Causes of Spotting, Grit, and Film on Dishes from Dishwasher

If you are getting grit on your dishes or are seeing spotting or filming, check the following:

  • Extremely hard water. Try using a rinse agent or get a water softener for your home.
  • Rinse aid dispenser is empty.
    • Use of a rinse aid can improve wash and dry performance by causing the water to sheet off of the dishes inside the dishwasher. This prevents water spots from forming on the glassware and dishware.
    • View a short video about checking and filling the rinse aid dispenser: Play Video
  • Sandy grit left on dishes is from water not being hot enough to dissolve liquid or dry detergent. The water coming into the dishwasher should be a minimum of 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
    • To check the water temperature, run the hot water at the kitchen sink and measure the temperature of the running water with a canning or meat thermometer. Adjust the temperature of the water heater accordingly.
    • To be sure that the dishwasher is filling with the hottest possible water, run the hot water faucet at the kitchen sink prior to operating the dishwasher. Also, avoid running the dishwasher while hot water is being used for other activities
  • Overloading of dishes or improper loading of dishes. Check the dishwasher loading and make sure dishes are loaded properly to ensure that water can reach all of the soiled surfaces in both racks.
    • View a short video about proper loading: Play Video
  • Using incorrect detergent amount. Use only fresh detergent made for use in dishwashers.
    • Soft hot water requires less detergent - perhaps a quarter of a cup in the main cup. Very hard water requires a full main cup and a full open cup to get good wash performance. Conditions between these require judgment. Use enough to get the job done, but don't use more than you need.
  • Poor water pressure. Check the sump area (lowest recessed area in dishwasher basin) inside dishwasher for restriction. This can cause poor water pressure in the spray arm.
  • Check the water inlet for kinks. Dishwashers require 15 to 120 psi and should be installed using 3/8" o.d. copper or 1/2" o.d. plastic water line. Using a water line that is too small will restrict proper water flow into dishwasher.
  • View a short video about white film on dishes: Play Video

If the above suggestions do not resolve the issue, service may be needed. If you would like to schedule a service appointment, please contact GE Appliance Service at 1-800-432-2737 or schedule a service appointment online.