Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It turns out drying your plates may really be more arduous for your machine than getting them clean. Crockery and cutlery and glassware have lots of crevices that can pool dishwater preventing it from drying out, thus as your appliance cools water droplets form from the humid air.

Dishwashers also make use of a variety of different means to dry your plates. Certain models will use a heating element to warm the inside of the dishwasher and assist with evaporation, some warm the water to a higher temperature near the end of the cycle, certain models use a fan, and others use a combination of all of these. There are therefore a variety of reasons why your machine could not be drying dishes fully and a variety of options to improve 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 seeing whether the drying issue is related to the material rather than the machine.

If dishes are coming out wet you can call a dishwasher repair service or first make use of this troubleshooting guide to help you identify and rectify the problem.

Top Reasons Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Crockery and Cutlery

There is nothing more irritating than a home appliance that isn’t working properly, whether that’s a smartphone that really isn’t being that smart, a washing machine that’s churning out dirty clothes, or a dishwasher that is either not cleaning or drying your plates. If you open the dishwasher to wet plates there are a number of places you can look to help you figure out the problem.

Not all dishwashers are created equal and some dishwashers do a better job of drying your plates than others. However, if you notice a change in how effectively your dishwasher is working one of these areas might be the cause.

Inspect How Your Machine Has Been Loaded

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

Check The Rinse Aid Dispenser

Rinse aid plays a key role in drying your plates thus, if you have run out of rinse aid or the rinse aid dispenser is faulty this can mean wet dishes at the end of the cycle.

The best thing to do is check the dispenser for damage and ensure that it’s full.

Inspect The Heating Coil

Heat is essential for drying your dishes so a not working heating element might be the explanation your dishwasher is not working as it should. If your dishes aren’t hot to touch at the end of the cycle this can be a good indicator that the heating coil is faulty.

To inspect the heating element first disconnect the machine, then find the heating element, you might need the owners manual to do this, and use a multimeter to check it’s working.

Inspect the Thermostat

The thermostat prevents your appliance getting too hot, adjusting the heat of the water and air during drying. Therefore, if it’s broken this can result in your dishwasher not heating up at all.

If the heating coil appears to be working as it should but there’s still no heat, then the thermostat may be the issue. Again you can make sure using a multimeter.

Check The Drying Fan and Vent

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

You can make use of your manual to find out if your dishwasher uses a fan and locate it. Again you need to make sure the dishwasher is unplugged before trying to access the fan.

You can look at the fan and vent to check if there is anything lodged that could prevent it from functioning correctly. If there is nothing obvious you can then test for continuity using a multimeter.

Ways to Boost Drying Ability

There are a variety of methods you can use to increase your appliances effectiveness at drying and make sure you need to get the drying up cloth out as little as possible.

  1. Allow sufficient space between dishes. Overloading the machine stops the circulation of both water and air decreasing the effectiveness of your dishwasher when it comes to both washing and finishing your dishes. It could be appealing to stuff in as much as possible but your machine will work better if you leave enough space so that water and air can circulate freely.
  2. Make use of rinse aid. Some detergents already have this but even so, adding a separate rinse aid to the machine will do no harm. 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 dishes helping the water to run off them and therefore making them dry more quickly and evenly.
  3. Open the door at the end of the cycle. Some new models do this automatically, but if yours doesn’t, opening the door at the end of the cycle allows warm air to evaporate thus preventing water droplets forming as the machine cools down.
  4. Have a look to see if your dishwasher uses a heat feature and make use of it. Setting a higher heat will mean improved drying times and it could be possible to add more heat at different points in the program.
  5. Think about how you unload your machine. 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 could be necessary to phone an engineer or perhaps upgrade your machine.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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