When your dishwasher cleans dishes, it uses hot water. When your dishwasher dries dishes, it uses radiating heating. Even if your dishwasher is connected to the hot water line in your home, it also uses a heating element to heat the water to the exact temperature it needs to be. That heating element also helps produce heat to dry the dishes once the wash is over. However, if your dishes are coming out dirty and cold, it is possible that your dishwasher is no longer heating appropriately. When this happens, do you know what to check?
Temperature too low
The water coming into the dishwasher normally needs to be around 120 degrees for the dishwasher to clean properly and dry properly. This is controlled by the hot water heater in your home.
Sometimes just turning up the water heater can solve the issue but it all depends on the length of pipe that runs to the dishwasher and whether or not changing the temperature is going to affect other faucets in the house.
Drain Filter is Clogged
If you check the drain filter and find it clogged with food scraps, it may also be impeding the dishwasher’s ability to not only drain, but switch cycles. If this is the case, the water may not be heating up because it is not switching to the right cycle. However, a clogged drain also means your dishes aren’t getting properly cleaned either, even if the water is heating.
Faulty Temperature Sensor
If the heating element checked out, you will next want to check the temperature sensor. If this part has gone faulty, it may be reading the water as hot even though it is not. This can leave you with ice-cold or even just lukewarm wash water.
Similar to the temperature sensor, the thermostat also controls how hot the water gets. Faulty thermostats and temperature sensors are often easily confused as they work so closely with each other. This means if one tests good, the other may very well be the problem.