DIY, Plumbing

How To – Dishwasher Installation In 9 Steps

dishwasher fitterDishwashers are an essential in the fast-paced homes of today; they are great, time-saving tools and they effectively put a stop to the regular arguments about who will be doing the washing-up after dinner. Many are now choosing to upgrade and replace their existing dishwashers with new energy-efficiency features in place. It is one of the most popular labour-saving inventions ever created, and those who want to invest in a new dishwasher can save even further by following this easy to use dishwasher installation guide. It makes installing a dishwasher straightforward and stress free and is split into easy to follow steps with instructions in plain English.

As with many kitchen appliances, particularly those that require access to the electricity or plumbing supply, there is common misconception is that dishwasher installation can be incredibly difficult without the assistance of a seasoned expert. In reality, dishwashers can be installed by anyone with a basic knowledge of how the machine works and a desire to do the job themselves. A few tools, some forward planning and a willing helper are all that is required.From start to finish the entire process can take a maximum of two hours and only the most basic of equipment is needed. Follow this simple step-by-step guide on dishwasher installation, and enjoy the luxury of not having a sink full of dishes to tackle by dinnertime tonight.

 You Will Need: a dishwasher, a dishwasher installation kit, supply and drain tubes, levellers, pliers, wrenches, tape, an adjustable ‘T’ fitting and the dishwasher installation manual. 


dishwasher installationPrepare the dishwasher and the connections for the dishwasher installation. Paint the enclosed sides of the kitchen cabinet where the dishwasher will be fitted with a moisture-proof or oil-based polyurethane paint in order to prevent damage from any moisture or steam warping the wood. Install a 20-amp circuit from the circuit breaker panel, if there isn’t already one fitted. The circuit breaker must be turned off and all power disconnected. Turn off the water supply valve and drain off all water from supply lines before setting up water connections. Have this dishwasher installation guide handy!

Step One – Locate the two front-to-back paths on the underside of the dishwasher to position the water and electric lines. These must be away from the motor of the dishwasher, as the motor wires run from the back to the front. Measure the distance of both paths from the sides of the dishwasher, and then transfer these measurements to the floor of the bay. Using the tape, secure the copper tube and the electrical wire in the marked positions on the floor.

Step Two – Connect the drain tube to the sink drain. All water must drain into a waste pipe or trap above the level of the drum. The connect water supply tube to the water pipe underneath the sink. This step should always be carried out this order, firstly to reduce the chances of flooding, and secondly by facilitating leak testing without the potential for shocks. Restore the water pressure in order to check for leaks, but do not exert too much pressure whilst doing this check, as it may damage the page.

Step Three – Tilt the dishwasher onto its back, on top of a waterproof canvas or sheet if possible. Remove the bottom cover and wrap tape around the water inlet threads. Screw a brass elbow to the inlet and tighten using one of the wrenches. Return the dishwasher right-side-up, and then push it into the cabinet bay where it will be positioned.

Step Four – Check water and electrical alignments. Make a hole in the side of the cabinet, then pass the end of the drain line through the side of the cabinet upwards through this hole.

Step Five – If there are any exposed wires, these must be covered. Plastic covering will ensure the electrical wires are sufficiently protected, and they need to be clamped and bundled properly with a clamping bracket. The clamp prevents electrocution if, by chance, there are any leaks within the dishwasher.

Step Six -Unscrew the star-shaped nut, then push wires through the threaded ends of the clamp, which passes through a hole in the unit junction box.

Step Seven – Match up the colours. White wire meets white, black wire meets black wire, and so on. Tighten them with wire nuts.

Step Eight – Turn on the power and water supply to check leaks. Press start on any dishwasher cycle, and allow it to fill with water. Press cancel and the unit will drain. If any leaks appear, turn all power and water back off and then tighten fittings.

Step Nine – Install base plates to the dishwasher. Secure the dishwasher to the countertop with screws if necessary.

Hints and Tips

dishwasher installationWhen buying a dishwasher, examine it thoroughly before you bring it back home and attempt to fit it. Faulty parts could be disastrous, whilst scratches and dents will ruin the aesthetic of the appliance and its resale value if you decide to upgrade to a newer model at a later date. Make sure all the necessary hardware and tools are installed. If disconnecting an existing machine in order to replace it, have some towels and a bucket on hand to drain any water left in the lines before fitting the new dishwasher.

Hire A Professional Dishwasher Installer

If you are not confident enough to attempt dishwasher installation yourself, you can always call in the dishwasher fitter. The process is simple enough if the steps are followed to the letter, but those who do not feel assured enough by their own DIY skills are advised to contact a professional dishwasher fitter, who will be happy to carry out the job in less time than it would take to do it yourself. In a situation where the location of the dishwasher is being moved, it is best to call out a plumber who will be able to advise on pipes, positioning and other vital considerations. The same goes if new electrical sockets need to be installed; call an dishwasher fitter rather than take a risk.

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