6 Common Reasons Your Dishes Are Coming Out Wet

Appliance Express
August 17, 2020
Dishwasher Repair

You could open up your dishwasher a hundred different times can see your dishes come out pristine, but that is not guaranteed. If you have recently opened up your dishwasher to find that the dishes are still soaking wet, then that can be indicative of a problem. The good news is that the problem may not be as serious as you suspect. Yet, it will still likely require some intervention if not outright repair on your part. You will want to check out these common culprits to help quickly get to the root of the problem so it can be rectified and you can get back to having both clean and dry dishes from your dishwasher.

The Rinse Aid is Out

As this is not really a problem that requires repair, it should be checked first. The rinse aid in your dishwasher is what helps the water slide off of your dishes naturally so they do not need excessive drying in the first place. It helps to prevent wet dishes and also water spots on your glassware. Over time, the rinse aid will run out and will need to be repaired. When this happens, you will notice the results. However, if you have had the dishwasher for a long time — more than a year – and never replaced the rinse aid, this is likely not the cause. Rinse aid is not necessary, but it is helpful. If you have become accustomed to using it, you will notice when it runs out.

The Door Was Opened Too Soon

If you only notice this issue happening sometimes, then it could be that your own haste to get clean dishes that are causing it. If the wash cycle has just stopped, opening the dishwasher, even very quickly to grab a dish you need, can result in the whole load staying wet. What happens is that opening the dishwasher allows a burst of cooler air to enter. When met with the hot air inside, this causes steam and that will re-condensate. This condensation will land on your dishes and is likely to stay there even after the dry cycle is done. This is not a problem that needs to be repaired. You simply need to be more patient next time or expect wet dishes if you do need to open your dishwasher.

The Heating Element is Faulty

The heating element in your dishwasher has two purposes. It is used to heat the incoming wash water to the appropriate temperature, and it is also used to aid in the dry cycle after the washing is done. The heat created by the heating element helps to remove the water from your dishes quickly so that it doesn’t pool or leave water spots. You can actually spot this issue without even testing anything. Certainly, you can take a multimeter to the heating element to find fault, but instead, try opening the dishwasher after the dry cycle. Your dishes should be both dry and warm. If they are wet and cold, this is a sign that the heating element is faulty. You should also be aware that this may mean your dishes were washed properly as well. Since the water wasn’t heated to the proper temperature, it means that a proper heat for sanitation may not have been met. You will want to replace the heating element and rewash the load to be safe.

The Drain Hose is Blocked

If your dishes are coming out wet and you notice that there is also still water in the bottom of the tub, then this could signal an issue with the drain hose. The drain hose could be blocked or slow draining. It is also possible that the water present in the appliance is backflow from an improperly-working drain. You can easily open up your sink cabinet and check this hose for blockages. If you find this is the case, then you will want to unclog the hose and rewash the load of dishes to make sure there was not any kind of contamination from backflow water.

The Drain Filter is Blocked

Similar to a blockage in the drain hose, a blockage in the drain filter can manifest in a similar problem. Food particles from your dishes often end up in this drain filter and can cause blockages. The filter is specifically put in place to prevent clogs deeper in the system. You should be checking the dishwasher filter at least once per month to prevent slow drainage. It also helps keep your dishwasher from becoming smelly if you clean the filter frequently. As the filter is easily reached, it is easily checked. However, if you notice standing water that is slowly going down, this is usually the case.

The Drain Pump is Not Working

The final cause for dishes coming out of a dishwasher wet is that the drain pump has failed. This pump produces a force that removes the wash and rinses water down the drain. However, if it is not working, some of the water may drain away, but not all of it. Sometimes the pump can become clogged and other times the pump may just have gone faulty. The drain pump is typically something you can hear when the cycles to switch, if you do not hear it or hear much stranger sounds, then this needs to be checked. Unfortunately, the drain pump is often something that requires a fair bit of disassembly to check., in some models, you may even need to uninstall the dishwasher from its alcove to check it. This is the most serious cause of the issue and often it is something you may feel more comfortable leaving to a professional.

Need Help?

Have you checked all these potential causes or aren’t comfortable taking on the problem on your own? We can help. If you want your appliances fixed up quickly with no hassle to you, contact us today. Appliance Express is dedicated to fast service done right the first time so you can get all your appliances back in working order.


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