GE dishwasher - Detergent Door Will Not Open!


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Old 03-28-06, 09:55 AM
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GE dishwasher - Detergent Door Will Not Open!

Hello everyone. I am new here, but I did use the search function and I could not find an answer for my issue. Sorry if this post is a little long, but any help you can offer is greatly appreciated. Thanks for taking the time to offer your advice and tips.

I have a GE GSS1800H01WW, Serial MF700788F, it is an 18Ē built-in dishwasher. I bought it brand new, but stored it in its original crate for a couple years before installing it at my new home about 10 months ago. I have been using it for 10 months trouble free, about 2-3 uses per week, but the last 3 wash cycles Iíve ran all produced the same result Ė the detergent door does not open.

So I searched your site and other online help areas and Iíve done the basics including making sure the detergent door is not obstructed, it is not. So, I removed the front access panel and closed the dishwasher and ran a wash cycle to try to witness the steps the machine makes when running.

The wax motor is not triggering the detergent door to open. However, the mechanical (plastic) linkage that operates the detergent door works fine. With the machine door closed and the front access panel removed, I can press the plastic lever where the wax motor plunger normally would contact it, and the detergent door opens just fine.

So, my problem is that the wax motor plunger does not expand out of the wax motor. So, I did the following: I removed the two electrical leads from the wax motor and placed my Ohm meter across the wax motorís electrical tabs. I get 1982 Ohms (give or take a few Ohms), I tested this a few times and each resulted in about the same reading. This reading took place with the wax motor electrical leads disconnected and the machine not running.
Is 1982 Ohms out of the wax motorís tolerance?

Next I switched the meter to volts but I am unsure how to test for the voltage on the wax motor. I traced the wax motorís two electrical wires back to where they connect to the timer assembly and connected each lead of the volt meter to those wires. I then cycled the dishwasher by turning the timer knob manually through the cycles. Many different voltage readings appeared on the volt meter momentarily as I rotated the timer knob. From what I understand, the voltage to the wax motor is applied only during a specific time during the wash cycle, so maybe I wasnít getting an accurate voltage reading without waiting there and monitoring my volt meter during the entire wash cycle.

Anyway, is my wax motor bad? Can you provide a wiring diagram and tell me where/what leads to test for voltage? I canít find the wiring diagram on my machine, I removed the lower trim and the kick plate but there is no wiring diagram there.

Everything else appears to work normally on the machine - the motor turns, the water is spraying, etc. It seems to be fine.

Thank you for taking the time to read this and to offer any advice.
 
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Old 03-28-06, 04:06 PM
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Unplug the wires to the wax motor... connect meter leads to wires and slowly turn dial if you get voltage the the wax motor is bad....
 
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Old 03-29-06, 07:05 AM
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Update!

Thank you for the advice Bambiblaster.

So I did the test as described above by Bambiblaster, and my voltmeter displays a voltage value as I turn the timer dial slowly through the wash cycles. The value that the volt meter displays is not a constant number though, it changes very rapidly from low numbers all the way up to more than 100 Volts. It's hard to explain, but if I look at the meter while I turn the timer dial, with the leads hooked up as described above, the meter displays rapidly changing voltage values.

I guess the reason for this is because the wax motor sees different voltage levels at different points in the wash cycle. and sometimes, as in the rinse cycle, etc. the wax motor sees no voltage at all.

anyway, where can I order a new wax motor? I hope this is my problem since it is an easy fix.

Thanks to all of you who can give advice on this.
 
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Old 03-29-06, 03:51 PM
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Try your local appliance store nearest you or look on this site are a few
 
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Old 04-06-06, 12:51 PM
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wax motor follow-up

Hello everyone,

Thanks for the advice Bambiblaster, here is my update:

I wish I had positive news to report, but I installed a brand new wax motor and still my detergent door does NOT open! I removed the front panel from my d/w so i could see the wax motor clearly, then i ran a wash cycle and sat there and watched. Once the machine got out of the rinse mode and into the wash mode i was waiting for the wax motor to switch open the detergent door, but the black plunger on my new wax motor did not extend out of the motor itself. So, I am guessing my timer is bad?

I connected my volt meter to the two leads that run to the wax motor, then manually rotated the timer knob through the cycles, and the volt meter showed a bunch of readings ranging from 0 to 120-ish volts, but only momentarily. I've read the wax motor needs either 30 or 60 seconds of 120V to open, so maybe the wax motor is not getting the voltage it needs?

I want to do a more thorough test to make sure the timer is the bad part before i spend $115 on a new timer. But, I do not have the wiring diagram for my d/w. Can anyone offer any advice or help me find a wiring diagram for a GE GSS1800H01WW. Any help you can offer is really appreciated.

Thank you for taking the time to read this and offer your advice.
 
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Old 04-06-06, 07:50 PM
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"I do not have the wiring diagram for my d/w. Can anyone offer any advice or help me find a wiring diagram for a GE GSS1800H01WW. "

There should be one hidden in the dishwasher someplace.
Try pulling the bottom pannel off and take a look around.
sometimes they will have them folded up and placed in an
envelope thats attach to a pannel.
 
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Old 04-07-06, 05:21 AM
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Thanks for the tip. I already tried that, i removed the lower trim plate and found an empty plastic pouch. I am guessing that's where the wiring diagram should have been.

so, I'm still stuck! Thanks for reading this thread everyone, please keep the advice coming.

Thanks,
Robert
 
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Old 04-18-06, 09:13 AM
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Update:

OK, I put in the new wax motor and hooked everything up and ran two cycles over the last few days and the wax motor is working properly. It opens in the "Light wash" cycle and NOT in the "Normal Wash" cycle. that had been throwing me off when i was testing for voltage. anyway, the d/w has ran properly two times now and it looks like everything is good to go. I'm going to reinstall the outer door cover and call it good.

Thanks to Jake for the advice along the way.

Oh, another tip that I learned:

GE does NOT sell the wax motor, they try to sell you a $110 detergent door assembly. The door assembly on my machine worked fine when manually operated. So, I bought a wax motor for a Maytag Neptune Washing Machine for $25 including shipping, and it is the exact same model and size as my GE d/w wax motor with the exception of a longer, black tip. So, clamp the two wax motors side by side, then use a Dremel and cut the longer tip down to match the wax motor you removed from your GE d/w.

Hope this helps anyone else who has a d/w wax motor problem.
 
 

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