Will A Dishwasher Work Without Hot Water? The Cold Truth

If you are a dishwasher user, you might be aware of how effectively it works with hot water. If you will use cold water in your dishwasher, it will not give you the same results as hot water. It is because hot water is good to remove oil and filth from the dishes more effectively. That is the reason; people ask will a dishwasher work without hot water.

Well, it depends upon the type of dishwasher that you are using. Some older dishwashers don’t have a heating element in the system and due to this, you will have to put hot water in the dishwasher. But some modern dishwashers do have a heating source that can change cold water into hot water. In these dishwashers, you won’t need to worry about hot or cold water.

Also, there is detailed information about dishwashers and their working with cold water. Let’s explore it.

Will A Dishwasher Work Without Hot Water

How Do Dishwashers Work?

Dishwashers are automatic, so after proper setup, they will carry out the necessary operations without manual assistance. When you will add water to the dishwasher, it will be heated at the temperature you have set in the dishwasher.

The washing cycle starts after the soap has been released and the maximum thermal temperature has been acquired. Water is pushed out of the dishwasher’s compressor and poured onto the plates/dishes.

The hot water’s suction makes it possible for the nozzles to spin and make contact with the plates. Water is removed and the plates are washed once more, as the process continues.

Why Does The Dishwasher Need Hot Water?

In the dishwashers, hot water is used to wash the plates thoroughly. Because hot water can easily dissolve oil and grease so grease and food particles are more effectively cleaned.

Moreover, hot water can also kill bacteria and microorganisms, resulting in the sanitization and disinfection of dishes. Hot water can also help activate the detergent used in the dishwasher, making it more effective at cleaning dishes.

Additionally, hard minerals are help dissolved by hot water to prevent spots on the dishes. Dishwasher’s performance is also increased when these hard minerals are softened by hot water resulting in the prevention of mineral buildup in the pipes and spray arms.

Will A Dishwasher Work Without Hot Water?

Cold water can be used in a dishwasher, but it is not the optimal solution. Germs on your plates cannot be killed by cold water. Yes, it will clear the dust, but it won’t get rid of invisible bacteria. Although you can use cleansers and other cleaning chemicals to fully react and remove debris and filth from your plates, a dishwasher also requires hot water.

The water in your dishwasher must reach a temperature of 140 degrees Fahrenheit to kill germs. Thermostats in a dishwasher enable it to regulate and raise water temperatures.

Not all microorganisms are killed by this heat. Some need temperatures over 200 degrees Fahrenheit, which are not available in a standard dishwasher. In this situation, you have the option of repeating the cleaning cycle for dishes instead of washing them one time. In this way, you can get rid of all the germs and microorganisms.

As I have described before, you can run your dishwasher without hot water. Although washing plates with cold water does not damage them in any way, the silverware and plates won’t be cleaned accurately after the cleaning cycle is finished.

This means that, according to the USDA, hot water is very good at cleaning and eliminating germs and other microbes. It is preferable to run the dishwasher on the hot temperature settings in these situations.

See our article if your dishwasher is not cleaning the top rack properly.

Do Dishwashers Use Hot Water Or Heat Their Own?

No doubt, when you have a packed schedule, dishwashers are a luxury. Dishwashers reduce the time and energy it takes to wash dishes. Have you ever wondered how dishwashers work or whether they heat water or draw it from a pipeline in the kitchen?

Well, a dishwasher can heat water as there are heating elements in the dishwashers for this purpose. To run the dishwasher, open the water connection, add detergents, and filthy plates. Then you will have to turn on the dishwasher to start washing.

It then goes on to use its heating components to heat the water to the right temperature. In this way, the hot water will give your plates and dishes a thorough cleaning.

Some dishwashers only raise water’s temperature by 10 or 15 degrees. Due to this, they still require a connection to a supply of hot water. The ideal range for dishwasher water temperature is between 120- and 150 degrees Fahrenheit.

These dishwashers raise the temperature because the water from your heating element does not have the power to accurately kill all the germs from your dishes.

To heat the water at the optimal temperature, you will have to turn on the water connection to add the water either cold or hot in the dishwasher. The water will be heated at the required temperature due to the heating source inside the dishwasher. In this way, you can start the washing cycle after getting the required temperature of the water.

Can a heating source cause a fire in the dishwashers? Read this article.

What Are The Different Types Of Heating In Dishwashers?

