Dishwasher Not Releasing Soap

It is really frustrating to open the dishwasher only to discover that the soap dispenser did not open during the wash cycle. This is a guide about dishwasher not releasing soap.

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The house we just bought has a small GE stainless steel dishwasher and it will not dissolve the soap. After running the cycle, even twice, the soap is stuck (not dissolved) in the holder. I just want to save water by washing the glasses in the dishwasher. Please help.

Java :)

By Java from Newport. MI

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Try adding vinegar to your detergent, also I notice that when I used cheap dishwasher detergent this happen. But adding vinegar to it the dishes comes out sparkling.

Also, that powder detergent will get old and it will not dissole properly, but add vinegar to it and you will not have any problem.

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Check to see what your water heater's setting is, we turned ours up so our DW would dissolve the soap. Good luck.

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Make sure you are not loading the dishwasher in a way that is blocking the soap dispenser. I used to have this problem when we put plates in the area that was in front of the dispenser, until I realized it wasn't getting a direct hit from the spinning water sprayer deal (also make sure that's not blocked). I moved my silverware basket to the area in front of the dispenser and make sure that only short stuff goes in the compartment closest to the door and haven't had a problem since.

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I have a 9 year old Whirlpool dishwasher that is not opening up the dispenser to release the liquid detergent to wash the dishes. I have tried using alcohol to clean the springs, because I thought it might be just build up on the little door. The door opens and closes when we pop it ourselves, but just doesn't open automatically when it is supposed to in order to dispense to wash our dishes. It's frustrating. Help.

By ScrpBkBon from Cincinnati, OH

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Fill your soap dispenser with either powdered Tang or powdered lemonade and run empty of dishes.

I did this twice and it cleared up the problem. The ascorbic acid cleaned up the problem.

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We had the same problem with our 2 year old dishwasher. Too new to replace and not worth a repair bill. Now we just fill the cup as usual, but we don't close the door to the cup. We just wait to fill it until we are ready to run the dishwasher and then close the dishwasher door and start it. It has worked great so far...nice clean dishes every time.

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Our Maytag dishwasher detergent dispenser has a wax motor to open the dispenser door. Recently, but not after every wash, when opening the dishwasher at end of the wash and dry cycle we found the liquid soap had dripped down the inside door and become hardened and dishes and silverware are not fully cleaned.

This seems to indicate that the dispenser opens, but at the wrong time late in the cycle after the wash and rinse and possibly opens due to the heat in the dry cycle. If the detergent door didn't open at all I would be sure it was the wax motor, but since it is intermittent, sometimes functioning correctly, we are baffled.

We made sure the spring is clean and functions (the door snaps open), the hinges are clean and not gunked up, and gasket is sealing well, the door catch funtions. We opened the interior door panel and removed the wax motor checking its electrical connections for oxidation (they were clean) and made sure the plastic parts to be moved by the motor to open the door moved freely. There was no detergent residue in the motor area or assembly.

What do you think is happening? And what can we do about it?

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    My Airstone LKF6 dishwasher's soap dispenser not working during cycle.

    By Sona

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    You can find several answers right on Thrifty Fun-use this search on the site: Dishwasher Not Releasing Soap

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    What would cause an automatic dishwasher dispenser not to eject the soap when cleaning the dishes? I can tell because I have not had to refill it in quite a while.

    By Arlene

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    Do you have hard or soft water? It sounds as though you've been using too much detergent for the type water you have coming into your home and as a consequence dishwashing detergent is probably caked behind the dispenser.

    If you can see caked detergent in the dispenser cup, scrape as much of it as you can out of that cup and discard it - it isn't effective soap anymore, trust me. The only thing cleaning your dishes right now is the hot water, not the soap.

    After you get all of the caked soap out that you can see, run your dishwasher empty (no soap, no dishes) at least twice at the hottest setting. Add a full cup of white distilled vinegar (put the vinegar in both dispensers if you have one for something like JetDry) each time to boost the cleaning of the hot water.

    Do this at least once a month for the rest of the time you have a dishwasher. Also, to prevent future build-up, go easier on the detergent. Use half of what the package or the directions for the machine suggest.

    If you continue to 'not need detergent', you have a more serious problem and should call in a repair tech.

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    Home and Garden Repair Appliances DishwasherSeptember 22, 2013
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