Why Isn’t Water Going to My Dishwasher? A Comprehensive Guide

If you’re wondering why isn’t water going to my dishwasher, you’ve come to the right place. A dishwasher without water is essentially non-functional and can be a great inconvenience. In this guide, we’ll break down common issues and provide you with step-by-step solutions to restore water supply to your dishwasher.

Why Isn't Water Going to My Dishwasher
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Check the Water Inlet Valve

The water inlet valve serves as a gatekeeper for water entering your dishwasher. This component is crucial to the appliance’s ability to clean dishes effectively. A malfunctioning or damaged water inlet valve will stop water from getting into the machine, making it inoperative.

Before you start examining the water inlet valve, it’s of utmost importance to disconnect the dishwasher from its power source for your safety. Unplug it from the electrical outlet or, if it’s hardwired, turn off the circuit breaker that controls the dishwasher.

The next step is to gain access to the water inlet valve, which usually requires the removal of the lower front panel of your dishwasher. You’ll likely need a screwdriver for this task. Depending on your dishwasher model, you may find screws at the corners or along the edges of the panel. Unscrew them and gently lift off the panel, setting it aside.

With the panel removed, the water inlet valve should be visible. This valve is generally connected to a water hose and will have electrical wires attached to it for control. Make a mental note or even take a photo of how the wires are connected; this will be helpful if you need to replace the valve.

Now it’s time to scrutinize the water inlet valve for any signs of physical damage. Check for cracks in the housing, signs of leakage, or corrosion. Corrosion is often noticeable as a white or green chalky buildup. Sometimes a valve may look fine but still be faulty, so if you have a multimeter, you can check for electrical continuity. This will tell you if the valve is working as it should, electrically speaking.

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If you’ve concluded that the water inlet valve is damaged or faulty, the next step is to replace it. Replacement steps can vary depending on your dishwasher’s make and model, so consulting the user manual is advisable. Some people are comfortable performing this replacement on their own, but if you’re not one of them, don’t hesitate to seek the help of a qualified professional. Remember to reconnect the wires and hoses just as they were originally to ensure proper installation.

Inspect the Hose

The hose is another vital part of your dishwasher’s water supply system. If it’s kinked or blocked, water can’t reach the dishwasher, disrupting its operation. Ensure the dishwasher is unplugged from the electrical outlet to avoid any electrical hazards.

Find the hose that connects your dishwasher to the main water supply. This hose is typically located at the back of the machine.

Perform a thorough inspection of the hose, searching for any kinks, bends, or blockages that might restrict water flow.

If you find a kink, gently straighten out the hose to restore water flow. If the hose appears blocked, you might need to clean it. Here’s how to do this…

Tools and Materials Needed

Adjustable wrench or channel-lock pliers

Towel or rag



Teflon tape (optional)

Safety Precautions

Turn off the electrical supply to the dishwasher.

Turn off the water supply valve, which is usually located under the sink.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Locate Water Supply Valve: Typically, this is found under the kitchen sink. Turn the valve to the “Off” position to stop water flow.

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Preparation: Place a towel or rag under the area where the water inlet hose connects to the dishwasher and the supply valve. Place a bucket nearby to catch any residual water.

Disconnect Hose from Dishwasher: Using an adjustable wrench, loosen the nut that connects the hose to the dishwasher. Carefully remove the hose.

Disconnect Hose from Supply Valve: Using the adjustable wrench, disconnect the hose from the water supply valve.

Empty the Hose: Hold the hose over the bucket and allow any remaining water to drain out.

Cleaning the Inside: Fill the hose with vinegar and let it sit for 20-30 minutes. The vinegar can help dissolve mineral deposits inside the hose.

Inspect the Hose: Look for any signs of wear or damage. If the hose appears to be in poor condition, consider replacing it rather than reinstalling it.

Apply Teflon Tape (Optional): Wrap Teflon tape around the threads of the connectors to ensure a leak-proof connection. This step is optional and based on your discretion.

Reconnect Hose to Supply Valve: Reconnect the hose to the water supply valve using an adjustable wrench.

Reconnect Hose to Dishwasher: Reconnect the other end of the hose to the dishwasher. Make sure to tighten all connections securely to prevent leaks.

Turn On Water Supply: Turn the water supply valve back to the “On” position.

Check for Leaks: Turn on the dishwasher and inspect the hose connections for any leaks. Tighten connections if necessary.

Restore Electrical Power: Once you are sure there are no leaks, plug the dishwasher back in or turn on the circuit breaker.

Clean the Filter

The dishwasher filter is responsible for trapping food particles and other debris to prevent them from re-entering your dishes during a wash cycle. A clogged filter can restrict water flow, affecting the dishwasher’s performance.

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Open the dishwasher door and locate the filter. It’s commonly situated at the bottom of the dishwasher, usually under the spray arm.

Remove the filter by twisting or unlocking it, depending on your dishwasher’s design. Rinse the filter under running tap water. Use a soft brush to remove stubborn grime or buildup.

Once cleaned, reinsert the filter into its original position and lock it in place. Run a test cycle to see if cleaning the filter has resolved the water supply issue.

Examine the Float Switch

The float switch is an essential safety feature in your dishwasher. It senses the water level in the machine and shuts off the water supply if it gets too high, preventing potential overflow. If it’s jammed or stuck, the dishwasher might mistakenly think it’s full and stop water from entering.

Open the dishwasher door and locate the float switch. It is usually a small plastic dome or cylinder found at the bottom of the machine.

Gently move the float switch up and down to see if it’s stuck or jammed. It should move freely. If you find any debris or objects obstructing the float switch, carefully remove them.

After clearing any obstructions, move the float switch again to ensure it moves freely. Run a test cycle to confirm that the float switch is functioning correctly and water is now entering your dishwasher.

For more articles on dishwashers, click here: Dishwasher Problems and Solutions: Your Ultimate Guide to Hassle-free Dishwashing

Conclusion: Why Isn’t Water Going to My Dishwasher?

In conclusion, a dishwasher that’s not receiving water can be more than just a minor inconvenience—it disrupts your daily routine and necessitates immediate attention.

By systematically checking the water inlet valve, hoses, filters, and float switch, you can identify the most common culprits and take appropriate action. Whether you opt for a DIY approach or decide to call in a professional, these steps offer a comprehensive roadmap to get your dishwasher back in working order.