Kenmore Dishwasher Troubleshooting

Kenmore is one of America’s most popular appliance brands and it’s dishwashers are sold exclusively through Sears and K-mart. Kenmore is actually just a brand name – it does not produce its own products. Dishwashers and other appliances bearing the Kenmore are manufactured by a variety of companies including Whirlpool, GE and Electrolux.

Since Kenmore Dishwashers are essentially re-badged units from other major companies the design and parts are shared and often interchangeable. This is good new in terms of dishwasher, problems, repair and troubleshooting because it means that spare parts, repair and support are widely available and inexpensive.

Because Kenmore dishwashers are really other-brand dishwashers with a different badge, when troubleshooting a problematic Kenmore dishwasher you can follow the same steps to troubleshoot the fault as you would with the brand that actually manufactured your dishwasher. Although Kenmore has used a large number of companies to manufacture its appliances, the vast majority of Kenmore dishwashers are made by Whirlpool, so common problems and faults are the same between the two. Double check your dishwasher model to find out who actually made it. Below are some troubleshooting steps to help you fix your Whirlpool manufactured Kenmore Dishwasher problems (yes, it is confusing!).

Kenmore dishwashers indicate any detected problems using the display screen on the control panel. The error codes give a good indication of where the dishwasher problem lies and after tracing the fault you can take the relevant dishwasher troubleshooting steps.

  • F1 – The dishwasher has detected a temperature fault. This error is most likely caused by a faulty temperature sensor or possibly the heating element.
  • F2 – A water leak, which if detected will stop water from entering the dishwasher via the inlet valve. You will probably experience the dishwasher not filling properly during a cycle. Possibly caused by a faulty water level indicator, you can also try cleaning the filters and drain if you notice a lot of standing water remaining in the dishwasher basin.
  • F3 – The heat cycle is malfunctioning and failing to get water up to temperature. Could be a similar problem to the F1 error code or possibly a faulty PCB.
  • F4 – Similar to F2 but this time the dishwasher is specifically detecting a drainage fault. The drain pump might be malfunctioning but again, cleaning the filters and unblocking the drain might help solve the problem and is a good troubleshooting measure.
  • F6 – The dishwasher can’t take on water. Check that the water inlet is properly connected, the stop tap valve is open and that water supply is otherwise available to the dishwasher. Also check for kinks or blockages on the water hose.
  • F8 error code – Water level fault, with some, but not enough, water getting into the dishwasher. To many suds in the dishwasher can confuse the water level indicator into displaying this error, otherwise the water pump might be struggling to maintain water pressure.

For further assistance please have a look at our page about common dishwasher problems and our general dishwasher troubleshooting guide.