Whirlpool Dishwasher Diagnostic Mode Explained

Whirlpool Dishwasher is a modern appliance that helps to clean kitchen equipment, ensuring you save time and energy. It’s one of the modern home appliances everybody should have.

However, the dishwasher might run into some problems at one point in time, like every other technological appliance. The problem might occur during or after using the dishwasher and could happen for many different reasons related to human faults or system malfunctions.

It can be pretty challenging to figure out the source of the problem. Whirlpool foresaw the need to include an automatic diagnostic mode in the system to aid in troubleshooting.

This article will discuss all you need to know about Whirlpool dishwasher diagnostic mode, how it works and how you can use it to troubleshoot and resolve your dishwasher problem.

whirlpool dishwasher diagnostic mode

What Is Whirlpool Dishwasher Diagnostic Mode?

The Whirlpool dishwasher diagnostic mode is an essential functionality built into the appliance system to help with troubleshooting. It’s a feature programmed in most Whirlpool dishwashers to help navigate and resolve problems.

Typically, the dishwasher diagnostic mode is an intelligent feature that troubleshoots system problems by inspecting issues saved in an error log. It’s a complex state that adjusts different dishwasher components to scrutinize performance status, check operation, identify errors, and resolve them accordingly.

It’s a go-to function for tackling problems with the dishwasher, especially the ones you don’t know the source or method of diagnosis. So, anytime there’s a problem with your dishwasher, maybe you can’t turn it on, or some cycles fail to work, you can run the diagnostic mode to retrieve errors and resolve the problem quickly.

Ideally, it helps to inspect, identify and resolve problems that arise with the dishwasher, preventing it from working to its utmost capacity.

How The Whirlpool Dishwasher Diagnostic Mode Works

You must understand what happens within the dishwasher system when you put it in diagnostic mode. When your dishwasher enters the diagnostic mode, the state runs a series of tests to determine if all the functions in the machine are working appropriately and as intended.

It tests different dishwasher parts and scrutinizes if they are working optimally. For instance, during the test, the mode will check the water valve and turn it on to ensure about three liters of water enter to check its functionality. The screen will display the turbidity value.

It powers on the pump heater, runs it for some seconds, and allows the temperature to rise to about 57°C before it stops. It also tests the high wash pump dispenser and the drain pump, among other components.

Note that during the series of tests, you can press the Start button to jump to the next step.

So, how do you enter the diagnostic mode on your Whirlpool dishwasher?

How To Enter The Whirlpool Dishwasher Diagnostic Mode

There are different methods you can use to prompt the diagnostic mode. The steps are mostly similar across other dishwasher models except for some slight variations in the buttons to press on the control panel.

Irrespective of the Whirlpool dishwasher model you use, one of the methods we’ll discuss will work for you. Below are different methods to start the diagnostic mode:

Cycles + Start/Cancel Buttons

You can use this method as follows:

  • Power off your dishwasher, ensuring all the lit LEDs are off
  • Disconnect the power cord from the source
  • Reconnect power to the dishwasher and open the door
  • Quickly press and hold the key combination of the Cycles + Start/Cancel
  • Press both buttons again and hold for about a minute
  • Close the dishwasher door
  • The system should begin to run the diagnostic mode automatically.

On/off + Start/Pause Buttons

These key combinations are another method to enter the diagnostic mode on a Whirlpool dishwasher. Follow the simple steps below to use this method:

  • Switch off your dishwasher and ensure all the LED lights are off
  • Unplug the machine from the power outlet
  • Wait for some seconds and replug the power cord to the power outlet
  • Open the dishwasher door and immediately press the On/Off + Start/Pause buttons simultaneously.
  • Ensure you press down these buttons within the first minutes you reconnect power to the dishwasher
  • Now close the door.
  • The dishwasher should begin the diagnostic mode immediately.

Rinse + Start Button

These buttons can also enter the diagnostic mode on a Whirlpool dishwasher. The process is the same as the ones described above. When you get to the key combinations, press Rinse + Start and follow other instructions as we’ve explained. Don’t forget to shut the door so the dishwasher can enter diagnostic mode.

Three Buttons Sequence

In some models of the Whirlpool washer, you can enter the diagnostic mode by pressing three different keys in sequences. However, before using this method, below are specific points you must consider:

  • The key combinations must not include either Start, Delay, or Cancel
  • The time difference between each key press should not exceed a seconds
  • In some dishwasher models, you must press button #2 and close the door to start the process. Remember, the diagnostic mode can only begin when the door shuts.

For each method above, your dishwasher will enter the diagnostic mode, and various components will be scrutinized to confirm their working conditions.

If the process detects a problem, the display screen will show an error code, sound a beep, or flash a LED light. Ensure you familiarize yourself with the different error codes so you can use them accordingly.

If you wish to exit the diagnostic mode at any time of the process, you can do so by disconnecting power from the dishwasher.


  • 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.