Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It may not be the primary function but drying your crockery and cutlery could in actual fact be more difficult for your dishwasher than getting them clean. Plates and cups have lots of crevices that can trap water stopping it from evaporating, plus as your dishwasher cools water condenses from the steam.

Dishwashers also utilize a number of different approaches to get your crockery and cutlery dry. Certain models will employ a heating coil to heat up the inside of the machine and help with evaporation, some heat the water more near the final rinse, some have a fan, and some use a mix of all three. There are thus a number of reasons why your dishwasher could not be drying crockery and cutlery fully and a number of options to rectify the situation.

Plastic is less likely to dry fully than glass or ceramics as it doesn’t retain heat in the same way which helps with the drying process, so it’s worth noting whether the drying issue is related to the material rather than the machine.

If dishes are coming out wet you can hire a dishwasher repair service or first make use of this troubleshooting list to figure out what the problem is and with any luck fix it.

Top Reasons Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Plates

Few things are more annoying than an appliance that isn’t working properly, regardless of whether its a smartphone, washing machine or dishwasher we expect them to do the job they were made for. If you open your dishwasher to discover wet plates here are a number of troubleshooting tips to help you figure out why.

Not all makes and models are built to the same spec and some dishwashers perform to a superior standard compared to others. But if if your dishwasher has always dried your plates in the past one of these areas might be the problem.

Check How Your Machine Has Been Loaded

Sometimes there is nothing actually wrong with the machine. Before assuming the dishwasher is broken you should look at how it has been loaded, ensuring it isn’t too full. Also be aware that plastic items don’t dry as well as metal, glass or ceramics.

Check The Rinse Aid Dispenser

Rinse aid plays a key role in drying your dishes thus, if you have run out of rinse aid or your rinse aid dispenser is not working this can result in wet dishes at the end of the cycle.

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

Inspect The Heating Coil

Without enough heat your plates will not dry so a broken heating coil could be the reason your dishwasher is not working as it should. If your dishes aren’t hot at the end of the cycle this can mean that the heating coil is broken.

To check the heating element you will need to unplug the appliance, locate the heating coil, you could need the manual for this, and check for continuity using a multimeter.

Check the Thermostat

The thermostat stops your appliance getting too hot, regulating the temperature of the water and the drying part of the cycle. Therefore, if it’s not working this can result in your appliance not reaching a high enough temperature.

If the heating coil appears to be in working order but there’s still no heat, then the thermostat may be the issue. Once again you can test this with the help of a multimeter.

Inspect The Fan and Vent

Many machines will use a fan and vent to suck moist air out of the appliance. If either of these elements are faulty then the hot air will remain in the machine preventing the crockery and cutlery from drying.

You can make use of your manual to ascertain if your dishwasher has a fan and locate it. Don’t forget to ensure the machine is disconnected before trying to access the fan.

First look at the fan and vent to ascertain if anything is blocking it that could stop it from working as it is supposed to. And again testing for continuity using a multimeter.

Tips to Boost Drying Capability

There are a number of methods you can use to increase how well your machine dries your dishes and prevent you needing to dry them by hand as little as possible.

  1. Don’t overcrowd the machine. Overfilling the appliance stops the flow of both water and air making cleaning and drying your plates harder. Although it’s appealing to try and stuff everything in, you will get better results if you leave sufficient space so that water and air can circulate freely.
  2. Employ rinse aid. Some detergents include a rinse aid but even if the brand you use says it does, adding a little extra to the machine won’t hurt. Rinse aid helps reduce marks and gives your glassware in particular a streak-free shine but it also breaks the bond between water molecules and your plates helping the water to run off them and thus making them dry more quickly and evenly.
  3. Open the door at the end of the cycle. Some new machines have this as an automatic function, but if yours doesn’t, opening the dishwasher at the end of the cycle allows warm air to escape and prevent water condensing on the plates as the dishwasher cools down.
  4. Check if your appliance uses a heat feature and use it. The higher the heat the better the drying and you may be able to choose which points in the program you increase the temperature.
  5. Unload the bottom rack first. This doesn’t affect how well your machine works, but it does prevent water from cups and glasses falling on dishes below.

If none of the above solves the problem it may be a good idea to call in an engineer or perhaps upgrade your machine.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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