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Is It Worth Fixing a Dishwasher?

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fixing a dishwasher
May 2022

An adage says, “out with the old, in with the new.” Now, this maxim is applicable in many facets of your life. However, when it comes to fixing a dishwasher, this maxim may not be as practical.

A dishwasher is an effective tool that saves time and energy when doing dishes. This appliance serves as a long-term solution to combating grim and grease. However, your dishwasher can break down or malfunction like any other machine.

Hence, what is the ideal decision to make when your dishwasher hits a snag in times of crisis? Do you dispose of the machine and purchase a new one? How can you decide on when to buy a new dishwasher? We’ll discuss both options with you in this article.

How Long Can a Dishwasher Last?

Typically, a standard-issue dishwasher can last up to 10 years. According to Consumer Reports, 30% of dishwashers need a fix or repair in their first five years. These first five years are also the most crucial part that determines whether to fix or buy a new dishwasher in the coming years.

However, if your dishwasher is older than 10 years, it may be worth considering replacing it. Nevertheless, you can reduce the chances of replacing the dishwasher by ensuring consistent maintenance throughout the machine’s run.

dishwasher last

How Much Can a New Dishwasher Cost?

On average, a dishwasher will vary in price depending on the brand and features. Nevertheless, you can get a standard dishwasher for about $500, while a more sophisticated version can cost $2,000 or more.

However, it is essential to note that installation costs can add $50 to $100 to the overall purchase costs. The amount of money you spend on purchasing and installing the dishwasher will also determine its longevity. Therefore, you can minimize repair costs and the need to fix your dishwasher by buying a quality device from the get-go.

dishwasher cost

How Much Can It Cost to Repair a Dishwasher?

Regardless of how much care you give to the dishwasher, it’ll develop some issues. Hence, you need to know when to fix your dishwasher and how much it’ll cost you.

Notwithstanding, the repair cost can vary depending on the particular problem or model. A low-performance issue can cost you between $100 to $200. Fortunately, if you’re observant and notice the slightest sign of a malfunction, you can repair some early issues yourself.

If a particular functional piece breaks off, you may only need to fix that broken part. For the more obscure pieces that break or malfunction, you can seek the dishwasher repair services in your vicinity to help. The prices of these repair stations can range between $50 to $100 or even less in the case of early detection.

repair a dishwasher

What are the General Dishwasher Problems?

Many problems can arise that’ll require your attention in fixing your dishwasher. These problems can range from electrical to mechanical errors. Follow us as we dive into the sea of possible issues you can encounter with your dishwasher.


If you notice pools of liquid forming at the base of your dishwasher, you may have a clogging problem. Clogging can block high-pressure water flow from the spray arms, thereby reducing the dishwasher’s efficiency.

Leaking Dishwasher

One of the more common issues you may experience when fixing your dishwasher can be leakage. Leakages occur when a hose is loose or there is damage to the gasket. These gaskets are small rings that connect two hoses.

The gasket is made of rubber material and can wear down and expand over time. Cracks can develop in the gasket, and the hose can cause water to spill out into the dishwasher. Luckily, the replacements for these gaskets are cheap and easy to find.

Noticeably, water leaking from your dishwasher to the floor outside the door means you have a broken door seal.

leaking dishwasher

Damaged Soap Dispenser

Occasionally, the soap dispenser may not release soap during a wash cycle or close during a rinse cycle. If you encounter this problem with the soap dispenser, you can order a replacement part or fix it yourself.

Broken Heating Element

A broken heat element can affect the dishwasher’s efficiency and interrupt the drying cycle. The faulty heating element will lead to wet dishes that will need external drying. However, early detection can make fixing the dishwasher worth it and prevent the problem from escalating.

Related Article: What to Do If Your Dishwasher Doesn’t Dispense Soap

broken heating element

Common Dishwasher Troubleshooting Tactics

You may chuckle at the idea of a dirty dishwasher and think of the dirty plates within the machine. However, the cleaning equipment itself requires cleaning and inspection from time to time. Here is some basic dishwasher troubleshooting you can carry out yourself.

Cleanse the Machine

As odd as it may sound; you can significantly reduce the chances of when to buy a new dishwasher next by regular cleaning. You can regularly clean out the various components like the spray arms to remove the debris build-up.

Additionally, you can wash out the filters. However, the cleaning process may vary depending on the type of filter in your machine. The filter may be automatic or manual; regardless, you can clean both types with hot and soapy water.

Load Items Carefully

If you’re experiencing dirty plates after a wash cycle, you may need to watch how you load items into the dishwasher. Carefully insert dirty dishes into the machine without overstuffing them or putting in abnormally large items.

Simple careful loading of items will reduce the chances of fixing or buying a new dishwasher in the long run. You’ll need to make sure there is enough space for the spray arms to spin during the wash cycle. Otherwise, you’ll get dirty dishes after a wash cycle that’ll prolong the whole washing process.

cleanse the machine

Combating Mineral Residue and Water Spots

One way of ensuring a spick and span set of plates is by controlling for water spots and mineral residue. You can utilize a rinse aid in the dishwasher during the wash cycle to eliminate surface tension. By doing so, you’ll prevent water droplets from hanging onto the surface of the plates after washing and drying is complete.

Furthermore, if you observe powdery residue on your plates after a wash cycle, you might be dealing with hard water. Now, hard water may be a regional issue for you, but you can combat that issue with a water softener. Adding a water softener will prevent any mineral residue in your dishwasher.

