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dishwasher leaking water

Dishwasher Leaks: Why Is My Dishwasher Leaking Water?

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Mopping up puddles from a leaky dishwasher dampens anyone’s spirits (pun intended). But that doesn’t mean it’s the end for this hardworking appliance. Why is my dishwasher leaking water? Water dripping from the door may be due to a damaged gasket, which can easily be replaced. Learn how to fix a leaking dishwasher with these problem-solving tips.

5 Reasons for a Dishwasher Leaking Water

While part failures could be responsible, dishwasher leaks can also be due to user errors that have a DIY fix. Here’s how to pinpoint the source of a dishwasher leaking water so you can initiate the right response.

1. Dishwasher Leaking from Door

A faulty gasket is a common cause of dishwasher door leaks. The rubber gasket runs along the perimeter of the door or its opening, creating a watertight seal when the door is closed. However, if the gasket is damaged, dirty or loose, it won’t seal properly, resulting in water coming from dishwasher door during wash cycles.

To assess the gasket, open the dishwasher door and feel along it with your hand to check for cracks, holes, or debris. If the gasket is damaged or loose, it must be replaced. However, a buildup of debris can be removed with a damp cloth to restore the gasket’s seal.

water coming from dishwasher door

2. Spray Arm Clogged or Damaged

There are several spray arm issues that could be at play when your dishwasher leaks while running.

Here’s how to assess dishwasher spray arms:

  • Look for clogs: If one of the spray arm holes is clogged, it can cause the other holes to spray with more pressure. This force can cause puddling that results in leaks. To resolve clogs, detach the arm and remove the blockage with a straightened paper clip or pin. Our cleaning tips detail how to clean a dishwasher and its spray arms to prevent clogs and blockages.
  • Check for obstructions: If items in the dishwasher’s racks obstruct the spray arms’ rotation, water will also collect and leak. Before starting a wash cycle, turn the spray arms by hand to make sure they can rotate fully.
  • Assess for damage: Cracks or holes in the spray arm can also result in forceful spraying that causes leaks. If the spray arm is damaged, it requires replacement.

3. Wrong Type or Amount of Detergent

If your dishwasher leaks sometimes, but not always, it could have to do with your choice of detergent and its amount. Using dishwashing soap instead of dishwasher detergent can result in excessive sudsing, causing leaks during wash cycles. Even if you consistently use dishwasher detergent, adding too much can also result in excessive suds and leaks.

To avoid leaking it’s imperative to only use dishwasher detergent, not dishwashing liquid or other cleansers. When adding detergent, refer to the package instructions for the right amount and measure accurately to avoid oversudsing.

How to fix a leaking dishwasher

4. Dishwasher Drain Hose Malfunction

The drain tube carries dirty water from the dishwasher to the sink or disposal. Over time, its connections can loosen, causing leaks from its clamps at the drain, disposal, or dishwasher. The hose can also suffer damage like cracks or holes. Both loose connections and damage can result in a dishwasher leaking underneath.

To assess the hose at its dishwasher connection, remove the lower front kick plate. Examine the hose’s connection at the drain or disposal by looking under the kitchen sink. If there are leaks coming from its connection clamps, the clamps may need to be tightened. However, if the clamps are damaged and leaking or the hose has a crack or hole, the hose must be replaced.

5. Faulty Water Inlet Valve

If the drain hose is functioning and you still notice your dishwasher leaking water underneath, the water inlet valve may be at fault. This valve opens and closes to allow water to flow to the dishwasher from your home supply. If it malfunctions, it may leak from one of its components, causing puddles underneath the dishwasher. 

The water inlet valve is typically located on the water inlet hose in the rear of the dishwasher. If it’s leaking, it can’t be repaired and should be replaced by a professional dishwasher repair service.

The experts at Solar Appliance can stop a dishwasher leaking water with the right fix. Contact us for all your kitchen appliance concerns!

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