A dishwasher is a vital appliance in any home, making cleaning dishes a breeze. However, it can be frustrating when it stops working correctly, especially when you have a pile of dirty dishes waiting to be cleaned.
One common issue homeowners face is a Kenmore dishwasher not washing dishes properly. Several factors, including clogged filters, faulty spray arms, or malfunctioning wash pumps, can cause this problem.
In this article, we’ll explore some simple yet effective ways to fix a Kenmore dishwasher that is improperly washing dishes.
Why is your Kenmore Dishwasher Not Washing?
A Kenmore dishwasher may fail to clean dishes due to several reasons. Here are some common causes:
1. Clogged Spray Arms
One of the main reasons why your Kenmore dishwasher may not be washing is due to clogged spray arms.
Spray arms are responsible for distributing water to clean the dishes. Over time, food particles, grease, and soap scum can build up in the spray arms and clog them. This prevents water from reaching the dishes, leading to poor cleaning performance.
Remove the spray arms and clean them thoroughly with a toothbrush and soapy water to fix this.
2. Faulty Dishwasher Pump
A faulty dishwasher circulation pump is another reason your Kenmore dishwasher might fail to wash.
The circulation pump pumps water into the spray arms to clean the dishes. If the circulation pump is not working correctly, the water flow will not be evenly distributed, leading to poor cleaning performance. To fix this, you may need to replace the dishwasher pump.
3. Blocked Filters
Blocked filters can also prevent your Kenmore dishwasher from washing dishes properly. Filters are responsible for trapping food particles and preventing them from clogging the spray arms.
Over time, filters can become clogged with food particles, preventing water from reaching the dishes. Remove the drain filters and clean them thoroughly with a toothbrush and soapy water to fix this.
4. Hard Water
Hard water can also cause your Kenmore dishwasher not to wash dishes properly. Hard water contains high levels of minerals that can build up in the dishwasher and clog the spray arms. This can lead to poor cleaning performance. To fix this, use a water softener to reduce the hardness of the water.
Using the wrong or too much detergent can also prevent your Kenmore dishwasher from washing dishes properly.
Too much detergent can cause suds to build up in the dishwasher, preventing water from reaching the dishes. To fix this, use the correct amount of detergent recommended by the manufacturer.
6. Improper Loading
Improper dish loading can also prevent your Kenmore dishwasher from washing dishes improperly. Water may not reach all of the dishes if the dishes are not correctly loaded, resulting in poor cleaning effectiveness.
Load the dishwasher properly by placing dishes correctly and not blocking the spray arms.
7. Malfunctioning Wash Motor
A malfunctioning wash motor can also cause your Kenmore dishwasher not to wash dishes correctly. The wash motor is responsible for circulating water to clean the dishes.
If the wash motor is not working properly, water will not be distributed evenly, leading to poor cleaning performance. To fix this, you may need to replace the wash motor.
8. Defective Thermostat
If the water in your Kenmore dishwasher isn’t hot enough, it might lead to poor cleaning results. The thermostat is responsible for regulating the water temperature in the dishwasher.
If the thermostat is defective, it may not be able to regulate the water temperature properly. To fix this, you may need to replace the thermostat.
How to Fix a Kenmore Dishwasher Not Washing?
If your Kenmore dishwasher isn’t washing correctly, you can try a few simple fixes. Here are some standard solutions that you can try:
1. Clean the Dishwasher
Over time, debris and food particles can accumulate inside the dishwasher and clog the spray arms and filters, affecting its cleaning performance.
To fix this, you can clean the dishwasher by removing the racks and spray arms and washing them in soapy, hot water. You can also use a dishwasher cleaner or vinegar to remove hard water deposits or stains.
2. Check the Water supply.
Ensure your dishwasher gets enough water to clean the dishes properly. A common solution is to check the water inlet valve to ensure that the water valve is open and supplying enough water. You may need to replace the valve if it is faulty or clogged.
3. Check the Spray arms.
If the spray arms are not rotating properly, they may be unable to clean the dishes properly.
Inspect the spray arms for obstructions or clogs and clean them as needed. You can also try spinning the spray arms manually to see if they work correctly.
4. Check the Dishwasher detergent.
The type and amount of detergent you use can also affect the cleaning performance of your dishwasher. Ensure you’re using the suitable detergent for your dishwasher and using the correct amount according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
5. Check the Dishwasher’s filters.
The filters in your dishwasher can also become clogged with debris and affect its cleaning performance. Remove the dirty filters and clean them thoroughly to ensure the water flow is not obstructed.
6. Check the Dishwasher’s pump.
The pump in the dishwasher is in charge of pumping water through the spray arms to clean the dishes. If the pump fails, the plates may not be cleaned properly. Check the pump for any signs of damage or wear and tear, and replace it if necessary.
7. Check the Dishwasher’s heating element.
The dishwasher’s heating element is responsible for heating the water to the right temperature to clean the dishes. If the heating element fails, the plates may not be properly cleaned. Check the heating element for any signs of damage or wear and tear, and replace it if necessary.
By trying these fixes, you can ensure that your Kenmore dishwasher is working properly and cleaning your dishes effectively. However, if the problem persists, it’s recommended that you seek professional help for your dishwasher repair.
Why is my dishwasher humming but not washing?
If your dishwasher is humming but not washing, there may be an issue with the dishwasher’s motor or motor capacitor.
The motor is responsible for powering the spray arm that distributes water throughout the dishwasher during the wash cycle. The capacitor helps to start the engine by providing a jolt of electricity.
If the motor or capacitor is faulty, it may cause the dishwasher to hum but not run. In some cases, the engine may be blocked by debris or food particles, preventing it from turning properly. This can cause the motor to overheat, resulting in a humming sound.
Another potential cause of a humming dishwasher is a malfunctioning water inlet valve. This valve controls the flow of water into the dishwasher, and if it is clogged or faulty, it can prevent the dishwasher from filling with water properly.
There’s also possibly an issue with the dishwasher’s control board or timer. These components control the various cycles and functions of the dishwasher, and if they are not functioning correctly, it can cause the dishwasher to hum but not wash.
It’s important to note that if the dishwasher has not been used for a week or longer and is now making a humming sound without filling it with water, it’s likely due to the pump motor not running. The pump seals may have dried out and stuck together, preventing water from flowing into the dishwasher.
Running the dishwasher at least once a week can help keep the seals from drying out and sticking, preventing this issue from occurring.