Viking Dishwasher Not Cleaning Dishes? Follow These Tips


Though the Viking name isn’t usually associated with underperformance, its dishwashers can be prone to the same cleaning woes as other brands. Wondering why is my Viking dishwasher not cleaning dishes? The filter, spray arms, and tub may need a thorough cleaning. Follow these Viking dishwasher troubleshooting tips for cleaner dishes every time.

Diagnosing a Viking Dishwasher Not Cleaning Dishes

While a part malfunction is possible, a Viking dishwasher not cleaning dishes also occurs with user error or a lack of maintenance. From improper loading to an insufficient water supply, here’s how to diagnose and resolve poor cleaning performance.

1. Dishes Are Overcrowded

If your Viking dishwasher leaves food particles on dishes it may be overcrowded with too many items. Overcrowding can prevent water and detergent from reaching every item, especially if they nest or overlap. Anything that hangs or protrudes beyond the dishrack can also stop the spray arms from fully rotating, leaving some dishes dirty.

Here’s how to load dishes properly for cleaner results:

  • Bottom rack: Face dishes inward, toward the spray arms, loading only one dish per slot. Place taller items, like serving trays, around the rack’s perimeter to avoid blocking the spray arms.
  • Top rack: Place bowls and glasses upside down and at an angle, leaving adequate space between each for water and detergent.
  • Silverware basket: Avoid nesting by alternating forks, spoons, and knives next to each other.

viking dishwasher not cleaning dishes

2. Dishwasher Needs Cleaning

Lingering food particles, detergent residue, and even mildew can all be reasons your Viking dishwasher leaves dishes dirty. Even though it’s exposed to water and detergent with each use, a dishwasher still requires regular cleanings to keep these byproducts at bay.

Follow these tips to clean a Viking dishwasher filter, spray arms, and tub:

  • Filter: Remove both the coarse and fine filters. Soak both components in a 50/50 solution of white vinegar and water overnight. Rinse under warm running water, removing any stubborn particles with a soft brush before replacing.
  • Spray arms: Remove the top and bottom spray arms and rinse under warm, running water. Soak in a 50/50 solution of vinegar and water for 2 hours to remove lingering stains. Unclog spray arm holes with a thin piece of wire before replacing. Repeat on a monthly basis.
  • Tub: Pour 3 cups white vinegar in the base of an empty dishwasher and run the longest wash cycle with hot water. Repeat on a monthly basis to prevent mold and mildew.

viking dishwasher troubleshooting

3. Insufficient Dishwasher Water Supply

A dishwasher not only requires reliable water access but an adequate amount of water pressure and heat as well. If your Viking dishwasher leaves white residue on dishes, an insufficient water supply may be at fault.

These issues can affect your dishwasher’s water supply, leaving dishes dirty:

  • Water temperature is too low: If your dishwasher leaves dishes wet as well as dirty, check your water heater’s temperature. It should be set to 120℉ to effectively clean and evaporate for dryer dishes. Before starting the dishwasher, always run the kitchen sink’s hot water to ensure that it’s available at the start of a wash cycle.
  • Inadequate water pressure: Is the water pressure in your kitchen sink not as strong as it should be? The same low pressure may be affecting your dishwasher’s performance. If you suspect low water pressure, consult a professional to evaluate the problem.
  • Part malfunction: A defective water inlet valve can limit your dishwasher’s access to water, while a broken spray arm won’t provide an adequate amount for cleaning. If either of these parts is faulty, they need to be replaced.

4. Dishwasher Detergent Dispenser Malfunction

The detergent dispenser opens electronically to release detergent at a specific point in the wash cycle. If the dispenser opens partially or not at all, you’ll find your Viking dishwasher not cleaning dishes sufficiently. A dispenser malfunction should be assessed by a professional Viking repair service.

5. Dishwasher Leaves Water Marks

Have you ever pulled your dish out of the dishwasher only to find it covered in water marks? Luckily, there are a few things you can do to prevent it from happening. 

First, make sure that your dishwasher is properly leveled. If it’s not, the water will pool in one spot and cause those pesky water marks. Second, use a dishwasher rinse aid. This will help to disperse the water so that it doesn’t puddle on your dishes. Finally, don’t overcrowd your dishwasher. If there is too many dishes in a wash load, the water won’t be able to circulate properly and you’ll again be left with water marks.

Your dishwasher also requires quality detergent for optimal cleaning. Consult your Viking dishwasher manual for brand-specific detergent recommendations. If your home has hard water, cleaning performance can be improved with a detergent specially formulated for this issue. 

The technicians at Appliance Service Station can handle any dishwasher repair. Call us to fix a Viking dishwasher not cleaning dishes or for any Viking appliance repair.

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