Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It turns out drying your plates could actually be more difficult for your dishwasher than removing the dirt. Dishes and glasses have multiple nooks and crannies that could pool dishwater making it more difficult for it to evaporate, thus as your dishwasher cools down water condenses out of the humid air.

Different machines also employ a number of different means to get your dishes dry. Certain models will have a heating element to warm the inside of the dishwasher and help the water to evaporate, some heat up the water to a higher temperature near the end of the cycle, some have a fan, and some use a combination of all three. There are thus a number of explanations why your machine may not be drying plates fully and a number of options to improve the situation.

Plastic items are more difficult to dry than glass or ceramics as it cools down more quickly hindering 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 properly you can hire a dishwasher repair service or first make use of this troubleshooting list to figure out what the problem is and with any luck fix it.

Top Reasons Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Dishes

Few things are more frustrating than a home appliance that doesn’t work as it’s meant to, regardless of whether its a smartphone, washing machine or dishwasher we expect them to do the job they were designed for. If you open your dishwasher to discover wet plates here are a number of places you can look to help you figure out why.

Not all appliances are built to the same spec and you will find that some makes and models do a better job of drying your plates than others. However, if if your dishwasher has always dried your crockery and cutlery in the past one of these issues could be the cause.

Check How Your Dishwasher Has Been Loaded

Sometimes there is nothing actually wrong with the dishwasher. Before assuming the dishwasher 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 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 crockery and cutlery and so if you have run out of rinse aid or the rinse aid dispenser is broken this can stop your dishes coming out properly dry.

Visually inspect the dispenser for cracks and check that there is rinse aid inside.

Inspect The Heating Element

Heat is essential for drying your crockery and cutlery so a broken heating element might be the reason your appliance is not drying plates. If your plates don’t feel hot when they come out of the machine this can indicate that the heating element is faulty.

To check the heating element you will need to disconnect the dishwasher, find the heating coil, you could need the instruction manual to do this, and check for continuity using a multimeter.

Check the Thermostat

The thermostat stops your dishwasher overheating, determining the heat of the water and air during drying. However, if it’s broken this can result in your appliance not reaching a high enough temperature.

If you check the heating coil and do not find an issue but your dishwasher isn’t getting hot, then the thermostat may be the issue. Again you can check this with the help of a multimeter.

Check The Drying Fan and Vent

Many machines will utilize a drying fan and vent to suck moist air out of the dishwasher. If either of these elements are faulty then the hot air will form droplets on the plates instead preventing them from drying.

You can employ your user manual to ascertain if your appliance uses a fan and locate it. Don’t forget to make sure the appliance is disconnected before trying to make repairs.

First visually inspect the fan and vent to check if anything is blocking it that would prevent it from working as it is supposed to. And again testing for continuity using a multimeter.

Ideas to Increase Drying Ability

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

  1. Allow sufficient space between crockery and cutlery. Overloading the machine stops the flow of both water and air making cleaning and drying your dishes harder. Although it’s tempting to try and stuff everything in, your machine will work better if you leave sufficient space so that water and air can circulate freely.
  2. Use rinse aid. Some dishwasher tablets already have this but even if the brand you use says it does, adding a separate rinse aid to the appliance can only improve matters. Rinse aid helps reduce spotting and gives your glassware in particular a streak-free finish but it also breaks the bond between water molecules and your dishes helping the water to run off them and therefore allowing them to dry faster.
  3. Open your appliance as soon as the cycle has completed. Some new models have this as an automatic option, but if yours doesn’t, opening the machine when the cycle finishes allows warm air to escape and stop water condensing on the contents as the appliance cools down.
  4. Find out if your appliance has a heat feature and utilize it. The higher the heat the better the drying and it might be possible to add more heat at different points in the program.
  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 plates below.

If none of the above solves the problem it might be time to phone the professionals or perhaps replace your machine.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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