A poorly performing dishwasher can significantly increase the time you spend doing dishes, not to mention potentially serious issues with the appliance overflowing. Problems with cleaning and more serious indicators like leaks can be caused by a clog somewhere in the unit, but they're frequently fixable by appliance owners.
It's important to understand where the problem starts. A dishwasher that leaks or holds stagnant water after a cycle is often a different problem than poor cleaning of the dishes and flatware inside. A problem not tied to either of these symptoms may be more complex. Here are simple approaches for addressing those two common issues. Be sure to switch off the dishwasher before working on it and remember to turn it back on afterward.
Dishwashers circulate water throughout the cleaning cycle, and clogs eventually occur. To clear potential blockages, remove the racks and then the spinner arms. Then, use a small metal skewer or rod to clean the holes on the arms. Always use a piece of metal for this purpose, as plastic or wood can break off and create another clog.
Water remaining at the bottom of the dishwasher is unsanitary and can eventually lead to leaks, spills and damage. Clean the drain basket, located at the bottom of the appliance, by first attempting to poke through the mesh to dislodge a visible clog. Removing the drain basket and cleaning it is the next step. Clearing the area around the float, the vaguely bell or button shaped piece at the bottom of the dishwasher, is another tactic.
While these easy fixes take care of some common problems, not every type of dishwasher repair is so easy or the same. Be sure to consult your owner's manual before tackling any issue and reach out to your local Durham Roto-Rooter for help fixing these more involved issues.