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Why is My Dishwasher Backed Up With Water?

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Posted on: May 25, 2017

Have you ever opened up your dishwasher to discover that it’s filled with water that just won’t drain? This is a common problem that can happen to people who have recently had a garbage disposal installed within their sink. When your dishwasher is backed up with water, food blockages and failure to remove plastic plugs are usually to blame.

Food Blockagesgarbage disposal repair

Before you start meddling around with your garbage disposal, check the drain plugs in the dishwasher pan. It’s possible that large pieces of food are clogging up these plugs, preventing water within the dishwasher from draining. Simply clean out the dishwasher of any possible debris and see if the water begins to drain. If the water does not drain, head over to your garbage disposal.

Removing the Plastic Plug

The draining tube from your dishwasher connects into a port on the garbage disposal. New disposals come with a plastic plug within the connecting port that need to be removed before installation. However, they are oftentimes left in by accident and will prevent water from draining out of the dishwasher.

  1. Before doing anything, unplug the garbage disposal (safety first!).
  2. Loosen the clamp that is holding the rubber drainage tube in place and pull it off.
  3. Place your screwdriver into the port and feel for a plastic plug. If you can’t find a plastic plug blocking the entrance of the port, you have a blockage elsewhere and you should call your local plumber. However, if you do find the plastic plug, all you need to do is remove it.
  4. Grab a hammer and lightly hit the back of your screwdriver until the plastic piece pops off. Make sure all of the plastic plug has popped off and not just a single piece of it.
  5. Reach into the disposal via the sink and remove the plastic plug before plugging the disposal back in. Reconnect the drainage tube, turn the garbage disposal and dishwasher back on, and the water should drain from the dishwasher into the garbage disposal!

Fixing a dishwasher that won’t drain is usually an easy fix if it’s been recently connected to a new garbage disposal. If the plumbing connected to the dishwasher or garbage disposal needs repair, contact Len The Plumber. To learn more or to schedule an appointment, give us a call at (800) 950-4619.

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