Is Your Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?

It turns out drying your plates may actually be harder for your dishwasher than removing the dirt. Dishes and glasses have multiple crevices that can collect water making it more difficult for it to dry out, and as your machine cools water condenses from the steam.

Different machines also utilize a number of different methods to get your dishes dry. Certain models opt for a heating element to heat up the inside of the dishwasher and assist with evaporation, some warm the water further approaching the end of the cycle, others have a fan, and certain models employ a mix of all of these. There are thus a variety of reasons why your machine may not be drying dishes fully and a number of things you can do to rectify the situation.

Plastic is more difficult to dry than other materials as it cools down more quickly hindering the drying process, so it’s worth noting whether the items that aren’t drying are predominantly plastic items.

If dishes are coming out wet you can call a dishwasher repair service or first utilize this troubleshooting guide to help you identify and rectify the issue.

Top Explanations Your Dishwasher Isn’t Drying Dishes

Few things are more frustrating than a home appliance that isn’t working as it should, whether that’s a smartphone that really isn’t being that smart, a washing machine that’s churning out dirty clothes, or a dishwasher that is either not cleaning or drying your plates. If you open the dishwasher to wet plates here are a few places you can look to help you figure out the problem.

Not all dishwashers 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 plates in the past one of these issues might be the cause.

Have a Look at the Placement of Your Plates

Sometimes there is nothing actually wrong with the appliance. Before assuming the machine is broken you should first check that you haven’t overfilled it or accidentally stacked items one inside the other. It’s also worth noting that plastics don’t dry as well as metal, glass or ceramics.

Check The Rinse Aid Dispenser

Your appliance needs rinse aid to properly dry your plates therefore, if you have run out of rinse aid or the rinse aid dispenser is not working this can stop your crockery and cutlery coming out properly dry.

The best thing to do is check the dispenser for damage and check that there is rinse aid inside.

Inspect The Heating Coil

Heat is essential for drying your crockery and cutlery so a broken heating element might be the reason your appliance is not working as it should. If your crockery and cutlery aren’t hot when they come out of the machine this can mean that the heating element isn’t working as it should.

To inspect the heating coil first unplug the machine, then find the heating coil, you may need the owners manual for this, then use a multimeter to check it’s working.

Inspect the Thermostat

The thermostat ensures your appliance doesn’t overheat, determining the temperature of the water and the drying part of the cycle. However, if it’s broken this can mean your machine doesn’t heat up at all.

If the heating coil appears to be in working order but your machine isn’t getting hot, then the thermostat might be the problem. Once again you can make sure with the help of a multimeter.

Inspect The Drying Fan and Vent

Many dishwashers will use a fan and vent to remove the warm moist air from the dishwasher. If the fan isn’t operating as is should or the vent is blocked then the water vapor will remain in the machine preventing the plates from drying.

You can use your user manual to find out if your appliance uses a fan and find its location. Again you need to ensure the appliance is unplugged before trying 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. And again testing for continuity using a multimeter.

Tips to Increase Drying Ability

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

  1. Allow sufficient space between plates. Overcrowding the appliance inhibits the circulation of both water and air decreasing the effectiveness of your dishwasher when it comes to both washing and finishing your dishes. Although it’s tempting to try and stuff everything in, you will get better results if you leave sufficient space so that water and air can circulate freely.
  2. Employ rinse aid. Some detergents include a rinse aid but even so, adding a separate rinse aid to the dishwasher will do no harm. Rinse aid helps reduce marks and gives your glasses a streak-free finish but it also breaks the bond between water molecules and your plates helping the water to run off them and therefore speeding up drying times.
  3. Open your dishwasher as soon as the cycle has finished. Some new dishwashers have this as an automatic function, but if yours doesn’t, opening the dishwasher at the end of the program allows warm air to evaporate thus preventing water condensing on the plates as the machine cools down.
  4. Find out if your machine uses a heat feature and utilize it. Setting a higher heat will result in better drying times and you could be able to choose which points in the program you increase the temperature.
  5. Unload the bottom rack first. This doesn’t affect how well your machine works, but it does stop water from cups and glasses falling on dishes below.

If none of the above solves the problem it could be necessary to call in the professionals or even replace your dishwasher.

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