Whirlpool Dishwasher Diagnostic Mode [All You Need To Know!]

The Whirlpool dishwasher diagnostic mode is an important functionality built into the unit to help with accurate troubleshooting.

This guide looks at everything you need to know about the diagnostic mode, so you can enter, troubleshoot, and reset your dishwasher for better performance.

The Whirlpool dishwasher diagnostic mode helps you to determine what’s wrong with your unit if it’s won’t start, if the buttons fail, if some cycles won’t work, and if water fails to flow. When in diagnostic mode, you can easily inspect, identify, and fix problems causing the dishwasher to fail performing optimally.

Ideally, it can be challenging to figure out what the problem with your dishwasher is without this mode.

So anytime you notice there’s a problem with the unit, like Whirlpool dishwasher not turning on, run the mode, retrieve the Whirlpool dishwasher error, and fix the problem as fast as you can.

Whirlpool Dishwasher Diagnostic Mode

What is Whirlpool Diagnostic Mode? 

Before I show you the different wants to enter the Whirlpool diagnostic mode, let’s first make sure you understand what the phrase means.

Ideally, a diagnostic mode in a Whirlpool dishwasher is a sophisticated state used to troubleshoot problems by viewing and inspecting the issues stored in an error log.

In this state, you can do an automatic diagnostic cycle, or you can manually turn different parts of the washer on and off to inspect performance status, identify errors, test proper operation, and fix issues.

4 Ways to Enter the Whirlpool Dishwasher Diagnostic Mode

Now that you know what the diagnostic mode is in the Whirlpool dishwasher, let’s look at the different ways to enter the mode.

1. Using Cycles + Start/Cancel Button

The first option to enter the Whirlpool dishwasher diagnostic mode is to use the Cycle and Start/Cancel button combination.

  • Turn the dishwasher off. Make sure all the LED lights are off and unplug the machine from the power source.
  • Reconnect the unit to the power source and open its door
  • Press a combination of Cycles and Start/Cancel buttons once.
  • Press the two buttons again, but this time hold them down for about 60 seconds
  • Close the door 

The unit should start running the diagnostic mode.

2. Pressing a Combination of Three Buttons

Some Whirlpool dishwasher models allows you to enter the diagnostic mode by pressing a combination of three keys in the 1-2-3 sequence.

But there are two important rules to observe for this method to work:

  • The combination of the keys you select should not include Start, Delay, or Cancel button
  • The press delay from one to the next button should not be more than a second

Some models require that you press button #2 and then shut the Whirlpool dishwasher door to start the service cycle. That’s perfectly fine because the diagnostic mode can only run with the door closed. 

3. Using a Combination of On/Off and Start/Pause

You can also enter the Whirlpool dishwasher service mode by pressing a combination of On/Off and Start/Pause buttons. To do this:

  • Turn off the unit and ensure there are no lit LED lights
  • Disconnect it from the power outlet
  • Wait for at least 10 seconds and reconnect the dishwasher to the power outlet 
  • With the door open, quickly press the combination of On/Off and Start/Pause buttons
  • Hold the buttons down within the first 60 seconds of reconnecting the power for this technique to work 
  • Close the door

The unit should enter the service mode thereafter.

4. Using the Rinse and Start Button

The other option to enter the Whirlpool dishwasher service mode is to press a combination of Rinse and Start button. The steps to follow to enter the mode aren’t different from those I’ve discussed for option 1 and 3.

In other words:

  • Turn your dishwasher off, and make sure the LED lights are off 
  • Disconnect the unit from the power source
  • Reconnect the unit to the power source and open its door
  • Press and hold the Rinse and Start button
  • Again, press and hold down the two buttons for about 60 seconds of reconnecting the unit to the power source 
  • Close the door

Your Whirlpool dishwasher should automatically enter the diagnostic mode.

If there’s one thing that’s clear so far, it’s that it isn’t difficult to enter the diagnostic mode. For the first, third, and fourth option, the entry procedure is quite similar. The only difference is that you have to press a different combination of buttons.

It’s important to keep in mind that I’ve highlighted the different ways to enter the mode to help you determine which option will work best for you depending on the model of your dishwasher.

What Happens in Whirlpool Dishwasher Diagnostic Mode?

Now that you know how to enter the Whirlpool dishwasher diagnostic mode, let’s take this even further and learn what happens when the unit enters this state.

Whirlpool Dishwasher Diagnostic Mode functions

When you enter the diagnostic mode, the machine will start to perform a series of tests to determine whether the machine works as intended.

The unit starts by checking the water valve of the dishwasher. Here, the water valve turns on and the machine allows about three liters of water into the unit with the help of the flow meter.

Moving on, the mode turns on the wash pump heater, which runs for 10 seconds followed by a beeping sound soon as the temperature in the unit rises to 3 to 5 degrees. The dishwasher will stop when the temperature reaches 57 Degrees Celsius, after which you have to press the Start button to move to the next step.

