Why is My Dishwasher Not Draining?

No-one wishes to open their machine and discover standing water but, try not to panic just yet. You might have the means to solve the issue before you have to call a plumber or acquire a new dishwasher.

Your machine declining to empty may be caused by multiple issues a number of which can be straightforward to resolve. Therefore, in advance of calling a dishwasher repair service here is a lineup of potential components you can identify by yourself. A proportion of which are not even caused by the machine itself.

Ensure the cycle wasn’t stopped mid-way

It is possible that there is nothing stopping your machine from emptying. Instead, the program may have been cut short.

The program could have been stopped mid-way for a number of of reasons. Little fingers pressing buttons, inadvertently pressing against the control panel, a power cut or opening the dishwasher mid-cycle could all stop the program from completing and mean your dishwasher doesn’t drain.

If you suspect this could be the situation, or you think it might be a good idea to check start the dishwasher again on a quick program.

A number dishwashers might have a drain function meaning it’s well worth consulting your instructions or consulting google to find out.

Inspect the garbage disposal

If you have a garbage disposal inspect this before you move on as a blocked disposal will prevent the machine from emptying. Run the waste disposal using plenty of water to check there are no obstructions.

If you do uncover a blockage drain unclogger or a plunger can be sought after to clear the blockage and this could solve the error.

Inspect the sink for blockages

If you sink is emptying reluctantly this might signify a plumbing issue as opposed to an issue with your dishwasher.

If the sink is emptying inefficiently you may try putting a little bicarb and vinegar down the drain, leaving it for a while and subsequently flushing it away with boiling water.

A plunger might also be employed to attempt to remove the obstruction.

This could be enough to allow your dishwasher to empty so start a short program to check. If not you can manually get rid of the dirty water using a cup as well as a sponge and troubleshoot the next few possible issues.

At this point make sure you turn off the dishwasher to prevent electrocution.

If during one of these checks you believe you may have detected and solved the problem you don’t have to go through the remaining steps. Just complete an empty cycle to make sure the machine is now draining as it used to.

Inspect and clean the filters

Any number of things could block the filters including popcorn, labels from tupperware, plastic film lids and broken glass. Clear plastic lids can also be difficult to see if you don’t look carefully.

Remove the filter and give it a good clean before putting it back in place. Not all machines have their filter in the same place so you may need to look at the instructions for this.

Is the waste water hose blocked?

The next place to inspect is the drain pipe. Many things could cause a blockage including a build up of food debris, a kink in the hose, or a crushed hose. All of which can all prevent your dishwasher from draining.

Contingent upon the location of the waste pipe (normally the ribbed one) you may have the means to look at it by removing the base alternatively you might need to move the dishwasher away from the wall.

Look at the hose in the first instance to see if there are any kinks or it’s been squashed. You may manage manually fix any kinks which should solve the issue, however, be aware that when this has occurred it is significantly more likely to happen again so you could need to buy a new hose.

If you can’t see an issue you may take off the drain pipe from the pump and blow through it to discover any blockages. Make sure you line the floor with newspaper or towels first as even if you have emptied the machine there could still be waste water in the hose.

If you can’t blow through the hose this may be the problem.

Disconnect the hose at the sink end and then give it a good flush through to remove the blockage. If you can’t get rid of the obstruction or the waste hose is split or damaged purchase a brand-new one. If you may remove the blockage then replace the hose and start a short program to make sure you have repaired the fault.

You may also inspect the point where the hose attaches to the waste disposal. This is a typical place for debris to build up so if you happen to remove the hose give this area a thorough scrub as well.

Inspect the drain valve

You can check the drain valve by hand to check it isn’t got stuck. The drain valve will generally be situated at the base of the machine on the valve bracket. Consult your owners manual if you’re unsure.

Pushing down on the valve or giving it a wiggle will likely be adequate to let you know if it’s stuck. If you are able to see anything stopping it from moving get rid of this. If you can’t, this could be the right time to get in touch with a repair person unless you are undaunted by ordering and swapping out the valve on your own.

Check your pump is not blocked

Your dishwasher pump uses impellers that could be obstructed by broken glass or other objects. Check your impellers aren’t obstructed by taking off the cover and checking that the impellers can be easily rotated.

Listen to your dishwasher while it’s on

If your dishwasher sounds unusual your dishwasher pump or motor may be damaged and need to be repaired.

Call a plumber

If you have been through the above list and the issue persists, or you think the pump, pump valve or motor are not working, it might be time to call in the professionals.

At least having done your best to fix the problem yourself you have prevented having to pay a big call-out charge for a clogged filter.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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