How Do You Unclog A Portable Dishwasher That Doesn’t Drain?

How Do You Unclog A Portable Dishwasher That Doesn't Drain

Clogged dishwashers can be a nightmare to deal with. It is not easy to unclog a portable dishwasher that doesn’t drain. There are several tools and methods to try to get your dishwasher working again.

We will share with you some of our best and relatively safe methods that we know will work. Many people have been successful in fixing their dishwashers by following some of the methods listed here.

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How to Unclog a Portable Dishwasher – Beginners Guide

How to Unclog a Portable Dishwasher

If your portable dishwasher won’t drain, try these simple steps first.

Before you start unclogging your dishwasher, it is best to make sure that the problem is in fact related to clogged drains. In some cases, the problem is actually an issue with the dishwasher pump itself.

Also, before starting the unclogging process, first, you have to figure out why it isn’t draining. The most common reason that a dishwasher won’t drain is that foreign objects are lodged in the drain holes. You can use a flashlight to look into your dishwasher through these locations and see if there is anything stuck inside.

Sometimes, the problem is as simple as a broken drain line. If the line is broken and kinked, water will not be able to flow through it, and the dishwasher will not drain. The water can’t flow back into the sink, so it stays in your dishwasher until you turn off the water and unclog it.

If you have checked both of the above things and your dishwasher still doesn’t drain, you will have to try one of the following options.

How Do You Unclog a Portable Dishwasher That Doesn’t Drain?

Unclog a Portable Dishwasher That Doesn't Drain

There are several fixes for you to try if your dishwasher doesn’t drain. Here are some solutions to try to unclog your portable dishwasher not draining:

Option 1: Use Sink Plunger

If your dishwasher doesn’t drain, you can use a standard sink plunger to try to unclog it. Sink plungers work well when the clog is in your drain line, but may not work well if there are objects stuck in the drain holes.

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Option 2: Use a Drain Snake

A drain snake will help you to manually remove objects that are stuck in the drain holes. Simply feed the snake into your dishwasher, and if you are lucky, you will be able to snag the object on the end of the snake.

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Option 3: Try Dishwasher Cleaner

If the drain holes are plugged with a slimy build-up or other types of debris, try using a dishwasher cleaner to break it down and dissolve it. This can make the clog easier to remove after you have already unclogged your dishwasher.

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Option 4: Clean or Replace the Drain Basket and Filter

The drain basket is located at the bottom of your dishwasher. If this area gets filled with food particles or other debris, it can create a clog, especially if you use harsh detergents. Simply take out the basket and clean it thoroughly.

Option 5: Remove Blockages on the Spray Arm

If your dishwasher still doesn’t drain, the problem may be in the spray arm. Take off the top of the dishwasher and look at the spray arms. There is usually a plastic cap that covers the holes in the spray arm. Sometimes, the holes will get clogged with food particles or other debris. Remove the caps and clean out any blockages.

If your dishwasher still doesn’t drain after trying one of the above methods, you may have to replace either your drain basket or your pump.

How To Prevent Clogging In Portable Dishwasher?

How To Prevent Clogging In Portable Dishwasher

The best way to avoid clogged drains is to prevent them from happening in the first place. Here are some things you can do to keep your portable dishwasher draining properly and running smoothly:

Don’t overload the dishwasher: You want to be able to get your dishes clean, but if you overload the dishwasher, it can cause problems. Avoid putting too many dishes in the dishwasher at once.

Run your dishwasher on time: Make sure to run your dishwasher regularly. If you don’t use the dishwasher, food and debris will build up in the drain. Running your dishwasher on a regular basis will help to prevent clogs from occurring in the first place.

Use liquid dishwasher soap: Using liquid dishwashing soap will help to keep your dishwasher draining and clean longer than using a powder.

Clean Portable dishwasher after every use: Make sure you clean your dishwasher after every use. If you don’t, debris and soap scum can build up in the drain and cause a clog.


If your dishwasher has clogged, you can fix it on your own. All you have to do is identify the problem, and follow one of the options above to fix it. Doing this will save you money and prevent further problems from occurring in the future.

We hope this article was helpful to you to unclog a portable dishwasher that doesn’t drain.

Thank you for reading!