Why Won’t My Dishwasher Turn On?

Discovering your dishwasher isn’t working is never going to be the highlight your day, particularly if you have to deal with the expense of phoning a professional and taking time off work to let them in just to pinpoint the issue.

The good news is it’s very feasible to diagnose and often sort out a number of machine problems alone without having to call for dishwasher repair, particularly if you own a multimeter.

You may discover you can fix the problem quite easily alone, especially if you are mechanically minded, and if not at least you will be better placed to describe the issue when you do have to call a repair man.

What To Do If Your Dishwasher Won’t Start

Before you begin considering a new dishwasher there are a number of simple faults you can troubleshoot without too much issue.

Safety Warning: Never attempt repairs while your dishwasher is plugged in.

Everyday Dishwasher Issues That Will Prevent Your Machine From Turning On

In advance of investigating your dishwasher for problems ensure that your dishwasher hasn’t been accidentally unplugged, as well as that there are no tripped switches in the circuit breaker.

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

You will most likely require the manual to do this as machines are all different however the child lock tends to be fairly simple to activate inadvertently. Similarly, the machine might have power however will not start, in this case the answer may be as simple as resetting the program.

When you have eliminated these problems it’s time for the real troubleshooting to start.

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

To examine these parts you will have to have a multimeter, or VOM (volt-ohm-milliammeter) to measure the resistance as well as check the electrical components are operating 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 as well as door latch switches. Your machine is not designed to run if the door latches are faulty for obvious reasons. There’s no way you would want to be able to accidentally start the dishwasher with the door open.

A defective switch will prevent your machine from turning on plus completing a cycle. You should test the switch using a multimeter. The switch will usually be situated behind the front door panel or control panel.

Double check the machine is unplugged prior to taking off the door panel and checking for continuity to prevent yourself from getting an electric shock.

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

Checking the Timer

If the door latch plus door latch switch, are working as they are meant to the next thing to check is the timer or electronic control.

This is the part of the machine that sends power to all the other parts the machine needs to run including the pumps, as well as the water inlet valve.

If your machine has an electric control rather than a mechanical timer then it may have to be checked while plugged in, this can be dangerous and should only be done by someone who is professionally trained.

Checking the Selector Switch

The selector switch is the part of the machine that selects the cycle , it’s style and location will vary contingent on the make as well as the model of your machine. A faulty selector switch or one that has got stuck may result in the machine not to run.

You can usually see if the buttons are going down all the way, or you might be required to disconnect the dishwasher and gain access to the control panel to check the contact points for continuity with the help of a multimeter.

Checking the Motor Relay

The motor relay is another component that can cause your dishwasher not to start, so this may be the issue if you have checked the control panel and so know that there is power running to the main pump.

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

Checking the Thermal Fuse

If you have investigated the above issues and are yet to find the issue the next part to check would be the thermal fuse. This will only be found on some models and is there to stop the control board overheating.

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

Examining the Drive Motor

The final part of the machine you should be able to check that might stop your machine from running is the drive motor. This is the component that circulates the water to wash your dishes.

Once you have tested the other components and still haven’t discovered the issue this may be the culprit particularly if you noticed a loud humming coming from the machine.

You can usually locate the motor by taking off the panel at the bottom of the machine. Check it by using 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 dishwasher and checking the components then you will need to call 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 sort out the fault without assistance. However if you are unsure it might be easier to call in the professionals.

Plus check your warranty and your home cover as appliance repairs might be included meaning the costs might not be as high as you think.

More Dishwasher Problems:

  • Dishwasher Being Loud
  • Dishwasher Leaking
  • Dishwasher Not Draining
  • Dishwasher Not Drying
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