Top 5 Reasons For a Dishwasher Clog & How to Fix It

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Reasons For a Dishwasher Clog & How to Fix It

Have you noticed that your dishwasher isn’t draining as well as it used to? Or maybe it’s making weird noises? If this is the case then you may have a dishwasher clog. These clogs can definitely affect the function of your dishwasher. Having an improperly functioning dishwasher can be frustrating. 


Continue reading for five reasons why you may have a dishwasher clog and how to fix it. 


To schedule a plumbing appointment now, give Dial One Johnson Plumbing, Cooling and Heating a call at (469) 518-2809.  

Signs Your Dishwasher May Be Clogged

Dishwashers can have a few different, common issues. Before you call a clog in, be sure to have checked for common signs. Take a look:


  • Gurgling noise: hearing a gurgling noise come from your dishwasher means that there is air trapped from the clog. Just as if you heard gurgling coming from the toilet, gurgling from the dishwasher is a sure sign there is a clog somewhere. 
  • Water back ups: if you run your dishwasher and water starts to back up through your sink, then you most likely have a clog. Because the water is trying to drain with no where to go, it goes through the path of least resistance, which is back up. Not all dishwashers are connected to the sink so this may not happen to yours. 
  • Water pooling: if after you run the dishwasher you notice water pooling at the bottom, then you may have a clog. This happens because the water cannot drain as quickly with a clog. 
  • Dirty dishes: unclean dishes after a full wash run could mean that your dishwasher isn’t properly functioning. A clog is only one reason why this could be happening so be sure to call a plumber. 


If you notice one of these, or more, occurring in your dishwasher then you may want to read on and call for plumbing repair

Reasons for a Dishwasher Clog

Understanding why you may have a dishwasher clog will help you to figure out if you can fix the problem on your own or if you need a plumber to help. Here are five reasons for a dishwasher clog:

1. Clogged Filter

All dishwashers contain filters that are meant to collect food, waste and other debris that gets cleaned off from your dishes. These filters help to protect your dishwasher from getting frequently clogged. If the filter becomes clogged then water may be slow draining or may not be draining at all. 


It is recommended that you clean out your filter every three to six months. You can continue reusing the same filter until it is damaged. Once it becomes damaged you can purchase a new one and replacement. 

2. Drain Hose Issues

All dishwashers use a drain hose to drain the water. As water drains over time the drain hose can accumulate residue along the hose. Eventually, this buildup may cause the dishwasher to drain slowly or not at all. You can flush out a drain hose yourself through a few different ways. However, you should never use a chemical drain cleaner to remove the residue from the hose. 

3. Clogged Pipes

If the water pipes in your home are clogged, then you dishwasher may not drain. This is especially true if the clog is near to the appliance. It can be difficult to detect clogs that are in piping by yourself, so you may want to call a plumber for this issue. 


If you are also having draining issues with your kitchen sink and other bathroom and kitchen plumbing fixtures then you may have a bigger issue on your hands. If this is the case then you need to call a plumber to locate the clog and remove it. 

4. Sewer Line Damage

Your dishwasher piping eventually leads to your sewer line. If the sewer line is damaged by a clog, tree root infiltration, corrosion or other issue then it could cause problems for your dishwasher. 


You may notice sewer line damage if you smell sewage coming from your drains or you notice brown puddles and lush patches of grass in your backyard. Sewer line damage needs to be taken care of right away so that it does not cause health problems. 

5. New Garbage Disposal

Often when homeowners get a new garbage disposal installed, the knockout plug is not removed. The knockout plug allows water to drain through the garbage disposal. All you have to do to fix this issue is remove the knockout plug. You can find tutorials to remove the knockout plug online. If you are not comfortable doing this then you can always call a plumber. 

How to Fix a Dishwasher Clog

If you are unsure as to why you may have a dishwasher clog and how to fix the exact problem you may be encountering, follow these steps:


  1. Turn on your garbage disposal. Doing this can help to release trapped air that may be keeping your dishwasher from draining.
  2. Open your dishwasher and look for blockages. Sometimes a piece of food may fall into where the water drains. Removing these kinds of blockages can help get your dishwasher back to normal.
  3. Clean the filter. Dishwashers contain filter cartridges that need to be cleaned every three to six months. All you have to do is run it under water and gently brush it with a sponge. If the filter looks old and worn you may want to replace it. 
  4. Take a look at the drain hose. Sometimes if drain hoses develop kinks they can keep the dishwasher from draining properly. Be sure to straighten it out.
  5. Check the drain valve. At the bottom of the dishwasher you should have a drain valve. This valve should easily give when you push on it. If it seems to be stuck then you should call a plumber.
  6. Wash out the drain basket. This basket often becomes full of food waste. Cleaning it out will help to keep your dishwasher in excellent condition.


If you are still encountering issues after following these steps then you should call a plumber. 

Reliable Red Oak Plumbing Services

For high quality Red Oak plumbing services, you need Dial One Johnson Plumbing Cooling and Heating. Specializing in all kinds of HVAC and plumbing services, our team is highly trained and qualified. We provide maintenance, repairs, installations and replacements for heating, cooling and plumbing equipment. From clogged dishwashers to faulty air conditioners, we have got your back.


Call Dial One Johnson Plumbing, Cooling and Heating at (469) 518-2809 to schedule an appointment in Red Oak, Texas. 


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