Why is My Dishwasher Not Draining?

No-one wishes to open their machine and discover standing water but, don’t lose it just yet. You could be able to figure out the issue by yourself, without having to call a repair person or purchase a new dishwasher.

Standing water in your machine can be caused by multiple things a number of which are easy to solve. So, before you call a dishwasher repair service here is a lineup of possible things you can identify by yourself. A few of which are not even caused by the dishwasher itself.

Ensure the dishwasher wasn’t interrupted mid-program

It is possible that there is nothing stopping your dishwasher from emptying. Instead, the cycle may have been stopped mid-way.

The cycle might have been cut short for multiple of reasons. Kids pressing controls, accidentally pushing on the controls, a power outage or opening the dishwasher mid-program might all prevent the program from completing and mean your dishwasher doesn’t drain.

If you believe this could be the situation, or you feel it could be worthwhile checking run the dishwasher again on a quick cycle.

A number dishwashers may have a drain capacity so it’s well worth consulting your instructions or doing a quick internet search to make sure.

Inspect the disposal

If your dishwasher is plumbed into a disposal inspect this before you move on as an obstructed garbage disposal will stop your dishwasher from emptying. Run the garbage disposal with fast running water to ensure there are no blockages.

If you do uncover an issue drain un-blocker or a plunger may be sought after to remove the blockage and so this might resolve the error.

Inspect the plumbing for clogs

If you sink is draining slowly this might indicate a plumbing issue as opposed to an issue with your machine.

If the kitchen sink is emptying slowly you may attempt putting a little bicarb and white vinegar down the drain, letting it sit for a few minutes and then flushing it through with boiling water.

A sink plunger could also be employed to try and shift the blockage.

This could be all you need to do to allow your machine to drain so start a quick program at this point. If not you can remove the water by hand using a cup and also a towel and have a look at a few more areas.

At this point make sure you unplug the machine to prevent electrocution.

If during any one of these checks you suspect you have found and solved the fault there is no need to continue to the next issue. Just start an empty program to ensure your machine is once again draining as it should.

Inspect and scrub the filters

Corn Kernels, labels from jars, plastic lids and smashed glass, plus food debris, could all block the dishwasher filter. Clear film could also be hard to see if you don’t look carefully.

Take out the filter and give it a good clean before putting it back in place. Not all dishwashers have their filter in the same place so you might need to consult the instruction manual for this.

Is the waste water pipe blocked?

The next area to examine is the drain pipe. Stuck food, a kink in the hose or a crushed hose can all impede your machine from emptying.

Subject to the position of the waste hose (normally the corrugated one) you could manage look at it simply by lifting away the kick board alternatively you may have to pull the machine away from the wall.

Look at the pipe first to find out if there are any kinks or it’s been squashed. You might be able to fix these issues by hand which should solve the issue, however, it’s worth noting that once this has occurred the chance of it occurring again is significantly increased so you might wish to buy a replacement hose.

If you can’t find any obvious kinks or obstructions you may take off the drain hose from the pump and blow into it to figure out if there are any blockages. Be sure to line the floor with newspaper or towels first as even if you have emptied the dishwasher there could still be water in the pipe.

If you are unable to blow through the hose this may be the issue.

Take off the hose at the sink end in order to give it a good clean to remove the blockage. If you are unable to remove the obstruction or the waste hose is slit or degraded invest in a new one. If you can clear the blockage then replace the hose and run a short program to find out if you have repaired the problem.

You may also examine where the hose attaches under your sink as well. This is a common spot for debris to build up so if you happen to take off the waste pipe give this area a thorough scrub as well.

Inspect the drain valve

You may check the drain valve by hand to ensure it hasn’t seized. The drain valve will usually be located at the base of the machine on the valve bracket. Check your instructions if you’re unsure.

Pushing down on the valve or giving it a wiggle should be enough to find out if it’s seized. If you can see any debris blocking it carefully extract this. If you are unable to, this might be when you should call a repair person unless you are confident in procuring and repairing the part on your own.

Examine your pump is not blocked

Your dishwasher pump uses impellers that may be obstructed by pieces of glass or other objects. Check your pump isn’t blocked by removing the cover and ensuring that the impellers are free to move.

Run your machine and listen for any unusual noises

If the dishwasher sounds unusual your pump or motor could be broken and need to be repaired.

Call a plumber

If you have been through the above list and the problem remains, or you suspect the pump, pump valve or motor are damaged, it might be a good time to call your local repair person.

At least having done your best to investigate what is wrong you have prevented having to pay a big call-out charge for a blocked hose.

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