While many modern dishwashers utilize fancy touchscreens with complicated displays, many Samsung models still like to use good old-fashioned buttons. Not only are these more simple to operate, but they have a longer lifespan than touchscreens.
However, dishwashers often need to convey detailed information to us, and without a screen to spell it out, Samsung looked for other creative ways to let us know if something was wrong with our dishwasher.
They use a series of blinking lights that spell out an error code. We can then use this error code to get more information about what’s wrong.
In this article, we’ll detail what these error codes mean and how to fix them so you can return to using your dishwasher as usual.
Why is my Samsung dishwasher’s normal light blinking?
Under normal operation, these lights will still blink; generally speaking, it’s not something you should pay much attention to.
However, suppose there is some problem with the dishwasher. In that case, we can look to the flashing light as an indication of an error code, and by marrying this up with the cause and solution, we will detail in this article, you can often fix these problems quite easily.
While it can often be tempting just to reset the Samsung dishwasher as it will erase the error code, it’s important to remember this is just a short-term solution. Sooner or later, you will need to refer to this guide to fix the root cause of the problem.
Here are the lights you might have present blinking on your dishwasher:
- Express 60
- Smart Auto
Any number or combination of flashing lights may be blinking to give us an error code. Here’s a rundown of all the common blinking combinations and what they mean:
1. Auto, normal, and express 60
If the auto, normal and express 60 buttons are all blinking simultaneously, the dishwasher has detected a stuck button.
Without a touchscreen, these dishwashers utilize the more traditional mechanical or membrane buttons, which are susceptible to having dirt, grime, or liquids make their way into the button housing, which can cause them to get stuck.
Once the button (or buttons) in question have been unstuck, this error code should disappear.
If your dishwasher doesn’t have the auto or express 60 options, this same error may be indicated by the following error code:
- Normal and Quick+
2. Auto and Normal
When auto and normal are blinking, it means that the dishwasher has gotten too hot. This is usually due to the water being supplied to the dishwasher being too hot or the dishwasher having experienced some malfunction, causing it to pass too much hot water into the machine.
While we can take steps to cool it and finish the wash cycle temporarily, the root cause will need addressing, which may require action from Samsung support.
You also have a degree of control over the temperature on the dishwasher’s front panel, so you can temporarily ‘fool’ the dishwasher into running cooler by lowering the temperature setting.
3. Normal, delicate, and quick
This error code means the water is too hot. Not to be confused with the dishwasher being too hot, as indicated by the auto and normal error code.
To remove this error message, ensure the temperature is set to about 176 degrees F. If you have set the temperature below this but still get this error message, it means there is a problem with the water supply or the machine itself.
If your dishwasher doesn’t have the ‘quick’ option, this same error may be indicated by the following error codes:
- Normal and quick
- Normal, Quick+, and Smart Auto
- Normal and Smart Auto
- Smart Auto, Normal and delicate
- Smart Auto and Normal
4. Normal and delicate
Similarly to the Auto, normal and express 60 error codes, this means there is a problem with a button.
If your machine does not have the express 60 button, it is usually used as a substitute error code for a button being stuck. If you have the express 60 option, it usually means there is a general issue with the button where it is permanently triggered.
Sometimes this error code will disappear when the dishwasher is restarted, but if it persists, it may mean the button itself is broken, and you may need to replace it with a new one before the error code disappears.
5. Normal, heavy, and express 60
This error code indicates that the thermistor, an electrical resistor used to measure and control specific parameters of the dishwasher during operation, has short-circuited.
This may happen as a one-off occurrence, but if, after restarting the machine, the error code still returns, it usually means the component has failed.
6. Normal, heavy, and quick
This error code is triggered by insufficient water in the dishwasher. While there can potentially be multiple causes of this problem, it’s usually because no detergent was added to the wash cycle, which has caused it to run dry.
If your dishwasher doesn’t have the ‘quick’ option, this same error can be indicated by the following alternative error code:
- Normal, heavy, and smart auto
7. Normal and Heavy
The normal and heavy error code means the thermistor is not operating correctly. This is not to be confused with the ‘normal, heavy, and express 60’ error code where the thermistor has short-circuited.
This is a more general error that a software error or a component failure can cause.
Inside the dishwasher are various moisture sensors designed to monitor where the water is running and help prevent leaks.
Instead of shutting down the cycle when this error code occurs, the dishwasher will turn itself on automatically and attempt to drain the water away.
This usually indicates a leak somewhere, but it can also occur if water has been splashed near the sensor by accident. Or the dishwasher has recently been connected to the garbage disposal, or the detergent has been overfilled.
