If the last time you tried to use your dishwasher, you noticed that the dishes were not getting particularly clean, you may need to get your dishwasher repaired. But before you call a local appliance repair service, follow these tips to see if you can find the cause of the problem yourself. A quick adjustment or two might make your dishwasher as good as new again and help you avoid a costly repair bill.
Check the Spray Arm
The spray arm is the long, thin device at the bottom of your dishwasher that does most of the work at sending water shooting throughout the washer when it is working. Spray arms have holes in them that the water shoots through, but these holes can become clogged with food debris over time. Remove the spray arm and wash out any openings you see.
Check the Filter
When you have the spray arm removed, you will then be able to get at the filter that is located underneath in most dishwashers. This filter can also become clogged over time from food debris. Clean the filter or install a new one, you can find a new dishwasher filter at most home improvement stores in the appliance section.
Fix the Float
The float is a device inside the dishwasher that helps tell your dishwasher when to stop adding water. If this float gets stuck in a position near the top of the dishwasher, your dishwasher will think there is more water in the machine then there actually is and will stop filling. Check the float switch, which is usually located under the lower arm.
When It's Time to Get Professional Help
If you check all of these areas and your dishwasher is still not cleaning dishes properly, it might be time to call an expert. There are other areas that can be checked, but they are more complicated. For example, the inlet valve that lets water into the machine could be faulty. But fixing this usually requires disconnecting the dishwasher from the water supply. If you don't know what you're doing, you could end up causing more damage or even cause a flooded kitchen.
If your dishwasher is not working properly, open up the door and take a look at areas that you might be able to clean, like the arms and the filter. If that doesn't work, take a look at the float to make sure it is functioning properly. If none of these options work, you may have a more complicated problem like a bad intake valve and should call a professional from a company like A Pittsburgh Service Center.