Last Updated on June 15, 2022
What could be more exasperating than a scenario where you load all dirty dishes inside your dishwasher to get them clean? The experience can get even worse when you open the dishwasher to pick the one dish out of it and experience the worst smell coming out of it due to stagnant water inside the clogged dishwasher.
Fortunately, there are some ways to fix this issue. Different materials can clog the dishwasher; all you have to do is remove it accurately.
In this article, we have described all the useful tips, tricks, and methods for you if you don’t know how to unclog your dishwasher.
Safety Tips Before Unclogging A Dishwasher
Before getting involved in the unclogging process, you must consider some safety measures.
- To fix the clogged dishwasher, you must turn off the appliance and remove its plug from the socket.
- To clean a dishwasher, you might need to bend, lean, or try hard to reach out to the inner parts of the dishwasher. So, pick the right place for doing this appropriately without damaging parts of the dishwasher or tangling your hair on the prongs.
Some other important tips are mentioned below:
Identify The Issue
Thoroughly check what is blocking your dishwasher by sticking inside the drain hole. If the problem lies somewhere else, you might need a different solution to solve that particular problem.
Assemble Plumbing Tools
You can do all fixing only if you have all the necessary tools that can be helpful in opening and repairing your dishwasher. Some essential tools you must have are:
- Wire Coat Hanger
Detach Dishwasher from Garbage Disposal
After assembling all the tools, switch off your dishwasher and garbage disposal. Removing the plugs and inserting them back after fixing the faults is better.
Remove the Standing Water
If there is stagnant water present inside the machine, mop it with the help of a towel. Dry the interior completely or put another towel inside to absorb the leftover water.
How to Unclog A Dishwasher: Step-By-Step Guide
If you want your appliances to last longer, you must take care of them. You need to consider it while dealing with your dishwasher. It might deliver the best performance, but its functioning can get interrupted if anything clogs inside the drain hose.
Follow the given steps to unclog your dishwasher.
Clean the Filter Basket
Beneath the dishwasher, you will find a drain hole that releases water outside the machine during cleaning cycles. There is also a filter basket present inside the drain, which acts as a strainer to catch large food chunks and other particles that could be present in your dishes.
If for some reason, the filter basket gets blocked by such items, you should pull out the basket and remove all the debris. Before placing the basket back at its position, rinse it properly.
Use ZipIt Below the Drain
As you have already opened the drain hole, now you can also check for hindrances beneath the dishwasher. To do this job most easily, use the ZipIt tool, which is an almost 20 inches long strip made of plastic with small tines to pick up debris stuck inside the drain.
Try to reach out to the lower region of the drain with ZipIt and be aware of unpleasing sticky objects found there during this process.
Reattach Garbage Disposal & Dishwasher
If, after cleaning the filter basket or detaching parts, the problem still exists, then you might need to check the garbage disposal. Reattach the garbage disposal while turning on cold water flow through it.
Now plug in the disposal and let the water run till all objects lying inside fully drain. If some entity obstructs the smooth running, disconnect the power to look for the object. There could be broken pieces of glass, bone, or coin in it, so be careful while checking this out.
You need to move the garbage disposal blades to remove the stuck items.
Use Vinegar and Hot Water for Cleaning
To melt down obstructions, pour the solution of hot water and white vinegar into the drain to run down towards the garbage disposal. This mixture will help remove any piece of dirt in any area of the dishwasher.
However, using baking soda or rock salt will prove useful in doing the cleaning to unclog your dishwasher.
Clean the Drain Hose
Each dishwasher has a drain hose that runs to the back side and enters inside the T-Connector, which lies below the garbage disposal. The other end of it lies at the bottom of the sink.
You need to remove the dishwasher by pulling it out to get access to its point of origin. Fully inspect the drain hose by disconnecting it from both sides. Wash it properly and break any debris by using a wire hanger specified for unwinding.
Inspect T-Connector Pipe
Sometimes the clog can also be found inside T-Connector. Examine it carefully to find the problem by reaching out the pipe with hands covered with gloves. If you feel any hard item, remove it quickly.
How to Unclog A Dishwasher With Standing Water
To remove the stagnant water, add a cup of vinegar and baking soda to the standing water. Let the mixture remain in the bottom of the dishwasher for at least 20 minutes.
If water will start draining after doing this, rinse the mixture with hot water and then turn on one cycle of your dishwasher for deep cleaning.
Repeat the same process to get things done quickly if you don’t know how to clean your dishwasher with baking soda.
Tips to Avoid Future Cloggings
- Ensure the cleanliness is being maintained on regular basis. Check the system after every cycle to make sure everything is working smoothly.
- Always put your dishes in the dishwasher after putting food particles into the waste can.
- For in-depth cleaning, you should run a hot dishwasher cycle once in a while.
- It is highly recommended to clean your dishwasher every month to avoid limescale buildup to cause future clogging.