Your appliances shouldn't break down, and they rarely do
Always be sure that you have your safety as paramount before you try to do anything with your dishwasher. Turn off the circuit breaker, and make sure that you have read the manufacturer's manual so that you know what not to do.
Trouble-shooting dishwasher problems
Here are some of the most common dishwasher problems and how to fix them.
1. A leak. If you have a serious leak from your dishwasher, you should call a professional. However, if you just notice a small pool of water near the unit, it is worth trying to fix it yourself before shelling out money for a repair bill. Leaks are commonly the result of a dishwasher that is unlevel, which is a usually a quick fix. Try removing the access panel cover to expose the feet. You can usually use pliers to adjust them so that the entire unit is level and able to hold water without spilling it.
2. Dishes with a water film. Sometimes the water that your dishwasher uses isn't hot enough, which can leave dishes looking less than clean. If you notice a cloudy film on your dishes even after they have been through a cycle in the washer, try turning your water heater temperature up to at least 130 degree Fahrenheit or 54 degrees Celsius.
3. An unpleasant odor. Because it processes many food particles and works in many complex parts, your dishwasher may develop an unpleasant odor. This is usually the result of food that has become trapped inside over time. If you detect an odor, first empty the food trap. If this doesn't work, you could also try cleaning your dishwasher with inexpensive products that are usually found around the house, such as baking soda or vinegar. Simply put a bit in the detergent dispenser and run a cycle with the unit empty.
4. A blocked spray arm. Sometimes, the holes in the spray arms of your dishwasher can become clogged, especially if you have hard water. A solution to this tends to be easy to find, however. Place the spray arm in a vinegar solution and allow it to sit. Check periodically to determine when it's fully cleaned.
5. A rusty dishwasher. Another common remedy used to solve issues with the dishwasher is citric acid. If your dishwasher has become rusty over time, run a cycle on empty with either natural lemon juice or citrus flavoured powdered drink mix.