Why Won’t My Dishwasher Turn On?

Discovering your dishwasher has stopped working is never going to be the best part of your day, especially if you have to deal with the expense of phoning an engineer and staying home to meet them just to pinpoint the problem.

The good news is it’s possible to diagnose and often sort out a number of machine problems yourself without having to call for dishwasher repair, especially if you happen to own a multimeter.

You may discover you are able to resolve the issue quite easily yourself, particularly if you are mechanically minded, and if not at worst you will have a better idea of the fault when you do have to phone a repair man.

Things To Do If Your Dishwasher Won’t Start

Before you start looking for a replacement dishwasher there are a few common problems you should be able to troubleshoot without too much trouble.

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

Everyday Dishwasher Issues That Will Stop Your Dishwasher From Turning On

Before you start investigating your machine for issues make sure that your machine hasn’t been unplugged, plus that there are no tripped switches in the circuit breaker.

This is also an opportune moment to see if the child lock hasn’t been activated as well as try resetting your dishwasher.

You will probably require the manual to do this due to the fact that machines vary however the child lock tends to be quite simple to engage without meaning to. Likewise, the machine could have lights but will not run, in this case the answer might be as easy as resetting the program.

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

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

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

Checking the Door Latch and Door Latch Switch

The initial thing to check is the door latches and door latch switches. Your machine is not designed to run if the door latches are broken for understandable reasons. You wouldn’t want begin the dishwasher without meaning to with the door open.

A broken switch will prevent your dishwasher from starting and running. You should test the switch using a multimeter. The switch is generally situated under the front door panel or control panel.

Double check the machine is unplugged before accessing the door panel plus checking for continuity to make sure you do not get an electric shock.

If you discover the latches or switches are not working you will need to replace them.

Checking the Timer

If the latch mechanism is working as it should the next thing to check is the timer or electronic control.

This is the component that sends power to all the other parts the machine needs to run such as the motor, as well as the water inlet valve.

If your dishwasher has an electric control as opposed to a mechanical timer then it could need to be checked while live, 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 chooses the program , it’s style and location will vary depending on the make as well as the model of your machine. A not working selector switch or one that has got stuck could cause the dishwasher not to run.

You can usually see if the buttons are going down all the way, or you might have to unplug the machine in order to have a look at the control panel to check the contact points 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 could be the issue if you have checked the control panel and thus have ascertained that there is power running to the motor.

To test this you need to locate the motor plus find the relay that will usually be located next to it. This may then be removed as well as checked with a multimeter and you may have to replace it.

Examining the Thermal Fuse

When you have checked all the above but still haven’t found the issue the next part of the dishwasher to check is the thermal fuse. This will only be found on some models and is designed to stop the control board overheating.

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

Testing the Drive Motor

The final component you could check that may prevent your machine from operating is the drive motor. This is the component that moves the water around to wash your dishes.

If you have checked the other electrical components yet still aren’t getting anywhere this could be the cause of the problem especially if you noticed a loud humming coming from the machine.

You can usually gain access to the motor by removing the panel at the bottom of the machine. Test it with the help of a multimeter then replace if not working.

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 an engineer sooner rather than later.

If you do have a multimeter and can perform the above tests then you may well be able to sort out the fault without needing a professional. But if you are con confident it’s always better to call in the professionals.

Plus check your insurance plus your home cover as appliance repairs may be included which means the costs could 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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