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Home>Appliance Repair Help.>What's Wrong With My Dishwasher?

What's Wrong With My Dishwasher?

Common Problems and Their Possible Causes for Your Dishwasher
Always unplug your washer or turn off power source before attempting any repair or maintenance to avoid risk of electrical shock.


PROBLEM:

My dishwasher won't start at all.

POSSIBLE CAUSE:
 Make sure your dishwasher is getting power. Check that you haven't blown a fuse or tripped a circuit breaker. Your dishwasher may also have a regular light switch located on a wall near your dishwasher or under your kitchen sink.
Check the wiring connections to your dishwasher for any burnt or broken wires. Repair or replace any found after you turn off power to the dishwasher.
Check your dishwasher door latch. The latch keeps the door tightly shut during operation. If it's worn, broken or not latching correctly, the dishwasher won't start. If this is the case, replace it.
Check your dishwasher door switch. Your door switch indicates whether the dishwasher door is open or closed. Your dishwasher won't turn on if the door switch is bad and not indicating the door is closed. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter
  Check the timer.
Check the selector switch. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter
Check the motor. First see if you can manually turn the motor as sometimes it gets jammed from lack of use or from debris.



PROBLEM:
My dishwasher doesn't start but the motor hums.

POSSIBLE CAUSE:

Check the motor. First see if you can manually turn the motor as sometimes it gets jammed from lack of use or from debris.
Check pump.
Test the motor start relay
If your dishwasher has one, check the drive belt. If there are signs of wear or damage, replace it.



PROBLEM:
My dishwasher won't fill with water.

POSSIBLE CAUSE:

Make sure the water supply for the dishwasher is turned on. The valve may be under the sink.
Check your dishwasher door latch. The latch keeps the door tightly shut during operation. If it's worn, broken or not latching correctly, the dishwasher won't start. If this is the case, replace it.
Check your dishwasher door switch. Your door switch indicates whether the dishwasher door is open or closed. Your dishwasher won't turn on if the door switch is bad and not indicating the door is closed. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter
Check the drain hose and recirculation hose for kinks or obstructions.
  Test the float switch. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter
Test the water inlet valve. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter
Test the drain valve lever arm
Check the drain valve. This step will only apply to GE brands which include General Electric, Hotpoint, RCA or some Kenmore. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter

PROBLEM:
My dishwasher won't drain.

POSSIBLE CAUSE:

Check your sink drain and the drain hose for kinks or obstructions.
Check the motor. First see if you can manually turn the motor as sometimes it gets jammed from lack of use or from debris.
Check the pump. See that it's clear of any debris.
Check the drain valve. This step will only apply to GE brands which include General Electric, Hotpoint, RCA or some Kenmore. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter
Check the timer.
If your dishwasher has one, check the drive belt for signs of wear or damage.



PROBLEM:
My dishwasher isn't getting my dishes clean.

POSSIBLE CAUSE:

 Check the water level. Make sure there is enough water entering the dishwasher tub to clean your dishes adequately. If the water level is low, it may be your inlet valve.
Check the spray arms. Make sure they spin easily. Look for any cracks splits or debris clogging the holes. Replace or clean.
Check the water temperature from your faucet. Your dishwasher will clean better with hot water. You can run hot water from the kitchen faucet for a little while before running your dishwasher to help with this.
 Check the detergent dispenser. Make sure it's clean and the door can open properly. See My dishwasher detergent dispenser won't open.
  Make sure the dishwashers internal filters are clean and clear of debris.
Check inlet valve. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter
Check drain valve. This step will only apply to GE brands which include General Electric, Hotpoint, RCA or some Kenmore. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter
Check the heating element. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter
Try using a higher quality detergent. It may just be that simple.



PROBLEM:
My dishwasher detergent dispenser won't open.

POSSIBLE CAUSE:

Check the detergent dispenser. Sometimes the dispenser can goop up from detergent. If this is the case, clean it.
Check the timer. Inspect the link between the timer and dispenser actuator. If that looks good, test the timer. If the timer is faulty, it won't activate the dispenser to open.
Inspect the dispenser actuator arm. Make sure it's not cracked , worn or broken.
Test the bimetal switch.
If all else is well, you probably need to replace your dishwasher dispenser assembly.



PROBLEM:
My dishwasher cycles don't complete.

POSSIBLE CAUSE:
Check the timer.
Check your dishwashers thermostat.
Check the heating element. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter


PROBLEM:
My dishwasher cycle times are too long.

POSSIBLE CAUSE:

Check the timer.
Check your dishwashers thermostat.
Check the heating element. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter




PROBLEM:
My dishwasher isn't drying my dishes.

POSSIBLE CAUSE:

Check the timer.
Check your dishwashers thermostat.
Check the dishwasher drying fan.



PROBLEM:
My dishwasher is making a lot of noise.

POSSIBLE CAUSE:

Check the spray arms. Make sure they spin easily. Look for any cracks splits or debris clogging the holes. Replace or clean.
If you hear a squeal or scraping during your dishwashers drying cycle, check the fan motor bearings for signs of rust or wear. If so, replace the fan motor. Also check if the fan blade is loose. If so, replace the blade.
Check the water inlet valve. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter
Check the motor and mounts.
Check the drain pump for any obstructions.



PROBLEM:
My dishwasher door won't close properly.

POSSIBLE CAUSE:

Make sure there is nothing obstructing the dishwasher door or door latch, keeping the door from closing.
Check your dishwasher door latch. The latch keeps the door tightly shut during operation. If it's worn, broken or not latching correctly, the dishwasher won't start. If this is the case, replace it.
Inspect your door gasket and seal for signs of age. The may have begun to harden or be damaged. If so, replace them.
Check the door hinges. If worn or damaged, they can cause the door to become misaligned. If one or both of your hinges are bent or broken, replace both of them.



PROBLEM:
My dishwasher is leaking water.

POSSIBLE CAUSE:

Check the float switch. Start your dishwasher, when you hear the water stop running, open your dishwasher. If the water lifts the float all the way up or the float is submerged, the problem may be the float or float switch. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter
Inspect your door gasket and seal for signs of age. The may have begun to harden or be damaged. If so, replace them.
Check the drain hose and recirculation hose for leaks. If they are wet near the connection, check the clamp. You could also have a damaged pump housing or a leak in the actual hose. If so, replace.
Check main tub seal.
Check the water inlet valve. See Testing Your Dishwasher Parts for Continuity Using a Multimeter
Check the pump.



PROBLEM:
Soap or water is leaking out from around my dishwasher door.

POSSIBLE CAUSE:

Make sure you are using the right detergent. Do not use liquid dish soap or a detergent not intended for dishwashers.
Inspect your door gasket and seal for signs of age. The may have begun to harden or be damaged. If so, replace them.
Check your dishwasher door latch. The latch keeps the door tightly shut during operation ensuring the door doesn't leak. If it's worn, broken or not latching correctly, the dishwasher door may leak. If damaged, replace.
Check the door hinges. They can cause the door to become misaligned which can result in leaks. If one or both of your hinges are bent or broken, replace both of them.


Disclaimer: The possible causes on this page in no way guarantee the repair of your appliance. Attempt to repair your appliance at your own risk. If you do not feel comfortably capable attempting repairs of your appliance, call a qualified professional repairman. You can also contact us for technical support at 1-513-232-8500.
 

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