Even as dishwashers become smarter and more high-tech, they’re still susceptible to the same problems. Even your Bosch dishwasher at home can suffer from the occasional clog or blockage, and it’ll let you know that there’s a problem by showing you a unique error code.
If your Bosch dishwasher displays the E22 error code, that means the filter is blocked or clogged, and water cannot correctly drain out of the machine like it’s supposed to. This error is usually caused by a clogged or calcium buildup in the drain filter. However, it can also be caused by a blocked drain hose, non-return valve, or circulation pump.
In this article, we’ll explore all the possible reasons for the E22 error code on your Bosch dishwasher, from the most likely to the least likely (but still possible).
What Does The E22 Error Code Mean On A Bosch Dishwasher?
On Bosch dishwashers, the E22 error code appears when there’s still water in the basin even after the draining cycle. This error code is usually caused by a clogged filter that might be blocked by food bits, dirt, foreign objects, or anything that prevents water from passing through and draining out of the appliance.
How To Prevent The E22 Error Code
The E22 error code represents a common problem with Bosch dishwashers: blocked or clogged filters. Because this problem is so typical, you can take steps to prevent it from happening in the first place.
You can prevent the E22 error code from appearing or re-appearing on your Bosch dishwasher by cleaning the filter regularly. That will prevent food scraps, dirt, or anything else from building up in and around the filter and preventing the water from draining out.
1. Drain Fine Filter Is Clogged
Right at the bottom inside your Bosch dishwasher is a filter. Typically, it consists of two parts: a mesh screen that lays flat on the bottom of the dishwasher and a filter piece that attaches to it and leads into the bottom of the basin under that mesh screen.
As the dishwasher sprays your plates, pots, pans, and anything else you’ve placed in the machine, the solid bits will fall to the bottom. The filter’s purpose is to then remove those solid pieces before the water is either recirculated or drained out of the machine.
Why it fails:
Like any other filter, the one in your Bosch dishwasher must be cleaned from time to time. Without proper cleaning, the bits and pieces that are washed off of your plates will build up at the filter, eventually leading to a clog. That will trigger the E22 error code.
Unfortunately, that’s only the start of the problem. When the fine drain filter is clogged, water will not be able to get through. That will lead to a lack of water being recirculated during the wash cycle.
How does that make matters worse? Well, a lot of the grease and other items on plates will not be diluted enough without enough water. As a result, they’ll contribute even more to the blockage that’s already formed at the filter, thereby making the clog much worse over time.
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How to fix:
Thankfully, fixing this problem is relatively straightforward. Firstly, shut your Bosch dishwasher off completely.
- Then, remove the filter. To do this, you’ll need to twist the filter’s top, which keeps it locked in place. If you’re unsure of how to do this for your dishwasher model, be sure to refer to the user manual for further details.
- Once you’ve removed the mesh screen and filter, remove any large, solid bits and throw them in the trash.
- Then, wash the filter in your sink to remove anything else that’s stuck to it. You might find it helpful to use an old toothbrush to scrub off any stubborn pieces still stuck to the filter.
- Before you replace the filter, be sure to check inside the basin for any other blockages while you’re there.
- Then, put the filter back and twist the top to lock it in place.
- Turn the dishwasher back on and run a quick cleaning cycle to confirm that everything is working correctly now.
2. Calcium Buildup In Filter
Besides a buildup of food bits and other solid objects, you may find that your filters are experiencing a calcium buildup. That will depend primarily on where you live and the type of water that’s being supplied to your home.
In some locations, the municipal water supply contains high levels of natural minerals. Over time, that can lead to mineral buildups in appliances that use lots of water like dishwashers, washing machines, and even coffee makers!
That buildup is referred to by many names. Some call it a calcium or mineral buildup, while others may call it ‘limescale’. All of them refer to the same thing: minerals in the water that build up in appliances like your Bosch dishwasher.
In your Bosch dishwasher, a severe buildup of calcium could lead to drainage problems and trigger the E22 error code. Again, this only depends on where you live and the condition of your water supply.
How to fix:
Firstly, you’ll need to remove the filter the same way as described in the previous section of this article. If you notice a calcium buildup in your Bosch dishwasher filter, then you’ll need to try and clean it off as best as you can.
Suppose the buildup isn’t too bad. If that’s the case, scrubbing it with a toothbrush might be enough to remove all of it. However, severe buildups will need you to ‘decalcify’ the dishwasher. You can purchase a ready-made ‘descaler’ from your local supermarket or hardware store.
- Run your dishwasher on the hottest and longest cycle that it has, but keep it empty and do not add detergent. The idea here is to heat up the buildup first.
- After 30 minutes, add one box of descaler directly to the bottom of the dishwasher.
- Let the wash cycle finish up. Then, run an additional cycle to wash everything away.
- This is a process you should repeat a few times per year if you live in an area affected by this problem.
3. Blocked Hose Or Non-return Valve
Once the water flows past the filter in your Bosch dishwasher, it eventually finds its way to a drain hose leading out of the machine and into your house’s drain. Along the way, there’s also a ‘non-return valve’. That valve ensures that any dirty water from the drain doesn’t flow back to where it came from.
Why it fails:
Over time, the drain hose or non-return valve may suffer from blockages as well. That could lead to wastewater from your dishwasher backing up all the way into the dishwasher’s drain where it came from.
These scenarios can trigger the E22 error code in a Bosch washing machine.
The E22 code is triggered whenever water cannot drain out from the basin as it should.
How to fix:
Before fixing this problem, please rule out a blockage inside the dishwasher first, as that’s the more likely cause. Once that’s done:
- Remove the hose and non-return valve behind the machine.
- Be sure to prepare pieces of cloth or a bucket to catch the water that might come out as you do that.
- Clear any dirt, debris, or food bits you find in the hose and valve until the water can flow through smoothly again.
4. Circulation Pump Partially Clogged
Many dishwashers have multiple pumps working inside of them. One of those pumps is the circulation pump, which drives water into the spray arms, which then wash your dishes.
For the washing cycle to be effective in cleaning those dishes, the circulation pump must supply a sufficient volume of water to the wash arms and at the correct pressure.
Why it fails:
Although this is less likely compared to the other reasons listed above, a partial clog in the circulation pump could still lead to the triggering of the E22 error code.
That partial clog also reduces the pump’s ability to drain water from the machine to be recirculated, which might cause the machine to display the E22 error code.
How to fix:
To access the circulation pump, you’ll need to find and remove the pump cover. Before doing that, disconnect the power supply to the dishwasher to prevent any injuries. Then, refer to the user manual to identify and locate the pump cover on your dishwasher’s model.
- With the cover removed, you’ll be able to reach into the pump area and pull out any clogs.
- You might find food bits, dust, dirt, or any other kind of debris causing the clog.
- It’s best to wear a pair of gloves and to do this very slowly, as there might be sharp objects stuck inside.
- It’s always possible that a sharp piece may have broken off your dishes and found its way into the pump.