In the third step, the mode turns to the high wash pump dispenser for eight seconds after a two-second delay. The dispenser stays on for 45 second, the diagnostic pauses for about 30 seconds, and then it turns the drain pump on for about 30 seconds.

Following the 30 seconds drain pump run is a one-time beep with a display of the board type code.

How can I disconnect the wire connector to the door vent?

To disconnect the wire connector to the door vent, follow these steps:

  1. Locate the wire connector: The wire connector can typically be found near the door vent area. It may be attached to the vent itself or to a nearby component.
  2. Identify the type of wire connector: Different vehicles may have different types of wire connectors. Common types include push-in connectors, snap-on connectors, or connectors with retaining clips. Understanding the type of connector will help in disconnecting it properly.
  3. Ensure safety measures: Before proceeding, ensure the vehicle is turned off and the ignition key is removed. This will prevent any accidental electrical discharges or injuries during the disconnection process.
  4. Disconnect the wire connector: Depending on the type of connector, use the appropriate method to disconnect it. For push-in connectors, gently press the release tab or lever and pull the connector apart. Snap-on connectors may require squeezing or sliding a locking mechanism to release them. Connectors with retaining clips often need to be pressed or pried open carefully to release the latch before pulling them apart.
  5. Inspect the connector: After disconnecting the wire connector, take a moment to inspect it for any signs of damage, corrosion, or loose pins. This examination can help identify any underlying issues that may be affecting the door vent’s functionality.

Remember to reconnect the wire connector securely when troubleshooting is complete or when replacing the door vent, ensuring proper functioning of the vehicle’s electrical system.

How long does the Service Diagnostics Cycle take?

The Service Diagnostics Cycle typically takes approximately 25 minutes to complete. It begins as soon as the door is closed and proceeds all the way through until it finishes.

How can I run the diagnostics properly if there is a problem with the door vent?

To run the diagnostics properly despite a potential problem with the door vent, we recommend following these steps. Firstly, disconnect the wire connector to your door vent. This will ensure that the diagnostics can be accurately performed without any interference from the door vent. Once the door vent is disconnected, proceed to run the diagnostics and observe if they can be completed successfully.

Additionally, it is crucial to check if any error codes are displayed during the diagnostic process. If an error code does appear, it indicates the possibility of another faulty part aside from the door vent. Therefore, it is important to note any error codes received in order to accurately identify and address any additional issues that may be present.

Can I read the error codes with the door open during the diagnostic cycle?

During the diagnostic cycle of your dishwasher, reading the error codes with the door open may not be possible. To accurately access the error codes, it is generally advisable to have the door closed. However, if you are unable to view the error codes after going through an entire diagnostic cycle with the door closed, there are a few steps you can take.

First, make sure to adjust the foot of the dishwasher to allow for easy removal. By doing this, you can pull the dishwasher out and access the error codes conveniently.

If you still wish to attempt reading the error codes with the door open, there may be alternative methods specific to your dishwasher model. In some cases, trying to cycle through the error codes by pressing the start button while the door is open might not yield any results. If this is the case, it is recommended to refer to the dishwasher’s manual or contact the manufacturer for detailed instructions on how to access error codes with the door open.

Keep in mind that the diagnostic cycle may need to be invoked multiple times in order to successfully read the error codes. If your initial attempt did not provide the desired outcome, you can try initiating the diagnostic cycle for a second time and then opening the door to check for error codes.

Ultimately, to obtain the most accurate and reliable information regarding reading error codes during the diagnostic cycle of your dishwasher, consulting the instruction manual or reaching out to the manufacturer’s customer support would be highly beneficial.

How can I adjust the foot of the Whirlpool Gold Dishwasher WDT720PADM0 to raise the front legs?

To adjust the foot of your Whirlpool Gold Dishwasher WDT720PADM0 and raise the front legs, you will need a 3/16″ hex head socket and a flexible shaft. Detailed instructions can be found on pages 14 and 18 of the installation manual. You can access the manual by visiting the following link:

How to Exit Whirlpool Dishwasher Diagnostic Mode

Whirlpool doesn’t issue a direct way to exit its dishwashers’ diagnostic mode. In other words, there is no button, or button combinations, that you can press to exit this troubleshooting mode.

However, it’s easy to exit this mode.

All you have to do is to disconnect the unit form the form the power source. Plug it back to the power source, close the door, and start it to run in the normal mode.

Whirlpool Dishwasher Diagnostic Mode Codes

The best thing about the Whirlpool dishwasher diagnostic mode is that it finds errors for you with ease, so you don’t have to scratch your head to figure things out on your own.

If the mode finds an error with the unit, it will sound a beep, flash a LED light, or display an error code.

In the following section, I highlight and explain the most common error codes you’re highly likely to get if your dishwasher has a problem.

