Why Won’t My Dishwasher Turn On?

Discovering your dishwasher is broken isn’t a fun way to start your day, especially if you are also faced with the expense of phoning a professional plus taking time off work to let them in just to pinpoint the issue.

Fortunately it’s often easy to diagnose and often fix plenty of machine problems yourself without having to call for dishwasher repair, particularly if you happen to have a multimeter.

You could realize you are able to resolve the fault quite easily by yourself, particularly if you are good at DIY, and if not at worst you will have a better idea of the issue when you do phone a repair man.

What To Do If Your Dishwasher Won’t Turn on

Before you begin searching for a new dishwasher there are a few possible issues you can identify fairly easily.

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

Common Dishwasher Problems That Will Prevent Your Machine From Starting

Before you begin going through the following list of possible issues ensure that it hasn’t been accidentally unplugged, plus that there are no tripped switches in the circuit breaker.

At this point you should also check that the child lock isn’t on and try resetting your machine.

You will most likely need the manual for this as machines are all different however the child lock tends to be fairly simple to activate without meaning to. Similarly, the machine could have lights yet will not run, in this case the answer might be as easy as resetting the program.

Once you have ruled out these faults you can start the real troubleshooting.

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

To examine these components you will need a multimeter, or VOM (volt-ohm-milliammeter) to test the resistance plus test the components are operating as they are meant to.

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 understandable reasons. There’s no way you would want to be able to inadvertently run the machine with the door ajar.

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

Double check you have disconnected power to the machine before taking off the door panel plus testing 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 latch mechanism is operating as it should the next component to test is the timer or electronic control.

This is the part of the machine that distributes electricity to all the different electrical 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 might need 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 dishwasher that selects the program , it’s style and location will vary contingent on the make as well as the model of your machine. A faulty selector switch or even one that has not been fully depressed may cause the dishwasher not to turn on.

You should be able to visually check to see if the buttons are depressing fully, or you may need to unplug the dishwasher and have a look at the control panel to test the connections for continuity using a multimeter.

Checking the Motor Relay

The motor relay is an alternative component that can result in your dishwasher not running, and this may be the issue if you have tested the control panel and thus have discovered that there is power going to the motor.

To investigate if this is the case you will have to locate the motor plus locate the relay that should be mounted next to the motor. This can then be removed plus checked with a multimeter and it may need to be replaced.

Testing the Thermal Fuse

When you have investigated the above issues and are yet to find the fault the next part of the dishwasher to test is the thermal fuse. This may or may not be present and is designed to stop the control board overheating.

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

Examining the Drive Motor

The final part of the dishwasher you could investigate that may prevent your dishwasher from running is the drive motor. This is the component that circulates the water to wash your dishes.

When you have tested the other parts and still haven’t discovered the issue this could be the culprit especially if your machine has previously been making a loud humming noise.

You can usually locate the motor by removing the lower access panel. Check it using a multimeter then replace if broken.

When to Contact a Professional

If you don’t have a multimeter or are not confident in taking panels off your dishwasher and testing the components then you will need to call a professional.

If you do have a multimeter and can perform the above tests then you might well be able to sort out the issue without needing a professional. Yet if you are not sure it’s always better to contact an engineer.

And examine your insurance as well as your home cover as dishwasher repairs could be covered meaning the expense could be less than you were expecting.

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