Why Won’t My Dishwasher Turn On?

Finding out your dishwasher is broken is never going to be the highlight your day, particularly if you are also faced with the cost of calling out a repair person and staying home to meet them just to diagnose the issue.

The good news is it’s possible to pinpoint and even sort out a number of dishwasher issues by yourself without needing to call for dishwasher repair, particularly if you happen to are able to find a multimeter.

You could realize you are able to fix the issue quite easily by 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 have to call an engineer.

What To Do If Your Dishwasher Won’t Start

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

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

Everyday Dishwasher Problems That Will Stop Your Machine From Turning On

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

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

You will most likely require the user manual for this due to the fact that models are all different however the child lock tends to be fairly simple to engage without meaning to. Similarly, if the machine has lights yet will not start, the solution may be as simple as resetting the program.

Once you have eliminated these issues you can start the real troubleshooting.

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

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

Examining the Door Latch and Door Latch Switch

The first thing to check is the door latches plus door latch switches. Your machine is designed not to start if these are broken for obvious reasons. You wouldn’t want to be able to inadvertently start the dishwasher with the door ajar.

A defective switch will stop your machine from turning on and operating. You may wish to check the switch using a multimeter. The switch is generally located behind the front door panel or control panel.

Ensure the machine is unplugged before taking off the door panel and testing for continuity to prevent yourself from getting an electric shock.

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

Checking the Timer

If you have tested your door latch plus door latch switch and ascertained they are operating as they should the next component to check is the timer or electronic control.

This is the component that distributes electricity to all the different components the machine needs to operate such as the motor, as well as the water inlet valve.

If your machine has an electric control rather than a mechanical timer then it may need to be tested while plugged in, 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 selects the cycle and will vary contingent on the make and model of your machine. A not working selector switch or even one that has not been fully pressed down might cause the machine not to start.

You can usually visually investigate to see if the buttons are going down all the way, or you may need to disconnect the machine and access the control panel to test the connections for continuity using a multimeter.

Testing the Motor Relay

The motor relay is another component that could cause your dishwasher not to start, and this might be the issue if you have checked the control panel and have ascertained that there should be power running to the motor.

To test this you will have to locate the motor as well as locate the relay that will usually be located next to the motor. This could then be taken out and checked with the help of a multimeter, if faulty it might need to be replaced.

Checking the Thermal Fuse

Once you have tested all the above but still haven’t found the problem the next part to check would be the thermal fuse. Note: Not all machines have a thermal fuse.

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

Checking the Drive Motor

The final part of the machine you should be able to test that might prevent your machine from running is the drive motor. This is the component that circulates the water to wash your dishes.

Once you have tested the other electrical components yet still aren’t getting anywhere this may be the cause of the problem particularly if you noticed a loud humming coming from the machine.

You can usually gain access to the motor by taking off the panel at the bottom of the machine. Test it by using a multimeter then 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.

If you are happy to perform the above troubleshooting then you might well be able to resolve the issue without needing a professional. But if you are con confident it might be easier to contact an engineer.

Don’t forget to check your insurance plus your home cover as dishwasher repairs could be included meaning the costs might not be as high as you think.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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