When dishwasher door problems come up, so can your stress level, especially if the issue involves a water leak or total mechanical failure. In other cases, however, the unit will continue to otherwise operate normally and you may be tempted to ignore the trouble. Dishwasher door problems generally involve either the latch, hinges, seals or springs. Read on for some helpful tips for troubleshooting and resolving these annoying problems — they aren’t likely to solve themselves, and ignoring them may only lead to bigger issues.
Dishwasher Latch Problems
Most dishwashers will not operate unless the latch is fully engaged, due to safety concerns. If the door becomes difficult or impossible to latch, food particles or a foreign object may have become lodged inside. Try removing debris gently using a cotton swab or small screwdriver. If this doesn’t correct the problem, the latch may require lubrication or adjustment. Try spraying a small amount of silicon lubricant on the latch spike and strike plate. Check the strike plate for any loose screws or bent edges. If either part is badly damaged, a replacement may be in order.
Broken or Damaged Door Seals
Dishwasher seals and gaskets are sneaky problem-causers. The rubber material used to make these gaskets is exposed to a constant supply of hot water and harsh detergents. Food debris and foreign matter can also build up in the gasket’s grooves, eroding the rubber. The first indication that you have a problem may be a puddle of water on the floor. Although leaks also can occur if the pump seal fails, the door gasket is a more probable culprit. In some cases, the gasket may simply have come out of its channel. A more likely explanation is that the gasket is simply old and needs to be replaced. For many dishwashers, replacing the door gasket is a simple and straightforward repair. On some models, however, special tools are required to properly seat the gasket seal into its channel.
Dishwasher Door Springs and Hinges
Over time, door springs often fail simply from normal use. In some cases, a spring can be repaired; however experts usually recommend replacing both springs to prevent further problems. Hinges may become rusty, bent or broken, typically requiring replacement as well. Although hinges are straightforward and easily accessible, springs are much harder to access and work with. In some models, door springs are combined with a series of cables under high tension. Once springs or hinges are replaced, the door will require a series of adjustments to make it close and operate smoothly. For safety’s sake, contact a repair professional for help with this problem.
In the Salt Lake City area, Complete Appliance Repair is your locally owned and operated dishwasher expert. Before attempting a do-it-yourself repair, contact them to schedule a service call. Their experienced professionals will have your dishwasher door problems resolved in no time.