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Dishwasher Leaking: How to Repair a Leaky Dishwasher

While your dishwasher may be your most prized household appliance, did you know that if it starts leaking, it can be one of the most expensive machines there is?

High utility bills from a leaky dishwasher and insurance claims for water damage from a major dishwasher leak can cost thousands of dollars—way more than the cost of a new appliance and a serious dent in your budget.

These modern-day time-savers require very little maintenance, so you may not notice right away if your dishwasher is leaking. You may mistake a little water on the kitchen floor from the sink or attribute a wet spot inside your cabinet to some excess condensation, but a little investigation could help you avoid a major catastrophe.

We've put together a list of things to check for, some of the most common problems, and how to repair a dishwasher that's leaking on your own.

Dishwasher Repair- How to Diagnose and Fix It


Looking for the Leak

leaky dishwasherDishwasher leaks usually come from a couple places—around the door, under the appliance, or where it connects to a drain.

Water leaks around the door could be from a faulty gasket, cracked spray arm, or stuck float. A water leak from under the dishwasher could mean you’ve got a pump, hose, or water inlet problem on your hands.

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Troubleshooting the Problem

dishwasher spray armThe door gasket keeps the water inside your dishwasher and is typically made from soft vinyl or rubber. After years of use, it can become brittle and crack or break. Take a look and run your hand along the entire gasket to find any signs of damage.

The spray arm inside your dishwasher is located on the floor of the unit. The arm turns during the wash and rinse cycles and sprays water onto the dishes. Check the spray arm for cracks, warping, or blocked holes.

The water level inside your dishwasher is controlled by a float. Turn off the machine mid-cycle and open the door. If the water level is above the heating element, the float may be defective.

Removing the kickplate or access panel at the bottom of your dishwasher will provide a glimpse underneath the appliance where you can inspect the water inlet valve, hoses and clamps, and pump or pump gasket. Look for leaks from cracks, tears and loose connections while the dishwasher is running.

Repairing the Dishwasher

fixing a broken dishwasherOnce you've determined the source of the leak, you may want to tackle the job yourself. Some issues are easy to replace on your own, whereas others require the help of a trained professional.

  • Replacing the gasket—open the dishwasher door and peel the gasket away from the door or tub. Clean the area with warm, soapy water. Heat the new gasket with a hair dryer and then press the new gasket into position.

  • Replacing or cleaning the spray arm—take the lower rack out and unscrew the spray arm (turning it counter-clockwise). Clean and remove any blockage.

  • Replace a damaged spray arm by screwing in the new part in a clockwise motion. Put the lower rack back into the dishwasher.

  • Change the float height—change the float switch (under the round float in the bottom of the tub) to lower the water level.

Turn off the water and electric circuit to your dishwasher before repairing or replacing the parts listed below.

  • Replace water inlet valve—first remove the hoses, screws, and the spring clamp. Replace with a new inlet valve and reattach connections.

  • Fix loose or damaged hoses—tighten loose hose clamps with a screwdriver or remove the clamps, replace faulty hoses, and reattach the clamps.

  • Pump replacement—this is a complex procedure that should be completed by a professional technician.

Puls—Professional Dishwasher Repair You Can Trust

Puls dishwasher repair technicianWhether you're nervous about repairing your leaky dishwasher or lack the skills needed to handle the job, Puls is ready to help you fix it quickly and conveniently.

All our technicians are skilled to troubleshoot the problem and experienced with all makes and models. For a low $79 diagnostic fee, an in-house evaluation will identify the problem and provide a fast, accurate repair quote. Appliance repairs start at just $139 and our diagnostic fee is waived entirely when you proceed with our recommended repair.

Same day appointments can be scheduled with just a few clicks online. For a limited time only, you can save $20 when you book online with the code: SAVE20.

We take pride in every appliance repair and earn your trust with our 90-day guarantee on all parts and labor. That means we'll be back to fix anything else that goes wrong free of charge.

So, what are you waiting for? Book an appointment today so you can rest easy with a dishwasher that’s like new before you know it.

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Debbie D.
Debbie D.
Debbie Dey is a professional writer with over three decades of experience in residential construction. Her background gives her a wealth of knowledge about all kinds of home improvement projects, which she enjoys sharing through her writing. She has been a Puls staff writer since 2018. In her free time, you can find her relaxing by the water or cruising with her husband in their sports car.

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