Since a faulty control panel makes it difficult to operate the dishwasher, having your GE dishwasher control panel not working is a real headache.
The control panel is the most important part of the machine. Without it, your dishwasher won’t be able to pump water and heat it to the necessary temperature.
Unfortunately, it could be the power surge, wrong settings, or even a lightning strike that damaged the dishwasher control panel.
If you find yourself in a situation where you’ve loaded your GE dishwasher, and the cycle won’t start since the control panel is not responding, you’ve come to the right place.
In this troubleshooting guide, you’ll learn why the GE dishwasher control panel is not working and how to fix and prevent any issues from happening again.
Why is your GE Dishwasher Control Panel Not Working?
Table of Contents
Before diving deep into the reasons why the GE dishwasher control panel might not be working, you should recall when and what exactly happens when you try to use your dishwasher.
The control panel might not turn on at all, so none of the lights on the control panel illuminate, even though there is a steady power connection.
It could also be that none of the buttons work when you turn on your GE dishwasher. And finally, you might even experience erratic behavior from your machine 一, like the control panel flashing lights at random without buttons responding.
As you can see, the problems may vary severely, same as the reasons that cause them. They are not always as straightforward as activated control locks or insufficient power supply.
So let’s determine why your GE dishwasher control panel isn’t working and what the issue might be.
1. The control lock is activated.
Every GE profile dishwasher has an extra safety feature that locks the control panel. It prevents the dishwasher from being used accidentally by kids when you’re not around.
Before you start using your dishwasher, you should disable the control lock. So it’s one of the first things you should check when the GE dishwasher control panel is not working. You might have activated the child lock.
2. Faulty touchpad
On most GE dishwasher models, you’ll need to hold down a key for 5-seconds. Some displays stay lit for as long as the power is on, while others don’t leave the display lit when not engaged.
The display will indicate the error code when pressed. However, you can be sure there is an issue with the touchpad when the display light is on, but the buttons don’t work. It is an issue even if some buttons work and others don’t.
3. A faulty main control board
A bad control board can cause many problems, from the buttons not working to the dishwasher not even starting. So if you suspect that your dishwasher’s primary control board is not working properly, it’s better to troubleshoot it.
4. Electricity issues
Even such a small thing as the power cord not being plugged into the wall outlet is an issue. If the wall outlet has power, your machine is plugged into it, but the power doesn’t reach your dishwasher, you know that the issue is in your GE dishwasher.
5. Damaged dishwasher thermal fuse
A thermal fuse is a feature that prevents your GE dishwasher from overheating. It if blows, you won’t get any lights on the control panel. The dishwasher will work fine, but some parts might need maintenance or replacement.
How to fix a GE Dishwasher Control Panel Not Working?
When you’re sure your GE dishwasher is not working properly, and there is nothing wrong with the soap dispenser, the water valve, or the door seals, but the control panel is not responding, it’s a mess.
If the GE dishwasher control panel is not working, it doesn’t necessarily mean the whole unit is faulty. As you can see from the seasons we’ve just discussed, anything could be from a poor power supply to a blown thermal fuse.
Run through these quick DYI solutions before calling a technician.
1. Reset your dishwasher
Before you move on to more serious situations, you should try this simple trick of resetting the appliance. Simply press the reset button just once. The reset process should take 2 minutes at maximum.
2. Plug and unplug the main feed to the control board
The central power feed powers the control board. This also enables it to perform its functions, such as washing and drying the dishes.
One of the first solutions for the GE washer control panel, not working issue might be removing the primary power source. Once you do it, please return it to its original state and check how that works on the control panel.
Remember to take all electrical precautions while working with the main power feed to avoid any electrical hazards.
3. Deactivate the child lock
To deactivate the control lock on the GE dishwasher, press and hold the “Heated dry” pad for about 3 seconds. The locks’ light should go off, indicating that it’s inactive. It should help, so the buttons and control panel respond to presses.
However, if pressing the corresponding pad doesn’t deactivate the control lock, you should reset the unit. Unplug it from a power source, wait at least 60 seconds, and put the machine back on. Repeat the process with the “Heated dry” pad.
4. Clean the ribbon cables
When you unclean them for a while, the ribbon cables can be stained with dirt buildup. And since they are connected to the control panel, you should clean them regularly with a pencil eraser.
However, first, disconnect the dishwasher from the power source. Besides, if you’re using the eraser, run it against your clothes to get the dirt off the eraser first.
Be extra careful with the screws, and don’t hesitate to call a professional if you need help.
5. Replace the control board
Before you jump to conclusions and replace the electronic control board, ensure the dishwasher is not connected to power. The control board is located between the inner and outer door panels. So you must separate the two to get to the control board.
Be attentive to the screws and where each goes as you unscrew them. Then remove any wires connected to the control board and remove the faulty one yourself.
Once you finish, return the wires and screws to their original position and power the dishwasher again to see the magic.
6. Replace the control panel
Replacing the control panel requires a lot of attention to detail and a lot of wiring. So be sure to disconnect the power and water supply before you begin.
Then separate the door panels, and disconnect the control panel and other wiring connections. After you fix the control panel, reattach the wirings and turn the power and water supplies back.
It is a meticulous task, so call a GE appliances service if you need help handling it.
7. Check the thermal fuse
If the issue is unrelated to the controls, you should look for a blown thermal fuse near the control panel. It is a white or silver cylinder linked to two wires. Use a multimeter with the continuity setting to check whether there is continuity using this fuse.
If the circuit board is vertical, you’ll find the thermal fuse adjacent to the control panel. If it is horizontal, look for the thermal fuse on the right side of the control board.
Peel the fuse cover off gently using a screwdriver and place the multimeter’s robes into two fuse holes. If the continuity test fails, you should replace the thermal fuse.
8. Replace the touchpad
If you’ve gone through the list of reasons why the GE dishwasher control panel is not working, and nothing seems to fit, try pressing each button on the touchpad to see if they’re working properly.
If all or some buttons are not responding, it could be either a touchpad problem or a hardware problem. Either way, it’s best to replace the touchpad.