Kenmore Dishwasher Diagnostic Mode Explained

Your Kenmore dishwasher is a great and reliable tool for efficient kitchen operation. It has advanced technology to help you watch your dishes and utensils. The technology works so well that sometimes we take it for granted.

Your Kenmore Dishwasher might be unable or forget to do its job sometimes. When this happens, a range of technical problems may be at work. Other times, it could be a malfunction or user-related problem.

Whatever the problem is, you’ll want to fix it quickly and get it up and running again. Perhaps you aren’t aware,  your Kenmore dishwasher has a diagnostic mode feature that can help with your troubleshooting process.

kenmore dishwasher diagnostic mode

This article will discuss all you need to know about the Kenmore Dishwasher diagnostic mode. If you find this interesting, read along.

Kenmore Dishwasher Diagnostic Mode: What Exactly Is It?

As the name implies, the diagnostic mode is used for “diagnosis” on the dishwasher. It assists in the identification of the problem of the dishwasher.

When your dishwasher is becoming unresponsive, unreliable, or running into trouble and won’t start or function efficiently, the diagnostic mode can help you identify the problem source.

Rather than manually checking the components to determine where the problem lies, the diagnostic mode can help you pinpoint the problem source, helping you save time and energy in troubleshooting the dishwasher.

It’s an intelligent feature that does the work of testing your dishwasher and helps you navigate the problem scheme to identify where you need to fix it. With the diagnostic mode, you won’t have to start checking all the parts manually, reducing the risk of troubleshooting or fixing the wrong part.

The diagnostic mode works by running a series of tests on every major component crucial to the efficient operation of the dishwasher. It tests these components to ensure they are in the proper working condition. If it detects a problem with any element, it returns an error code to signify the problem source.

So whenever your dishwasher is not working optimally, you can employ the diagnostic mode to help you test the parts and inform you of any problem.

Fun fact? You don’t necessarily have to use the diagnostic mode when your dishwasher runs into trouble. In case of suspicion, you can run the diagnostic mode to check for a possible problem. It helps you assess what is going wrong and what has gone wrong with your dishwasher system.

It fixes minor anomalies and returns error errors when it detects a significant problem with the machine’s working operation.

So how can you activate the diagnostic mode on the Kenmore dishwasher? We’ll discuss the process in the following section.

How To Start the Diagnostic Mode On Kenmore Dishwasher

It’s worth stating that Kenmore has different dishwasher models, and not everyone has the diagnostic mode feature. However, every modern dishwasher, so there’s a high chance yours also have.

You can check your dishwasher model and visit your manufacturer’s website to determine if it has the feature. You can also visit your owner’s manual to check if the diagnostic mode is present for your dishwasher model.

If you’re sure your dishwasher has the feature, you can run it as follows:

  • Open the dishwasher door
  • Push any three buttons three times consecutively.
  • Ensure you press these buttons in the same sequence you press the first round
  • You’ll know if you press it correctly when all lights flash.
  • Now close the dishwasher door
  • The machine should enter the self-diagnosis mode.

Let the self-test mode run independently, as it doesn’t require more input. It tests all the significant components consecutively, and you’ll hear the sound of the operation as it moves from one part to another.  If it encounters a problem, it will return an error code to notify you and seek your intervention.

You must understand how to interpret each error code to complete the troubleshooting process yourself. When it returns an error code, you should try to reset the error first before continuing with fixing it.

There are many possible ways to reset your dishwasher, depending on the model you use. Below is the universal method of resetting that works for all models:

  • Switch off your dishwasher
  • Disconnect the power plug from the socket or power source
  • Wait for at least a minute to allow it to drain residual power
  • Replug the dishwasher and power it on.

The hard reset will force the circuit board to shut down and make all sequences work correctly again.

The diagnostic mode is your dishwasher’s built-in troubleshooting guide that should be your go-to feature when your dishwasher suddenly runs into trouble or stops working. It’s your dishwasher’s last line of defense, and you shouldn’t forget to always use it.


  • Danny Saunders

    Danny Saunders is a tech enthusiast. He enjoys getting his hands dirty with the features and settings of tech products and pushing them to their limits just to know how to get the best from them and how well they can endure "abuse" without breaking down. He shares his findings on this blog.