Why is My Dishwasher Not Draining?

No-one wishes to open their machine and discover standing water but, try not to lose it just yet. You might be able to figure out the error before you have to call a repair person or invest in a brand-new machine.

Standing water in your machine can be caused by a number of components a few of which can be straightforward to resolve. So, before you call a dishwasher repair service here is a list of potential things you may troubleshoot on your own. A few of which are not even caused by the machine itself.

Check the cycle wasn’t cut short

If you’re fortunate the standing water you have discovered may not be an issue at all. Alternatively, the program could have been interrupted.

The cycle may have been stopped mid-way for multiple of reasons. Little fingers pushing controls, mistakenly leaning against the control panel, a power outage or opening the machine mid-cycle may all stop the program from completing and mean your dishwasher doesn’t drain.

If you believe this might be the circumstance, or you think it may be worthwhile checking run your machine again on a short cycle.

Some appliances might have a drain capacity meaning it’s worth consulting your owners manual or consulting google to check.

Examine the disposal

If your dishwasher is attached to a waste disposal examine this before you move on as an obstructed garbage disposal will prevent the dishwasher from draining. Run the waste disposal using fast running water to check there are no blockages.

If you do find a blockage drain cleaner or a plunger can be used to remove the obstruction and this might solve the problem.

Inspect the plumbing for issues

If you kitchen sink is emptying slowly this could suggest an issue with the plumbing as opposed to a problem with your machine.

In the case that the sink is draining inefficiently you can attempt putting some bicarbonate of soda and vinegar down the plughole, letting it sit for a few minutes, then washing it through with boiling water.

A plunger could also be utilized to attempt to dislodge the blockage.

This may be sufficient to permit your machine to empty so start a short rinse and drain cycle to check. If not you may remove the water by hand using a cup as well as a sponge and check a few more areas.

Make sure you turn off the dishwasher to stay safe.

If during one of these investigations you believe you have detected and fixed the fault there is no need to continue to the next issue. Just complete an empty cycle to check your machine is fixed.

Check and rinse the filters

Any number of things could block the filters including corn kernels, paper from food jars, plastic film covers and broken glass. Clear film could also be hard to spot if you don’t look closely.

Remove the filter and wash it thoroughly before putting it back in place. Not all filters are obvious and easy to remove so you might need to consult the manual for this.

Is the waste hose blocked?

The next place to inspect is the drain hose. Many things could cause a blockage including a build up of food debris, a kink in the hose, or a crushed hose. All of which could all prevent your machine from draining.

Subject to the location of the waste hose (generally the corrugated one) you could manage view it by means of taking off the kick board or you may need to pull the machine out from the wall.

Visually examine the hose first to discover if there are any kinks or it’s been squashed. You could have the means to fix these issues by hand which should rectify the issue, but it’s worth noting that when this has occurred the probability of it happening again is greatly increased so you might wish to order a spare hose.

If you are unable to see an issue you may disconnect the waste water pipe from the dishwasher and blow through it to check for any blockages. Make sure you line the floor with newspaper or towels before you remove the hose as there might still be waste water in the hose.

If you are unable to blow air through the pipe this may be the reason your dishwasher isn’t emptying.

Remove the other end of the hose in order to give it a good clean to clear the obstruction. If you are unable to shift the obstruction or the waste hose is cracked or damaged invest in a new one. If you may clear the blockage then replace the hose and run a quick program to make sure you have repaired the problem.

You could also inspect the point where the waste pipe attaches to the waste disposal as well. This is a typical place for a build-up of gunk so if you happen to take off the waste pipe give this area a good scrub as well.

Examine the drain valve

You may manually examine the drain valve to check it hasn’t got stuck. The drain valve will most often be situated at the base of the machine on the valve bracket. Examine your instructions if you’re not sure.

Pressing down on the valve or giving it a jiggle should be adequate to let you know if it’s stuck. If you can see anything stopping it from moving get rid of this. If you can’t, this may be the right time to ring a plumber unless you are happy in ordering and replacing the part yourself.

Examine your pump is not broken

Your dishwasher pump uses impellers that may be blocked by broken glass or other objects. Check your pump isn’t obstructed by removing the cover and making sure the impellers can be easily rotated.

Run your dishwasher and listen for any unusual sounds

If it doesn’t sound normal your dishwasher pump or motor may be broken and need replacing.

Call a repair person

If you have been through the above list and the fault remains, or you suspect the pump, pump valve or motor are broken, it may be time to call for help.

This way though you will at least be able to give them more information and have avoided needing to pay a hefty call-out charge for a blocked drain.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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