Different Types Of Heating In Dishwashers

Dishwashers that have the function to preheat their water from the start use less electricity than those that do not have this function. When you will use a hot water connection, it will result in heat transfer. Such dishwasher companies suggest you attach them to your cold-water connection to avoid heat transfer.

Some dishwashers contain a pre-heating capability that warms their water. The preheating option is intended to speed up and improve the cleaning of your plates. Heating the water to the proper temperature usually causes a cleaning operation to last longer.

Thus, preheating enables you to start a process before adding dishes to the dishwasher. You fill the dishwasher with water, and the dishwasher prepares it to the appropriate temperature during the preheating process.

After that, you can fill the dishwasher with filthy dishes and begin the washing process. Your dishes will get cleaner more quickly and the washing process will require less time.

From Where Do Dishwashers Get Their Hot Water?

The little bowl at the bottom where the water is flowing provides the hot water for dishwashers. Based on which source line is linked with it, the water might be warm or cold that is pushed in. If the dishwasher is linked to the cold-water supply, its internal heating element will warm the water.

The internal heating element can further raise the water’s temperature to the required temperatures up to 130°F (54 °C) if it is linked to the heated water line. A dishwasher with an internal heating system that is linked to a cold-water line utilizes less electricity.

Also, not every dishwasher has an integrated heating element. Some of them utilize the water that is heated in the kitchen tap. The dishwasher draws in cold water and utilizes it as if there is no built-in heating element and the water is cold.

Is It A Good Idea To Use Cold Water In The Dishwashers?

Some households might choose to use less hot water while operating the dishwasher to save money. Although it seems like a great idea, but washing processes in your dishwasher won’t clean your dishes thoroughly.

Some types of dishwashers’ internal heat sources raise the temperature of the water but aren’t built to properly heat cold water. If there is a choice, it is advised to use the hottest water possible because it will cleanse the dishes more effectively. Also, a dishwasher machine can have a defective heat source that won’t work effectively.

Moreover, modern dishwashers that have an effective heat source will maintain the inside temperature of the dishwashers. So, if you bought a standard dishwasher, you might have to directly pour hot water into it.

These modern dishwashers contain internal water heaters that make sure the water in your dishwasher is heated to the proper temperature. Also, you will get the option of adding cold water to your dishwasher to be preheated automatically or using heated water.

What To Consider While Using A Dishwasher?

To ensure the safety of your dishwasher, there are specific procedures that you should utilize:

  • You must utilize dishwashing soap to remove deposits from the water. If the water in your region is hard, you must use extra detergents. Additionally, they have chemicals that can cut through tough oil and removes bits of food.
  • Harsh dishwashing soap should not be utilized as it will cause the dishwasher to over foam.
  • Do not overfill dishwashers due to their convenience. For the detergents to adequately touch the plates and for the water to pour, there must be adequate space.
  • You must turn the dirty sides of the dishes toward the spraying arms when filling them. In this way, the water will strike them first.


I have tried my best to provide you with ample information about the dishwashers and their heating processes of water. You are not going to ask again about will a dishwasher work without hot water or not. It is because I have described every fact about it in this article.

It is possible that if your dishwasher has a heating element, you can use cold water in the dishwasher. The heating source will heat the water to properly wash and cleanse the dishes.

Don’t leave the article without giving your feedback!


If you find that your plates are not cleaning correctly after using your dishwasher, you should check the heat exchanger. You must change the heating component if you detect that it is rusted, cracked, or fractured. If any parts of the dishwasher are burnt out, you are highly advised to replace them.

Bosch dishwashers come equipped with steam drying. Bosch dishwashers do not include a heat source as plastic is utilized on the bottom shelf. The plates are given a very quick wash with heated water after the last washing.

The dishwasher can be connected to hot water, but the water must be heated by at least 60 degrees. Thus, you can check the owner’s manual directions. It is because there are several methods for linking the dishwasher to hot water in the instructions.

Every dishwasher uses heated water. It is because washing the plates with hot water is more efficient and productive. Some dishwashers heat or warm the water using their heat source, while others are linked to the heated water line, which assists to heat the water.

When your boiler breaks, you will also have to be concerned about the dishwasher, which can heat the water within the dishwasher. So, if the boiler breaks, you will have to worry about heating the water in the dishwasher.

Mery kitchen aims

Mery Webber

Mery Webber, the founder of Kitchen Aims, is a passionate home cook with extensive experience in the kitchen appliance industry. Through her blog, she aims to share her knowledge and help readers create the perfect kitchen.

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