Question about Kenmore 24 in. 16309 Built-in Dishwasher

6 Answers

Kenmore Dishwasher leaving SAND behind

Hello all, Kenmore mdl 16309 Dishwasher My Dishwasher is about 1 yr old. It used to work perfectly, but now it is like the dirt particles are not draining out with the water. I have a collection of sand like particles in the small pool of water at the top of the glasses when they are on the top rack. If I wash glasses on the lower rack, they are fine. Basically most anything I wash in the top rack have these sand particles on it when it is done. How can I fix this? Is there a filter that I can clean?

Posted by on

6 Answers

  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.


    An expert that has over 10 points.


    An expert whose answer got voted for 2 times.

  • Contributor
  • 1 Answer
Re: Kenmore Dishwasher leaving SAND behind

1. Remove the top rack and lower rack.
2. Remove the lower spray arm by holding the top of the center hub and rotating spray arm counter clockwise.
3. Remove water tube feed from the back wall of the dishwasher by unclipping at top and back. Pull towards you and lift tab at the bottom on the big tube to remove the plastic clip from main water feed.
4. Remove the main water tube by turning quarter turn clockwise, then lift off. Keep the center hub from falling out so you don't lose the plastic washer.
5. Using a star tip screw driver; remove the four screws and lift off the filter cap assembly. The assembly consists of the screen filter and the food trap grate (The outer edges look gear like).
6. Look down inside this area and clean out anything foreign. usually there will be seeds, paper, and other gook. I used tweezers, toothpicks, and needlenose pliers. I remove from my dishwaser quite a bit of paper, two wooden match sticks, lots of undissolved soap etc.
7. When you have removed as much as you can, put everything back together in the order you removed it.
8. When you run the next cycle, you should immediatly hear more noise to indicate that you have cleared the pathway that allows water to flow at its intended pressure.

Posted on Nov 13, 2008

  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.


    An expert whose answer got voted for 2 times.

  • Contributor
  • 2 Answers
Re: Kenmore Dishwasher leaving SAND behind

I think I know the problem. I have the EXACT same problem. Only on the top rack. For me, it was because the top-rack sprayer was not spinning freely. I used a screwdriver to unscrew the screw (it's reverse threaded!) and checked for stuck stuck food BUT the plastic washer which allows it to spin freely was cracked, causing friction. If the top rack sprayer doesn't spin freely, you are basically spraying less frequently with each pass, and like a paint sprayer you're depositing food particles inside your top-rack dishes.

Posted on Sep 10, 2008

  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.


    An expert that got 5 achievements.


    An expert whose answer got voted for 20 times.


    An expert who has answered 20 questions.

  • Contributor
  • 30 Answers
Re: Kenmore Dishwasher leaving SAND behind

Several things can cause this problem: Detergent - Old, clumped or poor quality detergent can cause this by not completely dissolving. Make sure you're using a high quality detergent, and that it is stored in a cool dry place (ie, not under the sink!). Also don't purchase large quantities at once - A good rule of thumb is to purchase about a month's supply at a time. Water temperature - Without proper hot water temperature, detergent will not be dissolved or will not be activated, thus food soils won't be properly removed. Water heating dishwashers require a minimum of 120 degree F inlet water, and non water heating dishwashers require a minimum of 120 degree F inlet water. Run the hot water before starting the dishwasher, in order to clear the line of cold water. Degree of water hardness - the proper amount of detergent should be based on water hardness. A general rule of thumb is one teaspoon of detergent per gpg of water hardness (with a minimum of 3 teaspoons). If water is too hard (15 gpg og higher), a mechanical water softener may be required. Loading - Glasses should not be placed over the tines. Pots, pans, dishes and bowls should be carefully loaded so as not to cover the center spray tower. Items should not protrude through the rack where they could block the wash arms. Soiled surfaces need to face the center. Water level - After filling, the water level should be about even with the heating element in the bottom of the dishwasher. If it isn't - - check for low water pressure - Be sure the dishwasher is level. - Avoid other hot water usage activities while using the dishwasher. - Ensure that the drain hose is at the correct height. If it is too low, the water may be draining out during the wash. Mechanical - if none of the above helps, there may be a mechanical problem - call a repairman.

Posted on Apr 09, 2006

  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.

  • Contributor
  • 1 Answer
Re: Kenmore Dishwasher leaving SAND behind

Eat your dishwasher, worked for me.

Posted on Feb 08, 2013

Re: Kenmore Dishwasher leaving SAND behind

Also if your dishwasher is equiped with an air gap, it could be the air gap is clogged with debris, or else where along the discharge tube. I had our counter replaced and the contractor dropped bits of ground down counter into it with out me knowing and it clogged on the first use. I popped the cap of the air gap and it was full of junk. I used a screw driver to clear it, but had to actually run the dishwasher on a drain cycle with the discharge hose removed from the airgap and dumped it and the other debris into a 5 gallon bucket.( Just make sure you have one big enough or can shut off the drain cycle:) )

Posted on Jun 25, 2007

  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.

