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Old 08-10-2014, 10:34 PM   #1
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Maytag Dishwasher (Unclean Dishes)


Been fighting a very old Maytag dishwasher since we moved in. Wife has cleaned it out by hand and with various products, tried many different types of soaps, etc. with unclean dishes still. We've owned many dishwashers, no idea what gives. A new one at this point doesn't make sense with a kitchen gut job coming up, but I don't want her to constantly HAVE to hand wash either.

She mentioned today that the water in the dishwasher when she opens it is cold. Remembering from when I was under the sink installing her new(er) faucet and insinkerator...



I did some research and I guess some very new ones actually plumb to the cold side and let the heating coil in the dishwasher heat up the water to save energy. I seriously doubt this is that new but I can't find a definitive yes/no on this model for hot/cold or an online copy of an original owners/installation manual.

After doing some research and asking questions, she also said they don't dry well. This leads me to believe the heating coil may be bad. Any recommended websites to purchase from, and how big of a job (in terms of specialty tools)?


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Old 08-11-2014, 08:18 AM   #2
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The heating coil could be burnt but that is not your big issue.

The heating coil in most dishwashers is not a coil to heat cold water but rather just a supplement to keep the hot water, hot. if you look at any dishwasher manual most (particularly dishwashers with sanitation cycles) will list a minimum recommended water temp of 120 or so. If you have a heated dry cycle then the coil will also be used to asist in drying.

You need to switch that supply to the hot side.

As for "saving money" by making the dishwasher heat the water.... that makes no sense. Electric heating is very close to 100% efficient so it really doesn't matter if it is heated in your tank or in your dishwasher... same difference. I will say that if your dishwasher has to heat straight cold city water all the time then your washing cycles will be much longer, so are you really saving money?

Now I suppose if your hot water tank is plumbed a great distance away you could label the time it takes for your water to get hot at the tap as a waste.... but then that's a whole other ballgame.

Personally speaking, I have never heard of new dishwasher technology using cold water and for all I know it may be true. However it would accomplish about the same as you using cold water from the tap (ignoring your hot water) and heating it on the stove so you can wash your dishes.

At any rate... you have an old dishwasher..... which requires a hot water supply.

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Old 08-11-2014, 08:24 AM   #3
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The heating coil could be burnt but that is not your big issue.

The heating coil in most dishwashers is not a coil to heat cold water but rather just a supplement to keep the hot water, hot. if you look at any dishwasher manual most (particularly dishwashers with sanitation cycles) will list a minimum recommended water temp of 120 or so. If you have a heated dry cycle then the coil will also be used to asist in drying.

You need to switch that supply to the hot side.
Thanks, this was my line of thinking. My fixes were going to be coil + replumb. The wife will see it works, she will ask which one fixed it, and I'll say "who cares, it's fixed." I was unable to find a manual online to clarify if the manufacturer wanted hot or cold, just a lot of old posts that Maytag dishwashers (generic comments, not model specific) wanted 120-160 inlet temps.

Quote:
As for "saving money" by making the dishwasher heat the water.... that makes no sense. Electric heating is very close to 100% efficient so it really doesn't matter if it is heated in your tank or in your dishwasher... same difference. I will say that if your dishwasher has to heat straight cold city water all the time then your washing cycles will be much longer, so are you really saving money?
I don't either, but there are a lot of things I don't understand. Maybe the coil is powerful enough that in a very short run it can superheat a small amount of water that hot rather than having the hot water heater run? Regardless, thanks for the info.

Just got back from my Home Depot run getting CPVC fittings to switch over to hot, should be able to knock that out this morning. I'll do a test before the wife gets home to see if that fixes it alone since the coil is only available online. I have found the best method of buying appliance parts is hit the big guys online (appliancepartspros, repairclinic, searspartsdirect) and getting the manufacturer part number, then punching that in eBay. Paypal protection, free shipping, and a lot lower pricing. I'll probably do like I did with the dryer and take it apart before ordering to see what else breaks on disassembly.
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Old 08-11-2014, 12:13 PM   #4
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Maytag Dishwasher (Unclean Dishes)


Out with the old




In with the new




Checked quickly for leaks after letting it sit for a coffee break and made some "test dishes" by burning some spaghetti sauce onto a plate and a bowl (also have half a clean load left in there).



