Water Coming Into Dishwasher When Off

(Last Updated On: August 2, 2021)

How to fix a dishwasher with water coming into it when turned off? This could be a problem with a few different parts in your dishwasher. Usually a solenoid or other component is not working properly.

Water Coming Into Dishwasher When Off - Dishwasher Fills With Water - How To FixWater Coming Into Dishwasher When Off

Question: Water leaks into dishwasher when OFF. My dishwasher cleans and goes through cycles perfectly. However, after I run a wash cycle and remove all the clean dishes, there is an issue with water in the bottom. When the dishwasher is not in use the bottom of it fills up with water. The water is slowly coming in and filling up the bottom of the dishwasher.

I see a round hole with a tube sticking out on the left side about an inch from the bottom of the dishwasher. I have seen a few drops of water coming from the hole on the left. However, I checked carefully and noticed the water was coming up from the bottom of the dishwasher. First, what is the hole or tube on the bottom left on the inside of the dishwasher? Also, if I see water coming from the bottom of the dishwasher when it is turned off, what can cause my dishwasher to fill up with water? How do I get rid of the standing water in my dishwasher?

Answer: The most common reason a dishwasher has water coming into it when off is:
The dishwasher drain hose is laying flat under the kitchen sink and therefore letting the drain water back into the dishwasher.

This could also be water from the sink going to the dishwasher. There is usually a check valve that goes from your sink to the dishwasher. This is to not allow the water from the sink to get into the dishwasher. This valve may be faulty.
This also may be because the impeller has become worn down from continued use and cannot seal the area which acts similar to a check valve therefore letting drain water back into the dishwasher.

NOTE: Some set-ups are different. You may have a sink with a type of vacuum breaker that comes up with the dishwasher drain hose and is on top of the kitchen sink. If you have this set-up, simply check that the drain hose is in place. Check to be sure the line has no blockage in it. Also check to be sure that the drain hose is not kinked and therefore causing the dishwasher to not drain as this will cause water collecting in bottom of your dishwasher.

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To fix the issue of my dishwasher (backfilling) fills with water when it is not running:
Attach the dishwasher drain hose with a zip-tie or similar up higher (attaching it onto something up behind the sink such as a small wood screw if needed) so no water can backflow into the drain hose and into the dishwasher. This is simply a gravity/siphoning issue. Basically, the drain hose needs to be elevated to stop the backflow of water.

Dishwasher fills with water when not running:
Another thing to check with the dishwasher drain hose is to make sure it is not kinked, clogged or blocked. If it is kinked or clogged the water that needs to drain out of the dishwasher will not be able to fully drain because of the blockage. See image below to understand how the dishwasher drain hose should be positioned…

dishwasher HIGH RISE LOOP to stop water from enteringdishwasher HIGH RISE LOOP to stop water from entering

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To answer your question about what is the small tube or hole on the inside left of the dishwasher:
The small hole you see in the dishwasher on the left side towards the back of the dishwasher is the WATER FILL INLET.
Basically this is where the Cold/Warm/Hot water comes into your dishwasher when running a wash cycle.
If you see a few drips coming out of it, this most likely is just residue water and is not the cause of the leak.
If you see water coming out of it when the dishwasher is not ON, then you have an issue with the water inlet valve.

NOTE: If you find out that it is FRESH WATER leaking into the dishwasher and not DRAIN WATER, then you may have a faulty WATER INLET VALVE or a bad IMPELLER. If you did have fresh water leaking in and you removed and replaced the water inlet valve, checked all the wiring and wire harnesses to be sure they are not damaged and securely connected. The next part to remove and replace would be the main control board. Be sure to thoroughly test all parts before replacing them. The parts you MAY need to replace on your dishwasher are below…

Dishwasher ImpellerDishwasher Impeller

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dishwasher WATER INLET VALVEDishwasher WATER INLET VALVE

 

 

dishwasher main control boardDishwasher Main Control Boards

 

 

Dishwasher drain hoseDishwasher drain hose

 

For more details and other possible reasons a dishwasher can fill with water when not turned ON can be found here.

