Thermador dishwashers are known for their reliability and versatile wash program options. However, there may come a time when your dishwasher’s door won’t close. This is especially common in dishwashers older than 5 years old.
If your Thermador dishwasher door can’t close, you need to inspect the door hinge, door latch, and door strike. Any damage or faults in these components can prevent your dishwasher from closing and running a wash cycle.
While damaged parts can be a sign of trouble, there’s no reason to shop for a new dishwasher just yet. In today’s guide, I’ll explain how to fix these problems and other uncommon causes of why your Thermador dishwasher door won’t close.
What Happens When Dishwasher Door Doesn’t Close
While it might not sound like too much trouble, there’s a lot that can go wrong when the door doesn’t shut properly.
For starters, if the dishwasher can’t register a shut door, it will not start a wash cycle. Thermador dishwashers usually try to detect a shut door before it fills with water, and if you can’t, then you’ll be left with a huge, expensive paperweight.
The second problem is leaking. Even if you manage to start your dishwasher, the door will not keep moisture inside, and you will end up with a huge puddle in front of your dishwasher. This is not good for your flooring and cabinetry.
Thermador Dishwasher Door Won’t Open (How to Fix the Problem)
If your Thermador dishwasher door won’t open, it can usually be attributed to a faulty locking mechanism. To be more specific, there are three parts that are usually the source of the problem—the strike, the latch, or the hinge. Below, I’ll explain what these parts are, how they can become damaged, and how you can fix them.
WARNING: Before doing anything, make sure you have depowered the dishwasher by unplugging the power cord or turning off the circuit.
The door strike is the portion of the dishwasher that the latch grabs onto to keep the dishwasher door from opening. The strike is a piece of thin metal that looks sort of like the letter D.
This is an incredibly delicate part due to its thinness, so it’s usually one of the first things to break down with age. Damage to the strike is usually done when you shut the door too quickly or when you try to force the door open when it’s locked.
You can use a pair of pliers to try and force the door strike back into its original shape and position. Shut the dishwasher door and see whether or not jimmying the strike has resolved the problem.
If it didn’t, you will need to purchase a replacement door strike. They’re fairly cheap and incredibly easy to install. Simply undo the screws, remove the current strike, snap the new strike into place, and secure the strike with the original screws.
The latch is the locking mechanism that keeps the dishwasher door shut. It consists of several parts, including a micro-switch, that keeps the door locked in place. You can find the latch on the middle of the top-facing portion of the dishwasher door panel.
The main culprit for a faulty door latch is debris. If moisture and food soils enter the latch, they can keep the micro-switch from locking the dishwasher door. Another common reason that the latch becomes faulty is when you slam the door shut too hard and fast.
First, open the dishwasher door and use a flashlight to illuminate the inside of the latch. Use a toothpick or bamboo skewer to remove any hidden debris. Now, try and shut the door and see whether the issue is resolved.
If it isn’t, then you’ll have to replace the latch. Unfortunately, you cannot repair a broken latch, especially if the micro-switch is damaged. Search for a compatible latch and follow the installation instructions on the package.
The door hinge is what keeps the door attached to the dishwasher’s main body. It’s kept in place with a series of springs and cords that, when disconnected, may cause the door to open completely in the middle of a wash program.
Usually, a faulty door hinge is due to improper care of the dishwasher. For example, if you tend to pull the dishwasher door open quickly, or if you don’t remove moisture and debris from the door gasket, then the hinge mechanism may become loosened or caked with grime.
To replace the hinge, you will need to remove your dishwasher from the cabinet. For freestanding dishwashers, take off the top and side panels. Next, examine the springs or cords found on the side of the dishwasher. If the springs are disconnected from the pulley, reconnect them. If the cord or spring has snapped, you will need to purchase and install replacements.
There should be enough tension so that the cords keep the dishwasher door closed in the closed position. When opening the door, it should open slowly and without slamming downward. You may need to cut the rope down to size if you didn’t purchase an OEM replacement or a part made specifically for your dishwasher model.
Other Uncommon Causes
Unfortunately, a faulty door strike, latch, or hinge isn’t the only thing that can prevent a Thermador dishwasher door from closing. Below, I’ll cover some of the more uncommon causes and what you can do to fix them.
It’s possible to overload a dishwasher. When this happens, the dishes will prevent the door from shutting. This is the simplest problem to fix, so eliminate it before doing anything else.
If the door doesn’t shut, check the bottom rack and make sure your pots and pans’ handles are pointed toward the back of the dishwasher or pointed upward.
The tub is the inner portion of the dishwasher. Everything fits inside the tub, including the spraying arms, the filter assembly, the dishracks, and your dirty dishes. It’s also one of the most durable parts of a dishwasher, so only in extreme cases would you need to check it as being a potential problem.
Sometimes, the dishwasher tub can be knocked out of place, which forces everything else to become misaligned. This is especially common when moving dishwashers to a different residence or in second-hand dishwashers.
First, check the inside of the dishwasher and make sure the top of the tub is parallel to the ground. If the tub looks skewed, you will need to crack open the dishwasher to realign the tub. I highly recommend getting a professional do this since you might not have all of the necessary tools to do it on your own.
The dishracks are the racks where you load your dirty dishes. They sit atop a set of rollers that allow them to slide in and out of the tub. They should sit parallel to the bottom and top of the dishrack. Some Thermador dishwasher models allow you to move the racks up and down, depending on how large your dirty dishes are.
The top or bottom dishracks may have become misaligned when moving homes or if you pull them out or push them back in with too much force. You may have also accidentally misaligned them when you moved them to the upper or lower position.
Test the dishracks by sliding them in and out. They should slide on the rails with ease. If they don’t, check the rollers and the rails for debris, which may prevent them from going in as for as they can go.