Why Won’t My Dishwasher Turn On?

Finding out your dishwasher isn’t working is never going to be the best part of your day, especially if you are also faced with the cost of phoning an engineer plus staying home to meet them just to diagnose the fault.

Fortunately it’s very feasible to pinpoint and even resolve many machine faults alone without needing to call for dishwasher repair, especially if you are able to find a multimeter.

You may discover you are able to sort out the fault quite easily yourself, particularly if you are quite handy, and if you can’t at least you will have a better idea of the fault when you do phone a repair person.

Things To Do If Your Dishwasher Won’t Turn on

In advance of considering a new machine there are a number of possible problems you can identify fairly easily.

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

Commonplace Dishwasher Faults That Will Prevent Your Dishwasher From Turning On

Before you begin checking your dishwasher for faults make sure that your dishwasher hasn’t been accidentally switched off, as well as that there are no tripped switches in the circuit breaker.

This is also an opportune moment to check if the child lock hasn’t been activated and try resetting your machine.

You will often need the user guide for this as machines are all different however the child lock tends to be fairly easy to put on accidentally. Likewise, the dishwasher could have power however will not start, in this case the solution may be as simple as resetting the program.

When you have ruled out these faults it’s time for the real investigations to begin.

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

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

Checking 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 run if these are not working for understandable reasons. You wouldn’t want begin the machine without meaning to with the door not closed.

A faulty switch will prevent your machine from starting as well as completing a cycle. You can test the switch using a multimeter. The switch is generally found under the front door panel or control panel.

Double check you have disconnected power to the dishwasher prior to taking off the door panel and testing for continuity to make sure 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 you have tested your door latch and door latch switch and discovered they are operating correctly the next component to check 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 motor, plus the valves.

If your dishwasher has an electronic control as opposed to a mechanical timer then it might need to be tested while connected, in which case you will need to call an engineer.

Checking the Selector Switch

This is the part of your machine that selects the cycle , it’s style and location will vary depending on the make and model of your dishwasher. A faulty selector switch or one that has got stuck could result in the machine not to turn on.

You should be able to see if the buttons are going down all the way, or you could be required to disconnect the dishwasher in order to have a look at 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 cause your machine not to start, thus this might be the fault if you have checked the control panel and know that there is power going to the motor.

To test this you will have to locate the motor as well as find the relay that will usually be mounted next to the motor. This could then be taken out as well as tested with the help of a multimeter and you may have to replace it.

Checking the Thermal Fuse

If you have investigated all the above yet still haven’t found the fault the next part of the machine to test is the thermal fuse. This may or may not be present and is designed to protect the control board.

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

Testing the Drive Motor

The final component you can check that could stop your machine from working is the drive motor. This is the component that circulates the water to wash your dishes.

If you have checked the other parts and still haven’t discovered the issue this may be the issue especially if your machine has previously been making a loud humming noise.

You should be able to gain access to the motor by taking off the panel at the bottom of the machine. Check it with the help of a multimeter then replace if faulty.

When to Contact a Professional

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

If you do have a multimeter and can perform the above tests then you could well be able to fix the issue without assistance. Yet if you are not sure it might be easier to contact an engineer.

Don’t forget to have a look at your insurance as well as 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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