, plastic lids and smashed glass, as well as scraps of food, can all block the machine filter. Clear film can also be difficult to spot if you aren’t looking for it.

Take out the filter then give it a good wash before putting it back in place. Not all filters are obvious and simple to remove so you might need to consult the instruction manual for this.

Is the drain pipe obstructed?

The next component to inspect is the waste water pipe. Stuck food, a kink in the hose or a crushed hose can all impede your machine from emptying.

Subject to the position of the waste pipe (generally the corrugated one) you may have the means to look at it by removing the base alternatively you may need to move the machine out from under the counter.

Look at the hose in the first instance to discover if it has been crushed or kinked. You might be able to manually straighten out any kinks which is likely to resolve the issue, however, it’s worth noting that once this has happened the chance of it happening again is significantly increased so you could need to purchase a replacement hose.

If you can’t find any obvious kinks or obstructions you may disconnect the waste pipe from the dishwasher and blow through it to figure out if there are any blockages. Be sure to line the floor with newspaper or towels first as even if you have emptied the machine there may still be dirty water in the hose.

If you are unable to blow air through the waste hose this might be the issue.

Take off the hose at the sink end and give it a thorough flush through to clear the obstruction. If you are unable to remove the obstruction or the waste pipe is slit or damaged purchase a new one. If you may clear the blockage then put the hose back and start a short program to check that you have fixed the fault.

You may also inspect where the waste hose attaches to the waste disposal. This is a likely place for a build-up of gunk so if you happen to remove the waste pipe give this connection a thorough clean as well.

Examine the drain valve

You may manually check the drain valve to ensure it hasn’t stopped working. The drain valve will usually be situated in the bottom of the dishwasher on the valve bracket. Check your instructions if you’re not sure.

Depressing the valve or wiggling it a bit should be adequate to find out if it’s stuck. If you are able to see an object blocking it carefully extract this. If you can’t, this may be when you should get in touch with a repair person unless you are undaunted by ordering and repairing the component yourself.

Examine your pump is not blocked

Your dishwasher pump uses impellers that may get obstructed by pieces of china or other debris. Check your impellers aren’t broken by removing the cover and checking that the impellers can rotate freely.

Listen to your dishwasher while it’s on

If your dishwasher is making funny noises your dishwasher pump or motor could be faulty and need to be repaired.

Call a plumber

If none of the above examinations has repaired the error, or you think the pump, pump valve or motor are not working, it might be the moment you need to call for help.

This way though you will at least manage give them more information and have avoided needing to pay a hefty call-out fee for a blocked hose.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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