The dishwasher is fixed! It’s true!

I wish I had video of my reaction once I had it all hooked up and pressed “Normal Cycle.” I literally hopped up and down in circles, hooting and hollering. It was like I had never pushed a button and had something turn on before. It was like I had invented electricity. My older daughter is unsure of my stability on this issue.

Below are a couple of photos of the final stage of work.

A repair action shot:

Paul models his flashlight pose for the camera:

Kelly fiddles with wires some more:

And here is a thrilling snapshot of the dishwasher running the normal cycle, as it was designed to do:

It’s like magic.

I have an epilogue activity planned for this dishwasher saga. I need time to work with it this weekend. I think it will be gross, and I can’t wait to share it.



The dishwasher part arrived! I’ve never ordered a part before and attempted to repair a major appliance. So here is the control panel console (NIB):

Except there’s one problem. It’s black, and I ordered white.

What to do, what to do? It’s possible they only make a black replacement part. I could not find a color choice online so I had to place the order over the phone with the Sears guy.

Mary says it looks fine. I’m torn between wanting it the right way and wanting my dishwasher fixed NOW. I could hook it up really quickly just to see if it works!

Paul will be home soon to weigh in on this issue. I wonder what he’ll say. Hmmm.

It is time to confront the dishwasher. As reported here, we started washing dishes by hand because our dishwasher was breaking. Over the past few months, fewer of the wash cycles have been available, so we were left with only the “China” cycle. The “China” cycle isn’t that effective.

After Internet researching, I guessed that the problem was based on either the electrical control panel (inside the door) or the control panel console that has the start buttons on it. Either of these parts seems to cost roughly $150. While this is cheaper than a new dishwasher, I’d still rather buy kayaking gear with the money, so I’ve been putting it off.

Here is the patient in the process of being disassembled:

Dishwasher disassembled

To take the dishwasher door apart, I had to buy a screwdriver set that has a six-pointed star shape. This is where cell phones come in handy. I took a picture of the screw head with a ruler next to it using my cell phone. Then at the Home Depot I was able to make sure I had the right size.

Screwdriver with star tip

Here is the faulty console, or control panel:

Dishwasher control panel

I think I have found the problem:

Faulty dishwasher wiring

That corroded wiring is attached to the back of the control panel. So, while I call around for the part (or eventually buy it online), we are still washing by hand.

As an aside – while we await the part, there is enough grime built up inside all of the door parts to keep the entire family busy with cleaning for a day or two. I cannot include pictures. It would be too embarrassing. However, if you are one of those people who can’t sleep knowing that there is dirt skulking in a corner of your house, then you need to take apart your dishwasher and get to work.

Here is a random summary of what I’ve been up to:

It has been a lovely autumn. I am enjoying myself, and the weather is fine.

Autumn leaves

I have decided to wage war on most of the carpet in the house, starting with the living room. That means I’m ripping it out. The hardwood floors that were under the living room carpet need some serious care, but they are still better than the carpet, which was on my nerves.

Rudy on LR carpet removal

So there is a pile of stuff growing and waiting for a trip to the landfill.

Pile of carpet rolls

We are still washing the dishes in a dishpan. In doing so we (I) have caused the side of the counter’s splash board to detach because there was a bit too much water in the draining area. There were no draining boards in stock the day I bought the rack, and I haven’t been back to the store since. Plus I don’t that it would have saved the situation. Water gets around. Frosty the Snowkid claims she remembers the installation guys warning me of this when they put in the countertop in 2001 – when she was 4.

Kitchen counter detaching

I haven’t done much with the bathroom except clear the drains manually with rubber gloves and a hanger. That’s a job that will make you reassess the meaning of life. (No picture provided.)

Frosty and I missed our kayak class this weekend because of the weather. That’s probably it for kayaking until the spring. The sight of my kayak shoved in the shed tells me that I need to get cold weather kayaking gear, that I need to get proper hanging hooks for my kayak, and that my shed is too full.

Kayak in shed

I am half way through my Teaching Reading in the Content Areas class and am still enjoying it. I repeat: I really wish I knew these techniques when I was a student.

Frosty the Snowkid is closing in on the end of her first calendar year of online school and doing great.  Unless you ask her, in which case she’s apparently going to fail out of 7th grade.

Mary about to fail school

Plum loves learning about Maryland facts and history.  She seems to like war.

Abby's Maryland history work

Paul suggests I should work towards running in a 5K in December.  I still don’t like jogging, but the wiser person deep inside me thinks that I should at least be strong enough to run 3 miles if I had to.  It’s just that when I try to move fast it feels like I’m suddenly made of jello-shaped lead weights.

I could just keep telling myself that ripping out the carpet tack strips is plenty of exercise.

The dishwasher is 8 years old and we use it about 11 times a week.  Who can blame it for starting to break?  The only wash cycle that works is “China” because the electric panel is otherwise fried (don’t get me started about the bad decision we made as a society to make every button electronic). Now it’s making some kind of high-pitched whining sound.  Maybe a belt – if dishwashers even have those.

So here’s the CURRENT appliance:


And here’s the UPGRADE I’ve selected:
Dish rack

Ha! I will not be held hostage by appliances that decide to break down – with the exception of the hot water heater, stove, refrigerator, washer, dryer, and air conditioner.

Too bad I couldn’t capture my family’s reaction in a photo, although they’re being supportive. This is a temporary solution. I haven’t yet scheduled time to figure out if I can fix the dishwasher. The fact that I want to try to fix the machine and not replace it is also mystifying those I live with.

In the mean time, I should probably look into routines that people (used to) use to hand wash their dishes. I’m sure there was a daily rhythm to this that households everywhere followed.