Dishwasher: Brass Inlet Valve
by Kris Deering
Dishwasher Repairs: Brass Inlet Valve
Our dishwasher was slowly leaking water out of the door. I removed all the panels and could not find anything visible that was causing it. The most likely suspect was the water inlet valve which is located behind the lower front panel. I had to remove the front panel to get access to the valve.
The bottom front panel is held on by a few screws along the edge of the panel and a couple hidden under a small service panel on the bottom right side of the unit when viewed from the front (see picture). You will have to remove this small service panel by removing two screws with a phillips head screw driver, then gently pull on it until it comes loose (it is held in by clips). With this panel off you can remove four more screws that are holding on the bottom front panel. There are two more screws on the top of this panel, but they become extremely difficult to access. After removing these six screws, you can pull off the lower front panel and get access to everything inside.
Dishwasher: Brass Inlet Valve. If your dishwasher is leaking, you may have a bad inlet valve. The inlet valve is the part of the dishwasher that opens and closes to allow water into the tub. The valve is controlled by an electromagnet, which when energized, pulls a plunger up to open the inlet valve.
The most common failure mode for this part is that the plunger can stick closed (normally, it should be open when there is no electric current). If it sticks closed, you will get a leak from the bottom of the door. This seems odd because this part would seem to have nothing to do with the door – but look up at the front of your dishwasher and you’ll see that there’s a hole in the door through which water enters!
The water inlet valve is a common part to fail on a dishwasher. The valve lets water enter the tub, but it also creates a seal so that the water does not leak out. When the valve breaks, leaks can occur. It’s an easy repair, especially on newer models where you can quickly replace just the valve instead of the whole assembly.
The easiest way to tell if this is your problem is to open the door and start the dishwasher. Look for water dripping from the bottom edge of the door or pooling at its base. If you see either of these signs, check the inlet valve.
If you have a leaky inlet valve or are planning ahead for when you might, I’ve shared my research about how to prevent a dishwasher from leaking below.
If you have a dishwasher leaking from the bottom of the front door, it could be due to a leaky fill valve. The fill valve is located on the lower side of the dishwasher tub and is responsible for filling your dishwasher with water. The water inlet valve is usually made of brass or plastic and can be easily removed and replaced.
But before you begin, unplug your dishwasher’s power cord or shut off power at the circuit breaker or fuse panel. Then slide out the dishwasher, shut off the cold water valve located under the sink and disconnect the inlet hose from behind it. Now you can remove two mounting screws that hold the inlet valve in place and replace it with a new one.
Before you re-install everything, make sure to clean out any debris or calcium deposits in all of your hoses, including those leading to your garbage disposal. Check your kitchen sink drain for blockage as well.
Finally, line everything up, reconnect all hoses, secure all connections and plug in your appliance’s power cord or turn on power at circuit breaker or fuse panel. Now you should be back in business – no more leaking!
A dishwasher can leak from several places. One common location is the bottom of the door, where the seal meets the tub. If it is leaking from here, you will need to replace the seal.
To test if it is leaking from here, close the door and fill a glass with water, then place it on the top rack in your dishwasher. Set the washer to run through a cycle and check if there is drips inside of your glass. If there are no drips inside due to a leak at this location, then it most likely something else such as a problem with your inlet valve.
If you have found out that you do indeed need to replace your seal, you can get one here for about $20:
Here’s how you replace it:
1) Remove Dishwasher From Under Countertop
First off, shut off power to dishwasher at circuit breaker box (or unplug). Next, disconnect water supply line by unscrewing (use pliers if necessary) water supply line connection nut below dishwasher. Shut off water supply valve under sink before doing this step if necessary. Once water supply is disconnected, remove screws holding dishwasher under counter
Inlet valve is leaking water which is dripping down the door and pooling at the bottom. I’d like to replace it myself, but I can’t seem to find instructions online. Also, my dishwasher is a GE Profile PDW8480J10SS, but I can’t find that model on the GE parts site. There’s a PDW8280 listed on the site instead.
Can I use this part? What are the instructions for replacing it?
Firstly, look at the bottom of the door and see if there is a plastic shield that goes over the bottom and protects it from water splashes. If so, see if that is warped or damaged in any way. If so, you will have to purchase a new one.
Secondly, check the seal around the door. There are several ways to do this, one of which is to shut the door and place a sheet of paper between it and the frame of the dishwasher body. Then pull on the paper and see how difficult it is to pull out. If you can pull it out easily, then you will need to replace your seal; however, if it is very tight, then your seal is probably fine and that is not your problem. If you cannot do this test for any reason, try filling up a cup with water and leaving it inside your dishwasher while closed for several hours. Then check back on it and see if there is any water on the floor surrounding your dishwasher.
Thirdly, use your eyes to follow where the water might be leaking out of. In particular, take note of all connections and tubes (especially those leading to/from your garbage disposal) as well as any other weak points such as cracked metal or holes in h