A dishwasher is one of those items that you do not think much about. You rely on it to make your life easier each day without too much deliberation. Until it does not work. Then it can make your kitchen flow fall apart. Did you know that a dishwasher is not just a luxury item? It is also an ecologically friendly household item. It saves a significant amount of water compared to hand washing. If you find your dishwasher is unreliable it is worthy of the effort to fix it.
According to a survey done by Residential Energy Consumption, 68 percent of homes have dishwashers. Of those homes only around half actually use their dishwasher once or more a week. If you are hesitant to use your dishwasher, don’t be. If it does not work or gives you any trouble, repairs may be as simple as changing a fuse.
Your Whirlpool Dishwasher fuse may blow out for a variety of reasons. The most common reason for a fuse dysfunction in a dishwasher is power fluctuation. This fluctuation may be caused by a water leak, a frayed wire, a loose connection, or another cause. A visual inspection can often help narrow down the issue.
Table of Contents
- How Do Dishwasher Fuses Work?
- Where Are The Whirlpool Dishwasher Fuses Located?
- Safety Tips For Working With Electrical Appliances
- How to Check a Dishwasher Fuse
- How to Replace a Dishwasher Fuse on Your Whirlpool Unit
- Related Questions
How Do Dishwasher Fuses Work?
You are likely not too interested in how a fuse works until it does not do what it should. That is one of the perks of technology, you do not have to put too much thought into it all typically.
Dishwashers have fuses to protect their electrical elements from damage if the power flow fluctuates dangerously. These fuses allow the repair person or homeowner to easily replace an inexpensive part instead of a more costly element.
If your dishwasher fuse keeps blowing it may be a DIY project you can handle yourself in a few simple steps. Remember to always put safety first and if you are unsure about replacing a fuse do not proceed until you are sure you can handle each step. It is a relatively simple project, but there is room for error while working with electricity and appliance motherboards.
If you discover your dishwasher’s problem is indeed a fuse, this is great news for your budget as it can be much more costly to fix the electronics that the fuse protects. Replacing a fuse is inexpensive and can be done in less than an hour.
Where Are The Whirlpool Dishwasher Fuses Located?
The fuses on a Whirlpool dishwasher are located on the door. The main fuse is called the thermal fuse, and it protects the remaining mechanics from extreme heat fluctuations. To access the fuses first open the door. You will need your Phillips-head screwdriver to unscrew the screws around the door. You will find the fuses behind the control panel.
Take your time and be diligent during this step, so you are sure to remember exactly how to put it all back together when you are done. Store your screws in a single container because you will likely not have the exact screws lying around if you misplace one. Once you have the fuses exposed you are about a third of the way through the fix.
Safety Tips For Working With Electrical Appliances
- Always make sure your appliance is unplugged before you start any work.
- If you cannot unplug the appliance due to the location, flip the breaker to that specific area. You should learn and label your home’s breaker switches before you actually need to know during a DIY project or emergency
How to Check a Dishwasher Fuse
- Phillips-head screwdriver or drill with Phillips-head bit.
- Flat-head screwdriver or drill with Flat-head bit.
- The fuse to replace the blown one.
- Wire Strippers.
- Multimeter (optional if you know the fuse is blown).
The first step to checking your dishwasher fuse is locating the fuse box. In a Whirlpool dishwasher, the fuses are located inside the door behind the power settings. You can use a device called a multimeter if you have one and are experienced with electrical work, but this is not required to change a fuse if you do not feel the need to confirm it is indeed blown.
The main goal at this point is locating the fuse that will need to be changed.
How to Replace a Dishwasher Fuse on Your Whirlpool Unit
Step One: Find the Fuse Box
First, locate the fuse box and turn off all power to your unit. Then you will need to carefully unscrew the array of screws that are in place around the door. You will not need to take the whole door off for this, only the screws that affix the power box to the door.
Once you have revealed the fuse and motherboard behind the power box the time has come for the more technical steps.
Step Two: Cut Wires
You will need to snip the wires leading to the thermal fuse at this stage. Do not fret, if you have the appliance unplug and/or the breaker turned off then there is no risk.
Step Three: Remove Fuse
The next step is to pry the fuse out of its position. This is where the flat head screwdriver comes in handy. Simply use it to loosen the fuse and pull it up with your fingertips.
Steps Four and Five: Expose and Insert Wires
Now that the fuse is up you will want to use your wire strippers to expose one inch of wire from the rubber coating. The new fuse will have two terminals to place the wires into. Insert one wire into each side.
Gently tighten them with the appropriate screwdriver but be cautious not to tighten them too much because the wires can be crushed easily.
Step Six: Replace Fuse
Click the fuse carefully back into the same space that you pried it out of with your screwdriver. It should snap down without too much pressure. If it does not, do not force it as you could break it and need to start from the beginning with a new fuse.
Step Seven: Reassemble Control Panel
Now is the time to put the control board back together. It should not be too difficult. Just be aware of the location of any new wires from the new thermal fuse. Also, be aware of the location of any wires that were stored safely when the box was closed but may be dangling now.
Once you gently snap the control panel back into place retrieve your screws from their safe location and replace each one. Beware of overdoing the twist and stripping them.
Now restore power to the appliance and test the unit. If the fuse was the issue it should work effectively. If it does not still work then the issue may not have been the fuse, or a fuse may be just out of place. Troubleshooting may be in order. Sometimes the fix is as simple as wiggling a fuse back into place that was disturbed while repairing the other one!
If your dishwasher is very old it may be a wise investment to go ahead and upgrade. Remember in most cases, the newer the model the greater your energy savings will be.
How often does a dishwasher fuse need to be replaced?
You may never have to replace a single fuse. If everything runs smoothly in your unit, and if you do not have sudden surges to that specific outlet then you may use your dishwasher for years without changing a single fuse.
Can a dishwasher fuse blow out be an indicator of another issue?
If the fuses blow often then it is likely an indicator of something amiss in the system. You may have seen signs of this on your dishes. Some signs may include wet dishes after a cycle, standing water after a cycle, unreliable button presses, and odd noises.
Will the same fuse work for an older dishwasher as a newer model?
Generic fuse kits work for most models of dishwashers regardless of age. Be sure to double-check before you purchase. Generally, the thermal fuse is the fuse that goes out in dishwashers so start there for efficiency.
If I decide to buy a newer model dishwasher instead of repairing will it fit in the same spot?
It really depends on the make and model, but most dishwashers are the same size. Check out this handy article about calculating linear feet for your kitchen for more appliance sizing information. If you simply want to buy the same unit in a newer model then you will likely have no issues quickly placing it in the exact same hole under your countertop.