Why is My Dishwasher Not Draining?

No-one wants to open their dishwasher and discover standing water but, don’t lose it just yet. You could have the means to fix the issue without having to call a repair person or purchase a new dishwasher.

Your machine refusing to empty can have any number of of causes some of which are straightforward to resolve. Therefore, in advance of calling a dishwasher repair service try this selection of possible components you may troubleshoot yourself. A few of which are not even caused by the machine itself.

Ensure the program wasn’t stopped mid-way

If you’re lucky the standing water you have discovered may not be a problem at all. Instead, the cycle could have been interrupted.

The program may have been cut short for a number of of reasons. Little fingers pushing controls, inadvertently pushing on the control panel, a power outage or opening the machine mid-program could all interrupt the cycle and mean your machine doesn’t empty.

If you suspect this may be the circumstance, or you think it could be a good idea to check start the dishwasher again on a short cycle.

A proportion dishwashers may have a drain function so it’s worth having a look at your instruction manual or consulting google to check.

Inspect the garbage disposal

If you have a disposal check this first as a blocked waste disposal will prevent your dishwasher from emptying. Run the waste disposal with fast running water to ensure there are no obstructions.

If you do find an obstruction drain un-blocker or a plunger may be sought after to remove the blockage and so this might rectify the issue.

Examine the sink for clogs

If you kitchen sink is draining reluctantly this may suggest a plumbing issue as opposed to a fault with your machine.

In the case that the sink is draining slowly you may attempt putting some bicarb and vinegar down the plughole, leaving it for a while, then rinsing it away with boiling water.

A sink plunger may also be utilized to attempt to dislodge the blockage.

This might be enough to permit your appliance to work again so run a short rinse and empty cycle now. If this hasn’t solved the problem you may manually remove the standing water using a jug and a towel and troubleshoot a few more areas.

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

If in the process of any one of these checks you believe you have found and repaired the issue there is no need to continue to the next step. Just complete an empty cycle to ensure your machine is repaired.

Check and wash the filters

Any number of things could block the filters including popcorn, labels from containers, film lids and broken glass. Clear plastic lids could also be difficult to see if you don’t look carefully.

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

Is the drain hose obstructed?

The next place to inspect is the waste hose. Stuck food, a kink in the hose or a crushed hose may all impede your dishwasher from draining.

Subject to the location of the hose (generally the ribbed one) you might manage view it simply by removing the base or you may need to pull the dishwasher away from under the counter.

Visually inspect the hose in the first instance to see if there are any kinks or it’s been squashed. You may be able to manually fix any kinks which should deal with the issue, but it’s worth noting that once this has happened it is significantly more likely to happen again so you may wish to order a replacement hose.

If you can’t see anything you may take off the waste pipe from the dishwasher and blow into it to figure out if there are any blockages. Be sure to line the floor with newspaper or towels before you remove the hose as even if you have emptied the dishwasher there may still be waste water in the pipe.

If you can’t blow air through the waste pipe this could be the problem.

Take off the other end of the hose in order to give it a good flush through to get rid of the blockage. If you can’t remove the obstruction or the pipe is cracked or worn purchase a new one. If you could remove the blockage then put the hose back and run a quick cycle to find out if you have fixed the problem.

You may also examine where the waste pipe attaches under your sink as well. This is a typical place for debris to build up so if you do remove the hose give this point a thorough clean as well.

Inspect the drain valve

You may inspect the drain valve by hand to make sure it isn’t stopped working. The drain valve will usually be located in the bottom of the dishwasher on the valve bracket. Examine your manual if you’re not sure.

Depressing the valve or wiggling it a bit should be sufficient to find out if it’s stuck. If you are able to see something stopping it from moving get rid of this. If you can’t, this could be a good time to call a repair person unless you are undaunted by purchasing and swapping out the component yourself.

Examine your pump is not blocked

Your appliance pump uses impellers that could become obstructed by pieces of glass or other debris. Check your impellers aren’t blocked by removing the safety cover and ensuring that the impellers can be easily rotated.

Run your machine and listen for any unusual sounds

If the dishwasher sounds unusual your pump or motor might be broken and need replacing.

Call a repair person

If you have been through the above list and the issue remains, or you have reason to believe the pump, pump valve or motor are not working, it could be the moment you need to call in the professionals.

At least having done your best to troubleshoot you have managed to avoid needing to pay a hefty call-out charge for a blocked hose.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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