Dishes that are still wet when a wash cycle ends means that your dishwasher’s duties are only half done. Why is my Whirlpool dishwasher not drying dishes? The wrong loading practices may leave them wet. Troubleshoot with these likely reasons when your dishwasher isn’t drying like it should. 

Whirlpool Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes?
This Could Be Why.

From user errors to failed parts, there are several common reasons for a Whirlpool dishwasher not drying dishes. Here’s how to determine if a DIY fix or professional repair will solve the problem.

Improper Loading

If your dishwasher leaves dishes dirty as well as wet it may be due to how it’s loaded. 

The following loading mistakes are often responsible when a Whirlpool dishwasher does not dry dishes:

  • Overcrowding: Nesting or overlapping dishes, bowls, and utensils allows little space for air to circulate, leaving items wet. Always allow adequate space between each loaded item and alternate forks, spoons, and knives next to each other to avoid nesting.
  • Too many plastic items: Plastic retains water longer than other materials, leaving these items wet when a wash cycle ends. Limit the number of plastic items in the dishwasher or opt to hand wash them instead.
  • Incorrect positioning: Load concave items like bowls, cups, and glasses upside down and at an angle so they don’t fill with water and drain properly.
Whirlpool dishwasher not drying

Image from Whirlpool

Lack of Rinse Aid

Why does my dishwasher not dry the dishes if I don’t use rinse aid? Though it may not have been necessary with older dishwashers, rinse aid is an essential component for today’s more energy-efficient models. Rinse aid alters the structure of water droplets so they easily run off dishes and glassware, promoting drier results. 

Always add rinse aid to your dishwasher’s designated dispenser before every wash cycle. Some dispensers allow you to adjust the amount dispensed so it can be increased for drier dishes or decreased for smaller loads.

Not Using Additional Drying Features

While the Heated Dry function is automatic on some Whirlpool wash settings, it must be separately selected for others. A Whirlpool dishwasher not drying dishes may not include a Heated Dry cycle on that particular wash setting. Check your user manual to determine if Heated Dry has to be separately selected for your chosen setting.

Many dishwasher models also have additional drying features that can enhance the performance of rinse aid and promote drier dishes. If your dishwasher has an “Extended Dry” function, make sure you select it after choosing your wash cycle. This feature extends the dishwasher’s drying cycle by 25-35 minutes for drier results.

Water Temperature is Too Cold

A dishwasher’s drying and washing functions are improved when hot water is used. This is because hot water evaporates faster and is better at removing grease and food stains. When your Whirlpool dishwasher leaves dishes wet, make sure it’s connected to your home’s hot water supply. If it’s properly connected, measure the temperature of the water from your kitchen faucet. If it’s below 120℉, the dishwasher’s water supply isn’t hot enough and your home water heater may need an adjustment.

Whirlpool Dishwasher Part Has Failed

If none of these issues are the reason for your Whirlpool dishwasher not drying dishes, it’s likely a part failure is responsible. 

The following part failures can leave dishes wet and require a professional repair:

  • Vent: Many dishwashers use a vent to allow moist air to exit after a rinse cycle. If the vent malfunctions and doesn’t open sufficiently, the moist air will stay trapped, leaving dishes wet. 
  • Vent fan: Some dishwasher models also employ a vent fan to expel moist air through the vent. If the fan fails or its blades are obstructed, dishes may not dry sufficiently. 
  • Heating Element: The heating element supplies the heat for the dishwasher’s drying functions. If it burns out, these functions won’t supply heat and dishes will stay wet. 

Whether your dishwasher isn’t draining water or not drying dishes sufficiently, we can help. Schedule your Whirlpool dishwasher repair with one of our expert technicians!