How to Replace the Upper and Lower Spray Arm in Your Whirlpool Dishwasher

Fred's Appliance
July 12, 2017

Your Whirlpool dishwasher is a time-saver. When it’s working properly, the time you spend in the kitchen is drastically reduced. However, nothing is more frustrating than opening your appliance to find the dishes inside are still dirty. While this may seem like a serious problem, it can actually be a simple fix. Damaged spray arms are a likely culprit. Luckily, replacing the lower or upper spray arm in your appliance is not a difficult or an expensive repair. Keep reading to learn how to accomplish this quick fix.

Safety First

Before starting any type of dishwasher repair be sure to unplug your appliance. You should also turn off the water supply. Wearing a pair of work gloves and safety glasses to protect you from injury is highly recommended. If you don’t feel confident in your ability to safely carry out the repairs listed below, please contact a professional.  Also, keep in mind that dishwasher models vary and these steps may not match your dishwasher exactly.

The Spray Arm

Malfunctioning spray arms can affect your dishwasher’s ability to clean. Your appliance’s upper and lower spray arms discharge a strong stream of warm water and detergent, which helps sterilize your dishes. The holes in the spray arms can become blocked due to food particles or other types of debris, such as broken glass or hard water deposits. If a blockage is an issue, simply cleaning the small holes with a paper clip should solve your problem. However, the spray arms in your Whirlpool appliance can also become damaged over time. Cracks or separated seams can form causing the spray arms to become ineffective. Luckily, replacing a spray arm is an easy fix. For help just follow the directions below.

  • Before you can remove the lower spray arm, you’ll need to pull out the bottom dish rack. Once the dish rack is out of the way, the spray arm will be visible. Now pull up on the spray arm to detach it from your appliance. After you have discarded the old spray arm, grab the new one and carefully line it up before pushing down to reattach the part. You should hear a snap when the spray arm is connected properly. Spin the arm around a few times to ensure it is secure and moves freely.
  • In order to gain access to the upper spray arm, you’ll need to remove the top dish rack. After you’ve set aside the rack, separate the water supply tube from the mounting bracket which is located on the top of the dishwasher’s tub. Once the tube is free, detach the spray arm assembly. At this point, grab your new upper spray arm and snap it into place on the water supply tube. Now reattach the water supply tube to the mounting bracket. Before you insert the dish rack spin the spray arm to make sure it is stable and can move without any obstructions.

If the above repair doesn’t fix your dishwasher’s failure to clean, please contact us today and we’ll be happy to diagnose and repair the malfunction.

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