Saturday, September 20, 2014

Dishes weren't getting clean in Kenmore Elite dishwasher 665.13422K701

So I noticed that the flatware wasn't getting clean in the dishwasher, and the cups weren't looking so nice either. Things were wet, mostly, but…

I looked at the dishwasher manual for troubleshooting help; no joy. So I did some web searching, and followed their advice (mainly, check for food junk which might impede water flow). The good news was we didn't have food junk impeding the water flow.

So I did some guerilla diagnostics, by which I determined that water was spraying from where it shouldn't (blech). And that the spinning sprayer arms didn't. After getting the kitchen floor quite wet, I noticed a little lever assembly near the axis of the lower spinning sprayer arm; it's in the photo at left. (There's probably a better word for "lever assembly" but I hope you get the idea.)

I zoomed out a bit to take the image at right, which shows the lever in context.

What I noticed was a lot of water shooting out from the gray plastic thingie directly beneath the lever assembly. A plastic ell enters the "floor" of the dishwasher right near there. The lever ought to keep the ell in the floor. When the lever is out of position, water pressure can force the ell out of its position in the floor, and water sprays from where it shouldn't. This reduces water pressure in the (non)-spinning (non)-sprayer arm, resulting in a poor wash.

The next three photos at left show the lever returning to its proper position. Notice the catch, or bracket, that keeps the lever from moving up (vertically).

With the lever locked in place, it holds the ell in its proper position, and the water seems to go where it should, spinning the sprayer arm and giving us clean dishes once again.

I was going to ask why they didn't put that in the manual, but I suspect this lever doesn't get moved very often. Actually, I don't even know how ours got thrown out of whack, but it definitely was.

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