  • Contributor
  • 1 Answer
Re: Kenmore Dishwasher leaving SAND behind

Hi, I have a Kenmore 665 experiencing the same problem for which I still don't have a solution. The generic solution which has been posted (and also included in the troubleshooting section of the manual) didn't work for me. However, I would like to share a solution for the following similar problem: Food particles remained on all the dishes of the top rack, especially inside the cups and glasses. After investigation, I found out that the manifold that connects to the water feed tube was loose. The water was then leaking and caused the water pressure that goes out from the sprayarm very low. This is what caused the upper rack dishes to not be washed properly. I only had to readjust the manifold and BINGO. Thanks everybody

Posted on Jul 13, 2006

3 Suggested Answers

  • 878 Answers

SOURCE: dishes not getting clean

brittgee, there has been a number of service flashes on this model. One that has to do with the upper spray arm assy. Complaint is poor washability; gritty glasses, food redeposited on glasses, especially in the corners. They redesigned the upper spray arm to improve water spray to all corners of the upper rack. The new part number is 8269022. They also redesigned the third level spinner for more consistant rotation and better washability. This was also under a service flash. Part number.8193768. Other reasons for poor wash would be; low water temperature, rinse aid disp. not working, loading etc. back.

Posted on Nov 25, 2006

  • 62 Answers

SOURCE: Kenmore elite dishwasher leaves food particles on dishes

If someone is putting dishes in the washer and obstructing the spray ams that would cause food to stay on dishes. After loading dishwasher and pushing in baskets make sure the spray arm doesnt hit any of the dishes causing them to not clean properly. If that doesnt work or is definately not your problem try removing the spray arm and seeing if it has food inside of it. Some times they get food build up in them and need to be flushed out.

Posted on May 12, 2009

  • 43501 Answers

SOURCE: Kenmore Dishwasher Not Cleaning


I have an older dishwasher also and recently my wife also complained about it not cleaning right... so me being the man I am tried in vain to clean the things... Bought new spray arms online and installed them in the thing works like new... However I have also found that if the heating element goes bad then that also can mess things up bad... So I would buy new spray arms, and also check out the heating element to make sure it is working... Here is a tip that will help you with the online buying...

Dishwasher Spray Arms not Spinning

How to Buy Appliance Parts Online

A bad heating element causes many problems in dishwashers...

Dishwasher Problems The Heating Element not Working

Dishwasher Maintenance



Posted on Sep 29, 2010

Add Your Answer

0 characters

Uploading: 0%


Complete. Click "Add" to insert your video. Add


3 Points

Related Questions:

1 Answer

No water coming into the start cycle of kenmore 16309. I've checked continuity at the solenoid (.96) and voltage coming in (56?) and filter screen looks clear. What next?

Hello John,
The voltage coming to the valve is only 56???
it should be 110-120 and not 56,with only 56 i would be checking for a broken/bad float switch and or pinched/broken wire to the valve
if all above checks good look at the control and see why only 50% of the necessary power is at the valve.


Nov 15, 2011 | Dishwashers

1 Answer

Have Kenmore Elite 665 11yrs old, bakes soap on dishes top and bottom racks. Tried powder and liquid soap,no difference.Tried water heat with no rinse dry,no difference.

That seems like it's probably related to the recent ban on phosphates in dishwashing soaps. Quite a number of people have found that their dishwashers aren't working as well and are leaving spots and soap behind now that phosphates are not being used.
A little vinegar may help, but the best answer would be to use a water softener.

Mar 06, 2011 | Kenmore 24 in. 16039 Built-in Dishwasher

1 Answer

Mineral deposits

make sure ya prime the sink before starting the dw and use less detergant

Jul 01, 2010 | Kenmore 24 in. 16309 Built-in Dishwasher

1 Answer

20 yr old GE d/w, completes cycle but leaves bottom full of water

check your drain hose.if all is good most common with older ge dishwashers is the piston valve take the screen off the back end behind the heater and in the midle is the valve it unscrews from the base. look at it and if the rubber valve is detieriated replace it

Mar 02, 2010 | Dishwashers

1 Answer

My Kenmore 16309 is having a continued problem with leaving crud inside glasses. Any ideas what the problem is?

is it white/ and cau you wipe it off.. if so its hard water filming . very common . use a powder not lig dergt. mix 50/50 with glass majic / use hi temp wash/ no heat in dry . things should bet better . also run tap til water is hot in kitchen .. mm

Dec 07, 2009 | Kenmore 24 in. 16309 Built-in Dishwasher

1 Answer

What is the air gap on a dishwasher?

The air gap is the chrom or white thing on your sink. It is where the dishwasher drain hose conects to the house drain/disposal.

Dec 31, 2008 | Kenmore 24 in. 16309 Built-in Dishwasher

Not finding what you are looking for?
Kenmore 24 in. 16309 Built-in Dishwasher Logo

3,525 people viewed this question

Ask a Question

Usually answered in minutes!

Top Kenmore Dishwashers Experts

Fred Sops

Level 2 Expert

271 Answers

D. E. Hev

Level 3 Expert

1059 Answers

Raisin Brann

Level 1 Expert

28 Answers

Are you a Kenmore Dishwasher Expert? Answer questions, earn points and help others

Answer questions

Manuals & User Guides