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If your dishwasher isn't getting dishes clean, it could be time to repair the upper and lower spray arms. After much use, the sprayer arms get clogged with dirt or crack. Here are some tips to fix dishwasher spray arms.
Prepare to Work
For this repair, you need:
Unplug the power cord to the dishwasher, which is usually plugged into a ground fault circuit outlet that is under the kitchen sink and behind the cabinet wall. If you have a hard-wired dishwasher, turn off the power from the breaker box. Try turning the dishwasher on to ensure that the power is off.
Repair the Lower Spray Arm
Pull out the bottom dish rack, and spin the arm manually making certain that nothing blocks movement. Remove the nut by turning it a 1/4 inch turn to the left with the Philips screwdriver, then remove the arm from the dishwasher tub. If the dishwasher has a spray cap or spray tower, you have to pry it off or untwist it to expose the sprayer nut.
Clean grease and dirt off the base that holds the spray arm with the cleaner, degreasing agent, and old toothbrush. Use a sponge to wipe down the base. Slide a pipe cleaner or flexible wire into all the holes on the spray arm to dislodge dirt.
If there are cracks, replace the arm. Otherwise, reattach the old arm, tighten the nut, then reinstall spray tower or spray caps. Spin manually to ensure that it moves freely in all directions, and slide the lower rack back in place.
Repair the Upper Sprayer Arm
Slide the upper dish rack off the glides, and set it upside down on a flat surface. Rotate the sprayer arm manually to determine if it spins freely. Clean the base with the old tooth brush, all-purpose cleaner, and degreasing agent. Insert the flexible wire or pipe cleaner in the holes to remove dirt.
Replace any spray arms that have holes. If you have to replace it, loosen the Philips screw securing the spray arm and water feed tube with the screwdriver. Remove the tube by pulling it through the U-shaped housing in the rear of the dish rack.
Pull the water feed tube off the spray arm, pry the plastic bearing from the arm, then remove the spray arm. Place the new arm on the base, replace plastic bearing, reinsert the water feed tube, and secure it to the arm with the screw.
Turn on the power and test the unit. Sometimes, a dishwasher sprayer arm only needs replacing or cleaning. If your dishwasher still doesn't work, contact a kitchen appliance repair service.Share