Why My Dishwasher Doesn’t Clean Well

It can be frustrating when you empty your dishwasher, and you find that nothing in the dishwasher is clean. However, if your dishwasher isn’t cleaning correctly, then it doesn’t necessarily mean that it is the end for your dishwasher. You may be able to diagnose and solve the issue yourself, or the team at Just Fixed may be able to fix your appliance if you are unable to resolve the problem yourself.

dishwasher not cleaning properly

1. Low pressure

If there is not enough pressure from the water jets, then you will not receive an effective clean. Low pressure is usually a sign that there is an issue with the upper discharge housing gasket. In some cases, the gasket may have come loose. In other cases, the gasket may need replacing. If you replace the gasket, make sure the clean the debris from the fitting so the new gasket can fit correctly. The housing gasket is located on the discharge cover in your dishwasher.

2. Spray arms

The spray arms may be another reason why the dishwasher is not cleaning correctly. The role of the spray arms is to provide the dishwasher with a constant stream of hot water and cleaning agent. If they are obstructed, they can’t function correctly, so make sure none of the dishes are in the way.

If there is no obstruction, then the issue may be with a wobbly spray arm which means that it cannot create a proper spray pattern. In this case, it may be due to a worn bearing ring on the spray arm which may need replacing.

When the spray arm is unobstructed and doesn’t wobble then the arm itself may have damage or have plugged holes in the spray arm. You can inspect and clean the spray arms and remove any debris that may be clogging the holes. It is wise to check the filter system too. If the spray arms are cracked, then they will need replacing for the dishwasher to work efficiently again.

3. Docking station

If your dishwasher has a middle spray arm, then the docking station may be the reason it is not functioning correctly. You can find the docking station at the back of the dishwasher; it is here where the water supply connects to the spray arm through two outlets. Make sure the docking station is securely attached to the water supply tube. It is important also the check the flappers to ensure they can move with ease and won’t restrict the pressure to the middle arm.

4. Food chopper

Dishwashers come equipped with a food chopper that breaks food down into tiny pieces to enable them to drain correctly. When particles are not chopped finely enough, they end up in the water and recirculate around the dishwasher causing more grime on the dishes. If you spot large food debris in the dishwasher and on your dishes, then the chopper may be damaged. You can often visually inspect the chopper to check before replacing.

5. Water valve

In order to clean your dishes effectively, the dishwasher needs the correct amount of water in the tub. The water inlet valve is usually the first part of a dishwasher to fail. The water inlet valve is found in the lower access panel of the dishwasher. Here, you can check that the valve how power and that it is not plugged. If the valve has power and has no restriction, then it may need replacing.

6. Water delivery tube

If the spray arms have no damage, then it could be the water delivery tube that is the issue. The water delivery tube supplies water to the spray arm from the pump. You can check the water delivery tube to ensure there is no blockage and make sure the tube is properly aligned with the spray arms.

7. Filters

Filters help to keep the dishwasher clean and furthermore, they are usually self-cleaning. You can find the filters need the pump in the circulating portion. Sometimes the filter will just need cleaning. However, if it is torn or damaged in some way, then it may need to be replaced. It the filter is not replaced then debris can get into the spray arms which can impede the performance of the dishwasher.

8. Wash spinner

While the spinner is a small part, if it becomes damaged or is not fitted correctly, then the dishwasher may not work as well as it should. Make sure the spinner can spin, otherwise it may need to be replaced.

9. Heating element

In order the clean the dishwasher effectively, the appliance needs hot water. If the heating element is broken, then your dishwasher may not properly clean dishes. You can check that the water coming into the dishwasher is warm enough as during a normal cycle, the heating element will not be used. You can check if the heating element is working by running the hot tap before turning on the dishwasher and then if the temperature falls mid-cycle then the heating element may need replacing.

10. Detergent Dispenser

Another crucial aspect of your dishwasher is its ability to release detergent into the tub. It is important to use a high-quality detergent to enjoy the maximum effectiveness. If you find that tablets are taking too long to dissolve, or gel pods leave a residue, then consider using a powder detergent for faster results. It is also essential to use the right amount of detergent for your water conditions. For example, if you live in a hard water area, then you may need more detergent.

If the detergent is not causing a problem, then check to make sure the detergent dispenser is not clogged up. Usually cleaning the detergent dispenser cup is enough to make detergent easier to release into the tub.