Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It turns out drying your crockery and cutlery could in actual fact be more arduous for your dishwasher than removing the dirt. Crockery and cutlery and glasses have multiple nooks and crannies that can pool water making it more difficult for it to evaporate, and as your appliance loses heat water droplets form out of the steam.

Dishwashers also employ a number of different approaches to get your plates dry. Certain models will use a heating coil to heat up the air in the dishwasher and assist with evaporation, some heat the water further nearing the final rinse, some use a fan, and some make use of a mix of all three. There are therefore a variety of explanations why your dishwasher could not be drying crockery and cutlery optimally and a variety of things you can do to rectify the situation.

Plastic items are 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 noting whether the drying issue is related to the material rather than the machine.

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

Top Explanations Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Plates

Few things are more annoying than a home appliance that isn’t working as it should, regardless of whether its a smartspeaker, tumble dryer or dishwasher we expect them to do the job they were designed for. If you open the dishwasher to wet plates there are a few troubleshooting tips to help you figure out the issue.

Not all appliances are created equal and some dishwashers do a better job of drying your plates than others. But if if your dishwasher has always dried your plates in the past one of these areas may be the problem.

Check How Your Machine Has Been Loaded

Sometimes there is nothing actually wrong 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 are more difficult to dry than metal, glass or ceramics.

Check The Rinse Aid Dispenser

Rinse aid plays a key role in drying your dishes therefore, if you’ve forgotten to top up or the rinse aid dispenser is not working this can mean wet crockery and cutlery at the end of the cycle.

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

Check The Heating Element

Heat is essential for drying your plates so a faulty heating element could be the explanation your machine is not drying plates. If your dishes don’t feel hot when they come out of the machine this can be a good indicator that the heating element isn’t working as it should.

To check the heating element you will need to disconnect the dishwasher, locate the heating coil, you may need the manual to do this, then check for continuity using a multimeter.

Check the Thermostat

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

If the heating coil seems to be in working order but your machine isn’t getting hot, then the thermostat could be the issue. Again you can make sure with the help of a multimeter.

Check The Fan and Vent

Many dishwashers will utilize a drying fan and vent to remove the warm moist air out of the machine. If the fan isn’t operating as is should or the vent is blocked then the water vapor will remain in the dishwasher preventing the crockery and cutlery from drying.

You can utilize your user manual to ascertain if your dishwasher uses a fan and find its location. Again you need to make sure the appliance is disconnected before trying to access the fan.

You can look at the fan and vent to see if there is anything lodged that might prevent it from working as it is supposed to. If there is nothing obvious you can then test for continuity using a multimeter.

Ideas to Increase Drying Power

There are a variety of things you can do to increase your appliances drying ability and prevent you needing to dry them by hand as little as possible.

  1. Allow sufficient space between crockery and cutlery. Overcrowding the machine inhibits the circulation of air and water decreasing the effectiveness of your dishwasher when it comes to both cleaning and finishing your dishes. Although it’s tempting to try and stuff everything in, you will get better results if you leave sufficient space so that dishes are not touching.
  2. Make use of rinse aid. Some detergents already have this but even if the brand you use says it does, adding a separate rinse aid to the appliance won’t hurt. Rinse aid helps reduce spotting and gives your glassware in particular a streak-free shine but it also breaks the bond between water molecules and your dishes helping the water to run off them and consequently making them dry more quickly and evenly.
  3. Open your dishwasher as soon as the program has completed. Some newer models do this automatically, but if yours doesn’t, opening the door when the cycle completes can help allow the water to escape thus preventing water condensing on the contents as the dishwasher cools down.
  4. Have a look to see if your machine has a heat feature and use it. The higher the heat the better the drying and it might be possible to choose which points in the cycle you increase the temperature.
  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 dishes below.

If none of the above solves the problem it could be necessary to phone the professionals or even buy a new machine.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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