Why is My Dishwasher Not Draining?

No-one wishes to open their machine and discover standing water but, don’t panic just yet. You could be able to rectify the fault before you have to call a repair person or purchase a brand-new dishwasher.

Your dishwasher refusing to drain can have any number of of causes some of which are easy to fix. Therefore, before you call a dishwasher repair service try this selection of potential issues you could correct on your own. Some of which are not even caused by the machine itself.

Ensure the dishwasher wasn’t stopped mid-program

It is possible that there is nothing stopping your machine from draining. Instead, the program may have been interrupted.

The cycle may have been stopped mid-way for multiple of reasons. Little fingers pushing controls, inadvertently leaning on the buttons, a power outage or opening the machine mid-cycle could all stop the program from completing and mean your dishwasher doesn’t empty.

If you think this may be the situation, or you feel it could be a good idea to check run your dishwasher again on a quick cycle.

A proportion dishwashers might have a drain program so it’s well worth having a look at your owners manual or consulting google to check.

Inspect the garbage disposal

If you have a waste disposal examine this before you move on as an obstructed disposal will block the dishwasher from draining. Run the disposal with fast running water to check there are no blockages.

If you do discover an issue drain cleaner or a plunger can be used to unclog the obstruction and so this may resolve the issue.

Examine the plumbing for clogs

If you kitchen sink is draining inefficiently this could suggest an issue with the pipes as opposed to a problem with your dishwasher.

If the kitchen sink is emptying slowly you may try putting some bicarbonate of soda and white vinegar down the plughole, letting it sit for a while and then flushing it away with boiling water.

A plunger might also be utilized to attempt to dislodge the blockage.

This may be sufficient to allow the appliance to drain so run a short cycle now. If this hasn’t sorted the issue you may manually drain the dishwasher using a bowl and also a sponge and check the next few possible issues.

Make sure you disconnect the machine to prevent electrocution.

If while you are carrying out one of these examinations you think you may have found and repaired the fault you don’t have to go through the rest of the steps. Just complete an empty cycle to ensure the machine is once again emptying as it used to.

Examine and scrub the filters

Any number of things could block the filters including popcorn, labels from jars, film covers and broken glass. Clear glass may also be hard to see if you don’t look closely.

Take out the filter then give it a thorough wash before replacing it. Not all filters are obvious and simple to remove so you could need to consult the owners manual for this.

Is the drain pipe obstructed?

The next place to examine is the waste hose. Stuck food, a kink in the hose or a crushed hose may all impede your dishwasher from draining.

Depending on the location of the hose (normally the corrugated one) you might manage inspect it by means of removing the base or you might have to move the dishwasher out from under the counter.

Have a look at the pipe first to see if there are any kinks or it’s been squashed. You may manage fix these issues by hand which should deal with the issue, but it’s worth noting that when this has occurred the probability of it occurring again is greatly increased so you could need to purchase a new hose.

If you can’t see any obvious kinks or obstructions you can take off the waste water pipe from the pump and blow into it to discover any blockages. Be sure to line the floor with newspaper or towels before you remove the hose as there could still be water in the hose.

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

Remove the other end of the hose and give it a thorough clean to get rid of the obstruction. If you can’t dislodge the obstruction or the pipe is split or worn invest in a new one. If you could get rid of the blockage then put the hose back and start a quick program to make sure you have fixed the error.

You may also examine where the pipe connects under your sink as well. This is a likely spot for a build-up of gunk so if you happen to remove the waste pipe give this connection a good scrub as well.

Check the drain valve

You can manually check the drain valve to check it isn’t stopped working. The drain valve will most often be located at the base of the machine on the valve bracket. Consult your instruction manual if you’re not sure.

Depressing the valve or wiggling it a bit should be sufficient to tell you if it’s seized. If you are able to see anything stopping it from moving carefully extract this. If you can’t, this may be when you should call a repair person unless you are happy in procuring and swapping out the part on your own.

Inspect your pump is not broken

Your dishwasher pump uses impellers that could become obstructed by broken china or other debris. Check your pump isn’t obstructed by removing the safety cover and ensuring that the impellers can be easily rotated.

Listen to your dishwasher while it’s on

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

Call a plumber

If none of the above examinations has solved the error, or you think the pump, pump valve or motor are not working, it may 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 hefty call-out fee for a blocked drain.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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