Whirlpool Dishwasher Not Drying Dishes? 5 Ways To Fix It

We can all agree that whoever invented the dishwasher deserves an award for savings us hours of hard labor.

However, another thing many dishwasher users could agree on is that there’s nothing more frustrating than a dishwasher leaving wet dishes after a drying cycle.

If this tends to happen with your Whirlpool dishwasher – worry not, as we’re about to explore the best options for fixing your dishwasher.

We will also discuss the possible issues that may have led to this problem, so stay tuned to learn more!

Why is your Whirlpool dishwasher not drying dishes?

As you already know, your dishwashing machine should wash the dishes and dry them. However, if the dishes remain wet after every drying cycle, there is something wrong with your Whirlpool dishwasher.

You didn’t load the dishwasher properly

Many dishwasher users don’t know that there are specific rules for loading the dishwasher and correctly positioning the dishes.

Often, if you tend to add too many dishes into the washer, not only could they remain dirty, but the dishwasher could also fail to dry them properly.

This often happens if you ignore the racks and pile up the dishes. This way, the water won’t be able to reach each dish, as well as the hot air that is supposed to dry them.

You’re not unloading the dishwasher in the correct order

Not only are there rules for loading the dishwasher, but there are also recommendations for unloading it correctly.

If you’ve decided to unload the top rack first, any remaining water from the dishes in this rack could end up on the dishes positioned on the bottom rack, leaving them wet.


Are the dishes in your Whirlpool dishwasher wet or just steamy? The moist air in the dishwasher could leave the dishes steamy and slightly damp due to the condensation.

However, the problem isn’t in the condensation if the dishes are dripping wet.

You’re not using a rinse aid

If you’re unfamiliar with the term, rinse aid is an essential liquid added to your Whirlpool dishwasher to promote and accelerate the drying process and aid the remaining water in dripping off the dishes.

While many modern dishwashers don’t require a rinse aid, your Whirpool dishwasher might need it to dry the dishes properly.

Heated dry setting is disabled

A heated dry setting of your Whirlpool dishwasher is one of the best methods you can use to ensure that your dishes end up entirely dry.

This method utilizes a heating element assembly, a fan, and a vent to distribute hot air throughout the washer evenly, leaving every single dish on the rack completely dry.

Depending on the Whirlpool dishwasher model, this setting may be automatically selected, or you may have to adjust it manually.

How to fix a Whirlpool dishwasher not drying dishes

As you can see, most of the drying problems aren’t as complex as you initially suspected, and they don’t require any professional service.

However, suppose you notice a malfunctioning or damaged element in your Whirlpool dishwasher. In that case, it is necessary to contact washer repair experts – especially regarding a faulty heating element or another vital component.

Let’s look at some of the most effective dishwasher repair methods if you’re having trouble with the drying cycle of your Whirlpool dishwasher.

1. Load the dishwasher properly

Even if you’ve had your Whirlpool dishwasher for a while now, you may not be familiar with the optimal loading method so that every single dish is adequately washed and dried.

First and foremost, it is essential not to overload the dishwasher. Not only will this interfere with the washing and the drying process, but it could also damage the dishwasher.

The best way to load your dishwasher optimally is to assign each rack to a specific category of dishes.

For instance, the top rack is usually reserved for your mugs, glasses, cups, and bowls, and it is also essential to position them upside down, so both the water and the air can reach them.

As you already know, the silverware basket is specifically designed for your forks, knives, and spoons. In case you place them onto the racks, they could fall off under the pressure of water and even get stuck in the mechanism.

Finally, the bottom rack is designed for all your dishes, cookware, and plates. Follow the rack design and avoid placing dishes too close to each other and overloading the rack.

If the dishes are stuck together, there won’t be enough room for the water and the air to pass, and you may be left with dirty, wet dishes.

2. Unload the dishwasher properly

Is there even such a thing as unloading the dishwasher correctly? Yes, because the accumulated water from the top rack could end up all over your plates, dishes, and silverware on the bottom rack.

That being said, take a mental note and unload your Whirlpool dishwasher starting from the bottom. Take the silverware out of the basket first, then move on to the bottom rack and unload it before reaching for the items on the top rack.

This way, even if water accumulates on the top rack, you can easily wipe it with a cloth and not have it splatter all over your dry dishes.

3. Check if the dishes are dripping wet or just steamy

If the dishes come out of your Whirlpool dishwasher dripping wet, there is something wrong with the mechanism of the washer.

However, a little condensation on your dishes isn’t as alarming, but we understand it can still be frustrating if you want your dishes to come out completely dry.

If this is the case, you may choose to add a rinse aid – as long as your specific model of the Whirlpool dishwasher supports it.

4. Start using a rinse aid

Is rinse aid an essential product you must have in your kitchen? We wouldn’t say so, as long as you are satisfied with the level of dryness your dishwasher provides.

However, if you prefer the dishes to be completely dry, your Whirlpool dishwasher may require some help, and adding a rinse aid is the easiest way to achieve this.

The first step will be to check if there is a rinse aid dispenser, which should be located near the detergent dispenser. You may also consult the user manual that came with the dishwasher for more detailed instructions.

Depending on the dishwasher model and the size of the rinse aid dispenser, the amount of the rinse aid could be enough for multiple washes, or you may have to refill it before each wash.

5. Enable the heated dry setting

The heated dry setting uses a powerful drying mechanism that distributes hot air throughout the washer, drying the dishes on both racks and preventing a high level of condensation.

Depending on the Whirlpool dishwasher model, this setting may be activated automatically, or you may need to select it manually on your dishwasher control board.

However, all the elements must work adequately for this system to work. If the heated dry setting still leaves your dishes wet, you could be dealing with a faulty heating element, vent, or vent fan motor.

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