Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It may not be the primary function but drying your crockery and cutlery could in actual fact be harder for your machine than cleaning them. Crockery and cutlery and glasses have multiple crevices that can pool dishwater preventing it from evaporating, thus as your machine cools down water condenses from the humid air.

Dishwashers also employ a number of approaches to dry your crockery and cutlery. Certain models opt for a heating element to warm the inside of the machine and help with evaporation, some warm the water more near the end of the cycle, some use a fan, and some use a mix of all three. There are therefore a number of reasons why your dishwasher could not be drying crockery and cutlery fully and a variety of things you can do to rectify the situation.

Plastic items are less likely to dry fully 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 items that aren’t drying are predominantly plastic items.

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

Top Explanations Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Dishes

There is nothing more annoying than an appliance that doesn’t work as it should, regardless of whether its a smartspeaker, washing machine or dishwasher we expect them to do the job they were designed for. If you open the dishwasher to wet plates here are a number of places you can look to help you figure out the issue.

Not all appliances are built to the same spec and some makes and models perform to a higher standard compared to others. However, if you notice a change in how effectively your machine is working one of these faults might be the cause.

Check the Placement of Your Dishes

Sometimes there is nothing actually wrong with the machine. Before assuming the dishwasher is not working you should look at how it has been stacked, ensuring it isn’t too full. Also be aware that plastic items don’t dry as well as metal, glass or ceramics.

Have a Look at The Rinse Aid Dispenser

Rinse aid plays a key role in drying your dishes therefore, if you have run out of rinse aid or the rinse aid dispenser is broken this can mean wet crockery and cutlery at the end of the cycle.

Visually inspect the dispenser for damage and ensure that there is rinse aid inside.

Inspect The Heating Coil

Heat is essential for drying your dishes so a faulty heating coil might be the explanation your machine is not working as it should. If your dishes aren’t hot to touch at the end of the cycle this can be a good indicator that the heating coil is broken.

To check the heating coil first disconnect the dishwasher, then find the heating coil, you may need the manual for this, then check for continuity using a multimeter.

Check the Thermostat

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

If the heating element appears to be in working order but there’s still no heat, then the thermostat may be the issue. Once again you can make sure with the help of a multimeter.

Check The Drying Fan and Vent

Many machines will employ 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 steam will form droplets on the plates instead leaving them wet.

You can use your manual to check if your dishwasher uses a fan and find its location. Don’t forget to ensure the appliance is unplugged before attempting to access the fan.

You can visually inspect the fan and vent to check if anything is blocking it that might prevent it from functioning as it is supposed to. If there is nothing obvious you can then test for continuity using a multimeter.

Ideas to Boost Drying Capability

There are a number of methods you can use to improve how well your dishwasher dries your dishes and prevent you needing to dry them by hand as little as possible.

  1. Don’t overfill the machine. Overfilling the dishwasher stops the flow of air and water making cleaning and drying your crockery and cutlery more difficult. Although it’s appealing 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. Use 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 appliance will do no harm. Rinse aid helps reduce spotting and gives your glasses a streak-free shine but it also breaks the bond between water molecules and your dishes helping the water to run off them and therefore making them dry more quickly and evenly.
  3. Open your dishwasher as soon as the program has completed. Some newer dishwashers do this automatically, but many do not, thus, opening the machine when the program finishes allows warm air to escape and stop water droplets forming as the appliance cools down.
  4. Have a look to see if your dishwasher uses a heat feature and utilize it. Setting a higher heat will lead to improved drying times and you might be able to choose which points in the cycle you increase the temperature.
  5. Empty the bottom rack before the top. 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 may be a good idea to call in the professionals or perhaps buy a new dishwasher.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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