Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It may not be the primary function but getting your crockery and cutlery dry may in actual fact be more arduous for your machine than removing the dirt. Crockery and cutlery and glassware have lots of crevices that may trap water making it more difficult for it to dry out, plus as your dishwasher cools water condenses out of the humid air.

Different machines also employ a number of methods to get your dishes dry. Certain models will use a heating element to warm the inside of the machine and assist the water to evaporate, some heat up the water to a higher temperature near the final rinse, certain models use a fan, and certain models have a mix of all of these. There are consequently a variety of reasons why your dishwasher might not be drying dishes optimally and a variety of things you can do to improve the situation.

Plastic is less likely to dry fully than other materials as it cools down more quickly hindering the drying process, so it’s worth seeing whether the items that aren’t drying are predominantly plastic items.

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

Top Reasons Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Plates

There is nothing more annoying than a home appliance that doesn’t work as it should, regardless of whether its a smartphone, tumble dryer or dishwasher we expect them to do the job they were designed for. If you open the dishwasher to wet plates here are a number of troubleshooting tips to help you figure out why.

Not all appliances are built to the same spec and you will find that some makes and models do a better job of drying your plates than others. But if you notice a change in how well your machine is working one of these areas could be the problem.

Check How Your Machine Has Been Loaded

It might be that there is no fault with the dishwasher. Before assuming the dishwasher is faulty you should first check that you haven’t overfilled it or accidentally stacked items one inside the other. Also be aware that plastics don’t dry as well as metal, glass or ceramics.

Inspect The Rinse Aid Dispenser

Your machine needs rinse aid to properly dry your plates 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 check the rinse aid dispenser for cracks and ensure that there is rinse aid inside.

Check The Heating Coil

Without enough heat your plates will not dry so a faulty heating coil could be the reason your machine is not working as it should. 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 check the heating coil you will need to unplug the appliance, locate the heating coil, you might need the instruction manual for this, and check for continuity using a multimeter.

Inspect the Thermostat

The thermostat ensures your dishwasher doesn’t overheat, regulating the heat of the water and air during drying. Therefore, if it’s broken this can result in your appliance not heating up at all.

If you check the heating coil and do not discover an fault but there’s still no heat, then the thermostat could be the issue. Again you can check this with the help of a multimeter.

Inspect The Fan and Vent

Many machines will make use of a drying fan and vent to remove the warm moist air from the dishwasher. If either of these elements are broken then the water vapor will remain in the dishwasher preventing the dishes from drying.

You can employ your user manual to ascertain if your appliance has a fan and find its location. Again you need to ensure the machine is unplugged before attempting to access the fan.

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

Tips to Increase Drying Ability

There are a variety of things you can do to boost how well your appliance dries your dishes and make sure you have to hand dry as little as possible.

  1. Don’t overcrowd the dishwasher. Overcrowding the dishwasher limits the flow of air and water making cleaning and drying your crockery and cutlery harder. It could be tempting to stuff in as much as possible but you will get better results if you leave enough space so that water and air can circulate freely.
  2. Utilize rinse aid. Some dishwasher tablets include a rinse aid but even if the brand you use says it does, adding a separate rinse aid to the dishwasher can only improve matters. Rinse aid works by breaking the bond between water molecules and your crockery and cutlery, helping water run off quickly, speeding up drying time and giving a spot and streak free finish.
  3. Open your machine as soon as the cycle has ended. Some newer dishwashers have this as an automatic option, but many do not, thus, opening the door at the end of the program allows warm air to evaporate thus preventing water condensing on the plates as the appliance cools down.
  4. Find out if your machine employs a heat feature and make use of it. Setting a higher temperature will lead to improved drying times and you might be able to choose which points in the program you increase the temperature.
  5. Think about how you empty your dishwasher. 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 crockery and cutlery below.

If none of the above solves the problem it may be time to call in the professionals or perhaps upgrade your dishwasher.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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