Why Won’t My Dishwasher Turn On?

Finding out your dishwasher isn’t working isn’t a fun way to begin your day, especially if you are also faced with the cost of calling out a professional as well as staying home to let them in just to determine the fault.

Fortunately it’s often easy to pinpoint and often fix a number of dishwasher issues yourself without having to call for dishwasher repair, particularly if you happen to are able to find a multimeter.

You might discover you can resolve the issue quite easily alone, especially if you are quite handy, and if not at least you will be better placed to describe the problem when you do phone an engineer.

What To Do If Your Dishwasher Won’t Turn on

In advance of looking for a new dishwasher there are a few common problems you should be able to identify without too much trouble.

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

Routine Dishwasher Issues That Will Prevent Your Dishwasher From Starting

Before you start checking your dishwasher for faults make sure that it hasn’t been inadvertently 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 as well as try resetting your machine.

You will most likely require the user manual for this due to the fact that machines are all different however the child lock tends to be quite simple to activate inadvertently. Similarly, if the dishwasher has lights however will not run, the answer could be as easy as resetting the cycle.

Once you have eliminated these problems it’s time for the real troubleshooting to begin.

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

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

Checking the Door Latch as well as the Door Latch Switch

The initial thing to test is the door latches and door latch switches. Your machine is designed not to operate if these are broken for obvious reasons. You wouldn’t want begin the machine without meaning to with the door not closed.

A faulty switch will stop your machine from starting and completing a cycle. You should test the switch with a multimeter. The switch is generally situated under the front door panel or control panel.

Ensure the machine is unplugged before removing the door panel as well as checking for continuity to prevent yourself from getting an electric shock.

If you discover the latches or switches are broken you will need a replacement door latch assembly.

Checking the Timer

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

This is the component that sends electricity to all the other electrical components the machine needs to operate such as the pumps, plus the valves.

If your machine has an electronic control as opposed to a mechanical timer then it may have to be checked while live, in which case you will need to call a repair person.

Checking the Selector Switch

This is the part of your machine that selects the program , it’s style and location will vary contingent on the make and model of your machine. A not working selector switch or one that has got stuck could cause the machine not to run.

You should be able to visually check to see if the buttons are depressing fully, or you might be required to disconnect the machine in order to 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 part that may cause your machine not to start, so this may be the issue if you have tested the control panel and thus have discovered that there is power going to the main pump.

To investigate if this is the case you will have to find the motor and find the relay that will usually be located next to the motor. This can then be removed and tested with the help of a multimeter and it might need to be replaced.

Checking the Thermal Fuse

Once you have tested the above issues and are still looking for the fault the next part of the dishwasher to investigate would be the thermal fuse. This will only be found on some models and is designed to stop the control board overheating.

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

Checking the Drive Motor

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

When you have tested the other electrical components and still aren’t getting anywhere this could be the cause of the problem especially if your machine has previously been making a loud humming noise.

You should be able to locate the motor by taking off the lower access panel. Check it with the help of a multimeter and replace if broken.

When to Contact an Engineer

Not everyone has a multimeter, or would know how to use one even if they do, in which case 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 may well be able to fix the problem without needing a professional. However if you are con confident it’s always better to contact an engineer.

Don’t forget to check your warranty plus your home cover as appliance repairs might be covered and so the expense may 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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