If the water won't drain from the dishwasher, first manually remove as much water as possible and then check the sump area for paper or any other large object. Make sure the door is properly latched. The pump will not drain if the door is not latched properly. Check the belt, drain line, air gap, drain valve and solenoid assembly, the motor, and the pump. If your dishwasher uses a belt to drive the pump, and it has broken or come off the pulley, replace it.
A cup or so of water in the sump area of your dishwasher is normal. It is there to prevent the seals from drying out. The dishwasher will pump this old water out before beginning to wash.
If you have recently installed a garbage disposer in your home, make sure that the drain plug on the disposer has been removed. It's just a little plastic piece that blocks the hole where you hook the dishwasher drain hose. If your dishwasher drains through the garbage disposer, you need to run the garbage disposer before you run the dishwasher to make sure that the drain is clear.
There is a drain hose between the drain valve or pump and the garbage disposal or drain line. If an obstruction has blocked this, then your dishwasher won't drain. The drain hose is connected by clamps to the drain valve and the disposer or drain pipe. Remove it and visually inspect it for a clog or a kink. Try to remove any debris. If it is in good condition, just put it back on, and if not, purchase a new one to install.
If you don't have an air gap in the drain line, at least use a high drain loop. Making a large loop about 18" off the ground with the drain line can prevent any back flow into the dishwasher from the sink.
If you have one, the air gap will be located on top of the sink. The air gap is there to prevent any siphoning of standing water from the sink. When your dishwasher drains, the air gap diaphragm will form a seal and allow the water to drain properly. If the diaphragm in the air gap is faulty, it's possible that water can leak onto the cabinet and into the sink area. When this happens, then the air gap must be replaced.
Like the inlet valve, there is also a drain valve on most models. When no power goes to the drain valve it remains closed and prevents water from leaving the machine. When the valve receives power during the drain cycle, the solenoid opens and allows the water to leave the machine. If your drain hose is attached directly to the pump, you don't have a drain valve. The motor simply reverses and the pump sends the water in the opposite direction, which is out of the machine.
If the motor doesn't turn or work properly, the dishwasher may not drain. Make sure you have power to the unit. If you notice that the motor hums but won't turn, it could be seized, and you probably need to replace it.
Small objects can sometimes get stuck in the pump. When this occurs, you'll need to open the pump and remove any debris buildup. The dishwasher pump is usually mounted directly to the motor and runs off the motor as well. The pump is also attached to the bottom of your dishwasher and pushes the water from the dishwasher.
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