Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It may not be the primary function but getting your crockery and cutlery dry may really be more difficult for your dishwasher than getting them clean. Dishes and glasses have lots of nooks and crannies that could pool water making it more difficult for it to evaporate, and as your dishwasher cools water droplets form from the steam.

Dishwashers also employ a variety of different approaches to dry your dishes. Some opt for a heating element to heat up the inside of the dishwasher and assist the water to evaporate, some heat the water to a higher temperature approaching the final rinse, some have a fan, and others have a combination of all three. There are consequently a number of reasons why your dishwasher may not be drying plates optimally and a number of options to improve the situation.

Plastic items are more difficult to dry than other materials as it doesn’t retain heat in the same way which helps with 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 hire a dishwasher repair service or first make use of this troubleshooting guide to help you identify and rectify the problem.

Top Explanations Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Dishes

There is nothing more irritating than a home appliance that doesn’t work as it’s meant to, regardless of whether its a smartspeaker, washing machine or dishwasher we expect them to do the job they were designed for. If you open your dishwasher to discover wet plates there are a few troubleshooting tips to help you figure out the issue.

Not all appliances are created equal and some dishwashers do a better job of drying your dishes than others. However, if you notice a change in how effectively your machine is working one of these areas may be the cause.

Have a Look at the Placement of Your Crockery and Cutlery

It might be that there is no fault with the dishwasher. Before assuming the dishwasher is broken you should look at how it has been stacked, ensuring it isn’t overloaded. Also be aware that plastics don’t dry as well as metal, glass or ceramics.

Inspect The Rinse Aid Dispenser

Your appliance needs rinse aid to properly dry your crockery and cutlery thus, if you have run out of rinse aid or the rinse aid dispenser is not working this can stop your crockery and cutlery coming out properly dry.

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

Check The Heating Element

Heat is essential for drying your plates so a not working heating element may be the explanation your machine is not drying dishes. If your crockery and cutlery aren’t hot to touch at the end of the cycle this can mean that the heating coil isn’t working as it should.

To check the heating element you will need to disconnect the dishwasher, locate the heating coil, you could need the instruction manual for this, and use a multimeter to check it’s working.

Inspect the Thermostat

The thermostat stops your dishwasher overheating, determining the temperature of the water and the drying part of the cycle. Therefore, if it’s faulty this can mean your dishwasher doesn’t heat up at all.

If you check the heating element and do not uncover an fault but your machine isn’t getting hot, then the thermostat might be at fault. Once again you can make sure using a multimeter.

Inspect The Drying Fan and Vent

Many dishwashers will employ a drying fan and vent to suck moist air out of the dishwasher. If the fan isn’t operating as is should or the vent is blocked then the steam will remain in the appliance preventing the crockery and cutlery from drying.

You can employ your manual to check if your appliance has a fan and find its location. Again you need to make sure the machine is disconnected before trying to access the fan.

You can look at the fan and vent to check if anything is blocking it that might prevent it from working as it is supposed to. If there is nothing obvious you can then test for continuity using a multimeter.

Ways to Increase Drying Power

There are a variety of things you can do to improve your appliances effectiveness at drying and prevent you needing to dry them by hand as little as possible.

  1. Don’t cram the machine. Overloading the dishwasher limits the circulation of air and water decreasing the effectiveness of your dishwasher when it comes to both washing and finishing your dishes. Although it’s tempting to try and stuff everything in, you will get better results if you leave sufficient space so that dishes are not touching.
  2. Employ rinse aid. Some detergents already have this but even if the brand you use says it does, adding a little extra to the appliance won’t hurt. Rinse aid works by breaking the bond between water molecules and your plates, helping water run off quickly, speeding up drying time and giving a spot and streak free finish.
  3. Open the door at the end of the cycle. Some new machines do this automatically, but many do not, thus, opening the machine when the program finishes allows warm air to evaporate and prevent water condensing on the contents as the machine cools down.
  4. Check if your dishwasher employs a heat feature and make use of it. Setting a higher heat will lead to improved drying times and you could be able to choose which points in the cycle you increase the temperature.
  5. Empty the bottom rack first. 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 may be time to call in the professionals or perhaps replace your machine.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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