Repair Tips for a Whirlpool Dishwasher

Updated April 17, 2017

Whirlpool Corp. manufactures and sells dishwashers and other home appliances under its own name, as well as under the brands Kenmore, Maytag and KitchenAid. Whirlpool has been in business for more than 100 years. Whirlpool dishwashers carry full warranties for one year, and limited warranties for longer periods on some of the parts. Not all issues with Whirlpool dishwashers require a service call from a dishwasher repairperson. You can solve some of these with the troubleshooting tips given below. Some dishwashing problems, however, cannot be solved yourself, but require a qualified plumber.

Has Your Whirlpool Dishwasher Been Recalled?

In 1996, about 500,000 Whirlpool and Kenmore dishwashers were recalled because the wiring within the door latch could potentially overheat and catch fire. The dishwashers in question were sold between June 1991 and October 1992. Affected Whirlpool brand dishwashers have model numbers beginning with DU8, DP8, DU9 and GDP, such as DU8700XY-1. Affected Kenmore dishwashers have model numbers beginning with 665, such as 665.1665591. In addition to model numbers, both Whirlpool and Kenmore have serial numbers ranging from FA2400000 through FA5299999 or from FB0100000 through FB1899999. If your dishwasher is affected by this recall, do not use it or try to repair it yourself. Contact Whirlpool at 800-874-9481 or Sears at 800-927-1625. About 162,000 Whirlpool and Kenmore under-the-counter plastic tall tub dishwashers made by Whirlpool and sold between June 2004 and January 2005 were recalled because of an overheating problem in the wash motor. To find out if your dishwasher is affected, call Whirlpool at 866-769-7260. In the meantime, do not use it or try to fix it. If your dishwasher is not included in the recalls, you might be able to repair it yourself.

Troubleshooting Whirlpool Dishwasher Problems

If the dishwasher does not fill, check to see that the overflow protection float is unobstructed and can move freely. Press down on it to release it. If your dishes are filmy or spotty after they've been washed or you see that the detergent is not completely dissolved, the water temperature might be too low. First, check to see that the dishwasher is connected to the hot water supply. Although the dishwasher heats water automatically at certain times, it will not heat cold water enough throughout the cycle to work properly. Whirlpool recommends that water be 48.9 degrees Celsius coming into the dishwasher. If you're sure the incoming water is hot enough and you're using the correct amount of detergent, but you still have problems with spots on dishes or a dishwasher that won't fill, insufficient water pressure might be to blame. Water pressure must be 20 to 120 per square inch for proper functioning of a dishwasher. If the dishwasher isn't draining well, you might need a drain air gap. This is an external part that keeps drain water from backing up into the dishwasher. Plumbing codes in some jurisdictions require the installation of a drain air gap. To avoid dishes getting chipped in the dishwasher, make sure you load the dishwasher in a way that the dishes and glassware stay stable in the rack. Do not put delicate china or anything not known to be dishwasher-safe into the dishwasher. If you see brown stains on dishes and on the inside of the dishwasher, it is probably because your water is high in iron. The remedy for this is rewashing the dishes, the first time without detergent. Put one to three teaspoons of citric acid crystals into the detergent compartment and run a full wash cycle. Next, run a normal dishwashing cycle with detergent.

Replacing Dishwasher Parts

If the solutions above do not work for you, it is possible that you need to replace one or more dishwasher parts. Whirlpool recommends that you use only factory-specified parts to ensure correct operation and fit. Make note of your model and serial number and call the Whirlpool Customer Interaction Center at 800-253-1301.

Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Elizabeth Dearborn is a former medical transcriptionist who now publishes websites and books. She writes mostly nonfiction and computer code but has been known to write flash fiction from time to time. She lives in Buffalo, New York and enjoys traveling, reading, cooking and gardening.