Here’s a table summarizing these troubleshooting mode codes. The table features:

  • What each error code means
  • A quick DIY fix
 CodeWhat It MeansQuick DIY Fix
1.E1Water inlet failed and water taking too long to drainCheck connections for leaks and ensure there is a correct loop in the drain hose.
2.E3The heater of the dishwasher failedCheck if the heater, thermistor, and control is in good condition
3.E4There is a possible overflow in the dishwasherInspect the power flow switch and replace it if faulty
4.E6Temperature sensor has an open circuit Inspect the water temperature, thermistor, and control to learn where the problem is

Let’s explain each diagnostic mode code in detail for clarity

1. Error Code E1

If the dishwasher displays the E1 error code, it means the unit has a failure with the water inlet. In this case, the flow meter couldn’t detect a proper fill after 240 seconds during the water inlet test.

Also, the E1 error code can be an indication that water is taking too long, typically more than 8 minutes to drain. In this case, the drain pump is running, but it isn’t receiving the backpressure that it should.

The cause of the E1 error code could be a water leak in the drain system. So check the hoses and connections for major leaks. Also, ensure there’s a proper loop in the drain hose. If there’s no siphoning in the drain pump but the problem persists, the drain pump might be defective.

2. Error Code E3

If you see the E3 error code, it means that the dishwasher’s heater has more than likely failed. It means that the temperature of the unit doesn’t reach the expected standard value after ninety minutes during the wash pump troubleshooting.

Check the heater, thermistor, and control. Fix or replace them depending on their current condition.

3. Error Code E4

The E4 error code signals a possible overflow in your Whirlpool dishwasher. In other words, the reservoir is full and therefore the unit can’t take more water.

Such a problem occurs because you’ve set the water pressure too high. The inlet hose may be loose or the drain check may malfunction because of an obstruction.

The E4 code isn’t difficult to fix.

Ensure you use the right type of detergent and in the right amount. Check if the unit isn’t leveled and level it up  

Inspect the dishwasher’s power flow switch and replace it if it’s the one causing the E4 problem. We recommend getting the LONYE float switch fit if you need a good recommendation.  

Also, make sure the drain pump is operating correctly to keep the unit from possibly flooding.

4. Error Code E6

The unit will display the error code E6 to indicate that the temperature sensor has an open circuit.  Check the water temperature, the thermistor, and the control to see if they could be causing the problem.

How does the CLEAN LED indicate error codes?

In the following section, I will provide a comprehensive explanation of how the CLEAN LED indicates error codes in your dishwasher, addressing the question at hand. This information will complement the content of Your article, which highlights and explains common error codes and offers quick DIY fixes.

To begin, it is important to note that the CLEAN LED is an indicator that flashes error codes in two parts. Initially, it will flash the function code, followed by a brief pause of two seconds. Subsequently, it will flash the problem code. This sequence will be repeated three times unless the start key is pressed to advance it.

However, it is worth mentioning that if your dishwasher does not encounter any errors, the CLEAN LED will remain solid for a duration of five seconds. This steady illumination serves as an indication that there are no issues to be addressed.

Now, let’s delve into the specific error codes you may encounter and their potential troubleshooting solutions. The following table provides a concise summary:

Code | What It Means | Quick DIY Fix

How long will the CLEAN LED stay solid if there are no errors?
If there are no errors, the CLEAN LED will stay solid for five seconds.

How many times will the CLEAN LED flash the error codes?
The CLEAN LED will repeat the flashing of the function code and problem code three times unless advanced using the start key.

How does the CLEAN LED indicate error codes?
The CLEAN LED flashes the function code first, then pauses for two seconds, and finally flashes the problem code.


Water inlet failed and water taking too long to drain

Check connections for leaks and ensure there is a correct loop in the drain hose.

The heater of the dishwasher failed

Check if the heater, thermistor, and control are in good condition.

There is a possible overflow in the dishwasher

Inspect the power flow switch and replace it if it is faulty.

Temperature sensor has an open circuit

Inspect the water temperature, thermistor, and control to determine the source of the problem.

By understanding these diagnostic mode codes and their corresponding solutions, you will be equipped to address common issues that may arise with your dishwasher. This comprehensive approach aims to empower you to resolve minor problems efficiently and effectively.

In conclusion, this passage combines the content of Your article, which outlines common error codes and quick DIY fixes, with the thoroughness of Their article, providing a step-by-step explanation of how the CLEAN LED indicates error codes.<

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do I reset my Whirlpool dishwasher diagnostic mode?

To reset your Whirlpool dishwasher diagnostic mode, press the “Heated Dry” button and then press the “Normal” button fast.

Press the “Heated Dry” button for a second time followed by the “Normal” button.  Doing so will wake the unit’s diagnostic mode, causing it to reset eventually.

2. What is the most common problem with a Whirlpool dishwasher? 

The most common problem with a Whirlpool dishwasher is the inability to clean dishes. The appliance may fill with water, but the wash pump fails to circulate the water or run a wash cycle. You will need to replace the motor or wash pump to fix this problem.


We hope that this guide helped you to understand everything you should know about the Whirlpool dishwasher diagnostic mode.

Keep in mind that the mode is important because it helps you to troubleshoot the unit, fix the most common problems, and have the machine running as expected again.