Why is My Dishwasher Not Draining?

No-one wishes to open their machine and discover it hasn’t emptied correctly but, try not to overreact just yet. You might be able to fix the error before you have to call a repair person or buy a new dishwasher.

Standing water in your dishwasher could have any number of of causes a proportion of which can be easy to figure out. Therefore, before you call a dishwasher repair service here is a lineup of possible things you can correct yourself. A proportion of which are not even related to the machine itself.

Check the cycle wasn’t cut short

If you’re fortunate the standing water you have discovered may not be a problem at all. Alternatively, the program might have been cut short.

The program may have been interrupted for any number of of reasons. Kids pushing controls, mistakenly pressing against the buttons, a power cut or opening the machine mid-program may all interrupt the cycle and mean your dishwasher doesn’t drain.

If you suspect this may be the case, or you think it may be worthwhile checking start the machine again on a quick program.

A number machines might have a drain capacity meaning it’s well worth having a look at your owners manual or consulting google to make sure.

Inspect the waste disposal

If you have a waste disposal examine this first as an obstructed waste disposal will prevent your dishwasher from draining. Run the waste disposal with lots of water to ensure there are no obstructions.

If you do find a blockage drain unclogger or a natural alternative can be sought after to unclog the obstruction and so this might fix the fault.

Inspect the sink for issues

If you sink is emptying slowly this could indicate a plumbing issue instead of a fault with your machine.

In the case that the sink is draining inefficiently you may try putting some bicarb and white vinegar down the drain, letting it sit for a few minutes and subsequently rinsing it through with boiling water.

A sink plunger may also be used to try and shift the blockage.

This might be all you need to do to allow your appliance to work again so start a short program at this point. If this hasn’t worked you could manually get rid of the standing water using a jug and a towel and have a look at the next few possible issues.

At this point make certain to unplug the dishwasher to stay safe.

If in the process of any one of these checks you believe you have detected and solved the error you don’t need to go through the rest of the steps. Just complete an empty cycle to make sure your dishwasher is once again emptying as it used to.

Inspect and clean the filters

Corn Kernels, labels from containers, plastic lids and broken glass, as well as scraps of food, can all obstruct the dishwasher filter. Clear glass could also be difficult to spot if you aren’t looking for it.

Remove the filter and give it a thorough scrub before putting it back in place. Not all dishwashers have their filter in the same location so you may need to consult the owners manual for this.

Is the waste water pipe obstructed?

The next component to examine is the waste water hose. Many things could cause a blockage including a build up of food debris, a kink in the hose, or a crushed hose. All of which could all prevent your dishwasher from draining.

Subject to the location of the hose (normally the corrugated one) you could have the means to view it simply by removing the base alternatively you could need to move the dishwasher out from the wall.

Look at the pipe first to discover if it has been squashed or kinked. You could be able to fix these issues by hand which is likely to fix the issue, however, it’s worth noting that when this has happened the probability of it happening again is significantly increased so you could need to purchase a new hose.

If you are unable to see an issue you could remove the waste pipe from the dishwasher and blow into it to figure out if there are any blockages. Be sure to line the floor with newspaper or towels first as there might still be water in the pipe.

If you can’t blow through the pipe this might be the problem.

Disconnect the other end of the hose in order to give it a thorough flush through to get rid of the obstruction. If you are unable to get rid of the blockage or the waste hose is cracked or worn purchase a brand-new one. If you can remove the obstruction then re-attach the hose and start a quick cycle to make sure you have repaired the fault.

You could also check where the pipe connects under your sink as well. This is a typical place for a build-up of gunk so if you happen to take off the hose give this point a thorough scrub as well.

Check the drain valve

You may manually examine the drain valve to make sure it isn’t got stuck. The drain valve will often be located at the base of the dishwasher on the valve bracket. Examine your manual if you’re not sure.

Pushing down on the valve or wiggling it a bit will likely be enough to find out if it’s seized. If you can see an object stopping it from moving remove this. If you can’t, this may be when you should ring a repair person unless you are confident in procuring and replacing the component yourself.

Inspect your pump is not broken

Your appliance pump makes use of impellers that could be blocked by pieces of glass or other debris. Check your impellers aren’t blocked by removing the safety cover and making sure the impellers are free to move.

Run your dishwasher and listen for any unusual noises

If it sounds unusual your dishwasher pump or motor could be damaged and need replacing.

Call a repair person

If you have been through the above list and the issue remains, or you suspect the pump, pump valve or motor are not working, it could be time to call for help.

This way though you will at least manage give them more information and have avoided having to pay a hefty repair fee for a blocked drain.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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