Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It may not be the primary function but drying your plates might actually be more difficult for your machine than removing the dirt. Plates and cups have multiple nooks and crannies that could trap water preventing it from evaporating, thus as your machine cools down water droplets form out of the humid air.

Different machines also utilize a variety of means to dry your crockery and cutlery. Certain models will have a heating coil to heat up the air in the dishwasher and help the water to evaporate, some warm the water to a higher temperature nearing the final rinse, others employ a fan, and others employ a mix of all three. There are thus a number of reasons why your dishwasher could not be drying crockery and cutlery fully and a number of options to improve 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 your dishwasher doesn’t seem to be drying effectively you can enlist the help of a dishwasher repair service or first make use of this troubleshooting list to help you identify and rectify the issue.

Top Reasons Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Plates

Few things are more frustrating than an 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 made for. If you open your dishwasher to discover wet plates here are a number of places you can look to help you figure out the problem.

Not all makes and models are created equal and some makes and models perform to a better standard compared to others. However, if you notice a change in how effectively your machine is working one of these areas could be the problem.

Inspect How Your Machine Has Been Loaded

It might be that there is no fault with the appliance. Before assuming the machine is broken you should look at how it has been loaded, ensuring it isn’t too full. It’s also worth noting 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 crockery and cutlery thus, if you’ve forgotten to top up or your rinse aid dispenser is not working this can result in wet dishes at the end of the cycle.

Visually check 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 faulty heating coil could be the explanation your dishwasher is not drying crockery and cutlery. If your crockery and cutlery don’t feel hot to touch at the end of the cycle this can indicate that the heating coil isn’t working as it should.

To check the heating element first unplug the dishwasher, then locate the heating coil, you might need the owners manual for this, then check for continuity using a multimeter.

Check the Thermostat

The thermostat ensures your machine doesn’t overheat, 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 discover an issue but your appliance isn’t getting hot, then the thermostat could be at fault. Once again you can test this using a multimeter.

Check The Drying Fan and Vent

Many dishwashers will employ a fan and vent to remove the warm moist air out of the appliance. If either of these elements are broken then the hot air will condense on the plates instead preventing them from drying.

You can use your instruction manual to find out if your appliance uses a fan and find its location. Again you need to ensure the machine is unplugged before attempting to access the fan.

First visually inspect the fan and vent to check if anything is blocking it that could stop it from functioning correctly. If there is nothing obvious you can then test for continuity using a multimeter.

Tips to Boost Drying Capability

There are a number of methods you can use to improve how well your dishwasher dries your dishes and make sure you have to hand dry as infrequently as possible.

  1. Don’t overcrowd the machine. Overcrowding the appliance inhibits the circulation of both water and air making removing the dirt from and drying your plates harder. It might be tempting to cram in as much as possible but your machine will be more effective if you leave sufficient space so that water and air can circulate freely.
  2. Utilize rinse aid. Some detergents include a rinse aid but even so, adding a little extra to the dishwasher won’t hurt. Rinse aid works by breaking the bond between water molecules and your crockery and cutlery, helping water run off quickly, speeding up drying time and giving a spot and streak free finish.
  3. Open the door at the end of the cycle. Some newer models do this automatically, but if yours doesn’t, opening the door at the end of the program allows warm air to escape and stop water condensing on the dishes as the machine cools down.
  4. Check if your dishwasher employs a heat feature and make sure it’s turned on. The higher the temperature the better the drying and you may be able to add more heat at different points in the program.
  5. Empty the bottom rack first. This doesn’t affect how well your dishwasher works, but it does prevent water from cups and glasses falling on dishes below.

If this trouble shooting guide hasn’t worked it may be necessary to call in an engineer or perhaps buy a new dishwasher.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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