How To Replace A Dishwasher In Four Steps (Tips and Guide)

Woman Arranging Plates In Dishwasher

Your dishwasher is the hero of your kitchen. If there is one thing no one really likes to do – especially those with big families, that is cleaning dishes. This is when the dishwasher kicks in. You load it up, press a couple of buttons and get your dishes clean in no time. But just like any other appliance, your old dishwasher may reach to an end soon.

Before figuring out how to put a new dishwasher in, it pays off understanding when you need to do it. So, what are the signs that you need to focus on installing a dishwasher?

Female Hand Arranging Plates

Door no longer closes

This is pretty obvious and there might be a few quick fixes, but there is a time when you need to replace a dishwasher. Make sure there are no handles in the way, preventing the dog from closing. If there is a problem with the latch, you can also fix it pretty quickly – you may also be able to order a new one.

In the worst situation, your dishwasher is warped. At this point, there is nothing you can do. Leaks will start kicking in – your kitchen will turn into a swimming pool before you even realize what is going on with the machine.

Dishes are cold

Dishes must be cleaned in a hot water environment. Your machine relies on a heating element to get the job done. If it breaks down, your dishes will be cold. Not only is the operation less effective, but it is also likely to leave bacteria behind.

Cold dishes represent a sign, as well as wet dishes – even after you use the function to dry them. The heating element is usually pricey. Sometimes, it is more cost efficient to just get a new dishwasher filter instead.

The drain malfunctions

Normally, there should be no water left in the dishwasher once the cleaning cycle is done. Can you spot any water at the bottom of the machine when taking dishes out of it? In this case, you have a dishwasher drain hose related problem.

Make sure the drain is not blocked. Bits of food can prevent the water from draining. Check for random utensils left in there by mistake. If it looks clear, the problem could be more complicated – again, learning how to replace a dishwasher could be a more cost efficient solution than fixing the drainage.

Your dishwasher leaks

Leaks are usually small and insignificant – by the time they become too big, your problem is out of your hands. One thing leads to another and you will have to buy a new dishwasher anyway, not to mention fixing the flooring.

There are small signs that could indicate leaks, suck as flecks of rust here and there, a small crack on the inside, water damage on nearby cabinets or cupboards or water on the floor. Some drains can be fixed without too much hassle – inspect the dishwasher and the surrounding area every couple of months.

Now that you know when you need a new dishwasher, how do you actually replace it? What are the steps to remove the old unit and dishwasher installation?

Tools You Will Need On Site


There are a few tools you will need to remove the old dishwasher and install the new one. Make sure you have them upfront or you might need to leave the house in the middle of the operation in order to buy what you need.

All in all, you will need the following tools for the operation:

·         Adjustable wrench

·         Screws/mounting screw

·         Screwdriver

·         Pliers

·         Teflon tape

Now, what are the steps to follow?

Get Rid Of The Old Dishwasher

Open dishwasher

You do not have to be an expert to remove the old dishwasher – there is no need for sophisticated tools either. Most units feature a few different standard sizes, with the 24 inch width being the most popular one. If your new dishwasher has the same size, you will not have to work on the cabinet either. Before you start, it might be a good idea to throw some rugs and cardboard around in order to keep the floor safe.

On the other hand, get a bucket too. Some water might come out of the unit and you need a bucket and perhaps some old clothes. Before you start, you need to ensure the power is off – do it from the main outer door panel. At the same time, turn the water supply off. Disconnect everything, from the electrical cords/power cord to the actual water lines. Unscrew hinges and slide the unit out of its position – different units have different mounting mechanisms, but the process is pretty straightforward.

Take A Look At The Water Supply Line

Installing a dishwasher may also require working on other associated parts. Take a look at the drain line in the cabinet. The water line should be in good condition. If it looks corroded or too old to take the new unit, you might need to handle some extra repairs and replacements there too. If you have a very old dishwasher, it might be clever to be on the safe side – simply replace everything around it to ensure there will be no further issues.

Get The New Dishwasher In

Many new dishwashers are set for home improvement DIY projects. They usually feature insulation layers around them. For now, it pays off leaving the insulation as it is. Focus on the bottom outer panel only – remove it, then locate the elbow joints. Attach to the water supply valve/shutoff valve – you need to ensure the dishwasher water supply lane is well tightened – use the wrench for it.

Once the joints are on, use some Teflon tape to ensure the watertight seal is durable and efficient. It makes no difference if you have a plastic or copper line. In an ideal case, these joints should face towards the front panel or control panel of your new dishwasher – you want access to them in case leaks or unexpected issues arise later on.

Install A Dishwasher

Once every single configuration is set, your task is to on the water supply line and electrical supply. Attach the connections to the new dishwasher. Start with the water supply unit. Once fitted on, make sure the project has no leaks. There should be nothing on the floor or around the joints – no moisture whatsoever. Once done, push the dishwasher under the cabinet and go fitting the screws/torx screws and other attachments.

When all done, the dishwasher should be ready to go. Run the water on and make sure there are no leaks. If you can spot a leak, you will need to find the hole and redo the project. It could be annoying, but it is necessary.

Frequently Asked Questions

Still not sure whether or not you should learn how to replace a dishwasher yourself?

Is it difficult to replace a dishwasher?

The operation is not easy, but it is not the most difficult DIY project in the world either. It is pretty straightforward – you might be able to do it without a video tutorial too. However, you need to ensure you have the right tools. Otherwise, you may have to improvise, which will ruin the efficiency of your operation, as well as the dishwasher.

Can you replace a dishwasher yourself?

The price of a new dishwasher depends on more factors, such as its features, brand and overall functionality. Some units can be cheap, while others may cost more than your old car. If you opt for a cheap unit, chances are the installation will cost almost as much as the actual dishwasher. In other words, you might need to pay double for it.

This is the main reason wherefore installing a dishwasher makes a good DIY project. You need to do plumbing and electrical work – it can be done, but it is better to rely on professionals if you have no clue what you are doing.

How long does it take to replace a dishwasher?

Replacing a dishwasher depends on the model, the installation site and your experience. A professional could do it within half an hour. A DIY enthusiast with a bit of experience might be able to smash the job within an hour. Someone with no experience at all could take a couple of hours.

Is it worth repairing my dishwasher?

It depends on the problem. If you have a problematic latch on the dishwasher door, you could get a new one for little to no money. If there is a crack in the dishwasher, you may need to buy a new one instead.

Bottom line, learning Can a plumber fix a dishwasher? is not the most difficult job in the world. It is an easy operation that requires patience and consistency. Even if you have never done it before, a little attention to small details can help you finish the job in no time.

Wanna learn some more?

Recent Posts

Legal Disclaimer is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Additionally, also participates in other affiliate and advertising programs, such as AdSense, ShareASale, Awin, Etsy, and CJ among others, and is compensated for referring traffic and business to them.