How to Fix Standing Water in a Dishwasher

standing water in dishwasher

A dishwasher is a time-saving appliance that takes most of the work out of post-meal cleanup. However, as with any appliance, it can develop a problem that will need your attention. One of the most common problems that occur is standing water in the dishwasher.

Standing water should never be in the dishwasher once the wash cycle is complete. This is because when the wash cycle is finished, the dirty water should be pumped out and drained.

Why Is There Standing Water in My Dishwasher?

The most common reason for standing water in the dishwasher is a clogged dishwasher drainage basket.

The good news is that with a few easy steps you can remedy this issue on your own! Before scheduling service with a professional, follow this step-by-step guide:

How to Fix Standing Water In a Dishwasher

Before you begin, you will need to have a few materials on hand. Here are the items you will need:


  • Towels
  • Large cup or plastic container
  • Sponge
  • Wire hanger
  • Screwdriver


Step 1. Power off the system. Safety comes first! Before you begin working on the dishwasher, turn off the power to prevent electric shock. Unplug your dishwasher or go to your electrical panel to switch off the circuit breaker.

Step 2. Remove the standing water. Now you need to get the standing water out. Put the towels on the floor under the dishwasher. Use a large cup to scoop out the standing water and pour it into your sink. Once the water becomes too shallow to scoop, soak up the rest with a towel.

Step 3. Check for debris in the drainage system. Inspect the dishwasher drain and clean the drain basket, unclogging any debris you see with a wire hanger.

Step 4. Clean the dishwasher pump. Sometimes debris can get stuck in the pump impellers, preventing them from turning which results in standing water. Remove any debris you discover that could be blocking the impellers.

Step 5. Remove and clean the sprayer arms. The sprayer arms are located at the bottom of your dishwasher. Gently remove them. Check the holes and clean out any debris with the wire hanger.

Step 6. Clean the dishwasher filter. Remove the dishwasher filter with a screwdriver. Rinse off the screen and wipe the surrounding area with a damp sponge. Replace the screen and the sprayer arms.

Step 7. Run a complete cycle. Turn the power back on and run a complete cycle. When the cycle is finished, check for standing water. If there is still standing water, there might be a clog somewhere deeper in your plumbing that connects your dishwasher to the primary drain in the kitchen.

Step 8. Schedule service. If you’ve followed the preceding steps but the standing water persists, your dishwasher needs to be serviced by a local plumber.

Contact Climate Design for Plumbing Repair Service in Clearwater, FL

If you have standing water in your dishwasher and you need service now, our team wants to help. At Climate Design, we offer comprehensive plumbing services to the Tampa Bay area and beyond. With the top service technicians in the area, we’re ready to help put an end to your plumbing woes.

Contact us today for all of your plumbing, HVAC and electrical needs in the Tampa area!

Call (888) 572-7245 to Schedule Your Appointment