Why Won’t My Dishwasher Turn On?

Discovering your dishwasher is broken isn’t a fun way to begin your day, particularly if you are also faced with the expense of phoning a repair person as well as taking time off work to meet them just to diagnose the problem.

Fortunately it’s possible to determine and often resolve a number of dishwasher issues alone without needing to call for dishwasher repair, especially if you happen to own a multimeter.

You might find you are able to fix the problem quite easily by yourself, especially if you are mechanically minded, and if you can’t at worst you will be better placed to describe the fault when you eventually do phone a repair man.

Things To Do If Your Dishwasher Won’t Turn on

Before you begin considering a new machine there are a few possible faults you should be able to troubleshoot without too much issue.

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

Commonplace Dishwasher Issues That Will Stop Your Dishwasher From Turning On

In advance of going through the following list of possible issues make sure that it hasn’t been 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 isn’t on and try resetting your machine.

You will probably require the manual for this due to the fact that models vary however the child lock tends to be fairly simple to put on without meaning to. Similarly, if the dishwasher has lights yet will not run, the answer may be as easy as resetting the program.

When you have eliminated these problems it’s time for the real troubleshooting to begin.

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

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

Examining the Door Latch and Door Latch Switch

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

A defective switch will stop your machine from turning on plus running. You can check the switch with a multimeter. The switch will usually be found under the front door panel or control panel.

Double check you have disconnected power to the machine prior to accessing the door panel plus checking 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.

Checking the Timer

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

This is the part of the machine that distributes electricity to all the other components the machine requires to run including the pumps, and the water inlet valve.

If your dishwasher is controlled electronically as opposed to mechanically then it could have to be tested while live, in which case you will need to call an engineer.

Testing the Selector Switch

This is the part of your machine that selects the cycle , it’s style and location will vary contingent on the make or model of your dishwasher. A broken selector switch or one that has got stuck might cause the machine not to run.

You can usually see if the buttons are going down all the way, or you may be required to disconnect the dishwasher and gain access to the control panel to check the contact points for continuity using a multimeter.

Testing the Motor Relay

The motor relay is another component that can result in your machine not starting, thus this may be the problem if you have tested the control panel and so have discovered that there is power going to the motor.

To test this you need to find the motor and locate the relay that will usually be mounted next to it. This can then be removed plus tested with the help of a multimeter, if faulty you may have to replace it.

Examining the Thermal Fuse

Once you have tested all the above but still haven’t found the fault the next component to test is the thermal fuse. This will only be found on some models and is designed to protect the control board.

If you will need to replace it in order to restore power to the control board.

Testing the Drive Motor

The final part of the machine you could check that may prevent your dishwasher from running is the drive motor. This is the component that moves the water around to wash your dishes.

When you have tested the other components and still aren’t getting anywhere this could be the cause of the problem especially if your machine has previously been making a loud humming noise.

You can usually locate the motor by removing the lower access panel. Check it using a multimeter then replace if broken.

When to Get in Touch With a Repair person

If you don’t have a multimeter or are not confident in taking panels off your dishwasher and testing the components then you will be better off calling a professional.

If you are happy to perform the above checks then you may well be able to resolve the fault without assistance. But if you are unsure it might be easier to contact an engineer.

Don’t forget to check your insurance and your home cover as appliance repairs may be included meaning the costs may not be as high as you think.

More Dishwasher Problems:

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