If your dishwasher runs with the door open, the door leaks, or it won't start at all, the door latch could be defective. The latch is an important part of the dishwasher's safety, and it forms a tight seal to keep from leaking.
When the door closes, it sends a signal to the control panel to begin the cycles. You should be able to repair the door latch yourself by following these steps.
Prepare to Fix the Door Latch
To fix the latch, gather:
- Torque screwdriver
- Phillips screwdriver or small flat-blade screwdriver
- silicone spray lubricant
Make certain dishes aren't poking in front of the rack. Rearrange the dishes, and try the latch again. If rearranging dishes doesn't help, remove all items from the dishwasher, and drain the water. Test the safety switch to make certain it isn't the problem.
Open the door slightly with the unit on, and press the safety switch, a protruding spike. Close the door tightly, and watch for water to spray.
If the dishwasher does not come on, the safety switch has failed. If the dishwasher runs, the latch is the problem.
Clean and Lubricate
Check the door for food particles that may have gotten stuck on the latch. Use a rag to clean the debris, and try the door again.
Some latches only need some lubrication from a hardware store to function properly. Dab a rag with lubricant, and move the latch while you wipe it on the surface, so the lubricant gets into all the parts.
Adjust the Strike Plate
Disconnect the power cord to the unit, and inspect the strike plate. If you find bends, tap them gently with a hammer, and try the door again. Check for loose screws under the counter that may block the door and tighten them with the flat-blade or Phillips screwdriver.
Otherwise, check strike plate alignment by opening and closing the door to see where it catches. A strike plate out of alignment will contact the inside of the door. Pull the dishwasher from the cabinet enough to access the strike plate, and detach the bottom bracket counter screws, if needed.
Use the Torque screwdriver to loosen the tub screw that connects the strike plate, and move the plate until it aligns with the door.Tighten the screws, and test the door.
Adjust the Latch
.Detach the Torque screws along the upper edge and side edge of the door, and set them aside. Raise the panel to access the latch bolts, and loosen them, but do not remove them.
Keep one hand on the latch, and gently raising the door to align with the strike plate. Lower the door, tighten the mounting bolts, then reattach the screws.Contact a service, like Anderson's Appliance Repair Service, for more help.