Dishwashers are the ultimate convenience tool. Nothing is more exhausting than having to wash and dry dishes after you’ve just finished cooking and eating when all you want to do is relax.
The dishwasher not only washes the dishes thoroughly for you, but most models will dry them for you too! The only work involved is loading and unloading them.
But Samsung dishwashers will sometimes have a problem when they suddenly stop drying the dishes, meaning you have to finish drying them by hand!
This defeats the whole purpose of using a dishwasher. So in this article, we will cover why your Samsung dishwasher is doing this and how to fix it.
Why is your Samsung dishwasher not drying?
This problem’s real challenge comes from identifying the root cause. The method by which dishwashers dry the dishes can vary from model to model, making it challenging to figure out what’s causing the issue.
Some dishwashers use a heating coil that passively heats the air in the dishwasher, causing the water to evaporate. Others use a fan that circulates air around the dishwasher, increasing its drying speed.
In particular, Samsung often uses a ‘condensing dry technology.’ This is where really hot water is used, which will evaporate off the dishes extremely fast; then, as the steam cools, it will form droplets on the stainless steel walls instead of cooling on the dishes—essentially transferring the water from the dishes to the dishwasher walls where it can easily drain away.
Here’s a rundown of the common causes of this problem:
1. The dishes haven’t been loaded properly
Some people may not realize there is a right way and a wrong way to load a dishwasher. This is because of the way it washes. A dishwasher uses pressurized water that shoots up little nozzles laid out across a ‘spray arm’ located at the bottom of the dishwasher.
This means that any dish not directly in the path of the spraying water won’t get properly cleaned.
So not only do we need to be mindful of how we stack dishes to achieve the best clean possible, but we also need to stack them in a way in which they can dry properly.
2. Unload the dishes correctly
If you don’t realize you’re doing this, you’ll be left thinking there’s something more serious wrong with the dishwasher when it’s just a simple user error.
No matter how good the dishwasher is, there will inevitably be a small amount of pooling here or there. Things like the base of a wineglass or a plate touching the rack might drop a few droplets onto the object below it as you pull it out.
This gives the perception of the dishwasher having some fault as some dishes are still wet when it’s just naturally pooling and dripping onto already dry dishes due to careless unloading.
3. The water is not hot enough
A key component in how effectively a dishwasher can dry dishes is how hot the water is, doubly so if it’s using condensing dry technology, as that relies solely on the heat of the water.
When the water is too cold, it won’t be able to evaporate very quickly.
Some dishwashers have their internal heating element, which will introduce additional heat into the water, but many rely on the heat from the hot water line. If the hot water supply to your home isn’t adequate, then it will not be able to dry dishes effectively.
The hotter the water, the dryer the dishes will be.
4. Extra drying features have been disabled
These days we often have a plethora of extra features built into our dishwashers to assist with and increase the drying capabilities of the dishwasher.
If you are unsatisfied with how dry your dishes are, you can enable a few unique drying options.
Of course, not every dishwasher has these options, but it’s worth checking the dishwasher manual to see if there is anything else you can turn on.
5. A rinse aid is needed
Samsung highly suggests you use a rinse aid to assist in drying your dishes.
Water tends to stick and cling onto dishes through a principle called surface tension. A rinse aid is designed to decrease that surface tension between the plate and the water, meaning it’s far easier to make it evaporate, condense or drop off the plate and drain away.
So often, if you are not happy with the drying capability of your dishwasher, a rinse aid may be just the thing you need to get the dishes dry.
6. The dishwasher door needs to be opened
As much as we like dishwashers to be a hands-off experience, it’s common for people to crack the door slightly after a cycle has finished to let some air circulate and assist in evaporation.
While not mandatory, if your dishwasher’s not drying correctly, this can help increase its drying capability.
7. An error has occurred
Modern dishwashers can be complicated machines that use microchips and computer software to manage the operation of a wash cycle. So when something goes wrong, and a wash cycle did not fully complete, it will often provide you with an error code to help you ascertain where the problem lies.
