A Dishwasher is Not Working After A Power Outage!

By - Hs Saini

Updated -

Power outages frequently occur due to natural courses, such as rains and hurricanes, overloading of outlets, and issues with the power lines.

However, even after restoring power, after an outage, there are chances a dishwasher will not work if it was plugged in and running. Why is that so?

During power outages, wires containing the flow of electricity are left void. An abnormal increase in voltage– a surge, is a consequence of the jolt in electricity after restoring power. This surge releases a current that goes through the dishwasher and brings about heat, damaging the dishwasher’s circuit and electrical components.

Can A Power Outage Damage A Dishwasher?


A power outage itself won’t damage a dishwasher because it simply stops running since there is no power supply.

So, restoring power is where the main problem arises, and the surge experienced causes harm to the dishwasher.

Dishwashers are among the appliances susceptible to power surges. The presence of a microprocessor in an appliance makes it particularly vulnerable.

A microprocessor is a component in a dishwasher that controls detectors, taps, and switches responsible for controlling the parts of the dishwasher that clean dishes.

This small digital component is so sensitive that even a minute volt fluctuation disrupts efficient functioning. Understandably, large appliances like Dishwashers contain microprocessors.

Power surges occur at insignificant or low levels, but either way, they cause damage, fry circuit boards, and melt metal and plastic parts of appliances.

Large power surges occur less frequently. Low-level surges don’t melt plastic and metal parts of appliances or blow fuses, but they cause electronic rust, Slowly degrading the dishwasher’s inner circuit until it finally fails.

Causes of Power Surges:

  • Lightning
  • Power grid failure
  • Overloading
  • Bad Wiring

#1. Lightning

Lightning 1

It is usual for terrible storms with destructive winds to cause surges. Lightning is caused by electricity voltage; such storms strike a home’s electrical system.

When this happens, the system accepts extra load and this excess burden on a home’s electrical system often causes surges.

#2. Overloading

Storms and jolts in electricity can cause excess electrical load, but there are other reasons this can occur.

For example, overusing extension cords by plugging in many large or small appliances is likely to cause overloading because this places excess current pressure on a circuit.

#3. Bad Wiring

Damaged and faulty wires cause electrical surges. When these wires are damaged, naked, or have been improperly installed in any way, then a wave is likely to happen.

#4. Power Grid Failure

The abrupt increase in electricity voltage after a failed power grid is fixed often causes power surges.

What Happens To A Dishwasher When Power Goes Out?

What Happens To A Dishwasher When Power Goes Out 1

When a power outage occurs, a dishwasher retains its memory and returns to a previous setting.

Nonetheless, the dishwasher resumes running immediately after the restoration of power. During a power outage, a dishwasher will, of course, cease to function.

While that is undoubtedly disturbing, it does not threaten the dishwasher. This is because most appliances run at standard household currents, ranging from 110-120 volts.

Most appliances run at a standard household current, varying from 110-120 volts. After the power outage, the current increases to 200v or more, damaging appliances.

Prevention is the easiest method employed to save dishwashers from surges. They include:

  • Unplugging Dishwashers when they’re not in use
  • The use of dishwasher surge protectors or installing a home surge protector.
  • Having a technician assess wires
  • Beware of post-outage surges

#1. Unplugging Dishwashers When They’re Not In Use

Unplugging dishwashers from outlets after use or when not in use is the easiest way to avoid surges. Since nothing connects it to electricity, a wave won’t harm it.

#2. The Use Of Surge Protectors Or Installing A Home Surge Protector

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Portable Wall Tap Adapter

A dishwasher surge protector defends dishwashers from electrical surges, while a home surge protector installed in the electrical box guards wires and all appliances against surges.

In conclusion, all appliances should use a surge protector because it is a significant device in a household.

#3. Have A Technician Assess Your Home’s Wiring

Old, outdated wires are susceptible to disrepair and cause surges. So, having an experienced electrician assess a wiring system to recognize potential future issues proves beneficial.

#4. Be Careful of Post-Outage Surges

It is best to be mindful of power surges as they are a byproduct of power outages. In addition, the sudden increase of voltage in electricity experienced after power outages damages plugged-in devices. Therefore, it is best to unplug all appliances immediately after an outage.

How Do I Reset My Dishwasher After A Power Outage?

You must press the start button for three seconds to reset a dishwasher. If that doesn’t work, turn the dishwasher off, or unplug it for a while before switching it back on.

However, if this doesn’t sort out the issues, there may be other problems, such as:

  • A blown fuse
  • Malfunctioning Door Latch
  • Faulty control panel
  • Faulty motor/ pump
  • A fault with the Thermostat
  • Activated Child lock ( present in some dishwashers)
  • Activated sleep mode
  • Activated Delayed mode or Control lock

#1. A Blown Fuse

The first thing to check if a dishwasher stops running is that the power is working. A fuse likely has blown, or a breaker tripped if the power display button on the dishwasher shows no lighting.

#2. Malfunctioning Door Latch

A door latch not being locked in place stops a dishwasher from running. This is a precautionary mechanism owing to the dishwasher’s unit’s temperature.

The problem could also stem from the micro switch in the door latch that regulates the opening and closing of the dishwasher’s interior contacts with the aid of a spring-loaded lever.

#3. Faulty Control Panel

A control board is responsible for all actions a dishwasher performs, and a fault in this panel affects the dishwasher.

The dishwasher’s cycle may discontinue midway, or there may be fluctuations in the light even when there is still power in the appliance.

It’ll be best to check the manual to see if there is a problem you can fix or if it needs a replacement.

#4. Faulty Motor/Pump

Dishwasher Not Working After A Power Outage

A dishwasher won’t run without water and adequate water pressure. Check that the water source is active and press and hold down the lock button to dispense from the mains.

If there are leaks in water from the pump,  this will make the machine stop working or even cease mid-cycle. Ensure to fix this problem.

#5. A Fault With The Thermostat

If a dishwasher stops midway or omits the drying cycle, the problem is from the thermostat. Also, if a thermostat is faulty, the dishwasher will turn off during the drying cycle or not work at all. Consequently, there won’t be proper washing of the dishes.

#6. Activated Child Lock

This control is found only in some new models of Dishwashers. The activation of a child lock stops the functioning of all other buttons.

The removal of the dishwasher from this lock happens by pressing the lock for three seconds or pressing the power button for three seconds.

#7. Activated Sleep Mode

This sleep function is available in some dishwashers like the whirlpool. Activating a sleep mode causes the dishwasher to stop while power is on.

The whirlpool manual recommends holding the start button for approximately a minute or more until the sleep light turns off.

#8. Activated Delayed Mode Or Control Lock

Check to ensure your dishwasher is not in delayed mode or control lock. Then, hold down the cancel/drain button and press the start button to resume running in delay mode.

Also, press and hold down the lock button to remove it from the control lock, then continue running.


A dishwasher likely won’t work after a power outage because of surges. However, electrical surges can be avoided by following preventive measures.

Resetting a dishwasher solves some fundamental problems, but if the problem continues, it means there are other severe issues in need of an electrician or replacement of damaged parts are required.

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