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Common Dishwasher Repair Problems
Not Filling With Water This problem can be caused by the overflow float not going down for some reason, something wedged under it. It can also be cause by clogged water inlet valve. Like a washing machine valve, this water inlet valve also has a small screen on it and can get clogged with sediment from your water supply. It is not very easy to clean these screens, so most of the time just change the valve. When you have the water hose disconnected from the valve, always turn on the water to flush the line just in case the clog is in your line. Don’t forget to put something under the water line to catch the water.
Also check for voltage at the fill valve. If you are not getting voltage to the fill valve, trace back to control board and see where the voltage starts. Most dishwashers run electricity from the control to the float then to the fill valve.
Slow or Low Water Level Most of the time, this problem points directly to the fill valve. Slow fill, like above, can be caused by blockage in the valve or the water line itself. Make sure you have good water pressure and the proper size pipe going to the fill valve. Most new machines are now time filled and not volume filled.
For example, some Whirlpool dishwashers fill for 90 seconds and then the water is shut off. The control is hoping that your water pressure is at least the minimum required to fill the machine to it’s minimum water level. If you have high water pressure, it is very possible your water level will be at the maximum allowed in the machine, and the water valve might even be turned off by the float/overfill switch.
Water Left in Bottom After Cycle Ends Drainage problem of some sort is usually the cause. Could be blockage before your drain pump, in your drain pump, or in your drain hose. One possibility is that you just installed a garbage disposal and forgot to remove the “knock-out” plug for the dishwasher drain line. Another cause can be that you have not looped your dishwasher drainline under your sink and water from your sink is flowing back into you dishwasher.
You must attach your dishwasher drain line under your sink so it is higher then your sink drain lines, creating a trap for your dishwasher. Your drain sump could be plugged, not letting the water get to your drain pump easily. This is caused by not getting loose or hard debris off your dishes before putting them in the unit. Also make sure your drain pump is getting the right voltage when it is supposed to.
Water Going in But hear No Circulation This is usually caused by a syphon effect or your drain line improperly installed. You can not attach your drain line from the dishwasher without having a loop in it. If you go directly under the floor with your drain hose, all water will drain out upon fill. Safest and recommended installation of drain hose is to your kitchen sink and attach the hose somewhere so it is higher then the bottom of your sinks.
Lights Come on, but Nothing Happens When You Hit The Start Button Sounds like a door switch problem here. Make sure you door closes and latches properly. If it does, you must gain access to your door switches and check for proper continuity and OPS of switches. Can also be a keypad or control issue, but make sure your switches are good first.
Unit is Dead, No Lights, No OPS Some units will have thermal fuse of some sort in the wiring before the control. If this fuse is open, no power will get to the control or display. Before checking this fuse, make sure the correct voltage is present at the junction box for the dishwasher. If all is OK, you have a control or keypad issue.
Dirty Dishes after Cycle Completes Can be caused by low water level, poor soap, no jet dry, detergent dispenser not opening, poor water circulation due to broken or clogged chopper screen, dirty dishwasher, & defective circulation motor. Some of these problems are actual component problems, and other problems are user problems. These user problems will be discussed in more detail later under Maintenance & Tips.
No Heating or Drying Check the heat circuit of your dishwasher. This will include your control, heat element, thermostat/thermal fuse, & sometimes your door switch. Check your thermostat/thermal fuse and heat element for continuity first. If all test good, go to your control and possibly your door switch. Check for voltage from your control and continuity of your door switch.