Dishwashers were meant to save time and make our days less exhausting. While normally they do a pretty good job, it may cause you extra trouble if you see the water not draining properly from this appliance.
That is why we are here with five different solutions on how to drain a dishwasher with standing water.
Preparations To Make Before Draining Dishwasher
Before we get into the methods, you need to prepare the dishwasher for these alternative methods of draining.
- Take out all the dishes from the dishwasher if there is any. Otherwise, they can be an obstacle to taking out certain parts.
- Particularly, the knives need to be removed from the dishwasher since their sharp body can injure someone.
- Now shut down the power source and turn off the water line to prevent other accidents. The water line should be right under the sink. You can identify it by its appearance which is usually made of copper or braided stainless steel. Find the valves around it and turn off the lower one.
- Finally, wear a pair of gloves since you need to touch and hold dirty parts for these methods.
5 Ways To Drain A Dishwasher With Standing Water
1. Cleaning Filter
a. Locating The Filter
The filter of a dishwasher is usually cylindrical in shape. They are present in almost every modern model. You will find it below the spray arms inside the dishwasher. After identifying it, you need to twist it in a counterclockwise motion and lift it to take out the valve from housing.
There are some dishwashers that have another metal filter that looks like a flat plate and has a hole inside it to hold the cylindrical filter. If your model has this kind of coarse filter, just slide it out.
If you cannot find the filter, search online with your dishwasher model number and download its user manual.
b. Check And Clean
Now check the hole where the filter used to be and see if there is any clogged item or debris in it. Get rid of these elements or loosen them up.
After taking out the filters and checking their holes, clean them up with hot water, sponge and soap in the sink. You can also use dish detergent here.
Rinse them well and reinstall the filters. Let the coarse flat one go in first and then secure the cylindrical one with a twist. Spin spray arms to ensure proper alignment. Now test if this method worked by running the dishwasher once for a short cycle.
2. Cleaning Air Gap
Some kitchens are designed with an air gap which stops the back-flow of your sink water. Its main job is to prevent this water from getting into the dishwasher. Ironically, this very thing can cause trouble in drainage by being clogged itself.
If you notice an incoming flood of water in your counter, get the air gaps checked up. To get rid of its clogged materials, take off its cap and clear up the accumulated debris inside. Then see if the drainage is working properly for your dishwasher.
3. Cleaning Drain Hose
a. Pull Out The Dishwasher
To clean the drain hose, carefully pull out your dishwasher outside so that it is separated from the other cabinets on either side. You may find this a little hard to do since they are quite heavy. Try to slide it out slowly to enough distance that you can reach its back portion and work on it.
b. Access The Hose
Disconnect the power supply for safety. Find the kick plate at its base and remove it. This will grant you access to the drain hose which extends between the air gap or sink to the drain pump. If the area is too dark, turn on a flashlight to find it.
c. Examine The Hose
Now take the hose off its both ends and carefully examine if there is something stuck in it. One way to do so is by using a long flexible brush to run through it. Spread a disposable rag on the floor and direct the hose mouth there. This arrangement will help you to collect the clogged out items and throw away.
After all these, put the hose back in place and reconnect. Test out the dishwasher by starting a short cycle.
4. Cleaning Drain Valve
a. Cool Down And Locate
Before you try this out, see if the dishwasher is cool to prevent injuries from hot parts. Find the drain valve which is usually placed by the motor, below the dishwasher and on the back of its front kick panel. You can identify it easily by its gate arm.
b. Check The Gate Arm
Check if the gate arm and both of its springs. If the arm seems stuck or the springs are damaged, they could be the reason behind your dishwasher’s standing water.
c. Check The Solenoid
You should also check out its solenoid which uses two wires. You will need a multi-tester to measure its resistance by setting the tester’s ohms at x1. If the reading is drastically different from the standard 40 ohms, you should replace the solenoid.
d. Check The Motor
Now it’s time to check the motor to see if it is working properly. If the motor seems stuck, turn it by hand. Test the dishwasher at last to see if it is now draining normally.
5. Clearing Garbage Disposal
In some models of dishwashers, the system is designed to run water through the garbage disposal. If your device is one of them and cleaning the drain parts didn’t work, it might be the garbage disposal that needs to be checked out.
Especially in the case of new garbage disposals, the plastic plug inside their ports may not have been popped out. This can cause the dishwasher water to stop from getting outside and draining normally.
a. Disconnect And Access
Pull off the plug on your dishwasher to disconnect it from the power source. Then spot the rubber tube held by a clamp and pull that tube off. Now test with a screwdriver if it can reach the other end or if it is stopped by the plastic plug.
b. Clear The Disposal
Take a hammer to get the plug out with a tap of the screwdriver and make sure that no plastic is left in the hole’s edges. Then take out the plug and any other plastic bits from the top of your garbage disposal. Put the hose back in place, plug the disposal in and see if your dishwasher draining problem is solved.
Now that you know how to drain a dishwasher with standing water in five different ways, try out one or more of these tricks to solve the issue yourself!
If it still doesn’t show any improvement, you may need to contact a professional plumber to get rid of the messy situation.