5 Dishwasher Repair Tips Every Appliance Technician Should Know

While dishwashers are great time savers, they can also develop a number of problems which cause them to break down and require repair. Appliance service technicians often get repair calls from customers whose dishwashers have stopped cleaning properly, aren’t draining correctly, or aren’t getting enough water.

Most dishwasher problems can usually be fixed by cleaning or replacing one or two parts. Diagnosing the problem correctly, though, can be a bit more complex. Issues with dishwashers can be caused by any number of factors, and appliance service technicians need to carefully assess the situation to make the right call.

If you’re considering a career in appliance repair, read on to discover five tips for checking the most common dishwasher repair issues appliance technicians encounter.

Tip 1: An Appliance Technician Should Check the Dishwasher Pump for Defects

During your pre-apprenticeship training, you'll learn the ins and outs of repairing appliances and how to check for common problems. As you’ll soon learn, one place where an appliance technician often checks for problems is the pump.

The pump is located at the bottom of the dishwasher, and contains a water impeller which circulates water by pressurizing the spray arms, as well as an additional impeller to drain water in most models. Pumps are also usually sealed to the tub by a rubber gasket, which can become dried out over time and cause leaks. That’s why students should remember to carefully inspect the pump and replace any broken or worn out components.

Tip 2: Water Inlet Valves Can Cause Appliance Technicians Problems

Water inlet valves connect the water mains to the dishwasher, and are one the most common parts to fail. If the water inlet valve isn’t supplying enough water into the tub, it can stop the dishwasher from cleaning properly, and will need to be replaced.

One trick you might learn during your pre-apprenticeship training is that a faulty valve will sometimes make a hammering noise when the dishwasher is turned on.

Tip 3: Appliance Technicians Should Check The Spray Arm For Clogs

The spray arm is one of the most important dishwasher components, and functions by turning throughout the wash cycle while spraying detergent and water on the dishes. Often, appliance technicians and pre-apprenticeship students will find that dishwashers which aren’t cleaning properly have debris in the spray arm holes, and need to be cleaned. They should also make sure that the spray arm is moving freely and not being obstructed, as well as check for cracks or warps in the plastic.

Spray arm filters can sometimes cause problems Spray arm filters can sometimes cause problems

Tip 4: An Appliance Technician Should Also Unclog Filters

As you’ll soon learn during your pre-apprenticeship training, most dishwasher models have at least one filter to remove excess food particles from the water. These filters are usually self-cleaning, but can still become clogged over time. That’s why students in appliance technician courses often find that cleaning out the filter is a useful solution when a dishwasher isn’t functioning properly.

Dishwasher filters can sometimes become clogged Dishwasher filters can sometimes become clogged

Tip 5: Appliance Techs Should Always Make Sure the Float Switch is Working

The float and float switch are located at the bottom of the tub, and prevent the dishwasher from overfilling. The float lifts as the water level in the dishwasher rises, triggering the float switch to close the water inlet valve once it reaches the correct level. A malfunctioning float can cause the water level to become too high and lead to leaks. Fortunately, this problem is often caused by dirt and debris accumulating, and can be cleaned quickly by appliance technicians and students completing their pre-apprenticeship training.

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