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Dishwasher Stuck on Wash Cycle or Clean Cycle

It is not uncommon to have issues with your dishwasher, especially when it gets stuck on a specific cycle. What do you do when your dishwasher is stuck on the wash or clean cycle? 

When your dishwasher is stuck on the wash or clean cycle, check if the water heating cycle works properly. Next, make sure the thermostat is not malfunctioning. If those parts are working correctly, you can check the timer and the float switch. 

There could be several reasons why your dishwasher is stuck on the wash or clean cycle. Fortunately, you will most likely be able to find and fix the problem yourself. This article will describe what could be going wrong, figure out what part is malfunctioning, and how to fix it, so keep on reading.

Check the Water Heating Cycle

The first thing you can check is if the water heating cycle is working correctly. When the dishwasher fills with water, the machine heats the water to the correct temperature before moving on to the next cycle. If the water does not reach the set temperature for some reason, the dishwasher will stay on the current cycle.

It is reasonably easy to check if the water heating cycle is working. Firstly, try checking the temperature reading on your water heater. The temperature should be somewhere between 120℉ (49°C) and 130℉ (54.4°C). 

If this is not possible, you can check what temperature the water is coming out of your sink. Put a cup under your tap and run the water till it is hot. Then take a thermometer and make sure the water is heated to the correct temperature. It is okay if the water is off by a degree or two.

If the water is not the correct temperature, you can always adjust it using your water heater. Another helpful tip is to run your water until it is hot before you start the dishwasher. That way, the water will be at the correct temperature before starting. This will make it easier for the machine to heat the water. 

Refer to the video below if you want a few more tips when checking your dishwasher water temperature:

Make Sure the Thermostat Is Working

The second thing you should check is your thermostat. If one of the thermostats malfunctions, it could cause your dishwasher to get stuck on the wash cycle. The thermostats regulate the temperature of both the drying cycle and the washing cycle. If the water gets too hot or not hot enough, the thermostat will not allow the cycle to go on. 

Anyone can check the thermostat if you follow the right steps. There are also a few safety precautions that are important to follow. It is also good to note that not every dishwasher has two thermostats. However, some only have one. 

  1. Go to your circuit box that controls the kitchen appliances and turn off the electricity. 
  2. Loosen and take out the screws on either side of the dishwashers kick panel, located in the front on the bottom. Put the screws and kick panel in a safe spot. 
  3. To make sure the electricity is off, you can use a non contact voltage tester and touch the wiring that is located under the washer tub. 
  4. Use a flashlight or work light to see into the bottom of the washer tub. You should see one or two small silver disks with two wires coming from each or one of them. 
  5. Take a small screwdriver and unscrew the thermostat or release it from the clips to remove it. 
  6. Check your product manual to see find the thermostat that measures temperature. Use a multimeter to check if it is working. You will be touching one probe to each terminal. Then set the dial of the multimeter to Rx1. You will be looking for a reading of infinity.
  7. To check the limiting thermostat, which makes sure the water does not get too hot, you will do the same procedure as the first to check it. Ensure the reading is at infinity at room temperature and drops to zero beside a hot lamp. 

After you have gone through these steps, replace any defective thermostats. After you have replaced them, rerun the dishwasher to test if they work correctly. 

There Could Be Problems With the Timer

Something else that could be causing the dishwasher to be stuck in the timer. The timer is what controls how long the electricity will be supplied to a certain cycle of the wash. If the timer malfunctions, the washer can get stuck and not move on to the next cycle. 

If your dishwasher timer is stuck, you may have to think about replacing it. You can either call someone to do this for you or follow the step by step guide below and do it yourself. 

  1. Turn off the electricity for your kitchen appliances on the circuit breaker. 
  2. Pull the dishwasher timer straight off, removing it from the front of the control panel.
  3. Loosen the screw under the latch handle knob and remove it by sliding it off the end of the handle. 
  4. Loosen and remove the screws on the inner door panel and separate the outer door panel from the inner door panel. You will access the timer by removing the outer door panel. It will be on the outer door panel. Next, you will be removing the indoor panel screws to separate the outer and inner door panels. 
  5. Now you will remove the timer and disconnect it from the wire harness connecter and screws. You will then unplug the wire harness and remove the mounting screws. 
  6. Attach the wires to the new timer and reinstall the mounting screws. 
  7. After installing the timer, reattach the outer and inner door panels, reinstall the door latch handle knob and turn on the electrical power. 

If you do not have the manual for the dishwasher, which has visuals of all the parts listed, or are not comfortable doing this yourself, make sure to hire someone to install the timer for you. It is essential to install the timer correctly, and the process can be dangerous if you are unfamiliar with working with electrical appliances. 

Check the Float Switch

The float switch is what detects the water level of the machine. When the machine fills up with the correct amount of water, the float moves up to the top of the machine and triggers the float switch. If a malfunction occurs with the float or float switch, this could prevent the dishwasher from moving out of the wash cycle. You can use the AstroAI Digital Multimeter to test your float switch. 

Final Thoughts

When your dishwasher is stuck on the wash/clean cycle, check the water heating cycle. If the water is not heating up enough, the machine will not move on to the next cycle. Secondly, make sure the thermostats are working by using a multimeter to test them. 

Copyright article owner is for this article. This post was first published on 2020-09-09.

Furthermore, make sure the timer is not malfunctioning. If it is, you will need to replace it with a new one. This can be easily done yourself, but make sure to follow the safety precautions. Lastly, check how the float switch is functioning. If the float or float switch is not working correctly, it will prevent your dishwasher from moving on to the next cycle. 

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ReadyToDIY is the owner of this article. This post was published on 2020-09-09.

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