So this is really baffling... Our GE Profile dishwasher is having an issue with dirty water backing into it while it's off. We've had the dishwasher for years with no issues, it just recently started doing this. And the water is really gross. High drain loop is correct (and always has been with no issues). We figured a check valve somewhere in the pump must have gone bad, and the water is somehow siphoning or backing up from the kitchen sink? (We have no disposal FYI). So we added a secondary check valve in the drain line, thinking that would surely solve the problem (as opposed to trying to replace or fix an interior one in the pump?). This worked for a day or so, but alas the problem has returned. Totally baffled how drain water can be backing into the dishwasher with the new check valve in place. And high loop in drain line. Driving us crazy. Any ideas???

  • Where in the line did you put the check valve? Is it close to the dishwasher or the drain? It sounds like it is leaking by from a food clogg.
    – ArchonOSX
    Apr 17 '18 at 16:28
  • Close to the dishwasher. And we always rinse (basically hand wash) dishes before using dishwasher so I'm leaning against food clog.
    – TerryT
    Apr 17 '18 at 23:05

Fill kitchen sink with water and drain it while observing high drain loop if it is translucent. Or disconnect drain hose from Dw and drain sink . If no water travels to the dishwasher the issue is with dw not getting rid of waste water correctly.

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If water is traveling from sink to dish washer there may be a change in how your sink is draining like a partial blockage in drain line or an obstruction in plumbing vent.

Edit Since you commented that you tried the experiment above but saw no water in dishwasher and sink drains well the only other thing I can think of is perhaps it is filling with fresh water. A faulty inlet valve could cause this. Even fresh water will get gross if it sets in the bottom with the traces of bacteria laden gunk in the strainer etc... Try turning supply off for a week to test this theory.


  • Thanks for the feedback. Filled both kitchen sinks and drained at the same time. So far, no water in the dishwasher. It seems to take a couple days for the water to accumulate. The dishwasher drains completely at the end of the cycle. Since we don't run it every day, after a couple of days the gross water accumulates in the bottom of the dishwasher. The longer we go without using it, the more water accumulates. Just don't understand how it's getting back in the dishwasher with the high loop and the check valve in place.
    – TerryT
    Apr 17 '18 at 23:08
  • 1
    @TerryT Just a thought but turn water supply off to dw and eliminate the possibility that there is a slow drizzle coming in that way.
    – Kris
    Apr 18 '18 at 0:14
  • Good thought, I’ll test that out and see what happens. Thanks for the suggestion!
    – TerryT
    Apr 18 '18 at 17:55

Sounds like the inlet valve is leaking and admitting water slowly.

Seems like cleaning the filters and the sump is warranted to keep the water from getting foul.

Can also run a drain cycle as needed, until the inlet valve is replaced.

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