Should be done in an hour or so, I'll check once or twice as the cycle is going. Other dishwashers I've used if you open them to add more dishes mid-cycle the steam coming out nearly burns your face off. I'm going to assume at this point I'm going to have to go back for the heating coil anyway since she reported they also do not dry correctly (on air or heat dry setting). Also, noticed the heat delay light never illuminates.
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Old 08-11-2014, 06:33 PM   #5
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dishwashers never ever get plumbed to the cold water
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Old 08-11-2014, 06:39 PM   #6
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DWU7400 Maytag would be about 10 years old. Heating element would be about a 600 watt unit. It would take about 15 minutes to heat up the cold water coming in, not efficient at all, and not what it was designed for.
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Old 08-11-2014, 09:25 PM   #7
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seems redundant I know, but I pretty much clean the dishes before loading the washer (when I had one). That way the crud and grease do not choke the pump and drainline. Also if the waste on the plate is grease, it goes into a coffee can. Keeps the stuff out of my septic tank.
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Old 08-11-2014, 09:53 PM   #8
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seems redundant I know, but I pretty much clean the dishes before loading the washer (when I had one). That way the crud and grease do not choke the pump and drainline. Also if the waste on the plate is grease, it goes into a coffee can. Keeps the stuff out of my septic tank.
nothing wrong with that, you'd be amazed at the number of service calls i get because people want to use their dishwashers as garbage disposals. Nasty nasty stuff when you have to clean it out.
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Old 08-12-2014, 07:46 AM   #9
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seems redundant I know, but I pretty much clean the dishes before loading the washer (when I had one). That way the crud and grease do not choke the pump and drainline. Also if the waste on the plate is grease, it goes into a coffee can. Keeps the stuff out of my septic tank.
We always have. With only 2 people in the house usually only generating dishes for 1 meal, it takes quite a few days of eating to fill the dishwasher to the point where it is economically responsible to do a cycle. If you don't "pre rinse" the dishes, by the time they are 4-5 days out they need my impact chisel to get stuff off of them. I created the thread because the dishwasher was operating so poorly out of what we thought was an acceptable value - from the before/after, obviously the hot water was the (a) issue.

For now, I'm going to let her do a couple loads for real and see where we are at. Demo on the entire kitchen should be next summer, no sense in spending the time and money on the dishwasher if it's going in the dumpster (found it for $20 on eBay a few days out but it looks to be about a day's work for a non pro and I'm sure other things will break). I was wrong about the heat cycle button, it did come on during the dry phase.
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Old 08-12-2014, 08:25 AM   #10
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Actually with the newer high end machines there is a filter at the bottom which keeps the crud away from the impeller and from re-circing back up onto the dishes. You can throw chicken bones, elephants... etc into the machine and not worry. Just need to unsnap the filter and rinse it once a week or so. It is sooooo nice not having to rip into the impeller twice a month to clear it! (We have kids who NEVER pre-rinse dishes )
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Old 08-12-2014, 08:28 AM   #11
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(We have kids who NEVER pre-rinse dishes )
Increase the beatings.
Or make them clean out the filter/impeller.


Only way a schmuck like me ever learned as a kid.
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Old 08-12-2014, 08:33 AM   #12
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Actually, I possess the best dishwasher ever made.

The hands on the end of both of my arms.
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Old 08-12-2014, 08:36 AM   #13
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Actually, I possess the best dishwasher ever made.

The hands on the end of both of my arms.
LOL!
Yeah... that works with a couple of people, but with a family of six....
We easily do 2 loads a day.
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Old 08-12-2014, 08:42 AM   #14
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Increase the beatings.
Or make them clean out the filter/impeller.
- Increased beatings equals jail term
- kid cleaning impellers equals new dishwasher every few months
- dishwasher with good filter system equals peace

I have no fears they'll get the payback coming to them. They'll have kids one day too.
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Old 08-12-2014, 08:43 AM   #15
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Bob,
I cook large, intricate Sunday dinners. Have to do dishes several times through the prep work. By the time the final cooking is started the kitchen and dishes used are clean. We have several friends over at times so there is 4 - 8 sets of plateware to clean. Not a problem
.
Had a family of four that would invite their friends for dinner many years ago. Same thing.

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