 


My Dishwasher is Backing Up with Water – Video

 

Note: The methods above to troubleshoot water in the bottom of your dishwasher will work with all appliances including: Amana, Bosch, Electrolux, GE, KitchenAid, Whirlpool and more.

Need help with fixing your dishwasher with a water leak when not turned on? Please leave your comment below and we will help you to troubleshoot the issue.


8 thoughts on “Water Coming Into Dishwasher When Off”

  1. Our Whirlpool DU1148XTPQ6 Dishwasher started leaking water inside the tub (no leak outside the dishwasher) 8 days ago. The float still clicks so I don’t think it’s that. Since the water is clean it’s not backed up water & it’s not coming from the sink. Maybr it’s the water inlet valve (or the solenoid I think is in it), but then abt 5 days after the leak started I noticed a rusty water trail coming down from the Water Inlet Port in the tub’s left vertical wall. Is that just rust from the Inlet Valve being pushed through the wall’s inlet port by the constant slow leak? Many thanks!

  2. I’m perplexed. My dishwasher slowly fills up with water from the sink…despite the HIGH RISE LOOP. I run the dishwasher and it drains everything…but then over the course of using the sink for a few days…sink water slowly fills the bottom of the dishwasher. Help!

  3. I have a Bosch dishwasher. When the dishwasher is not in cycle mode water comes into dishwasher and is dripping onto the HVAC unit downstairs. I cancel drain and it empties but the fills again. I have since shut the hot water off under the sink that leads to the dishwasher but I would like to know how to fix it. I have checked the hose under the sink leading from the disposal and it is NOT kinked. I would like to figure out how to fix it. Thanks

  4. This weekend I assessed under my sink to consider replacing my kitchen, 3-hole faucet. I turned off the hot (one switch) and the cold (2 smaller switches) off so I could assess. I did not go any further because there is a nut that I am not able to reach with my tools. I turned the water back on and this morning I went to run my dishwasher. About 15 minutes in, water started leaking out all over my floor, and it appeared to come from the bottom right of the dishwasher. A LOT of water. I took out all the dishes and let the unit drain. NOW, water continues to slowly leak back into to the bottom of the dishwasher from the small hole on the left side of the dishwasher. The unit is a Kitchenaid (KUDL16FXSSS) — did I screw something up with the water valves or is this a coincidence that I turned the water supply on/off and now having the problem. Please help!

  5. I have had drain water leaking into the bottom of my dishwasher for probably 2 months now. When it gets too high, it trips the anti-flood mechanism in the dishwasher, which renders the dishwasher unusable. It is a dishlex dishwasher, bought in November 2019 so it is only 6-7 months old. I have called the manufacturer, who have sent their technician 3 times already, and he now believes it to be a plumbing issue. The technician replaced the inlet valve already, but it still continued. He also re-positioned the drain hose so that it was up higher. The plumber has also been, who cleared any blockages, and the drains are not blocked, they are running well. He believes it to be a fault with the dishwasher!
    I am now wondering if it could possibly be due to the position of the spigot on the sink trap, where the dishwater drains into? Is it possible that the position of the spigot is too low, and therefore any water that comes from the sink is going into the dishwasher hose? Are there any other possible explanations? Between the two different tradesmen, I cannot get the problem resolved.

    1. For Heather:
      I am currently assessing my son’s whirlpool dishwasher for the same reason.
      I found that there is lime deposits throughout the fill side of the washer due to
      hard water without softener.
      The water inlet valve (aka solenoid valve) is not closing completely due to lime deposits.
      If your water tends to be hard or if you have older piping that may rust; you may have dislodged either by shutting off the water and turning back on.
      I have cleaned all the hoses and am currently attempting to clean the valve by filling with vinegar to clean the lime out. The water lines are all pex, so I don’t suspect rust.
      Time will tell if it works; otherwise I have bookmarked a valve at an appliance parts outlet.
      Hope this helps.

  6. I know water is always on the bottom of the dishwasher. But If I leave, say, on vacation for a month, do I need to add more water to the bottom to prevent it from drying out?

    1. The water that you experience at the bottom of your dishwasher should be only residual amounts that have not been evacuated by the washer at the end of the cycle or what has not evaporated yet.
      There is no need to worry about the bottom drying out for any priming or lubricating reasons whatsoever.

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