Why Won’t My Dishwasher Turn On?

Discovering your dishwasher has stopped working is never going to be the best part of your day, particularly if you have to deal with the cost of phoning a repair person plus taking time off work to let them in just to determine the issue.

Luckily it’s possible to determine and even fix many machine faults by yourself without needing to call for dishwasher repair, especially if you happen to own a multimeter.

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

What To Do If Your Dishwasher Won’t Turn on

Before you begin looking for a new machine there are a number of possible issues you should be able to troubleshoot without too much trouble.

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

Routine Dishwasher Faults That Will Prevent Your Machine From Starting

Before you start investigating your dishwasher for problems ensure that it hasn’t been unplugged, and that none of the switches on the circuit breaker have tripped.

At this point you may wish to also check that the child lock hasn’t been activated plus try resetting your machine.

You will most likely require the user guide to do this as machines vary however the child lock is usually fairly easy to put on accidentally. Similarly, the machine might have power but will not run, in this case the solution might be as simple as resetting the program.

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

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

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

Testing the Door Latch as well as the Door Latch Switch

The first place to start is the door latches as well as door latch switches. Your dishwasher is designed not to start if these are not working for understandable reasons. There’s no way you would want to be able to accidentally begin the dishwasher with the door open.

A faulty switch will prevent your dishwasher from turning on plus running. You can check the switch using a multimeter. The switch is generally found under the front door panel or control panel.

Ensure the machine is disconnected 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.

Testing the Timer

If the door latch as well as door latch switch, are working as they are meant to the next component to check is the timer or electronic control.

This is the component that distributes power to all the different electrical components the machine needs to operate such as the pumps, plus the valves.

If your machine has an electric control as opposed to a mechanical timer 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 component that selects the cycle and will vary contingent on the make or model of your machine. A not working selector switch or even one that has not been fully engaged might result in the dishwasher not to run.

You can usually visually investigate to see if the buttons are depressing fully, or you might have to unplug the machine and have a look at the control panel to test the contact points for continuity using a multimeter.

Checking the Motor Relay

The motor relay is an alternative part that could result in your machine not running, so this might be the problem if you have tested the control panel and have ascertained that there is power going to the motor.

To test if this is the case you need to find the motor and find the relay that should be mounted next to the motor. This may then be taken out and tested with a multimeter and you may have to replace it.

Testing the Thermal Fuse

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

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

Examining the Drive Motor

The final component you can test that might prevent your dishwasher from running is the drive motor. This is the component that circulates the water to wash your dishes.

When you have checked the other electrical components yet 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 panel at the bottom of the machine. Check it by using a multimeter and replace if faulty.

When to Get in Touch With an Engineer

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.

If you are happy to undertake the above troubleshooting then you may well be able to sort out the problem without needing a professional. However if you are con confident it might be easier to call in the professionals.

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

More Dishwasher Problems:

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