Heater element had shorted out and began to smoke

ApplianceWhirlpool Dishwasher


Level of DifficultyEasy

Time to do repair15 - 30 mins

Age of Appliance5 - 10 years

Tools Pliers
Screw drivers

James From McCordsville, IN

Oct 29, 2011

7 out of 10 people found this instruction helpful

I released the heater element from the clips on the bottom of the waaher tub. I pulled the unit out from the wall and disconnected power. There are two slip on wire terminals on each end of the heater element accessible from the back that need to be removed. One of them was badly rusted from leaking water, which had caused the short, and had to be replaced. These terminals and the crimping tool to install them are available at any home center. I removed and discarded the old plastic nuts since one of them was damaged by arching from the short circuit. Moving around to the front of the dishwasher, I removed the old heater and installed the new one. I had ordered new rubber washers, but the new heater came with them already installed. Since one of the old ones failed and caused the leak, they are a good thing to keep around as spares anyway. I installed the new nuts and tightened them to enough to ensure that the washers made a good seal. I reconnected the wire terminals to the heater, reconnected power and moved the unit back into place. The circuit opening when the heater failed caused a "call for service" error and the controller would not allow the unit to run. You will know you have this by the "CLEAN" LED flashing seven times. Clear the diagnostics by pressing the buttons for "HEATED DRY", "NORMAL", "HEATED DRY", "NORMAL" and after the controller resets, the dishwaher is ready to run. It's worked like new ever since.

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Diagrams and Parts List for this repair

Part PhotoPart DescriptionPriceAvailability

Rubber Washer

Part Number: PS384970

In Stock

Heater Nut (Now subbed to Heating Element Nut)

Part Number: PS392966

In Stock

Heater Element (Now subbed to Heating Element)

Part Number: PS8260087

In Stock