Are Your Dishwasher Spray Arms Working?

Fred's Appliance Academy
June 26, 2021
Dishwasher Training

Hi. My name is Renae, and I'm an appliance repair tech. Today. I'm going to show you the trick that I use to figure out whether or not your dishwasher is pumping water through properly.

The easiest way to tell if your dishwasher is pumping water through all the spray arms is to take all of your spray arms and line them up at 6 and 12, so you're going to line them up, front to back. And then what you want to do is close the dishwasher, start a cycle, and after a few minutes, check on it to see if the spray arms have moved.

And no, it's not going to hurt your dishwasher to open it up mid-cycle. Just be really careful because it might spray at you. As you can see, both of the arms in my dishwasher have moved from the original positions that I put them in, which means that the water was flowing through them just fine.

If you open your dishwasher and both the spray arms are in the same position, try it a couple more times just to make sure. If neither one has moved and you've noticed your dishes aren't getting very clean, either the spray arms could be clogged or your wash motor might not be working properly. If one spray arm has moved and the other one hasn't, there might be a clog somewhere down the line, or your wash motor might be weak. Definitely run and check a few more times just to make sure, and if they're still not moving, or only partially moving, call for service.

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