dishwasher not starting

Dishwasher not starting? Try these quick fixes.

You’ve just cleaned up the kitchen from a big messy dinner, loaded the dishes in the dishwasher, and you’re ready to plop on the couch and relax. But then you notice your dishwasher not starting. Now what?

Don’t panic. If there is power to your unit, there are typically three reasons for this dishwasher not starting issue:

  • Dishwasher needs to be reset
  • Dishwasher sump pump clogged with debris
  • Dishwasher door isn’t latching properly

You can easily diagnose and fix these problems yourself. Just follow these step by step instructions when your dishwasher won’t start.

DIY  Fixes for Dishwasher Not Starting

How to Reset Your Dishwasher

One of the easiest fixes, when you notice your dishwasher not starting, is to reset it.

Step 1: Turn off the dishwasher.

Step 2: Unplug the dishwasher from the power source.

Step 3: Leave the dishwasher off and unplugged for at least 30 minutes.

Step 4: Reconnect the dishwasher to the power source.

Step 5: Select a wash cycle and press start.


How to Check for Debris in Your Dishwasher Sump Pump

You may be wondering, “What the heck is a dishwasher sump pump?” It’s the pump that removes water from the dishwasher. If it gets clogged with food debris, it can be the cause of your dishwasher not starting. Here’s how to check for and remove dishwasher sump pump clogs.

Step 1: Turn off and unplug the dishwasher.

Step 2: Remove the lower spray arm and screen. (The sump pump is under here.)

Step 3: Unbolt and remove the sump pump housing.

Step 4: Disassemble all the pump parts. You should have an upper and lower impeller, impeller hood, blade, spacer and flat plate, O ring, and washers.

Step 5: Inspect all parts for food build up and remove any clogs.

Step 6: Soak them in warm soapy water and give them a good rinse.

Step 7: Reassemble the pump and replace the pump housing, screen and spray arm.


How to Fix a Dishwasher Door That Isn’t Latching Properly

If your dishwasher door isn’t latching properly, the dishwasher won’t start. This is a good thing! (Although you would get a nice floor cleaning if it did!) You can realign the dishwasher door to fix the latching problem.

Step 1: Unplug the dishwasher from its power source.

Step 2: Open the dishwasher and unscrew the screws that connect the inner and outer parts of the dishwasher door. (You can find them on the sides and top of the door.)

Step 3: Loosen (don’t remove) the two bolts on the inner latch.

Step 4: Align the door latch with the strike plate.

Step 5: Screw the inner and outer dishwasher door parts back together.

Step 6: Close the dishwasher door to ensure it latches.