Why is Whirlpool Dishwasher Not Draining?

Although Whirlpool dishwashers are very much reliable, they are still susceptible to many issues that can cause draining problems. Some problems are easy to fix, while some need professional help. If you have a Whirlpool dishwasher that is not draining properly, then this guide is for you.

Whirlpool dishwashers often face draining issues due to plenty of reasons. There could be only one factor or combination of factors behind draining issues. Read the leading reasons along with their solutions below that causes draining issues in Whirlpool dishwasher.

1. Clogged or Kinked Drain Hose

If your Whirlpool dishwasher is not draining, it could be due to a clogged drain hose. Check the drain hose to see if there is any blockage hindering the way of draining. The drain hose is located behind the dishwasher. You can remove and inspect it easily.

Whirlpool drain hose


Remove the drain hose from the dishwasher after turning off the water and power supply. Check the drain hose if it is clean and free of debris. If you find it clogged, use any pointed object to unclog it. You can also use a long tail scrub brush for thorough cleaning. In the end, rinse it with water and attach it back to the dishwasher.

Another possible cause of blockage in the drain hose is the presence of a kink. If this is the case, you should manually remove any kink present in the drain hose. Thus, you don’t need a plumber for this task, and you can easily remove kinks from the hose. This will resume your dishwasher’s draining process.

2. Blocked Drain Filter

Besides the drain hose, if your Whirlpool dishwasher’s drain filter is clogged, it will not drain. Therefore, you need to check the drain filter thoroughly for clogging due to food particles and other debris.

Whirlpool filter


Turn off the dishwasher and remove its bottom rack. You will reach the filter. Depending upon your dishwasher’s model, it will be near the spray arms at the back corner of the tub. With slight pressure, you can remove the filter quite quickly. After removing the filter, you have to clean it.

Take a bucket of warm soapy water and soak the drain filter in this water. Let it leave for at least 30 minutes, and then scrub it with a toothbrush. Rinse the filter with warm water and place it back to its position. If the drain filter was the problem, it would be resolved by following this method.

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3. Incomplete Wash Cycle

Sometimes the incomplete wash cycle causes draining issues in the dishwasher. If the last cycle is interrupted, then you will face draining issues. Thus, you need to check the settings and wash cycle carefully.


Your Whirlpool dishwasher has a “Clean” indicator light. If this light is illuminated, the last cycle is completed. But, if this light is not illuminated, then it indicates that the last cycle was not completed. In this situation, you have to close the dishwasher’s door properly. Then press the start button to resume the previous cycle. You can also press Cancel if you want to start a new one. Choose from settings which cycle to start.

4. Faulty Drain Pump

The drain pump in a dishwasher helps push the dirty water to the drain hose and then out from the dishwasher. This pump provides the energy for draining dirty water. If the drain pump of your dishwasher is faulty, then your draining system will fail. If this is the case, you need to replace the drain pump.

Whirlpool drain pump


Check the drain pump by running a cycle. If you hear a humming noise, your drain pump needs to be replaced. You can also check its continuity with a multimeter. Touch the multimeter’s probes with drain pump’s connections. If the drain pump is not showing continuity, it should be replaced.

5. Clogged Garbage Disposal

If your Whirlpool dishwasher’s garbage disposal is clogged, it will cause draining issues for the dishwasher. So, a cloggy garbage disposal should be cleaned for better drainage.

Whirlpool garbage disposal


Turn off the dishwasher and access the garbage disposal drain. It is located at the back of the dishwasher or under the sink. Inspect the garbage disposal drain, and if you find food particles and debris accumulated over there, you should clean it. To clean, use water and vinegar to wash away the garbage. Then rinse the disposal drain with cold water for ten seconds.

If you have installed a new disposer and it is not draining, you probably forgot to remove the plug. So, remove the plug installed inside the disposer to continue the draining.

6. Stuck Check Valve

Check valve in the dishwasher allows the water movement in one direction. If it is stuck, then water will not drain from the dishwasher. Check the drain valve or check valve and inspect it to see if any debris or sediments are present inside it.


The check valve is usually located at the outer part of the drain housing. Turn off the dishwasher and remove the bottom panel to access the check valve. Inspect the valve and if you find any debris, then remove it. You can use a toothbrush or scrub brush for thorough cleaning. If you see large obstacles inside the valve, then remove them manually.

If cleaning the check valve doesn’t work, you may need to replace it.

7. Clogged Air Gap

Many dishwashers have an air gap setting. Through air gaps, dishwashers restrict the backflow of dirty water inside them. Any blockage in the air gap hinders the drainage process. That’s why you should check it out thoroughly.


Access a silver cylinder present under your sink. After reaching that cylinder, pull it straight to remove its upper part. Now inspect it and if you find any clogging, clear it. Food residues may stick inside this pipe. So, you have to remove them manually and rinse them with water. After the air gap cleaning, reassemble it.

Final Words…

This guide covers all the possible reasons and solutions for the Whirlpool dishwasher that won’t drain. If your dishwasher doesn’t drain even after trying these methods, you may need professional help. You can ask freely in the comment section if you have any questions.


  • Stephen Powers

    Appliance repair guy from Washington. I am majorly experienced in dishwashers, water filters and refrigerators, AMA on my twitter account.

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