How to fix Samsung dishwasher’s normal light blinking
It can be quite a complicated affair without the help of a display screen to tell you which error code has occurred directly. The issue is further challenged by the fact that multiple light combinations can represent different error codes depending on which options you have available on your dishwasher.
Once you have ascertained what your error code is and what problem it indicates, here are the methods you should use to fix that error.
Keep in mind that these solutions can span multiple error code combinations depending on your model of the dishwasher and what kind of wash options it has available.
1. Unstick the dishwasher buttons
As indicated by the auto, normal, and express 60 or normal and quick+ error codes, this means your control panel has a stuck button that needs unsticking before the error code will disappear.
Samsung’s suggested method to fix this is first to turn off the dishwasher and then press every button on the control panel a few times with a bit of pressure to help unstick the buttons.
In many cases, the combination of electronic restart and the pressure applied is enough to unstick them.
You can try a few other things to aid the process a bit. If your control panel has depressable buttons (i.e., not a solid cover where the buttons themselves are covered up), a small spray of WD40 or rubbing alcohol can help to remove built-up dirt or grime from the buttons.
Additionally, sometimes certain buttons have a small metal ring housing them. This is particularly common for power buttons. Some users have suggested taking a small metal pick and lightly prying on the button housing from underneath.
By doing so, you are releasing the button that is stuck, and you will often hear an audible ‘ping’ or click as the button is freed from sticking to the housing.
An easy way to avoid butting sticking to their house is to make sure you press the center of the button straight down in the future, so it makes as little contact with the side housing ring as possible.
2. The dishwasher has gotten too hot
Indicated by the auto and normal error code. The first step is to turn the machine off and empty it of dishes. Then you should add detergent and run a normal cycle (while it’s empty).
This helps to clean the system out and hopefully remove whatever problem was causing it to overheat in the first place.
If this does not solve the problem, you should turn the machine off and then turn it off at the circuit breaker to ensure no further damage is made to the machine while there is still a problem. Then you should contact Samsung support service to have a technician diagnose the root cause of the problem.
3. The water is too hot
Again, this is a different issue than the dishwasher being too hot. It’s indicated by the normal, delicate, and quick error code.
The temperature for the dishwasher should be below 176 degrees F. You can adjust the temperature of the water directly from the control panel, so check what that is and make sure it’s set lower than 176.
If the water temperature is below 176 degrees, but you still get the error, it may indicate an internal sensor issue. You will need to contact Samsung service to rectify the problem.
4. A button is permanently triggered
Indicated by the normal and delicate error code. While this could potentially be solved by following the previously unsticking processes, often, if a button is detected as permanently pressed, it’s usually due to an issue with the sensor itself.
Unfortunately, this problem is quite hard to self-service. You can try restarting the machine to see if it clears up the issue, but if the error code persists, then Samsung support will need to address the problem.
5. Thermistor failure
The thermistor is a vital component in the smooth operation of the dishwasher. Still, if you receive the error code ‘normal, heavy, and express 60’, the thermistor is short-circuited for some reason.
Occasionally, this can occur as a one-off problem; restarting the machine fully may solve the error.
However, if this happens consistently, it indicates that the thermistor has failed, in which case you should power the machine off and turn it off at the circuit breaker until Samsung support can take a look at it.
6. Not enough water in the dishwasher
Indicated by the normal, heavy, quick, or normal, heavy, and smart auto error codes, it means there is insufficient water in the dishwasher.
Occasionally this can be a sensor issue which can be fixed by restarting the machine. But more commonly, it’s caused by the machine being run without detergent, causing it to ‘run dry.’
If this happens, the easiest solution is to cancel the cycle by restarting the dishwasher, adding the detergent, and starting the cycle from the beginning again.
7. The thermistor is not operating properly
This is technically considered a separate issue from the thermistor short-circuiting and is indicated by the ‘normal and heavy’ error code.
Because it’s more of a broad error and not necessarily an indication of a component failure, it will require Samsung support to be contacted so they can further diagnose what is causing the problem.
8. A Leak has been detected
If only the ‘normal’ button is flashing, this error code means a leak has been detected somewhere.
If you can spot an apparent leak, then you can refer to Samsungs own guide for dealing with dishwasher leaks.
However, if there’s no obvious leak present, it may mean water has been splashed near the sensor, in which case you should give it some time to dry out.
Likewise, if it’s recently been connected to the garbage disposal, then you should ensure the garbage disposal cap has been removed.
Finally, you should check that the detergent has not been overfilled, causing an excess of liquid to be present.