Why Won’t My Dishwasher Turn On?

Finding out your dishwasher isn’t working is never going to be the highlight your day, especially if you are also faced with the expense of phoning a professional as well as staying home to let them in just to diagnose the issue.

Fortunately it’s very feasible to pinpoint and often fix a number of dishwasher issues alone without needing to call for dishwasher repair, especially if you have a multimeter.

You might realize you are able to fix the fault quite easily yourself, especially if you are good at DIY, and if not at worst you will be better placed to describe the problem when you do call an engineer.

What To Do If Your Dishwasher Won’t Start

In advance of looking for a replacement dishwasher there are a few common faults you should be able to troubleshoot fairly easily.

Safety Warning: Always make sure your dishwasher is unplugged before testing or replacing any electrical components.

Routine Dishwasher Faults That Will Stop Your Dishwasher From Starting

Before you start investigating your machine for faults ensure that your dishwasher hasn’t been inadvertently unplugged, and that none of the switches on the circuit breaker have tripped.

At this point you should also check that the child lock hasn’t been activated as well as try resetting your machine.

You will probably need the user guide to do this as models are all different however the child lock tends to be quite easy to put on without meaning to. Likewise, the machine may have lights yet will not start, in this case the answer could be as simple as resetting the cycle.

When you have ruled out these problems it’s time for the real detective work to begin.

  1. Investigate the door latch or door latch switch.
  2. Examine the timer.
  3. Test the selector switch.
  4. Test the motor relay.
  5. Check the thermal fuse.
  6. Test the drive motor.

To test these electrical components you will have to have a multimeter, or VOM (volt-ohm-milliammeter) to test the resistance and test the parts are working as they are meant to.

Testing the Door Latch as well as the Door Latch Switch

The first place to start is the door latches and door latch switches. Your dishwasher is designed not to run if these are not working for understandable reasons. There’s no way you would want to be able to inadvertently run the dishwasher with the door not closed.

A broken switch will prevent your machine from turning on plus running. You should check the switch using a multimeter. The switch will usually be found under the front door panel or control panel.

Make sure the machine is disconnected before removing the door panel and checking for continuity to make sure you do not get an electric shock.

If you discover the latches or switches are faulty you will need to replace them.

Testing the Timer

If the door latch and door latch switch, are working as they are meant to the next component to test is the timer or electronic control.

This is the component that sends power to all the different components the machine requires to operate including the pumps, as well as the valves.

If your dishwasher is controlled electronically as opposed to mechanically then it could have to be checked while plugged in, in which case you should call a repair person.

Checking the Selector Switch

The selector switch is the part of the dishwasher that chooses the program , it’s style and location will vary contingent on the make as well as the model of your machine. A broken selector switch or one that has got stuck might cause the dishwasher not to start.

You can usually visually check to see if the buttons are depressing fully, or you could have to disconnect the machine and access the control panel to test the connections for continuity using a multimeter.

Checking the Motor Relay

The motor relay is an alternative part that can result in your machine not running, thus this may be the problem if you have checked the control panel and thus have ascertained that there is power going to the motor.

To test if this is the case you will have to find the motor and locate the relay that should be mounted next to it. This can then be taken out plus checked with the help of a multimeter, if faulty you may have to replace it.

Examining the Thermal Fuse

When you have investigated all the above and are still looking for the fault the next component to test would be the thermal fuse. This may or may not be present and is designed to protect the control board.

If it will need to be replaced in order for the control board to get power.

Checking the Drive Motor

The final component you can check that might stop your dishwasher from running is the drive motor. This is the part of the machine that moves the water around to wash your dishes.

Once you have checked the other components yet still haven’t discovered the issue this might be the issue particularly if you noticed a loud humming coming from the machine.

You should be able to locate the motor by removing the panel at the bottom of the machine. Test it with the help of a multimeter then replace if broken.

When to Get in Touch With a Repair person

If you don’t have a multimeter or are not confident in taking panels off your machine and checking the electrical components then you will be better off calling a repair person sooner rather than later.

If you are happy to perform the above checks then you could well be able to sort out the problem without assistance. But if you are unsure it’s always better to contact an engineer.

Plus check your insurance plus your home cover as dishwasher repairs could be covered and so the costs could be less than you were expecting.

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