Dishwasher not draining enough?

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by Peter Brinson, Jun 6, 2021.

  1. Peter Brinson

    Peter Brinson New Member

    May 23, 2020
    Los Angeles
    Lately my dishwasher leaks in the front when running. I believe the water level is getting too high in the middle of the cycle...

    I went under the sink and removed the related tubes, cleaned them and put them back, but that didn't help.
    The tube that drains into the garbage disposal, I blew on it hard to get air to pass back into the dishwater, thinking that proves it's not blocked. (Although it took real effort to do so).

    When this cycles is done, here's an image.
    It's hard to tell from this image, but there's water near the top of that oval area where water drains out. Shouldn't that be empty?

  2. Jeff H Young

    Jeff H Young In the Trades

    Feb 27, 2020
    i doubt its a plugged hose. something wrong with D/W
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  4. Tughillrzr

    Tughillrzr In the Trades

    Jan 29, 2020
    New York
    Did You clean the debris in the pump screen/ filter
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2021
  5. plumber69

    plumber69 In the Trades

    Jun 20, 2014
    Prince Rupert, British Columbia
    Not sure about all dishwasher but I think they all have a one way rubber flapper valve. So if you blew towards dishwasher you may have caused more damage.
  6. J F

    J F New Member

    Jun 27, 2021
    Ontario, Canada
    Is that a General-Electric Nautilus series? (Or a derivative of it?) ;)

    The dishwasher should have a float sensor near the front of the sump; if this float rises high enough, a limit switch cuts off the water inlet -- no exceptions.

    If your dishwasher is spilling water out the front, that suggests any of 3 potential problems:
    1. The float / limit switch is not working, and the machine is subsequently admitting too much water into the sump.
    2. The machine is not properly leveled; if it's slightly tilted to the side away from the float, the water can overflow out the lower front corner, before the float (near the higher front corner) will ever detect an excessively-high water level.
    3. You're using an incorrect detergent that's causing way too much foaming. The foam -- which floats on the sump water -- is spilling over the front edge.

    Regarding water remaining in the drain... that's normal for GE Nautilus machines.
    Because they have a horizontal-axis pump, it's technically impossible for the inlet cavity to completely drain of all water.
    Anyhow, a little bit of water in there is a good thing! The water lubricates the pump gland (the seal around the rotating shaft); without water in there, the pump can seize! (If this happens, you risk burning the motor coils / permanently destroying the pump motor!)
    Now perhaps on modern machines, the pump might not start until the sump fills with water... but on my Beaumark Whisper Wash (rebranded GE Nautilus), the pump immediately starts, before the water inlet valve even opens! If I haven't used the dishwasher for several weeks and the water has evaporated, I pour about 2 or 3 cups of water into the sump just to get the pump wetted before starting the machine.

    plumber69 had a good point too: The dishwasher has a rubber flapper check-valve on the waste pipe, to prevent drain water flowing backwards into the sump. If this is damaged or jammed open with gunk, you might find excess water remaining in the sump at the end of the final cycle.
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