A malfunctioning start button on your Whirlpool dishwasher can be frustrating and disrupt your daily routine. However, before you call for professional help or consider a replacement, there are several steps you can take to diagnose and potentially fix the issue. In this guide, we’ll walk you through a step-by-step troubleshooting process to identify the cause of the problem and, if possible, resolve it.
1. Check for Power Supply
Whirlpool dishwashers often have a control lock feature that can inadvertently disable the start button. To check if this is the issue:
a. Locate the Control Lock Button
- Look for a button labeled “Control Lock” or “Child Lock” on the dishwasher’s control panel.
- Press and hold this button for about 3-5 seconds until the control lock indicator light turns off.
b. Test the Start Button
- Once the control lock is deactivated, attempt to use the start button again.
- If the start button now works, the control lock was the problem.
3. Inspect the Door Latch
A malfunctioning door latch can prevent the dishwasher from starting as it needs to ensure the door is securely closed. Follow these steps:
a. Examine the Door Latch Mechanism
- Open the dishwasher door and inspect the latch mechanism, typically located along the top edge of the door.
- Look for any visible damage, misalignment, or foreign objects that may be obstructing the latch.
b. Clean and Adjust
- If you find any debris or foreign objects, carefully remove them using a soft brush or cloth.
- Gently realign the latch if it appears misaligned.
- Close the door firmly to see if the start button now functions.
4. Check for Error Codes
Whirlpool dishwashers often have error codes that can help pinpoint the issue. Consult your dishwasher’s manual for information on how to retrieve and interpret error codes. Some common error codes related to the start button issue include F2 and F7.
5. Test Other Buttons
Press other buttons on the control panel to see if they are responsive. If other buttons are also not working, it could indicate a larger control panel or control board issue. In such cases, it’s advisable to contact Whirlpool customer support or a technician for assistance.
6. Inspect the Wiring
Sometimes, the problem might be related to loose or damaged wiring. To inspect the wiring:
a. Turn Off Power
- Ensure the dishwasher is disconnected from the power source by unplugging it or turning off the circuit breaker.
b. Access the Control Panel
- Depending on your dishwasher model, you may need to remove the front panel or access the control panel from the inside of the door.
- Inspect the wiring harness and connectors for any loose or damaged wires.
- Reconnect any loose wires and replace any damaged ones.
c. Reassemble and Test
- Carefully reassemble the control panel or front panel.
- Restore power to the dishwasher and test the start button again.
7. Contact Whirlpool Customer Support
If none of the above steps resolve the problem, it’s best to reach out to Whirlpool customer support or schedule a service appointment with a certified technician. They will have the expertise and tools to diagnose and repair the issue accurately.
|Cause||Description||Solution||Difficulty Level||Cost Estimate|
|Power Supply Issues||Dishwasher not getting power.||Check power source, fuse, or circuit breaker.||Easy||$0 – $20|
|Control Panel Defect||Start button may be faulty.||Replace the control panel.||Moderate||$50 – $150|
|Door Latch Problems||Door not properly closed.||Check latch mechanism and realign if needed.||Moderate||$20 – $60|
|Wiring or Cable Damage||Wiring inside the dishwasher is damaged.||Inspect and replace damaged wiring.||Difficult||$50 – $100|
|Faulty Control Board||The dishwasher’s control board is malfunctioning.||Replace the control board.||Difficult||$100 – $200|
DIY Troubleshooting Steps
|1. Check Power Supply||Ensure the dishwasher is plugged in and the circuit breaker is on.|
|2. Inspect the Start Button||Examine the start button for physical damage or sticking.|
|3. Verify Door Closure||Ensure the dishwasher door is properly closed and latched.|
|4. Check for Error Codes||Look for any error codes or lights on the control panel that indicate issues.|
|5. Inspect Wiring||Carefully check for damaged wiring inside the dishwasher.|
Professional Repair Services
|Service Provider||Description||Contact Information||Cost Estimate||Service Area|
|Whirlpool Service||Official Whirlpool repair service.||Phone: 1-800-253-1301||Varies by issue||Nationwide|
|Local Appliance Repair||Local appliance repair companies.||Varies by location||Varies by issue||Local|
|Online Repair Services||Online platforms connecting with repair professionals.||Varies by platform||Varies by issue||Online|
|Home Warranty Service||Service provided through your home warranty policy.||Contact your warranty provider||Covered by policy||Varies by policy|
|Control Panel||Replacement control panel for Whirlpool dishwashers.||Model-specific, check your dishwasher.||$50 – $150||Appliance Stores|
|Door Latch Assembly||Complete door latch assembly for various models.||Model-specific, check your dishwasher.||$20 – $60||Online Retailers|
|Wiring Kit||Wiring harness kit for dishwasher internal wiring.||Universal or model-specific options.||$50 – $100||Appliance Stores|
|Control Board||Replacement control board for Whirlpool dishwashers.||Model-specific, check your dishwasher.||$100 – $200||Appliance Stores|
Estimated Repair Times
|Repair Task||Time Required|
|Troubleshooting||30 minutes to 1 hour, depending on the issue.|
|Replacing Control Panel||1 to 2 hours, including diagnostics.|
|Door Latch Adjustment||30 minutes to 1 hour, including testing.|
|Rewiring||2 to 3 hours, depending on complexity.|
|Replacing Control Board||2 to 3 hours, including diagnostics.|
In summary, a non-functioning start button on your Whirlpool dishwasher can be due to various factors, including power supply problems, control lock settings, door latch issues, or more complex control panel malfunctions. By systematically following these troubleshooting steps, you can often identify the root cause and either fix the problem yourself or provide valuable information to a technician for a faster and more effective repair. Remember to prioritize safety when working with electrical appliances, and when in doubt, seek professional assistance.