Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It may not be the primary function but drying your plates could really be more arduous for your dishwasher than getting them clean. Crockery and cutlery and glasses have multiple nooks and crannies that can collect water preventing it from evaporating, plus as your dishwasher loses heat water droplets form out of the humid air.

Different machines also make use of a variety of methods to dry your dishes. Some opt for a heating coil to heat up the inside of the dishwasher and assist the water to evaporate, some heat the water to a higher temperature approaching the end of the cycle, some make use of a fan, and some employ a combination of all three. There are consequently a variety of explanations why your dishwasher might not be drying dishes fully and a variety of options to improve the situation.

Plastic is less likely to dry fully 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 drying issue is related to the material rather than the machine.

If your dishwasher doesn’t seem to be drying effectively you can enlist the help of a dishwasher repair service or first use this troubleshooting guide to help you identify and rectify the problem.

Top Explanations Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Crockery and Cutlery

Few things are more frustrating than a home appliance that doesn’t work as it should, 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 number of troubleshooting tips to help you figure out why.

Not all dishwashers are built to the same spec and you will find that some makes and models perform to a better standard compared to others. However, if you notice a change in how well your dishwasher is working one of these areas may be the cause.

Have a Look at How Your Dishwasher Has Been Loaded

Sometimes there is nothing actually wrong with the appliance. Before assuming the appliance is not working you should look at how it has been loaded, ensuring it isn’t too full. It’s also worth noting that plastic items are more difficult to dry than metal, glass or ceramics.

Inspect The Rinse Aid Dispenser

Rinse aid plays a key role in drying your plates thus, if you have run out of rinse aid or your rinse aid dispenser is not working this can stop your crockery and cutlery coming out properly dry.

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

Inspect The Heating Element

Heat is essential for drying your crockery and cutlery so a faulty heating coil could be the reason your appliance is not drying dishes. If your plates aren’t hot when they come out of the machine this can mean that the heating element is faulty.

To inspect the heating coil first disconnect the appliance, then find the heating coil, you might need the owners manual for this, and check for continuity using a multimeter.

Have a Look at the Thermostat

The thermostat prevents your dishwasher overheating, regulating the heat of the water and air during drying. However, if it’s faulty this can result in your dishwasher not heating up at all.

If you check the heating element and do not discover an fault but your dishwasher isn’t getting hot, then the thermostat could be the issue. Once again you can make sure using a multimeter.

Have a Look at The Fan and Vent

Many appliances will use a drying fan and vent to suck moist air from the machine. If either of these elements are broken then the hot air will remain in the appliance preventing the plates from drying.

You can utilize your manual to find out if your machine uses a fan and locate it. Again you need to double check the dishwasher is disconnected before attempting to make repairs.

First visually inspect the fan and vent to check if there is anything lodged that might prevent it from working correctly. And again testing for continuity using a multimeter.

Tips to Increase Drying Power

There are a number of methods you can use to boost your dishwashers effectiveness at drying and ensure you have to hand dry as infrequently as possible.

  1. Don’t overfill the machine. Overcrowding the machine stops the flow of air and water making cleaning and drying your dishes more difficult. Although it’s appealing to try and stuff everything in, you will get better results if you leave sufficient space so that crockery and cutlery are not touching.
  2. Utilize rinse aid. Some dishwasher tablets already have this but even if the brand you use says it does, adding a separate rinse aid to the machine won’t hurt. Rinse aid works by breaking the bond between water molecules and your dishes, helping water run off quickly, speeding up drying time and giving a spot and streak free finish.
  3. Open your appliance as soon as the cycle has completed. Some new dishwashers have this as an automatic option, but if yours doesn’t, opening the door when the cycle completes can help allow the water to evaporate and stop water droplets forming as the dishwasher cools down.
  4. Find out if your machine uses a heat feature and make sure it’s turned on. Setting a higher heat will result in improved drying times and you might be able to add more heat at different points in the cycle.
  5. Unload 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 dishes below.

If you have checked all the above it may be a good idea to call in the professionals or perhaps buy a new machine.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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