Why Is My Dishwasher Not Cleaning the Dishes?

Today’s appliances are designed to make our lives as easy as possible. So when they don’t function as expected, it can really create challenges in our lives. When dishwasher problems arise and you now have to wash and dry by hand, turn to the professionals at Alpha Tech Appliance. Don’t know why your dishwasher isn’t cleaning dishes like it used to? Check out our list of common dishwasher problems and solutions!

Interior is Dirty

Over time, it’s common for food particles, grease, and soap scum to build up in your dishwasher, and as a result, it could stop working altogether. Fortunately for you, this is a pretty common fix. Get some good ol’ fashion white vinegar from the cupboard and run your dishwasher on a cycle. Simply pour three cups of vinegar into the bottom of the appliance and turn it on. This will also help to eliminate any unpleasant smells

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Rinse Dirty Dishes

It’s always best to rinse dishes before putting them in the dishwasher. The machine might not be able to remove caked-on sauces or grease. You certainly don’t need to break a sweat, but a simple wipe goes a long way. Your appliance could be overloaded too. If water can’t reach the dishes inside because it’s too full, it’ll be tough to get your dishes properly cleaned. It’s always necessary to leave enough space for soap and water to safely pass through during the cycle.

Low Water Temperature or Pressure

If your water doesn’t reach a certain temperature during the washing cycle, it will not adequately clean the dishes. In order to properly wash and sanitize the dishes, the internal water temperature needs to reach between 120 and 150 degrees Fahrenheit. As a test, you can run hot water from your tap right after you start a cycle. If it isn’t hot enough, you might need to adjust the water heater. Low pressure could also be the issue. Check your taps to see if it is not as powerful as it once used to be. 

Ensure Water is Running

It might sound silly, but if your water isn’t running, it won’t clean your dishes. If you notice your dishes are coming out just as dirty and dry, this could be the issue. Place cups on the top and bottom rack, facing up, and turn on the appliance. After the cycle completes, these cups should be full of water. If not, water does likely not reach the dishwasher.

Check Spray Arms for Obstructions

If you overfill your dishwasher, the spray arms will not be able to spin as intended. You should be able to manually turn these arms by hand. If anything is preventing the arms from spinning, then it’s unlikely your dishes will get cleaned properly. 

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Broken Soap Dispenser

Soap is a necessary part of the dishwashing cycle. Without it, your dishes won’t be clean or sanitized. Use a brush and a mix of warm water and vinegar to scrub away any obstructions that have built up inside the dispenser. Also, inspect the dispenser for any jagged edges or broken pieces. A broken gasket won’t dispense soap and will need to be replaced. 

Contact the Pros

With this information, you should be able to get your dishes sparkling clean. Important things to remember: soap and water are key, the machine’s components need to be functioning properly, and don’t overload your dishwasher. If you’ve been racking your brain and you still can’t get your appliance to work, call the experts at Alpha Tech Appliance. Our team of professionals can handle all your appliance repair and installation needs.