How to Fix a Dishwasher That Won’t Drain

Dishwasher Won't Drain - Dishwasher Repair - It Is Fixed - Atlanta

We rely on the dishwasher to adequately clean and rinse dirty dishes. When the dishwasher stops functioning, it often increases the time spent on household chores.

If you’ve noticed that your dishwasher completes a cycle and the tub fails to drain, this may be the result of a deficiency in the dishwasher drainage system. While your initial thought may be to replace the appliance, typically this is an issue that can be repaired.

Here are 6 simple things to check when your dishwasher won’t drain:

Possible Cause: Blockage
Before you begin troubleshooting the dishwasher, it’s important first to check if the drains in your home are blocked. If the pipes inside or outside your home are clogged, it may prevent the sink, toilet, and even your dishwasher from properly draining. To check for pipe clogs, run water into your sink and flush a toilet. If water starts to back up in other areas, contact your utility provider to report the backup. It may be necessary to contact a professional plumber for assistance.

In some cases, the garbage disposal can be the culprit. Typically, the dishwasher hose is connected to the disposer during installation. When food remnants build up in the disposer, it may cause a clog and there won’t be anywhere for the water to go in the dishwasher. You can clear the garbage disposal by running water through it for a few minutes so buildup can wash down the pipe.

A blockage may also occur in the dishwasher drain hose. The drain hose is what carries the water out of the dishwasher once the cycle is complete. If the drain hose is clogged with substances, the water won’t be able to flow out of the bottom tub.

Disconnect the drain hose from the dishwasher. Inspect the hose. If you find signs of wear or damage, replace the hose. At a sink, run hot water through the hose until the water runs clear. If water doesn’t pass through the hose, and the clog cannot be removed, replace the hose.

Possible Cause: Faulty Motor or Drain Pump
Most dishwasher models rely on a motorized drain pump that is designed with two different compartments. One section of the drain pump is for circulation and the other second part for draining the water from the dishwasher. Some dishwasher models utilize a drain pump in conjunction with the drain solenoid. On both of these model types, you’ll want to inspect the drain pump. Check to see if the pump has become clogged or blocked.

If the motor or the drain pump has signs of wear such as cracks or dent and it’s not to pump out water, then it’s possible that the drain pump or the motor controlling it has failed. On models that are designed with a separate pump and a solenoid, you’ll need to check for obstruction in the solenoid or in the input and output sections of the pump.

Possible Cause: Faulty Motor 
As previously mentioned, a faulty motor in the drain pump can affect dishwasher drainage. Ensure the appliance and is plugged in and powered on. When you turn the washer on, listen closely and to see if you hear a humming noise. A humming noise may indicate that motor is receiving power but not turning over. The motor may need to be replaced.

Possible Cause: Clogged Filter
All dishwashers are constructed with a filter system that is often located at the bottom of the tub. Newer dishwasher models have small built-in grinders. It’s easy for both a filter and the grinder to become clogged with food, debris such as labels that have washed off of jars. Inspect and clean the dishwasher filter.

Pro Tip: Some filters are built with a cage over the exterior held in place with screws. It may be necessary to remove the screws to thoroughly clean the filter.

Possible Cause: Drive Belt
Some older model dishwashers use a belt driven pump system. If the belt is slipping or has completely come off the dishwasher will not function in the properly. In fact, it will affect the draining process and cause the washer to retain water. Replacing the belt is the best solution.

If your dishwasher is still retaining water after trying these troubleshooting steps, there could be a fault in other parts of the appliance. In this case, it may be necessary to seek help from a professional.

It’s Fixed Appliance Repair is a reputable repair service with technicians that are skilled in diagnosing and repairing problems in household appliances. We can provide assistance seven days a week. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.

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