Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It may not be the primary function but getting your crockery and cutlery dry may really be more difficult for your machine than cleaning them. Dishes and glasses have lots of nooks and crannies that could collect water stopping it from drying out, plus as your appliance cools down water droplets form out of the humid air.

Different machines also make use of a variety of methods to get your crockery and cutlery dry. Certain models will employ a heating coil to warm the air in the machine and assist with evaporation, some heat up the water to a higher temperature approaching the end of the cycle, others make use of a fan, and some have a combination of all three. There are consequently a variety of explanations why your dishwasher might not be drying dishes optimally and a number of things you can do to improve the situation.

Plastic items are more difficult to dry than glass or ceramics as it doesn’t retain heat in the same way which helps with the drying process, so it’s worth taking note whether the drying issue is related to the material rather than the machine.

If your dishwasher isn’t drying effectively you can enlist the help of a dishwasher repair service or first make use of this troubleshooting list to figure out what the issue is and with any luck fix it.

Top Reasons Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Crockery and Cutlery

Few things are more irritating than a home appliance that doesn’t work as it should, 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 removing the dirt from or drying your dishes. If you open your dishwasher to discover wet plates here are a few places you can look to help you figure out why.

Not all appliances are built to the same spec and some makes and models perform to a superior standard compared to others. But if you notice a change in how well your dishwasher is working one of these issues could be the problem.

Inspect the Placement of Your Dishes

Sometimes there is nothing actually wrong with the appliance. Before assuming the appliance is broken you should look at how it has been stacked, ensuring it isn’t overloaded. Also be aware that plastics don’t dry as well as metal, glass or ceramics.

Check The Rinse Aid Dispenser

Rinse aid plays a key role in drying your dishes thus, if you have run out of rinse aid or the rinse aid dispenser is not working this can result in wet crockery and cutlery at the end of the cycle.

The best thing to do is check the dispenser for damage and check that there is rinse aid inside.

Have a Look at The Heating Coil

Without enough heat your crockery and cutlery will not dry so a broken heating coil may be the reason your appliance is not drying crockery and cutlery. If your dishes aren’t hot at the end of the cycle 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 machine, find the heating coil, you may need the manual to do this, and check for continuity using a multimeter.

Inspect the Thermostat

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

If you check the heating element and do not discover an fault but your dishwasher isn’t getting hot, then the thermostat could be the issue. Once again you can make sure with the help of a multimeter.

Inspect The Drying Fan and Vent

Many appliances will use a fan and vent to suck moist air out of the machine. If either of these elements are broken then the hot air will form droplets on the crockery and cutlery instead leaving them wet.

You can utilize your user manual to check if your dishwasher has a fan and find its location. Again you need to ensure the machine is unplugged before trying to access the fan.

First look at the fan and vent to ascertain if anything is blocking it that could stop it from working as it should. If there is nothing obvious you can then test for continuity using a multimeter.

Ways to Increase Drying Ability

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

  1. Don’t overfill the dishwasher. Overfilling the machine inhibits the flow of air and water making cleaning and drying your dishes more difficult. It may be appealing to stuff in as much as possible but 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 detergents already have this but even if the brand you use says it does, adding a little extra to the machine can only improve matters. Rinse aid works by breaking the bond between water molecules and your plates, 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 cycle has completed. Some newer dishwashers have this as an automatic function, but many do not, thus, opening the door when the program completes allows warm air to escape thus preventing water droplets forming as the machine cools down.
  4. Have a look to see if your machine uses a heat feature and make sure it’s turned on. Setting a higher temperature will mean improved drying times and it may be possible to add more heat at different points in the cycle.
  5. Think about how you empty your machine. 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 might be time to phone an engineer or even replace your dishwasher.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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