Inadequate Drying of Dishes

Early detection of your dishwasher cleaning but not drying your plates makes dishwasher repair worth it. A faulty heating element may cause inadequate drying of your dishes after a wash cycle.

You can use a multimeter to check the high limit thermostat within the dishwasher. Typically, you can locate this thermostat behind the access panel at the base of the dishwasher.

If working correctly, the multimeter should read a high temperature, but if not, you may need to replace the heating element because it may be broken. Thankfully, replacing a heating element is relatively inexpensive when fixing a dishwasher.

drying of dishes

Water Leakage

There are a couple of reasons your dishwasher may be dripping after a wash cycle. The float can experience a form of jamming that’ll prevent it from informing the dishwasher to stop letting in water when it’s full. Check for debris or blockage and ensure the float can move freely back and forth.

Similarly, you can examine the door of the dishwasher. A faulty door can determine whether to repair or replace your dishwasher if you do not notice it on time. In this case, the door seal may be dirty or broken and require immediate replacement. Check the door latch as well and ensure that it is working properly or replace it as soon as possible.

Stagnant Water

You may experience stagnant water collecting inside the dishwasher at the base. We advise you check out the drain valve and drain hose. Also, you can remove the hose from the drain pump and blow through it to check for any blockages.

Standing water can cause mould to grow within the machine and add a foul odour to your dishes after a wash. Hence, make your dishwasher repair worth it by fixing any immediate drainage issues you may have.

How Can You Fix a Dishwasher Yourself?

There are some basic troubleshooting you can carry out yourself to reduce the cost of repair. Furthermore, before you decide to repair or replace your dishwasher, check if the problem is minor or major. 

Here are some immediate checks you can carry out:

  • Search for clogs in the internal drain,
  • Ensure that no obstructions are preventing the door from closing properly,
  • Examine the gaskets and hoses for fractures and loose connections,
  • Survey the power connection and ensure that the dishwasher is getting power from the primary electrical system
  • Look out for any early signs of dripping water at the base of the dishwasher

fix a dishwasher yourself


One of the most economical reasons for fixing your dishwasher is the warranty. If your dishwasher is still under warranty, you can get the necessary repairs you need from the factory at no cost. However, we know how tedious it can be to get in touch with a factory-authorized repair shop.

Nevertheless, we offer adequate dishwasher repair services at the drop of a call. You can call us on our customer care lines and get a quick response and solution to your dishwasher problems.

Safety Operation of Dishwashers

A literature search was undertaken using PubMed to look into reported dishwasher-related injuries. A total of forty homes responded to the poll. According to their comments, 10% to 12.5% of youngsters help empty and load dishwashers, respectively.

The frequency of associated injuries was 12.5% among adults and 5% among children, indicating that small children in families with dishwashers are at risk of sharp injuries. With the support of manufacturers, you can avoid the unsafe loading and unloading of sharp objects and direct engagement of toddlers.

Repairing your Dishwasher vs. Replacing Your Dishwasher

You may still be wondering, “should I fix my dishwasher?” The answer lies in the particular circumstance that you find yourself in. There are benefits to either replacing or repairing your dishwasher. Below is a tabular comparison of both actions that will adequately guide you on when to make the right decision.


Repairing your Dishwasher

Replacing your Dishwasher

It’s more cost-efficient

Can set you back financially

It’s more environmentally friendly to repair your dishwasher

May come with energy-saving features that can save you money on utility costs

It’s less tedious to shop for a new dishwasher

Can be an inconvenience to buy a new dishwasher

Damaged parts may be challenging to find replacements for on the market

May possess new features that will suit your needs and current condition


replacing your dishwasher

When Should You Replace Your Old Dishwasher?

Whereas fixing a dishwasher may be worth it in most cases, there are factors to consider when determining whether to replace it. Chief among the factors determining if you’ll replace your dishwasher is the cost.

If making a set of repairs will cost 50% or more than the cost of a new one, then you should consider replacing it. Therefore, if it will cost you $1000 to replace your current dishwasher, you shouldn’t pay up to $500 or more to repair it.

In addition, if you’re fixing your dishwasher numerous times in a year, you should consider a replacement. A periodic repair is fine, but when different parts keep falling apart, this is clear that the whole machine is breaking down.

Next, consistently inspect the major functional components like the gasket, heating element, drains etc. This frequent inspection of the dishwasher will help determine if other machine parts are failing.

old dishwasher

How You Can Make Your Dishwasher Last Longer

You may be trying to maintain an old dishwasher or sustain a brand new one. Regardless, there are several steps you can take to reduce the frequency of fixing your dishwasher. Thus, ensuring the longevity of the dishwasher.

  • Never place items that are not dishwasher safe into the appliance. 
  • Refrain from washing bogus items like car parts or toys in the dishwasher
  • Check and get rid of hard water build-up regularly
  • Clean your dishwasher once a month to remove blockages of grime and dirt that can cause future problems

Related Article: What Is the Cost of Repairing a Dishwasher in Toronto?

Fix Your Dishwasher at Affordable Prices

We hope we’ve been able to answer your question on whether to fix your dishwasher or replace it entirely. We suggest consistent maintenance checks on your dishwasher to tackle any potential problems early. This way, you can reduce how much you have to spend fixing your faulty dishwasher. 

A dishwasher that you adequately look after and maintain will serve you for an extended period. The machine will reduce the workload for your home and bring you many pleasant memories.

Here at Prime Appliance Repairs, we offer same-day appliance repair services to keep your dishwasher in great working conditions. We’ll save your bank balance from bearing the cost of a new dishwasher. Get in touch with us today to learn more!

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