Why Won’t My Dishwasher Turn On?

Discovering your dishwasher has stopped working isn’t a good way to start your day, especially if you have to deal with the cost of phoning a repair person as well as staying home to meet them just to determine the issue.

Fortunately it’s very feasible to pinpoint and often resolve plenty of machine issues alone without having to call for dishwasher repair, particularly if you happen to are able to find a multimeter.

You could find you are able to resolve the problem quite easily yourself, especially if you are good at DIY, and if you can’t at worst you will be better placed to describe the fault when you do have to call a repair man.

What To Do If Your Dishwasher Won’t Turn on

Before you start looking for a replacement dishwasher there are a few common problems you should be able to identify without too much trouble.

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

Routine Dishwasher Problems That Will Prevent Your Dishwasher From Starting

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

This is also a good time to see if the child lock isn’t on plus try resetting your dishwasher.

You will most likely require the user manual for this as machines vary but the child lock tends to be quite easy to activate without meaning to. Similarly, if the dishwasher has lights yet will not start, the solution may be as simple as resetting the program.

When you have eliminated these faults it’s time for the real investigations to start.

  1. Have a look at the door latch or door latch switch.
  2. Check the timer.
  3. Examine the selector switch.
  4. Examine the motor relay.
  5. Check the thermal fuse.
  6. Examine the drive motor.

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

Testing the Door Latch and Door Latch Switch

The first place to start is the door latches and door latch switches. Your machine is designed not to operate if the door latches are not working for obvious reasons. There’s no way you would want begin the machine without meaning to with the door ajar.

A defective switch will stop your machine from starting as well as running. You can test the switch with a multimeter. The switch will usually be located under the front door panel or control panel.

Ensure the dishwasher is disconnected prior to accessing the door panel and testing for continuity to make sure you do not get an electric shock.

If the latches or switches are not working you will need to replace them.

Checking the Timer

If you have tested your door latch as well as door latch switch and discovered they are working as they should the next component to check is the timer or electronic control.

This is the part of the machine that distributes power to all the other components the machine requires to operate including the motor, and the water inlet valve.

If your machine is controlled electronically as opposed to mechanically then it might have to be tested while plugged in, this can be dangerous and should only be done by someone who is professionally trained.

Checking the Selector Switch

This is the part of your machine that selects the program and will vary depending on the make and model of your dishwasher. A not working selector switch or one that has got stuck may result in the dishwasher not to run.

You should be able to visually check to see if the buttons are going down all the way, or you could have to disconnect the dishwasher and gain access to the control panel to test the contact points for continuity with the help of a multimeter.

Checking the Motor Relay

The motor relay is another part that may cause your dishwasher not to run, thus this could be the problem if you have checked the control panel and have ascertained that there is power going to the motor.

To test if this is the case you need to find the motor as well as find the relay that will usually be mounted next to the motor. This could then be taken out and checked with a multimeter and it might need to be replaced.

Testing the Thermal Fuse

If you have tested all the above and are still looking for the problem the next part to check would be the thermal fuse. Note: Not all machines have a thermal fuse.

If the fuse is blown it will need to be replaced in order to restore power to the control board.

Checking the Drive Motor

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

Once you have checked the other parts and still aren’t getting anywhere this may be the culprit particularly if your machine has previously been making a loud humming noise.

You can usually access the motor by removing the lower access panel. Test it with the help of a multimeter then replace if broken.

When to Contact a Repair person

If you don’t have a multimeter and 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 do have a multimeter and can perform the above tests then you might well be able to resolve the issue without assistance. Yet if you are unsure it’s always better to call in the professionals.

Don’t forget to check your warranty as well as your home cover as appliance repairs may be included and so the expense might be less than you were expecting.

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