Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It may not be the primary function but drying your crockery and cutlery might actually be harder for your machine than removing the dirt. Crockery and cutlery and glasses have lots of crevices that can collect dishwater making it more difficult for it to dry out, plus as your dishwasher cools down water droplets form from the steam.

Dishwashers also make use of a number of different means to get your dishes dry. Certain models will use a heating coil to warm the air in the machine and assist the water to evaporate, some heat up the water more nearing the end of the cycle, some have a fan, and certain models make use of a mix of all three. There are therefore a variety of explanations why your dishwasher could not be drying crockery and cutlery fully and a number of things you can do to rectify the situation.

Plastic items are less likely to dry fully than glass or ceramics as it cools down more quickly hindering the drying process, so it’s worth seeing whether the drying issue is related to the material rather than the machine.

If your dishwasher isn’t drying effectively you can call a dishwasher repair service or first use this troubleshooting list to figure out what the issue is and with any luck fix it.

Top Reasons Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Plates

There is nothing more irritating than a home appliance that isn’t working as it should, regardless of whether its a smartphone, air conditioner or dishwasher we expect them to do the job they were made for. If you open your dishwasher to discover wet plates there are a few troubleshooting tips to help you figure out the problem.

Not all appliances are built to the same spec and you will find that some appliances perform to a higher standard compared to others. But if if your dishwasher has always dried your plates in the past one of these issues could be the cause.

Have a Look at the Placement of Your Dishes

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.

Have a Look at The Rinse Aid Dispenser

Your appliance needs rinse aid to properly dry your crockery and cutlery and so if you’ve forgotten to top up or your rinse aid dispenser is faulty this can result in wet dishes at the end of the cycle.

Visually check the rinse aid dispenser for damage and check that it’s full.

Inspect The Heating Coil

Without enough heat your plates will not dry so a broken heating coil could be the reason your appliance is not drying crockery and cutlery. If your dishes aren’t hot to touch when they come out of the machine this can mean that the heating element isn’t working as it should.

To inspect the heating element first disconnect the appliance, then locate the heating element, you may need the manual to do this, then check for continuity using a multimeter.

Have a Look at the Thermostat

The thermostat ensures your machine doesn’t overheat, regulating the temperature of the water and the drying part of the cycle. However, if it’s not working this can result in your machine not heating up at all.

If you check the heating coil and do not discover an issue but there’s still no heat, then the thermostat might be the issue. Once again you can test this using a multimeter.

Inspect The Fan and Vent

Many machines will use a drying fan and vent to suck moist air out of the machine. If the fan isn’t operating as is should or the vent is blocked then the water vapor will form droplets on the crockery and cutlery instead preventing them from drying.

You can use your user manual to find out if your dishwasher uses a fan and locate it. Don’t forget to double check the appliance is disconnected before trying to make repairs.

You can visually inspect the fan and vent to ascertain if there is anything lodged that would prevent it from operating correctly. And again testing for continuity using a multimeter.

Ideas to Increase Drying Power

There are a variety of methods you can use to boost your dishwashers drying ability and prevent you needing to dry them by hand as little as possible.

  1. Don’t cram the dishwasher. Overcrowding the dishwasher inhibits the flow of air and water making cleaning and drying your crockery and cutlery more difficult. Although it’s tempting 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. Make use of rinse aid. Some detergents include a rinse aid 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 program has ended. Some newer dishwashers do this automatically, but if yours doesn’t, opening the machine at the end of the cycle allows warm air to evaporate and stop water condensing on the contents as the appliance cools down.
  4. Check if your appliance uses a heat feature and make use of it. Setting a higher temperature will result in better drying times and it could be possible to choose which points in the program you add more heat.
  5. Unload the bottom rack before the top. This doesn’t affect how effective your machine is, but it prevent and water spilling that has collected in the concave bottoms of cups and glasses.

If none of the above solves the problem it might be necessary to call in the professionals or even buy a new dishwasher.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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