Whether you’re replacing your existing dishwasher or simply installing a new one, this is the step-by-step “how to” you’ve been looking for.
If you’re installing a new dishwasher, there are a few “must haves” to complete the job. First is an electrical outlet under the sink or an available circuit rated at 20 Amps coming directly from the electrical panel. Next, a water supply and drain must be close by. And then, of course, you’ll need the available space. If it doesn’t already exist, you may need to remove some under-counter cabinets.
For this article, we’ll assume that you’re replacing an existing dishwasher with a new one.
Some tools you will need to complete this job include:
- Screwdriver (Phillips and Straight)
- Adjustable Wrench
- Electrical Tape
- Needle-nose Pliers
- Voltage Tester
- Slip-joint Pliers
- Wire Nuts
- Teflon® Tape
Removing the Old Dishwasher
- Turn the electrical circuit that supplies power to the dishwasher OFF, or if it is plugged into an outlet, unplug it. Close the water valve that supplies water to the dishwasher.
- Unscrew the two screws holding the dishwasher to the countertop. These screws are located right in front of the dishwasher.
- Gently slide the dishwasher out from under the counter.
- Follow the electrical cord to the junction box, usually on the lower rear side, and remove the cover. Use a voltage tester to ensure the circuit is OFF and disconnect the wiring.
- Remove the electrical cord from the junction box and place wire nuts on the ends of each wire, then move the wires so they won’t be in the way.
- Under the dishwasher, locate the water inlet line. Remove the nut holding it in place and remove the water line. (Keep a towel handy to soak up any draining water still in the line.)
- Under the sink, locate the dishwasher’s drain line and disconnect it from the sink’s drain line or garbage disposer.
Installing the new dishwasher is just as easy as removing the old one. It’s the internal complexities of the dishwasher that makes most people afraid to try installing one themselves – that, and the fact that both plumbing and electricity are involved.
But, as with every installation or replacement, if you follow the directions and always keep safety in mind, you will be surprised at how much you can accomplish!
Installing Your New Dishwasher
- Gently place the dishwasher on its back and attach the drain line with the supplied compression clamps. You may need the needle-nose pliers to help open the clamps.
- Wrap Teflon® tape around the threads on the water inlet connection and connect the 90 degree brass fitting needed to connect the water line. Then set the dishwasher upright and connect the water line to the 90 degree fitting.
- Underneath the dishwasher, you will see a retaining sleeve for the electrical cord to slide through. Slide the cord through and tighten the sleeve.
- Remove the cover from the junction box and run the wires through the knockout into the box. Connect the black wire to black wire, using the needle-nose pliers to twist the pair together, and then tighten a wire nut over them. Do the same thing to the white wires. The green or bare ground wire gets tightened to the green ground screw inside the box. Wrap electrical tape around the wires where the wire meets the wire nut. Replace the junction box cover.
- Connect the dishwasher’s drain line to the exact spot that the old one was connected, either to the drain line or to the garbage disposer.
- Before moving the dishwasher into place, open up the water line to check for leaks.
- Finish sliding the dishwasher into place under the counter and use a level to make sure that it’s sitting level. Adjust the legs on the unit to make any corrections.
- Screw the top flange of the dishwasher into the bottom of the counter to hold it in place. Install the bottom cover.
- Turn the power back on to the circuit or plug in the electrical cord.
- With the dishwasher empty, run a cycle and double check again for any leaks.
Not Something You Care to Tackle Yourself?
At Your 1 Plumber, we encourage and foster the DIY spirit in everyone. At the same time, we recognize that jobs like dishwasher installation are NOT for everyone. So if you need a hand with dishwasher replacement and installation, contact us today. And save $25 with the coupon below.