While a dishwasher’s primary function is to clean dishes, drying is also an important final step in the wash cycle. Oftentimes we discover just how important that is when your Whirlpool dishwasher leaves dishes wet after the cycle completes. We’ll discuss common causes for this problem like improper loading or incorrect settings and what you can do to fix it.

Whirlpool Dishwasher Leaves Dishes Wet? Here’s What to Do

Wondering why does my Whirlpool dishwasher not dry dishes? Before thinking that a repair is in order, there are some easy adjustments that can do the trick when your Whirlpool dishwasher leaves dishes wet. Here’s how to troubleshoot the simplest causes first.

Dishes Not Loaded Properly

Overloading and improper loading of the dishwasher are two of the most common reasons a Whirlpool dishwasher doesn’t dry effectively. Avoid overloading by leaving adequate space for air to circulate between each item. We also suggest these rack-by-rack loading tips for a better drying function:

  • Top Rack: Place glasses and bowls upside down for better rinsing, which promotes faster and more effective drying.
  • Bottom Rack: Make sure dishes don’t touch and are facing inward for better rinsing and air circulation
  • Silverware basket: Avoid nesting by alternating spoons, forks, and knives next to each other. If the silverware basket has designated compartments, put one item in each compartment.
whirlpool dishwasher leaves dishes wet

Image from Whirlpool

Unloading in the Wrong Order

Your unloading technique is just as important as loading when it comes to keeping dishes dry. If your Whirlpool dishwasher leaves dishes wet make sure you unload the bottom rack first. Unloading the top rack before the bottom allows any trapped water on top to fall on the dishes below.

Drying Plastic Items

Sometimes an abundance of plastic items can be another reason for a Whirlpool dishwasher not drying dishes. Plastic is unable to retain heat as well as glass, ceramic, or other materials. This means a typical dishwasher drying cycle will still leave plastic items wet.

For more efficient dishwasher drying, limit the number of plastic items in a cycle or opt to hand wash them.

Try Adding Rinse Aid

While rinse aid is usually touted for making dishes sparkle, its main function is to aid in rinsing. It does this by altering the structure of water droplets so that they run more easily off glasses and dishware. This promotes better drying by lessening the amount of remaining water that a drying cycle must remove.

To improve your dishwasher’s drying ability, try adding a rinse aid to the rinse compartment of your dishwasher before each wash cycle. Our repair technicians will even provide you with a FREE sample of Finish® dishwasher detergent tabs and rinse aid! Just ask your technician for a sample during service to see for yourself how it can improve your dishwasher’s drying performance.

Heated Dry Not Selected

Is your Whirlpool dishwasher heated dry not working the way it should? Make sure you select the heated dry function before a wash cycle begins. Selecting this function before the dishwasher starts enables the heating element to be ready for use at the right point in the wash cycle.

whirlpool dishwasher heated dry not working

Image from Whirlpool

Defective Whirlpool Dishwasher Parts

If none of the above measures result in dryer dishes, it’s possible that one of your dishwasher components is defective. These components are often the cause when a dishwasher’s drying function malfunctions:

  • Failed Whirlpool dishwasher vent: Some dishwashers use a vent to let out damp air after a wash cycle, ridding dishes of moisture. If the vent doesn’t open properly this moisture will be left on dishes. A broken vent requires replacement.
  • Broken fan motor: Dishwasher vent systems often use a fan to propel moist air through the vent and off dishes. If the fan blades don’t turn freely and the fan motor has no continuity, the motor needs replacement.
  • Defective Heating Element: Other dishwashers use a heating element to dry dishes after they’re washed. When the heating element isn’t operating correctly, your dishes will remain wet. If multimeter testing of the heating element reveals a lack of continuity it needs to be replaced.

When your Whirlpool dishwasher leaves dishes wet or experiences any malfunction, let Moore Appliance Service be your go-to dishwasher repair service provider.