The top spray arm of a dishwasher

How to Fix a Dishwasher That’s Not Filling With Water

Having a dishwasher that doesn't have the power to get the job done is a major inconvenience to any home. Your dishwasher is a staple appliance that helps keep mealtime cleanup moving. If your dishwasher appears to be running but will not fill with water, there are a handful of solutions you can try before contacting a professional. There's a chance that the problem might require some professional attention. Going through this checklist will allow you to better understand what can be done to address your dishwasher’s issues.

Why is my dishwasher turning on but not getting water?

Here's a short checklist of ways you can find out why your dishwasher might be turning on, but not getting water. An open or unlatched door, a clogged or malfunctioning water inlet valve, a shut off water supply or an obstructed overfill protection float could be the culprit. Read on to learn more about solutions you can try to correct these issues on your own.

What You’ll Need

  • Clean, dry towels

  • Bucket


  • Wrench

  • Flashlight

How Do You Fix a Dishwasher That Won’t Spray Water?

Start by giving your dishwasher's exterior a thorough inspection to discover why your dishwasher isn't filling with water. It could be as simple as an obstructed dishwasher door, or a small blockage in your dishwasher's inlet valve. At different points throughout the checklist, it's important to observe if your troubleshooting worked. To see if your dishwasher is filling with water, simply start a cycle and open the door midway through the cycle to determine if the dishwasher tub is wet or beginning to fill. In the steps below, discover what you can do to troubleshoot the problem before you call on a professional for assistance.

Dishwasher Door Open icon

1. Dishwasher door is open or unlatched

An open or unlatched door will prevent the dishwasher from filling with water. A flashing START/RESUME indicator light typically suggests that this is the problem. If this is the case, make sure the dishwasher door is closed and press the START/RESUME button to continue the cycle. If your dishwasher door won't latch, check for obstructions and consult a professional if the latch needs to be repaired or replaced.

Turning on Water Valve icon

2. Water supply valve is closed

In order for your dishwasher to fill, the water supply valve must be turned to the open position. Locate your dishwasher's water supply under the sink and twist the valve open as needed to allow water to flow freely through the water supply line and into the unit. Be sure to consult your appliance’s user manual to make sure this step is applicable.


Be sure your water supply valve is not leaking or blocked. If there is a leak coming from the valve, try to fix it by ensuring that all connections to the valve are secured tightly. To tighten, place a bucket beneath the valve in case any water escapes and use a wrench to secure all connections to the valve.


Determining if there is a blockage in your water supply line is difficult without the help of a professional. One sign that there might be something obstructing your water supply is a decrease in water pressure. If this is the case, the kitchen faucet will have a weak stream and a professional will need to take it from there.


If your dishwasher is still not filling after ensuring that your water supply line is in working order, there are still a few things you can do to troubleshoot the problem.

Blocked Inlet Valve icon

3. Blocked Dishwasher Water Inlet Valve

The water inlet valve allows various amounts of water to enter the dishwasher at different times during use. You can typically find your dishwasher's water inlet valve at the base of the inner left panel of your dishwasher.


Use your clean, dry towels to gently clean any buildup around the valve and use your flashlight to check for any apparent blockages that might be caught at the mouth of the valve. If all looks good, the problem could be an electrical or mechanical malfunction in the water inlet valve and would need a professional's attention.


Cleaning Float Switch icon

4. Clean the Dishwasher Float Switch

The float switch prevents the dishwasher from overfilling and must be correctly in place and functioning properly to allow the appliance to fill. Locate the float, typically in the front right corner of the dishwasher tub, and check for obstructions by moving it up and down to see if it moves freely. If you find any food or other particles obstructing your dishwasher's float switch, use a clean dry towel to gently clean the area around the float switch until the obstruction is removed.

Find Replacement Dishwasher Parts from Maytag®

If your dishwasher needs replacement parts, start by consulting your owner’s manual. Always use genuine Maytag® replacement parts for your Maytag brand dishwasher. You can purchase your replacement parts on the Maytag® Replacement Parts website. If you are unsure which parts you need to fit your model, consult a professional.

What if my dishwasher fills with water, then stops?

If your dishwasher fills with water but stops before reaching the wash cycle, a technical issue such as a shorted-out thermal fuse or electronic control board could be to blame. You can contact a professional to correct these issues by scheduling Maytag® Service and Repairs.

What if my dishwasher still isn't filling with water?

If your dishwasher still isn’t working after performing these troubleshooting tips, you may need to schedule a service with a licensed professional to investigate the issue further. These technicians can help you determine the root cause of your dishwasher problems and advise you on the best way to proceed to get your dishwasher back in good shape.

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If you’re ready to upgrade to a dishwasher that gives you serious cleaning power with every load, Maytag brand offers a variety of dishwashers with select models featuring Dual Power Filtration and high-pressure water jets that deliver the cleaning results you need every day.

Learn More About Maytag® Dishwashers

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