Signs It May Be Time for a New Dishwasher

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Kitchen appliances are an invaluable amenity.  They are there when you need them and there to make your life easier.  So, what happens when one breaks down?  How much of an inconvenience would it be if your dishwasher breaks down?  That is a frightening thought, isn’t it?

A dishwasher breakdown can quickly transform your kitchen from a perfectly functioning sanctuary to a disorganized nightmare, piled high with dishes waiting to be washed.  Of course, as we all know from life experience, it will probably happen at the most inconvenient time (e.g. right before your Thanksgiving family gathering). That’s why we’re sharing a few signs that you should look out for that may indicate it’s time to replace your dishwasher.  Together, let’s make sure a total meltdown doesn’t happen to you!  Here’s what you should pay close attention to:  

Your dishes aren’t hot. You know that hot steam that comes out of your dishwasher when you open it?  Well, if it suddenly stops, don’t ignore it.  If your dishes aren’t coming out hot, they’re not getting clean.  The most important factor in cleaning and getting germ-free dishes is hot, soapy water.  In fact, the FDA says that a temperature of at least 170 degrees Fahrenheit is necessary to completely sanitize.  

So, if you take your dishes out right after a cycle ends to put them away, and they’re not warm and steamy, you may have an issue with the washer’s heating coil.  The coil is what makes the water super-hot in order to sanitize; if it’s broken, then the water isn’t heating, and your dishes aren’t getting clean.  

Your washer has stopped draining properly.  Once a cycle completes, you should see no water at the bottom of the washer.  If you do, however, see a pool of water, you likely have a problem with the drain, and this could be minor or major.  In order to determine which kind of problem you’re dealing with you’ll have to investigate a bit.  Check to see if any food or debris is blocking the drain preventing water from filtering out.  If you don’t see anything, then it may be a major issue of the drain itself being cracked.  If that is the case, you will need to look for a replacement.

The washer door no longer latches.  If the door has stopped latching properly or stopped latching at all, your washer won’t run.  It could be as simple as getting a latch repair, but it’s most likely a sign that your appliance has warped from a leak.  

You see signs of rust.  This is a pretty obvious sign that your dishwasher’s life has neared its end, as signs of rust on anything is never good.  If you’re unsure, take a light-colored cloth or paper towel, and swipe the floor underneath your dishwasher.  If it comes up with flakes of rust, this means that your washer is leaking water into places that it shouldn’t, and it’s time to get a new one.  

Your washer is dated and inefficient.  While it’s not an urgent reason to run out and buy a new washer, energy efficiency is a great factor worth considering.  If your appliance is more than 10 years old, for example, an upgrade to an Energy Star model will more than pay for itself, as you will conserve both energy and water as well as reduce your power bill.  

A dishwasher breakdown can be a terribly inconvenient matter, especially if you have a family that relies on its constant use.  So, keep your eyes open for any of these signs, and if you’re still unsure as to what you and your dishwasher are facing, give us a call at 815-515-4062.


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