Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It may not be the primary function but getting your plates dry may really be more difficult for your dishwasher than cleaning them. Plates and glasses have lots of crevices that may collect dishwater making it more difficult for it to dry out, plus as your appliance cools water condenses out of the humid air.

Different machines also utilize a number of means to dry your dishes. Certain models opt for a heating coil to heat up the inside of the dishwasher and help the water to evaporate, some heat the water further near the final rinse, some use a fan, and certain models make use of a combination of all of these. There are therefore a number of explanations why your dishwasher might not be drying plates optimally and a variety of options to improve the situation.

Plastic is more difficult to dry than other materials as it doesn’t retain heat in the same way which helps with the drying process, so it’s worth taking note whether the items that aren’t drying are predominantly plastic items.

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 issue.

Top Reasons Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Dishes

Few things are more irritating than an appliance that doesn’t work as it’s meant to, regardless of whether its a tv, air conditioner or dishwasher we expect them to do the job they were made for. If you open the dishwasher to wet plates there are a few troubleshooting tips to help you figure out why.

Not all appliances are built to the same spec and you will find that some appliances 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 cause.

Have a Look at the Placement of Your Crockery and Cutlery

Sometimes there is nothing actually wrong with the dishwasher. Before assuming the machine is faulty you should first check that you haven’t overloaded it or accidentally stacked items one inside the other. Also be aware that plastics are more difficult to dry than metal, glass or ceramics.

Have a Look at The Rinse Aid Dispenser

Your dishwasher needs rinse aid to properly dry your plates therefore, if you’ve forgotten to top up or the rinse aid dispenser is faulty this can mean wet dishes at the end of the cycle.

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

Have a Look at The Heating Element

Without enough heat your crockery and cutlery will not dry so a broken heating coil may be the explanation 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 be a good indicator that the heating coil is broken.

To inspect the heating coil first unplug the machine, then locate the heating coil, you might need the instruction manual for this, then use a multimeter to check it’s working.

Have a Look at the Thermostat

The thermostat prevents your dishwasher overheating, adjusting the temperature of the water and the drying part of the cycle. However, if it’s faulty this can mean your dishwasher doesn’t heat up at all.

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

Inspect The Fan and Vent

Many appliances will utilize a drying 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 remain in the dishwasher preventing the plates from drying.

You can employ your instruction manual to check if your dishwasher has a fan and locate it. Again you need to make sure the machine is unplugged before attempting to make repairs.

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

Tips to Increase Drying Power

There are a number of methods you can use to boost how well your machine dries your dishes and ensureyou need to get the drying up cloth out as infrequently as possible.

  1. Don’t overload the dishwasher. Overloading the appliance limits the flow of air and water decreasing the effectiveness of your appliance when it comes to both cleaning and drying your dishes. Although it’s tempting to try and cram everything in, you will get better results if you leave enough space so that water and air can circulate freely.
  2. Make use of 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 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 new dishwashers do this automatically, but many do not, thus, opening the dishwasher when the program finishes can help allow the water to escape and stop water droplets forming as the machine cools down.
  4. Have a look to see if your dishwasher employs a heat feature and make sure it’s turned on. The higher the temperature the better the drying and it might be possible to choose which points in the cycle you add more heat.
  5. Empty the lower level first. 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 this trouble shooting guide hasn’t worked it might be a good idea to call in the professionals or even upgrade your dishwasher.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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