Is It Safe to Leave the Dishwasher On When Not Home?

Whenever you leave your home, there is always that concern about what to do with your appliances. Amongst all the different appliances, the dishwasher is something you will always need to be concerned about. The question is, is it safe to leave the dishwasher on when you are not at home?

Generally, the answer is no; it’s not safe to keep your dishwasher on while you are away from home. It can cause various kinds of hazards, including fire, water, and electrical. So, it’s better not to run a dishwasher if you are going away from home for a longer period. 

Now, if you want to know more about this, then stick with me till the end as I go in-depth into the whole thing.

Solved: Dishwasher Making Noise Whe...
Solved: Dishwasher Making Noise When Off

Can You Go Out and Leave the Dishwasher On?

If you ask whether you can leave your dishwasher on and go out, then yes, you can. But should you? Then, I have to say no. However, there are exceptions when you can go out and leave your dishwasher on without any worries.

The exceptions are with your dishwasher features. There are plenty of dishwashers out there that come with features that support keeping your dishwasher on when you go out. Let’s check out when you can go out and leave your dishwasher on.

  • The dishwasher has an automatic turn-off feature.

A lot of dishwashers these days come with an automatic turn-off feature. Even though the purpose of this feature is to save up on energy, you can still consider it for use when you are not at home.

This works because you will set up a timer, or the dishwasher will have a predefined timer that automatically turns off the dishwasher. So, whenever you are going out, you can simply set the timer function on and go out without any worries.

However, this feature isn’t that common and is only found in some expensive dishwashers. Also, it doesn’t eliminate every adversity related to keeping the dishwasher on. It can only help in avoiding heat and electricity hazards.

  • Opens door automatically for drying dishes 

When you decide to leave your dishwasher on, you have to go through drying the dishes afterward. For that, you will need a feature that allows the dishwasher to open the doors after washing the dishes. This allows the dishes to dry properly.

Without having open doors to dry your dishes, it may heat up inside and burn any plastic dishes you may have in there. A dishwasher with an automatic door opening feature eliminates that possibility and gives you a worry-free dishwasher operation. Even if you are not at home, you won’t have to think about it too much.

  • It has an emergency safety feature.

This feature stops the dishwasher whenever it goes through any internal issues. The machine will instantly stop as soon as it detects any kind of malfunction in the dishwasher, even if it’s in mid-cycle.

It can be overheating issue or can be due to shorting or even when the door isn’t opening or closing properly. This doesn’t stop the problem from happening. But it keeps the problem under control, so it doesn’t get out of hand and cause further damage.

Typically, having any or all of these features in your dishwasher lets you leave your home without turning off the dishwasher. With these features keeping your dishwasher safe, you won’t have to worry about any damages whatsoever.

Is It Safe to Leave the Dishwasher On When Not Home?

Right away, it’s not safe at all to leave your dishwasher running while you are out of your home. Several things can go wrong with it, and they are pretty serious issues as well. Let’s get through the safety hazards you may encounter when you are away and keep your dishwasher running.

  • Risk of fire 

This is one of the major problems with keeping your dishwasher on when you are not at home. According to a consumer report, there were 1015 fire hazards due to dishwashers in 2002-2009.

First of all, if you are not at home, this can turn out to be a disaster and cause a huge fire in your house. You won’t have any control over that at all.

Secondly, this not only ruins the dishwasher, but it also impacts the whole house and may even put your neighbors in danger.

The reason for a fire hazard in an unattended dishwasher is overheating. The dishwasher will overheat when the washing cycle is done, but it keeps running. As a result of overheating, anything inside the dishwasher can easily catch fire.

Now, this can happen if you are at home as well. But in that scenario, you can simply cut off the power and put out the fire as soon as you notice it. So, the damage will be very minimal.

  • Electrical hazard 

Just like any other electrical appliance, there is always a possibility of short circuits and sparks in your dishwasher. This eventually leads to a fire hazard as well. So, you are still at risk of fire even if there are no overheating issues with your machine.

Now, if you are not at home to monitor the power surges of electricity, there is a chance that your dishwasher will get it by that in your absence. Also, if you have wiring issues going on with your dishwasher, things can get even worse.

Well, these are the safety issues that you will likely have to consider before you leave your dishwasher on and go out of the home. Since they pose a huge threat, I suggest not leaving the dishwasher on at any cost.

Should I Run the Dishwasher When Not Home?

Aside from the safety issues, if you consider running your dishwasher while you are away, there is another concern: flooding. While the dangers aren’t as grave as fire hazards, it’s still a problem you won’t want to come across.

When you leave your dishwasher running while you are away, it can easily leak, and that can flood your entire kitchen or maybe even your whole house. That’s why it’s better not to keep your dishwasher running when you are not at your home.  

Is It Safe to Leave the Dishwasher On Overnight?

Now, this can be a bit controversial. This surely gives you the option to attend to any problem when you notice any malfunction, either through noise or a smell. You can just get up and get the problem under control.

However, it also poses a huge threat to your life. If the dishwasher catches fire and somehow goes out of control, you can get stuck inside your home and eventually fall victim to the fire. So, I would recommend not leaving your dishwasher on overnight.

Should You Leave the Dishwasher Door Open?

Typically, it’s better to leave your dishwasher door open if you choose to keep it running when you are away. Keeping the door open makes sure the inside of the dishwasher isn’t getting too heated. It allows your dishes to try and helps the remaining moisture inside the washer to evaporate.

Altogether, keeping the door open makes sure there isn’t any kind of moisture damage in your dishes or your dishwasher. It keeps the dishwasher clean for the longest time. So, yes, you should leave the dishwasher door open but make sure there isn’t standing water in the dishwasher.


To sum up, it is never safe to leave your dishwasher on when you are away from home. It can have serious fire hazards and electrical hazards and may even cause flooding in your home.

So, no matter what you do, always stay close to the dishwasher when you are using it. Never keep it running, without some exceptions that I discussed earlier here. Even then, it’s best not to keep it on while you are away.