It is daunting to see the pool of water accumulated at the bottom of the dishwasher. But worry not! You can fit it with the proper guidance given in the article.
Water will start accumulating at the bottom of the dishwasher due to the clogged filters, drain hose, air gap, faulty solenoid, or malfunctioning drain pump. Start inspecting each part, and unclog them if clogs are causing the issue. Replace the part if it is damaged or not working.
In this article, you will learn common causes of the water sitting at the bottom of the dishwasher. So, keep reading.
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Why is water sitting at the bottom of the dishwasher?
Yesterday when I went to the kitchen, I sensed a strong foul odor from the dishwasher.
Initially, I had no clue why the dishwasher was spreading a foul odor.
I inspected the dishwasher’s interior to find the water sitting at the bottom, causing a foul odor.
That was the first time I saw standing water at the bottom of the dishwasher.
I was wondering what could be the reason for the issue.
After draining the water manually, I researched the reason for the issues in my dishwasher.
I found out the 11 common reasons there is water sitting at the bottom of the dishwasher.
Based on that, I inspected my dishwasher and fixed the issue.
Also read: Why is my Amana dishwasher not draining?
Here are the 11 common reasons for the water sitting at the bottom of the dishwasher.
1. Clogged or Dirty Filters
Filters are located at the dishwasher’s bottom rack.
The filter’s primary purpose in the dishwasher is to catch the debris particles in it to prevent them from depositing in the clean dishes and clogging the dishwasher’s drain pump.
In most dishwashers, the drain basket is also attached to the filter.
You can refer to your dishwasher’s user manual to find the filter’s exact location, as it may differ based on the model and brand.
My dishwasher has a filter attached to the drain basket.
A filter and drain basket prevent the dirty water from coming in contact with the cleaned dishes.
If you are not cleaning the filter regularly, dirt and debris particles will start accumulating in it.
In the long run, soap, debris particles, and dirt will clog the filter resulting in the water standing at the bottom of the dishwasher.
It is due to poor draining as the filter is clogged.
Inspect your filters for any dirt and debris accumulation; if you find any, clean them immediately to fix the issue.
To clean the filter, remove it from the dishwasher by referring to the instructions in the user manual.
Prepare soapy water and soak the filter in it.
Use a toothbrush to remove all the debris particles accumulated into it.
After cleaning the filter, rinse it thoroughly with warm water.
Let it dry for 5 minutes and reattach it to the dishwasher’s bottom rack.
Also, clean the drain basket if it is attached to the filter in your dishwasher.
Now, run the test cycle without loading dishes. Check if the issue is solved.
Follow the fixes below if the issue persists.
2. Drain Hose Issues
A drain hose is attached at the bottom of the dishwasher that helps to drain the washer water from it at the end of the washing cycle.
It carried dirty water mixed with debris particles, a food washer, and greasy materials from the dishwasher.
So, cleaning the dishwasher’s drain hose regularly is essential to avoid clogs.
In addition, a drain hose also gets kinked and damaged in the long run.
Check the drain hose of your dishwasher for any clogs or damages.
If your drain hose is clogged, it will block the water from the dishwasher from draining into the garbage disposal.
It might cause the water to sit at the bottom of the dishwasher at the end of the drying cycle.
When checking the drain hose of my dishwasher, I was getting on the floor to inspect the bottom of the dishwasher and the sink.
You must also be comfortable doing this if you are fixing the issue without professionals’ help.
Turn off the power to the dishwasher. Start by checking the bottom of the dishwasher.
Disconnect the dishwasher’s drain hose by following the instructions in the user manual.
Check the drain hose for cracks and damages. Also, check if it is clogged.
If yes, it may be why the water sits at the dishwasher’s bottom.
Prepare a vinegar and baking soda solution, pour it into the hose, and let it soak for 5 to 10 minutes.
After 10 minutes, flush the hot water into it.
You can also use a drain snake and auger to remove the stubborn clogs.
Reattach the drain hose without any kinks and bends.
Run the test wash cycle and check if the issue is solved.
Also read: How Do You Cap Off A Dishwasher Drain Line?
3. Faulty Drain Pump
The drain pump is at the dishwasher’s bottom.
It helps to drain the water from the dishwasher to the garbage disposal.
In the long run, debris and food waste accumulation may clog the drain pump.
Insect the drain pump of your dishwasher by removing the filter and drain basket at the bottom.
My dishwasher requires me to remove the filter to inspect the drain pump.
It may differ based on the model of the dishwasher.
So, consider referring to the user manual to know how it works in your dishwasher.
If the drain pump is clogged in your dishwasher, use a cleaning or vinegar solution to unclog it.
Remove all the debris particles using a wire hanger or snake drain.
Pour the vinegar or the cleaning solution into the drain pump.
Let it soak for 5 to 10 minutes.
Flush the drain pump with hot water and repeat until the clog is cleared.
After cleaning the drain pump, plug in the dishwasher and check if the issue is solved.
4. Garbage Disposal Issues
The garbage disposal is attached to the sink.
If the dishwasher has no separate drain system, it is connected to the baggage disposal to drain the wastewater.
If you don’t run it often, the garbage disposal will accumulate debris.
