What Causes a Dishwasher to Leak?

The inside of a dishwasher.

One of the most common kitchen appliance problems is a dishwasher leak. You’ll most likely notice the leakage at the door or underneath the washer. If the leakage is serious, you will end up with a constantly wet kitchen floor. Not only does this create extra cleaning work, it can also easily cause one to slip. With a bit of effort, most leaks can be effectively repaired. It helps to know what causes a dishwasher to leak. Below are some of the more common causes of dishwasher leaks.


A dishwasher that is filled with too much water will not drain properly. This will cause some water to force itself out of the washer.

Faulty Door

An open dishwasher.

Drips or water accumulation directly under the door are a sure sign of a faulty door. The door latch may be loose or misaligned. This happens with time due to the frequent mechanical movement. Use a screwdriver to tighten loose screws on the latch. Once well secured, the door should fit properly in place. The door seal may also be loose or damaged. An epoxy patch kit and screwdrivers can be used to correct this. However, if the seal cannot be firmly secured, it is best to replace it. The dishwasher door hinges may also be loose. Adjust loose hinges so that they fit firmly in place. This will prevent water from filtering through the dishwasher.

Hand Dishwashing Liquid

It is a mistake to use hand dishwashing detergent in a dishwasher. If used in the dishwasher, the detergent will cause a lot of foaming leading to leaking. To avoid such leakages, it is best to use detergents specifically meant for dishwashers.

Worn Out Gasket

The gasket is the rubber sealing on the door that prevents water from flowing out. A worn out or damaged gasket will let water out. Should you discover that yours is worn out or damaged, it is best to replace it.

Defective Tub

A man inspects a dishwasher.

Old dishwashers are likely to develop a worn out tub. Detergents and minerals in the water may have caused corrosion of the tub. A hole may also have developed in the tub. Defective tubs cause water to leak from the dishwasher. While some damaged tubs can be repaired, sometimes, it may be best to simply replace the dishwasher if the damage is extensive.

Loose Connections

The water inlet valves and hoses sometimes get loose with time. This allows water to filter through the washer. The drain hose may not be firmly fitted into the dishwasher. The loose connection will allow water to filter through. Inspect all connections to ensure they’re well secured.

Misaligned Dishwasher

If the dishwasher isn’t level, water is bound to leak. Open your dishwasher and place a level inside on the bottom. This will ascertain whether it is level or misaligned. If not level, you will need to use screwdrivers to remove the service panel. Pull out the dishwasher and make the necessary adjustments. Fit back the dishwasher and screw the fittings.