Why Won’t My Dishwasher Turn On?

Finding out your dishwasher is broken isn’t a fun way to start your day, particularly if you are also faced with the cost of calling out an engineer and staying home to meet them just to diagnose the issue.

Luckily it’s very feasible to determine and even resolve many dishwasher faults by yourself without having to call for dishwasher repair, particularly if you happen to own a multimeter.

You could discover you are able to sort out the problem quite easily alone, especially if you are mechanically minded, and if not at worst you will be better placed to describe the fault when you do have to phone a repair person.

Things To Do If Your Dishwasher Won’t Start

Before you begin looking for a replacement dishwasher there are a number of simple faults you can troubleshoot without too much trouble.

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

Routine Dishwasher Issues That Will Stop Your Dishwasher From Turning On

Before you start investigating your machine for problems make sure that your machine hasn’t been accidentally unplugged, plus that none of the switches on the circuit breaker have tripped.

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

You will most likely require the user manual for this due to the fact that machines vary however the child lock tends to be quite simple to engage without meaning to. Similarly, the machine could have power however will not start, in this case the answer could be as easy as resetting the program.

When you have eliminated these faults it’s time for the real detective work to begin.

    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. Test the drive motor.

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

Testing the Door Latch as well as the Door Latch Switch

The first thing to test is the door latches as well as door latch switches. Your machine is designed not to start if the door latches are broken for understandable reasons. You wouldn’t want begin the machine without meaning to with the door not closed.

A faulty switch will stop your machine from turning on as well as running. You may wish to test the switch using a multimeter. The switch will usually be situated under the front door panel or control panel.

Make sure the machine is disconnected prior to taking off the door panel plus checking for continuity to ensure you do not get an electric shock.

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

Checking the Timer

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

This is the part of the machine that distributes power to all the different components the machine requires to run such as the motor, as well as the valves.

If your dishwasher has an electric control as opposed to a mechanical timer then it may need to be checked while live, this can be dangerous and should only be done by someone who is professionally trained.

Testing the Selector Switch

The selector switch is the component that chooses the cycle and will vary depending on the make as well as the model of your dishwasher. A faulty selector switch or one that has got stuck might result in the dishwasher not to start.

You should be able to see if the buttons are depressing fully, or you could have to unplug the dishwasher in order to gain access to the control panel to check the contact points for continuity with the help of a multimeter.

Testing the Motor Relay

The motor relay is an alternative part that could result in your dishwasher not starting, thus this may be the fault if you have checked the control panel and so know that there is power running to the main pump.

To test this you will have to gain access to the motor and find the relay that should be located next to it. This may then be taken out and tested using a multimeter, if broken it might need to be replaced.

Testing the Thermal Fuse

If you have checked the above issues but still haven’t found the problem the next component to check would be the thermal fuse. This may or may not be present and is there 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 part of the machine you should be able to check that may stop your machine 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 electrical components but still haven’t discovered the issue this might be the culprit particularly if your machine has previously been making a loud humming noise.

You should be able to gain access to the motor by removing the panel at the bottom of the machine. Check it with the help of a multimeter and replace if not working.

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 an engineer sooner rather than later.

If you are happy to perform the above troubleshooting then you may well be able to sort out the fault without assistance. Yet if you are con confident it might be easier to contact an engineer.

And check your insurance plus your home cover as appliance repairs could be included meaning the costs 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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