If it is clogged, it may also be why the water sits at the bottom of the dishwasher.
You can fix the issue by unclogging the garbage disposal.
To do so, disconnect the power supply to it.
Flush the hot water into the garbage disposal.
Using a flashlight, inspect the inside content of the garbage disposal.
Check if there are any objects stuck.
In such a case, use a prong to remove it.
Prepare a vinegar and baking soda solution to remove the stubborn clogs.
Start by pouring the vinegar first and followed by baking soda.
Let them soak for 5 to 10 minutes.
Flush them with hot water.
You can also place the ice cubes and rock salt to clean the garbage disposal blades.
Baking soda and vinegar solution helped me to unclog the garbage disposal.
After following this, check if all the clogs are cleared.
Repeat the process until the blades are clear.
While unclogging the garbage disposal, you must not put your hands directly into it, even if the electricity is disconnected.
Plug in the dishwasher and check if the issue is solved.
5. Dishwasher Loading
Improper loading of the dishwasher will also cause the water to sit at the bottom.
Check if you are placing the bowls in the propped-up position.
It is best to refer to the user manual to learn how to load the dishes properly.
6. Detergent Build-up
Using excess detergent in the dishwasher will lead to accumulation at the bottom.
If you suspect that detergent accumulation is causing the issue, inspect the bottom of the dishwasher.
A white residue accumulation is an indication of the detergent built at the bottom of the dishwasher.
You can fix this by flushing the hot water into the detergent build-up.
Use a brush to clean the detergent build-up manually.
You can also prepare a vinegar solution and let it soak in the particular area of detergent build-up.
It will remove all the detergent build-up.
Next time using a dishwasher, use only an appropriate amount of detergent liquid.
Read the instructions in the detergent pack. Following the instruction will prevent excess usage of detergent.
7. Faulty Dishwasher Float Switch
A float switch is a dishwasher sensor to monitor the dishwasher’s water level during the washing and draining cycle.
If the float switch is faulty, it will fail to detect the water level in the dishwasher.
In such a case, replacing the float switch instead of repairing it is best.
It is located at the bottom of the dishwasher.
To replace the flat switch, turn off the electric supply to the dishwasher by turning off the circuit breaker.
Disconnect the control panel and the door panel of the dishwasher.
Locate the bottom access panel and toe panel.
Disconnect it from the dishwasher and place it aside.
Now, you can find the float switch on the left side.
Disconnect the wire harness from the floating switch and release the locking tab to remove it altogether.
Replace it with the new float switch and reconnect the wire harness.
Secure the floating switch with the locking tab.
Reconnect the door panel and control panel.
Turn on the dishwasher and check if the issue is solved.
8. Faulty solenoid
Solenoid is an integral part of the drain pump of the dishwasher.
It helps in opening and closing the drain valve to facilitate smooth draining.
If the solenoid is faulty, a drain valve may get stuck in the open or closed position.
If there is a draining issue in your dishwasher, it must be stuck in the closed position.
Check the solenoid with the multimeter.
If there is no continuity in the multimeter, it is confirmed that the solenoid is faulty.
In such a case, you must replace the solenoid.
9. Air gap issues
If your dishwasher has an air gap, clogs in it will also cause the water to stand at the bottom of the dishwasher.
The air gap is located near the sink. It is a plastic material protected with a mental casting.
You can check the air gap after disconnecting the electric supply to the dishwasher and the garbage disposal.
Locate the air gap and remove the metal casting and diverter.
After removing the metal casting, you can see if debris and food particles are accumulated.
If so, you can use needle nose pliers to remove all the clogs.
If you want to clear the air gap deeply, insert the drain snake into it.
Twist and turn it to remove all the clogs from the air gap.
Once done, reassemble the air gap and clean the area around it.
Plug in the dishwasher and the garbage disposal. Check if the issue is solved.
10. Insufficient water supply
If you have checked all the above causes and still water sits at the bottom of the dishwasher, it may be due to the insufficient water supply.
If there is an insufficient water supply to your dishwasher, dishes will not be adequately cleaned.
In the end, the dirty water will accumulate at the bottom of the dishwasher.
You can fix this issue by ensuring a sufficient water supply to the dishwasher.
The dishwasher holding the water at the bottom will not only cause damage to the appliance but also spread a foul smell in your kitchen. The only way to avoid the issue is to maintain the cleaning schedule for your dishwasher.
If you have cleaned your dishwasher for a long time, hire a professional to clean it deeply. Water standing at the bottom of the dishwasher may be due to the clogged filter, drain hose, faulty solenoid, or malfunctioning drain pump.
Check all the causes mentioned in the article and fix the issue to facilitate smooth draining in your dishwasher.
How do I get rid of standing water in my dishwasher?
You can eliminate the standing water in the dishwasher by mixing the baking soda and vinegar. Pour the mixture into the standing water and let it soak for 20 minutes. Flush the hot water and begin the rinse cycle.
Should I run my dishwasher if it has standing water?
If only 1 cup of water stands at the dishwasher’s bottom, it is not an issue. If the water is more than 1 cup, the dishwasher could have a problem. Inspect and fix the issue before running the dishwasher.
Reference: Dishwasher Wikipedia