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How To Take Apart a Whirlpool Dishwasher

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If you own a Whirlpool dishwasher, there may come a time when you need to take it apart for repairs or cleaning. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the process step-by-step, ensuring you can disassemble your appliance safely and effectively.


To take apart a Whirlpool dishwasher, start by disconnecting the power and water supply. Remove the lower dish rack and spray arm, followed by the filter. Open the dishwasher door and separate the inner and outer door panels to remove the control panel. Next, remove the lower and upper racks and spray arms. If your dishwasher is installed under a countertop, remove the mounting brackets or screws to slide it out. Remember, the process can vary slightly depending on your specific model.

Safety First!

Before you start, remember to always prioritize safety. Disconnect the power supply by unplugging the dishwasher or turning off the circuit breaker to prevent electrical shock. Also, turn off the water supply to the dishwasher to avoid any leaks. Wear protective gear like gloves and safety glasses to protect your hands and eyes from any sharp edges or debris.

Tools You’ll Need

You will need a few basic tools to disassemble your Whirlpool dishwasher:

  • Screwdriver (both Phillips and flat-head)
  • Small flat-head screwdriver
  • Adjustable wrench

Having the right tools at hand will simplify the process and prevent damage to your appliance.

Initial Steps to Disassembly

Start by removing the lower dish rack. Simply slide it out and set it aside. Next, find the spray arm. Depending on your model, you may need to unscrew or unclip it from the bottom of the dishwasher.

The filter, located at the bottom of the dishwasher, may consist of an upper and lower assembly. Turn the upper filter counterclockwise and lift it out. Then, gently lift and pull the lower filter forward to remove it.

Removing the Door and Control Panel

Open the dishwasher door and remove the screws securing the inner door panel to the outer door panel. Carefully separate the two panels and set the outer panel aside.

Next, unscrew or unclip the control panel from the inner door panel. Carefully disconnect any wiring harnesses connected to the control panel and set it aside.

Removing the Racks and Spray Arms

Begin by pulling the lower rack out and lifting it up and out of the dishwasher. For the lower spray arm, remove it by unscrewing or lifting it out, depending on your model.

For the upper rack, pull it out until it comes to a stop. Release the end caps or clips at the end of each sliding track. Once released, pull the upper rack out. The upper spray arm is usually held in place by a locking mechanism or a screw. Twist the spray arm to release the lock or remove the screw, then lift the spray arm up and out.

Removing the Dishwasher from the Cabinet

If your dishwasher is installed under a countertop, you will need to remove the mounting brackets or screws that secure it to the cabinet. Carefully slide the dishwasher out from under the countertop.


Reassembly is the reverse of disassembly. Ensure all parts are clean and dry, then reinstall the internal components. Reconnect any electrical connections or hoses, reattach the door and outer panels, and reconnect the power and water supply. Test the dishwasher to ensure it functions correctly and doesn’t leak.


Disassembling a Whirlpool dishwasher may seem daunting, but with the right tools and guidance, it’s a task you can complete yourself. Always consult your dishwasher’s user manual for specific instructions, and if you’re unsure about any steps, don’t hesitate to reach out to a professional.

Remember, this is a general guide. The disassembly process may vary slightly depending on your specific Whirlpool model. For more detailed instructions and visual aids, you can refer to the Whirlpool dishwasher disassembly videos available on YouTube. Happy DIY-ing!

Frequently Asked Questions

What should I do if I can’t find my Whirlpool dishwasher’s user manual?

Many manufacturers, including Whirlpool, offer digital versions of their appliance manuals online. You can visit the Whirlpool Customer Care website, input your model number, and download the manual directly.

How do I identify my Whirlpool dishwasher model?

You can find the model number on a sticker or rating plate on your dishwasher. This is usually located on the inside edge of the door or on the side of the dishwasher.

I’m having trouble removing the control panel, what should I do?

Be sure you’ve removed all the screws securing the control panel. If it’s still not coming off, it may be clipped in place. Use a small flat-head screwdriver to gently pry it free. However, be careful not to use excessive force as it might damage the control panel.

I’ve taken apart my dishwasher and cleaned it, but it’s still not working properly. What should I do next?

If your dishwasher is still not functioning correctly after cleaning, there may be a more serious issue at hand. It’s recommended to reach out to a professional appliance repair service or contact Whirlpool support directly for further assistance.

Can I use any screwdriver for the disassembly process?

While any screwdriver may work, it’s best to use a Phillips and flat-head screwdriver as specified. These are the most commonly used types of screws in appliances, and using the correct screwdriver helps to avoid stripping the screws.

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