Dishwasher Soap Dispensers don’t open or broken? Tips to Fix

Broken Dishwasher soap dispenser

The soap dispenser is usually located at the door of the dishwasher. A detergent is usually loaded on the soap dispenser.

The soap dispenser flips open during the wash cycle. This usually happens after a while when the washing machine is switched on.

When the soap dispenser opens the detergent is dropped or dripped into the hot water bath at the bottom of the machine. The detergents help clean the grime and grease on the eating and serving tableware.

Reasons your Dishwasher Soap Dispenser won’t open

1. Broken spring

A spring usually powers the soap dispenser. This makes sure that instead of the detergent door falling open in the dishwasher, it pops open.

The spring is usually responsible for the popping up of the soap dispenser. The soap is then splashed instantly around the crockery through suds caused by hot water jets after the opening of the soap dispenser.

Broken springs will make it difficult for your soap dispenser to open. You will be forced to manually work on the soap dispenser when you need it open or completely do away with it.

When the soap dispenser doesn’t open you are likely to find more grime from the dishes on the dishwasher wall interior surroundings as well as the area around the soap dispenser door.

2. Wax Motor

The wax motor’s work is to track timers and trigger soap dispenser when needed. The wax motor may be the problem if your dispenser doesn’t open with anything being wrong with the door or latch.

The wax can be repaired by a hired professional. One can buy a new one as well.

When the soap dispenser doesn’t open during the cycle the dishes will come out rinsed but there will be no soap used in the process which is a key ingredient in ensuring the dishes are well cleaned.

3. Broken Latch

A broken latch can affect both the opening and the closing of a soap dispenser. A small piece of food can also affect how the latch closes.

If the latch closes differently, it might not open as it used to normally. Other causes of latch problems include; breaks from the much-applied force, brittle plastic from an older latch breaking off, bending, and wearing out.

4. Soap Buildup

This is very common in dishwashers. Soap dispensers are mostly full of detergents and influence the whole cycle of dishwashing.

To wash out the soap in the soap dispensers, most dishwashers are designed to direct water into them to wash out the soap in them.

However, not all dishwashers can achieve this feature fully. Some do not get the angle of the dispenser well while others do not spray water using the required force in the dispenser.

This, therefore, leaves the dispenser unclean and not cleared out. this detergent may dry up and clog the soap dispenser.

The soap dispenser becomes hard to open when the latch grooves fill up with the detergent. The detergent can also clog on the hinges making it hard to open the dispense smoothly.

How to use a dishwasher with a broken soap dispenser

It is not the end of your dishwashing experience if your soap dispenser breaks. There is still a reliable way that you can use to clean your crockery.

You can clean your dishes by putting the detergent on the bottom of the dishwasher. When you put the detergent at the beginning of the process you will probably not get the perfect results.

Before the main wash begins there is always a pre-wash followed by a pre-rinse. The detergent put at the beginning of the process can survive the pre-wash but will not survive the pre-rinse. The detergent will dissolve or get washed away too soon.

Therefore, you should wait for at least 25 minutes before adding the detergent. This ensures that the detergent is added during the main wash.

This wash period is very long and water temperatures are heated to high temperatures of between 150-165 degrees.

After the main wash, two rinses follow and you are assured of clean dishes at the end of the process. Many people have opted to use this method instead of repairing their broken detergent dispensers.

Though this method works, it is not as efficient as using detergent dispensers. You will waste your detergent and complicate the cleaning cycle more and more.

There is also no guarantee that the detergent will be optimally utilized by the temperature and at length or stage of the cycle as it is meant to be.

How to Fix my Dishwasher Soap Dispenser?

A soap dispenser may fail to function due to several reasons which require specific methods of fixing.

1. Detergent and Rinse Aid dispensers

The dispense may have been damaged, cracked, or discolored. Fix these requires you to replace the dispenser. Detergents that have caked on the dispenser can be cleaned using a wet cloth. Always disconnect your dishwasher from the power source before inspecting it.

2. Rinse aid cap

Your dishwasher not releasing rinse aid can be due to damaged rinse aid caps. A rinse aid cap that is loose will require to be refitted while the caps that are damaged by the heat will require replacements.

3. Door spring and Hinge Pin

These also can cause the dishwasher not to dispense detergent. If the spring and hinge are covered by the detergent dispenser assembly, remove them to restore them to their normal state of work. If they are corroded, broken, or damaged in any other way, they will need to e replaced.

4. Wax motor

The dispenser door will not open to release the detergent if the wax motor is not working properly. To fix the wax motor, you will first need to disconnect your appliance from the power source.

Remove the wax motor from the external door panel or the internal door panel (depending on your model) for you to access the wax motor.

Test it by touching probes to one terminal using a multimeter with an R×1 setting. The wax motor is defective if the reading is infinity and will need replacement.

5. Timer

Some dishwashers use timers. These timers mechanically operate the detergent dispenser. At a set time cycle the timer will activate a lever that will open the detergent door.

To fix a timer that is not working check the linkage between the door and the catch of the detergent door. If it is not working properly replace it.

6. Bi-Metal Release

This is common in older models. The dispenser door catch is operated using a bi-metal release which uses electric currents to release the door catch by creating a mechanical action.

To fix a bi-metal release that is not working you will first need to remove the internal or external door panel of your device.

Check the alignment of the bi-metal release by closing the detergent cup and using a screwdriver to push in on the metal until the detergent dispenser opens.

If you have a good dispense, it will definitely go a long way. Check out our list of the best soap dispensers with sponge holders as additional features.

How to Fix a broken dishwasher soap dispenser latch

When the dishwasher soap dispenser door latch is broken it needs to be fixed. To fix it you will need to follow the following process:

1. Switch the dishwasher off

Switching the power off usually helps prevent electrocution by mistakenly touching a live wire. Always attempt to switch on the dishwasher to confirm whether you have switched the power off.

2. Eliminate both the control panel and the door

Open the dishwasher and remove the screws in the edge of the dishwasher’s door and close the done after you are done. Discover the bottom of the door by slowly pulling on the front panel in the dishwasher.

3. Eliminate the dispenser

Any insulation substance that may prevent you from disconnecting the spring to the actuator should be eliminated. Do away with the dispenser mount and open the dishwasher to eliminate the dispenser module as well.

4. Install a fresh dispenser

Into the door, attach the new toaster mount module and shut the dishwasher. To maintain the mount in place, tighten the screws after replacing the dispenser bracket.

5. Reattach the control panel

The cable connector should be connected to the toaster. Connect the dishwasher to the power outlet and check whether the fix was successful through rigorous evaluation.

Can I use my dishwasher if the soap dispenser is broken?

You can use your dishwasher even when your dishwasher is broken. You can put the detergent at the bottom of the dishwasher and your dishes will still get washed. The dishes will not be washed thoroughly when you do this.

Therefore, it is recommended that you wait for some minutes before putting the detergents just as the soap dispensers spill the detergent at a set time.

Even though using soap dispensers is not a necessity, they are recommended because the dishes will be cleaner and the detergent will not be wasted

Why is my Kitchenaid dishwasher soap dispenser not opening?

There are several reasons why your Kitchen dispenser may not be opening:

  • The dispenser latch.
  • The dispenser door spring
  • The bi-metal.
  • Soap Buildup.
  • The wax motor.