Dishwasher Not Draining

There is nothing worse than opening up your dishwasher to find water at the bottom.

If you find water in bottom of your dishwasher after the cycle has completed, read through the tips below to see if you can resolve the problem.  Before attempting to disassemble any part of your dishwasher, make sure you have unplugged or removed power to it.  Manually remove as much of the standing water as you can.

  • Check to see if your dishwasher filter is blocked. The most common reason for standing water is because food and debris has clogged up the drainage system. There is a filter in the tub of your unit. Most modern dishwashers have built-in grinders, but things like food and paper can still block the filter. Remove the bottom sprayer arm so that you can access the filter screen. If the screen has food debris on it, clean it thoroughly with a brush.  Next, remove the screen by the pressure lock in the middle of the dishwasher where the sprayer arm attaches. Look inside the screen to check for any additional food or debris.  Once this is cleared, you have likely solved the problem.
  • Check the hose that runs from your dishwasher to the garbage disposal or drain line. Make sure it isn’t blocked or kinked. At this point you may want to turn off the water supply and have a bucket ready to catch water in the line.
  • Check your sink. Make sure it is draining properly.
  • Check the garbage disposal by turning it on (with running water) for a few seconds. Many times, your dishwasher is set up to drain through your garbage disposal. If you have a problem in your disposal – it will prevent your dishwasher from draining.
  • Check the drain valve. To test to see if a valve is working, push on the valve bracket and make sure it moves freely. If it is locked in place, the electrical solenoid that powers it may have burned out.
  • Check the drain tube. Simply disconnect the drain tube from the air gap. Inspect it to ensure it is not plugged and clear it out before reconnecting it.

If you find water in the bottom of your dishwasher and you haven’t run a wash cycle, it may be from water seeping back from your sink. This may be because the hose that discharges from the dishwasher to the kitchen sink was not installed properly. Dishwasher hoses must travel upwards from the dishwasher to the under-side of your counter top, then run downward to the kitchen sink to create a loop. If the loop isn’t high enough, water may not drain properly and trickle back into your dishwasher instead of the drain. If there are no problems with the dishwasher hose, then the problem may be caused by the drain valve and the solenoid may need to be replaced.

NRH Plumbing’s certified experts can evaluate your dishwasher’s plumbing repair. Call us at 612-900-7728 and schedule an appointment today!