Most modern dishwashers will have a display panel that will tell you the code directly, while older dishwashers may have blinking LED lights which you will need to marry up with an error code using the dishwasher’s user manual.
It’s common for a plate or bowl to move or fall over due to the high-pressure water from the spray arm. Sometimes this can bang into the door of the whirlpool dishwasher, which fools it into thinking you’ve tried to open the door.
This will then prompt the dishwasher to stop the cycle prematurely. So by fixing the error, we can restore functionality to the dishwasher.
How to fix a Samsung dishwasher not drying
Now that we have a better understanding of what causes your dishwasher to not dry dishes well let’s look at how to solve this problem so you can have your dishwasher performing optimally as soon as possible.
1. Load the dishes correctly
As we discussed, there is a right and a wrong way to load a dishwasher. Follow these tips to ensure your dishes stand the best possible chance of drying off well:
- Avoiding jamming too many dishes into the dishwasher as it will restrict the airflow and dramatically decrease drying effectiveness.
- All cups and bowls should be placed face down so gravity can help drain the water. Otherwise, it will pool in them and never drain away.
- Ensure you utilize the bottom tray dish rack even when stacked upside down. Most plates/dishes will still collect water on the upper side. So the dish rack usually angles them perfectly so all the water will drain away.
- When placing silverware in the dishwasher, try to avoid ‘nesting.’ Nesting means that the silverware slots into each other (like a spoon fitting against another spoon) so much restricts airflow.
2. Be mindful of how you unload the dishes
As you unload the dishwasher, pay attention to any pooling and unload the dishes, so excess water doesn’t drop onto an already dry dish. This can remove any confusion about whether the dishwasher is working well.
3. Ensure the water is hot enough
Samsung recommends that the hot water supply to the dishwasher should be set between 120 – 149 degrees F. You can test your home’s water using a thermometer, and if you find it too cold, you may want to consider increasing it to assist in the operation of the dishwasher.
4. Enable additional drying features
We recommend consulting your dishwasher manual to see if you have any of the following features. Turning them on will dramatically increase the effectiveness of your dishwasher.
- Dry+: Hot water often costs money, so blasting the hottest water for the entire cycle is inefficient. It’s only near the end of the wash cycle that we need the water scalding hot to ensure it evaporates as much as possible, and that’s exactly what this option does. It increases the temperature of the final rinse to help everything dry that much better.
- Heated dry: Some dishwashers have an additional heating coil that can assist in warming up the internal air within the dishwasher, thus increasing the speed that the water evaporates.
- High-Temp wash: Perhaps a little unnecessary, but a high-temp wash increases the water temperature for the entire wash duration. This is meant to help combat tough, stuck-on food and grease. But as a byproduct, it also makes the air within the whirlpool dishwasher that much hotter and ends up passively increasing its drying capability.
5. Add a rinse aid
If you aren’t using one already, now is an excellent time to start! And if you are already using a rinse aid, then Samsung suggests using even more!
The amount of rinse aid you use in a wash cycle should be proportional to the number of dishes being washed. So if you have a lot of dishes you’re trying to wash, you should use a lot more rinse aid.
6. Crack the dishwasher door after a cycle
Sometimes the most straightforward solutions are the most effective. Once a wash cycle is complete, crack the door slightly so air can circulate the dishes.
Many newer models of dishwashers have a function that automatically unlocks the dishwasher door once the wash cycle has finished.
If you believe your dishwasher has this feature but notice the door doesn’t open by itself, you may have a problem with your door latch, which you should inspect and fix to restore functionality to the auto-release feature.
7. Fix any error codes
Consult your dishwasher’s manual to see if any error codes are present.
If it’s encountered an error mid-wash, sometimes a simple restart of the machine or opening and closing the door again can act as a soft reset allowing it to pick up the cycle where it left off.