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How to Fix Standing Water in Dishwashers


It is not uncommon for the tech survey cook to complain about standing water in their dishwasher. This should however not be a cause for concern as most issues affecting a dishwasher can easily be solved.

The beauty of a dishwasher is that it can be fixed without a specialised tool.

Tip: Remember to turn the power off. To be safe, ensure that the dishwasher is unplugged from the electrical socket. You can also switch off the circuit breaker or unplug the fuse.

Cleaning the Sump and Drain Basket

Clean the lower spray arm of the revolving drain basket .Clean thoroughly to ensure that all food debris and slime is removed.

You will have to be creative to clean the mesh. Straighten a wire coat hanger and try to dislodge the clog by poking it.

If the wire coat hanger fails to dislodge any clog, then you will have to use a screwdriver to unscrew the basket and clean the sump.

Drain Hose

To clean the drain hose of your dishwasher, you must first remove the screws to open the panel. Once it is removed, unblock the hose by cleaning all the debris inside.

The Pump

A dishwasher machine has two impellers. The lower impeller pumps water into the drain while the upper impeller acts as an inlet of clean water into the dishwasher.

The most common problem that may affect an impeller is plastic and broken glass.

Garbage Disposal and Air Gap

At times, the Hose drain may be blocked at the point where it meets the garbage disposal.

To clear any blockages you will have to use a flat-head screw driver.

For best results, ensure that you remove the knock-out plastic cup. Punch it out by using a screwdriver.

The hose at the top part of the sink, at times connects to the air gap. Remove the plastic cup and unscrew the domelike cover to lift it up. You can use a tube from paper roll cardboard to blow into the air gap to clear any clog.

Float Assembly

Remove the screw that holds the float assembly into place. Inspect the float for any obstructions and remove debris if any. Under the float assembly is a multimeter that you can use to test the float switch.

Motor and Timer

The motor is important as it drives the pump in your system. The timer, relay and solenoid control the functioning of the motor. To know if your motor is working correctly, or needs to be replaced, you can use the terminal method or the multimeter method.

In the terminal method, your multimeter reading should be zero when each terminal is touched with a setting of R x 1.
In the multimeter method, the probes from each wire should give a reading of

2,000-3,400 ohms. If the reading is not in this range then the timer is faulty.


A setting of “x 1,000” should be set on your multimeter for this method to work.

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