Why Won’t My Dishwasher Turn On?

Finding out your dishwasher has stopped working is never going to be the best part of your day, particularly if you are also faced with the expense of calling out an engineer as well as staying home to let them in just to pinpoint the problem.

Luckily it’s possible to diagnose and even resolve plenty of machine issues yourself without having to call for dishwasher repair, especially if you happen to own a multimeter.

You may find you can resolve the issue quite easily yourself, especially if you are quite handy, and if you can’t at worst you will have a better idea of the issue when you do phone a repair person.

Things To Do If Your Dishwasher Won’t Start

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

Safety Warning: Always make sure your machine is unplugged before attempting repairs.

Common Dishwasher Issues That Will Stop Your Dishwasher From Starting

In advance of going through the following list of possible issues ensure that your dishwasher hasn’t been inadvertently switched off, plus that there are no tripped switches in the circuit breaker.

This is also a good time to check if the child lock hasn’t been activated as well as try resetting your machine.

You will most likely need the manual for this due to the fact that models vary however the child lock is usually fairly simple to activate without meaning to. Likewise, the dishwasher may have power but will not start, in this case the solution could be as simple as resetting the program.

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

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

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

Testing the Door Latch and Door Latch Switch

The first place to start is the door latches as well as door latch switches. Your machine is not designed to operate if these are not working for understandable reasons. You wouldn’t want to be able to inadvertently run the machine with the door ajar.

A broken switch will stop your machine from turning on plus running. You can test the switch with a multimeter. The switch is generally situated behind the front door panel or control panel.

Make sure you have disconnected power to the machine 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.

Checking the Timer

If you have tested your door latch as well as door latch switch and ascertained they are operating as they should the next component 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 run including the pumps, plus the valves.

If your dishwasher is controlled electronically rather than mechanically then it could have to be tested while connected, in which case you will need to call a repair man.

Checking the Selector Switch

The selector switch is the component that selects the cycle , it’s style and location will vary contingent on the make and model of your dishwasher. A faulty selector switch or even one that has not been fully pressed down could result in the dishwasher not to run.

You should be able to visually investigate to see if the buttons are going down all the way, or you could be required to disconnect the machine in order to have a look at the control panel to check the connections for continuity with the help of a multimeter.

Testing the Motor Relay

The motor relay is an alternative part that could cause your dishwasher not to run, thus this may be the issue if you have tested the control panel and so have ascertained that there is power running to the main pump.

To investigate if this is the case you need to locate the motor and locate the relay that should be mounted next to it. This can then be removed plus checked with the help of a multimeter, if broken it might need to be replaced.

Examining the Thermal Fuse

When you have tested all the above but still haven’t found the fault the next component to test would be the thermal fuse. Note: Not all dishwashers have a thermal fuse.

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 might stop your machine from working is the drive motor. This is the part of the machine that moves the water around to wash your dishes.

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

You should be able to locate the motor by removing the lower access panel. Test it with the help of a multimeter and 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 dishwasher and checking the electrical components then you will need to call an engineer.

If you are happy to undertake the above checks then you could well be able to sort out the issue without needing a professional. But if you are not sure it’s always better to contact an engineer.

Plus check your warranty plus your home cover as appliance repairs could be included and so the expense might be less than you were expecting.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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