Why Won’t My Dishwasher Turn On?

Finding out your dishwasher has stopped working isn’t a good way to start your day, especially if you are also faced with the cost of phoning a repair person as well as taking time off work to let them in just to determine the issue.

Fortunately it’s often easy to diagnose and even resolve many machine issues by yourself without having to call for dishwasher repair, especially if you happen to own a multimeter.

You could discover you are able to fix the problem quite easily by yourself, especially if you are mechanically minded, and if not at worst you will have a better idea of the issue when you do have to call a repair man.

Things To Do If Your Dishwasher Won’t Turn on

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

Safety Warning: Always make sure your machine is unplugged before testing or replacing any electrical components.

Common Dishwasher Faults That Will Stop Your Dishwasher From Turning On

In advance of investigating your machine for issues make sure that your machine hasn’t been accidentally switched off, as well as that there are no tripped switches in the circuit breaker.

This is also a good time to check if the child lock isn’t on plus try resetting your dishwasher.

You will most likely require the user manual to do this due to the fact that machines are all different however the child lock is often fairly simple to activate inadvertently. Similarly, the dishwasher might have lights yet will not start, in this case the answer could be as simple as resetting the program.

When you have eliminated these faults you can start the real troubleshooting.

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

To examine these parts you will have to have a multimeter, or VOM (volt-ohm-milliammeter) to test the resistance as well as check the parts are operating as they are meant to.

Checking the Door Latch and Door Latch Switch

The first place to start is the door latches as well as door latch switches. Your dishwasher is designed not to run if the door latches are faulty for obvious reasons. You wouldn’t want to be able to inadvertently start the dishwasher with the door not closed.

A defective switch will prevent your dishwasher from turning on plus completing a cycle. You can test the switch using a multimeter. The switch is generally found under the front door panel or control panel.

Make sure you have disconnected power to the machine before removing the door panel plus testing for continuity to make sure you do not get an electric shock.

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

Testing 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 electricity to all the different components the machine requires to operate such as the motor, as well as the water inlet valve.

If your machine has an electronic control as opposed to a mechanical timer then it may have to be tested while connected, this can be dangerous and should only be done by someone who is professionally trained.

Testing 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 or model of your machine. A faulty selector switch or even one that has not been fully pressed down might cause the dishwasher not to start.

You should be able to see if the buttons are depressing fully, or you may need to unplug the machine and gain access to the control panel to test the contact points for continuity with the help of a multimeter.

Testing the Motor Relay

The motor relay is an alternative component that could result in your dishwasher not starting, and this may be the problem if you have checked the control panel and thus have ascertained that there should be power going to the motor.

To check if this is the case you need to locate the motor plus find the relay that will usually be located next to the motor. This could then be removed plus checked with the help of a multimeter and it might need to be replaced.

Testing the Thermal Fuse

If you have checked all the above and are still looking for the problem the next component to test would be the thermal fuse. This will only be found on some models and is designed to protect the control board.

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

Checking the Drive Motor

The final part of the machine you could investigate that may stop your dishwasher from running 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 electrical components but still haven’t discovered the issue this might be the cause of the problem especially if your machine has previously been making a loud humming noise.

You should be able to gain access to the motor by removing the lower access panel. Test it with the help of a multimeter and replace if faulty.

When to Get in Touch With a Professional

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 professional sooner rather than later.

If you do have a multimeter and can perform the above checks then you might well be able to fix the fault without assistance. Yet if you are con confident it’s always better to call in the professionals.

Plus examine your warranty and your home cover as dishwasher repairs may be included and so the costs 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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