Why Won’t My Dishwasher Turn On?

Finding out your dishwasher is broken isn’t a great way to start your day, especially if you are also faced with the cost of calling out a repair person as well as taking time off work to let them in just to diagnose the fault.

Fortunately it’s possible to determine and even sort out many machine problems alone without needing to call for dishwasher repair, particularly if you happen to are able to find a multimeter.

You might find you are able to fix the issue quite easily by yourself, particularly if you are good at DIY, and if not at least you will be better placed to describe the problem when you do have to call an engineer.

Things To Do If Your Dishwasher Won’t Start

Before you begin looking for a replacement machine there are a few simple problems you can troubleshoot fairly easily.

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

Everyday Dishwasher Issues That Will Stop Your Dishwasher From Turning On

In advance of going through the following list of potential issues make sure that it hasn’t been inadvertently switched off, and that none of the switches on the circuit breaker have tripped.

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

You will most likely need the user guide to do this due to the fact that machines vary however the child lock tends to be quite easy to put on accidentally. Likewise, the dishwasher could have lights yet will not start, in this case the answer could be as easy as resetting the cycle.

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

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

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

Testing the Door Latch as well as the Door Latch Switch

The initial thing to test is the door latches plus door latch switches. Your dishwasher is designed not to operate if these are faulty for obvious reasons. There’s no way you would want to be able to accidentally begin the machine with the door not closed.

A broken switch will stop your machine from starting plus running. You can check the switch using a multimeter. The switch is generally situated under the front door panel or control panel.

Make sure you have disconnected power to the machine prior to accessing the door panel plus checking for continuity to prevent yourself from getting an electric shock.

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

Checking the Timer

If the door latch and door latch switch, are working as they should the next component to test is the timer or electronic control.

This is the part of the machine that distributes power to all the other electrical components the machine needs to run including the pumps, and the water inlet valve.

If your machine is controlled electronically as opposed to mechanically then it might need to be tested while live, in which case you will need to call an engineer.

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 dishwasher. A broken selector switch or even one that has not been fully pressed down might result in the dishwasher not to run.

You can usually see if the buttons are going down all the way, or you might need to unplug the machine and gain access to the control panel to test the connections for continuity using a multimeter.

Testing the Motor Relay

The motor relay is another part that may cause your dishwasher not to start, so this may be the issue if you have checked the control panel and thus have discovered that there is power running to the motor.

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

Examining the Thermal Fuse

Once you have checked the above issues and are still looking for the problem the next component to check is the thermal fuse. This will only be found on some models and is there to protect the control board.

If you locate the fuse and discover it is blown you will need to replace it in order for the control board to get power.

Checking the Drive Motor

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

If you have tested the other parts yet still haven’t discovered the issue this might be the cause of the problem particularly if your machine has previously been making a loud humming noise.

You can usually gain access to the motor by removing the panel at the bottom of the machine. Test it using a multimeter and replace if faulty.

When to Get in Touch With a Repair person

Not everyone has a multimeter, or would know how to use one even if they do, in which case you will need to call a professional sooner rather than later.

If you are happy to perform the above checks then you might well be able to resolve the fault without assistance. Yet if you are not sure it might be easier to contact an engineer.

Plus check your insurance and your home cover as dishwasher repairs could be covered which means the costs might be less than you were expecting.

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