Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It may not be the primary function but drying your crockery and cutlery might really be harder for your machine than removing the dirt. Dishes and glassware have lots of nooks and crannies that may pool dishwater stopping it from drying out, and as your machine cools down water droplets form out of the steam.

Different machines also utilize a variety of different means to dry your dishes. Some opt for a heating coil to warm the air in the dishwasher and assist with evaporation, some warm the water further nearing the end of the cycle, some employ a fan, and certain models have a mix of all of these. There are thus a number of explanations why your machine may not be drying crockery and cutlery fully and a variety of options to improve the situation.

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

If dishes are coming out wet you can enlist the help of a dishwasher repair service or first utilize this troubleshooting list to help you identify and rectify the problem.

Top Reasons Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Crockery and Cutlery

Few things are more annoying than an 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 your dishwasher to discover wet plates here are a few places you can look to help you figure out the problem.

Not all appliances are created equal and you will find that some makes and models do a better job of drying your dishes than others. But if you notice a change in how effectively your machine is working one of these faults could be the cause.

Check the Placement of Your Dishes

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

Check The Rinse Aid Dispenser

Your dishwasher needs rinse aid to properly dry your dishes therefore, if you’ve forgotten to top up or the rinse aid dispenser is not working this can stop your plates coming out properly dry.

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

Inspect The Heating Coil

Heat is essential for drying your dishes so a broken heating coil could be the reason your machine is not drying dishes. If your plates aren’t hot when they come out of the machine this can be a good indicator that the heating coil is broken.

To check the heating element first unplug the dishwasher, then find the heating coil, you may need the manual to do this, then use a multimeter to check it’s working.

Inspect the Thermostat

The thermostat stops your machine overheating, adjusting the temperature of the water and the drying part of the cycle. Therefore, if it’s faulty this can result in your appliance not reaching a high enough temperature.

If the heating coil seems to be working as it should but there’s still no heat, then the thermostat could be at fault. Once again you can make sure using a multimeter.

Check The Fan and Vent

Many machines will utilize a fan and vent to remove the warm moist air out of the dishwasher. If the fan isn’t operating as is should or the vent is blocked then the steam will condense on the crockery and cutlery instead preventing them from drying.

You can make use of your instruction manual to ascertain if your appliance uses a fan and find its location. Don’t forget to make sure the machine is disconnected before attempting to access the fan.

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

Ways to Increase Drying Capability

There are a variety of methods you can use to increase how well your appliance dries your dishes and make sure you need to get the drying up cloth out as infrequently as possible.

  1. Allow ample space between dishes. Overcrowding the dishwasher stops the circulation of air and water making removing the dirt from and drying your plates more difficult. Although it’s appealing to try and stuff everything in, your appliance will be more effective if you leave sufficient space so that water and air can circulate freely.
  2. Use rinse aid. Some detergents include a rinse aid but even so, 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 the door at the end of the program. Some new models have this as an automatic option, but if yours doesn’t, opening the dishwasher when the cycle completes allows warm air to evaporate thus stopping water droplets forming as the machine cools down.
  4. Check if your dishwasher has a heat feature and make sure it’s turned on. The higher the heat the better the drying and you might be able to add more heat at different points in the program.
  5. Empty the lower level first. This doesn’t affect how well your machine works, but it does stop water from cups and glasses falling on dishes below.

If none of the above solves the problem it may be a good idea to phone an engineer or perhaps replace your dishwasher.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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