Why is My Dishwasher Not Draining?

Although it’s never a pleasant sight to open the dishwasher and discover the machine hasn’t drained properly, try not to overreact just yet. You might be able to fix the fault without having to call a repair person or purchase a new dishwasher.

Standing water in your machine could be bought about by any number of components a number of which can be straightforward to figure out. Therefore, before you call a dishwasher repair service here is a selection of potential issues you may identify by yourself. A proportion of which are not even related to the machine itself.

Check the program wasn’t cut short

It is possible that there is nothing preventing your machine from emptying. Rather, the program could have been stopped mid-way.

The cycle might have been stopped mid-way for any number of of reasons. Children pushing controls, mistakenly pressing on the buttons, a power outage or opening the machine mid-program may all prevent the cycle from completing and mean your dishwasher doesn’t empty.

If you believe this could be the circumstance, or you just want to be sure it’s not the issue start your dishwasher again on a quick cycle.

A number appliances may have a drain capacity so it’s well worth having a look at your owners manual or checking online to find out.

Inspect the waste disposal

If you have a garbage disposal inspect this before you move on as an obstructed waste disposal will block the machine from draining. Run the disposal with plenty of water to check there are no obstructions.

If you do find an issue drain un-blocker or a plunger may be employed to remove the obstruction and so this may fix the error.

Inspect the plumbing for issues

If you kitchen sink is draining slowly this might signify an issue with the plumbing rather than a fault with your dishwasher.

In the case that the sink is emptying reluctantly you may try putting some bicarbonate of soda and white vinegar down the drain, leaving it for a few minutes, then washing it away with hot water.

A sink plunger may also be used to try and remove the obstruction.

This may be enough to allow your machine to work again so start a short rinse and empty program now. If not you could manually drain the dishwasher using a bowl and a sponge and troubleshoot a few more areas.

Make certain to disconnect the dishwasher to avoid electrocution.

If during one of these examinations you think you may have discovered and fixed the error you don’t need to go through the rest of the issues. Just complete an empty cycle to make sure the machine is fixed.

Examine and clean the filters

Any number of things could block the filters including popcorn, labels from containers, film covers and smashed glass. Clear plastic lids could also be hard to spot if you aren’t looking for it.

Take out the filter then clean it thoroughly before putting it back in place. Not all machines have their filter in the same location so you might need to refer to the instructions for this.

Is the waste pipe blocked?

The next area to inspect is the waste pipe. Stuck food, a kink in the hose or a crushed hose can all prevent your dishwasher from emptying.

Subject to the position of the waste pipe (generally the corrugated one) you may have the means to inspect it by removing the kick plate alternatively you may have to move the dishwasher out from the wall.

Have a look at the hose first to see if it has been squashed or kinked. You might manage fix these issues by hand which is likely to solve the issue, however, it’s worth noting that when this has happened the chance of it happening again is significantly increased so you could need to purchase a replacement hose.

If you can’t find anything you may disconnect the waste water pipe from the dishwasher and blow through it to check for any blockages. Make sure you put down newspaper or towels before you remove the hose as there may still be dirty water in the hose.

If you are unable to blow air through the hose this might be the problem.

Disconnect the hose at the sink end and then give it a good flush through to remove the blockage. If you can’t remove the blockage or the waste pipe is slit or damaged purchase a brand-new one. If you can get rid of the obstruction then put the hose back and run a short cycle to make sure you have solved the issue.

You can also examine where the hose attaches to the sink as well. This is a likely spot for debris to build up so if you do take off the pipe give this area a thorough scrub as well.

Examine the drain valve

You could inspect the drain valve by hand to make sure it hasn’t got stuck. The drain valve will often be found in the bottom of the dishwasher on the valve bracket. Check your instruction manual if you’re not sure.

Depressing the valve or giving it a wiggle will likely be sufficient to let you know if it’s stuck. If you can see something stopping it from moving get rid of this. If you can’t, this might be a good time to ring a repair person unless you are happy in procuring and repairing the valve on your own.

Inspect your pump is not broken

Your dishwasher pump makes use of impellers that can be obstructed by pieces of china or other debris. Check your impellers aren’t blocked by taking off the cover and making sure the impellers can rotate freely.

Run your dishwasher and listen for any unusual noises

If your dishwasher is making funny noises your dishwasher pump or motor might be broken and need replacing.

Call a plumber

If you have been through the above list and the fault remains, or you think the pump, pump valve or motor are damaged, it may be the moment you need to call your local repair person.

At least having tried to investigate what is wrong you have prevented needing to pay a hefty repair charge for a blocked hose.

More Dishwasher Problems: