LG Dishwashers are some of the most reliable appliances on the market, praised by users for their excellent performance and efficiency. However, even the best machines can run into problems from time to time.
One particular issue LG Dishwashers seem to run into is leaking, indicated by the error code AE on the front control panel. If you’re encountering this problem, don’t worry; we’re here to help!
In this article, I’ll walk you through all the reasons why this error occurs and give you easy step-by-step instructions on how to get things fixed up.
Causes of LG Dishwasher AE Code
The main cause of the AE code is some leak, blockage, or damaged door gasket. Where the root issue lies will determine which method is best to fix this error code.
So let’s first walk through exactly what causes this error to occur so you can better diagnose what’s happening with your washer.
1. The Washer isn’t Level
LG Dishwashers are designed to be completely level with the floor so that gravity can direct the water down the drain. If the washer’s at an angle, it can cause water to pool up on one side and not be able to drain away, which will trigger the AE code.
An easy way to test this is by pouring a cup of water into the washer’s base; if you notice it pools up on one side, your washer probably needs leveling. Fortunately, this is very easy to do as you can simply adjust the feet on each corner to level it.
2. The Float Switch is Faulty
The float switch is designed to monitor the internal water level of the washer. As the water level rises, the float switch rises with it; certain levels can trigger a relay that tells the washer there’s enough water inside the machine.
However, if the float switch becomes faulty, it may prematurely tell the washer it’s overflowing with water and trigger the AE dishwasher error code as a safety measure to stop water from spilling out.
So the float switch will need to be inspected, and should it be found to be defective, then it will have to be replaced.
3. The Drain Hose is Clogged
Over time the drain hose may become clogged up with things like food debris or other foreign items, which not only prevents the water from draining away but can cause water to back up into the machine and overflow it.
This will cause the float switch to rise and trigger the AE code. So, in this case, you’ll need to disconnect the hose and clear it out of obstructions.
4. The Water Inlet Valve isn’t Working
The water inlet valve will open and close to let in more water or stop the water supply, depending on what your washer needs. However, if the inlet water valve fails to open, it may mean your washer cannot get enough water, triggering the float switch and causing the AE error code to appear.
It’s crucial that washers get enough water; otherwise, it can cause the heating element to burn out, so here, you’ll need to replace the faulty water inlet valve.
5. The Spray Arms are Blocked
The spray arms have small nozzles that the water shoots through to clean the dishes. These nozzles can become blocked due to things such as food particulate or mineral deposits from hard water.
This, too, might trigger the float switch causing the AE code, so the spray arms will have to be cleaned out so the water can spray into the dishwasher unhindered.
6. The Door Gasket isn’t Working
The door gasket is designed to create a water-tight seal around the washer so that water cannot spill out. Over time the gasket may become damaged or worn out, or sometimes a bit of food build-up will breach the seal.
Water leaking out of the washer will trigger the leak detection system. So depending on what’s wrong with the gasket, it may need to be cleaned, or if it’s damaged, it might have to be replaced.
How to Fix LG Dishwasher AE Code
Now that you better understand what problem areas can trigger this AE code to appear, we can go through the solutions and fix these issues to restore your dishwasher back to working order.
1. Level the Dishwasher
If your washer isn’t adequately leveled, then the water won’t be able to drain correctly. Here’s how to get it leveled:
- Start by checking the current level of your washer using a spirit level to ascertain which corners need raising/lowering.
- Turn the dishwasher off and unplug it from the power source.
- Take a wrench, loosen the locking nuts, and adjust the feet height as needed. You can turn them clockwise to raise the level and counterclockwise to lower it.
- Re-check the level of the washer and continue adjusting as needed.
- Once you’re happy with its level, re-tighten the locking nut to secure the feet and plug the dishwasher back in.
2. Check and Repair the Float Switch
A defective float switch may send out the wrong signals and trigger the AE code, so we need to inspect it with a multimeter to ascertain functionality; if it’s broken, it will just have to be replaced.
- Once again, start by turning off the power supply to the dishwasher.
- Locate the float switch inside the dishwasher. It’s usually on the front right side of the dishwasher, but this may vary depending on your model. You can refer to your user’s manual to ascertain its exact location if you can’t locate it.
- Visually inspect the float switch for damage. Is it cracked? Or is anything stuck underneath it that stops it from raising and lowering?
- If it’s not damaged, we’ll need to test it for continuity using a multimeter. Touch the probes to the terminals of the switch, and if there is no beep, it means it’s defective and should be replaced.
- Disconnect the wires that attach the float switch to the washer. Take a photo of the wiring order, as this will help you plug the new float switch in the exact same way.
- Depending on your model, the float switch will be attached with clips or screws; release or unscrew them to remove the faulty float switch.
- Install the new switch in its place and plug the wires back in the same order.
- Turn the machine on and check that the new overfill float switch works.
3. Unclog the Drain Hose
A clogged drain hose may cause water to back up into the washer and trigger the AE code, so we’ll need to get it unblocked. The first thing to do is visually inspect the hose for any signs of damage.
If it looks ok, then you will need to disconnect it to get it unblocked. The 2 easiest ways to clear a drain hose are by firstly using a drain snake or plumbers snake, which you can insert down the hose to dig out any blockages manually.
Otherwise, you can also make a cleaning solution consisting of equal parts baking soda and vinegar; pour this down the drain hose and wait 10-15 minutes. Then flush it through with water.
4. Replace the Faulty Water Inlet Valve
If the inlet water valve isn’t functioning, it must be replaced. To do this, remove the back dishwasher access panel and locate the old dishwasher inlet valve, unscrew it, and replace it with a new one.
However, depending on which LG dishwasher model you have, you may need to disassemble other components to gain access to the valve. If you are uncomfortable doing this, we recommend contacting LG support, who will have a trained technician assist you.
5. Unblock the Dishwasher Spray Arms
Over time the small nozzles can easily become blocked up with mineral deposits or other foreign objects and need to be unblocked. First, remove the arms from the washer by taking out the bottom rack and then unscrewing the retaining nut.
Now you have 2 primary methods of unblocking the nozzles. If the build-up is not serious, you can often just use a toothpick or paperclip and poke it through the nozzles to clear them.
However, if the build-up is severe, you can let the entire spray arm soak in a mixture of vinegar and water for about 30 minutes which will break down the deposits. Then simply rinse them through and reinstall.
6. Clean the Door Gasket
Sometimes a food deposit or grease build-up may breach the water-tight seal the door gasket makes, causing water leakage. Simply wipe it down with any all-purpose cleaning solution so it can seal properly.
If the gasket has been damaged or ripped, you must order a new one from LG and replace it.
Preventing LG Dishwasher AE Error Code
Ensuring the AE code doesn’t return in the future is quite an easy process. Simply clean out the spray arm nozzles and dishwasher drain hose occasionally to ensure the debris build-up doesn’t become too severe.
Oftentimes just using the dishwasher regularly is enough to keep flushing the system through and keeping it clean.