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How to remove a dishwasher

So your old dishwasher has finally given up on you. It's time to remove it, and get ready for a new one. Here's how.


Don't yank your dishwasher out just yet. 

Chris Monroe/CNET

So your old dishwasher has finally given up the ghost. You've bought a new one (and here's how to install it), but first you have to get rid of the old one. It isn't difficult to do if you follow a few simple steps. Here's how to remove your old dishwasher. 

Firstly, disconnect the power cable. If you are disposing of the dishwasher, cut off the power plug. This indicates that the appliance isn't to be used. If you are just moving the dishwasher or getting it repaired, leave the cable intact. Next, turn off the water feed and unscrew the water pipe from the valve. Hold a bucket underneath while doing this, as water in the pipe may drain out once you break the seal.


Turn off your water and disconnect your water pipe from the valve. 

Chris Monroe/CNET

The next thing to remove is the drain pipe. Disconnect this from the drain or waste disposal feed. These are usually held in place by a metal clamp that is secured by a screw: Undo this until it is loose, then pull the pipe off.

Now remove the kick plate that covers the space underneath the dishwasher. If this is the type that has the power and water connections at the front, remove both. If you don't see these connections, they are probably at the rear and can't be removed until the dishwasher has been taken out.


Remove the kick plate under your dishwasher. 

Chris Monroe/CNET

Next, open the dishwasher door and look around the edges of the frame. You will probably see several screws in metal anchors that secure the dishwasher to the surrounding cabinet and worktop, so it doesn't move when in use. Unscrew each of these and make sure the anchor is loose from the surrounding wood. Look at the top, above the lip of the door as well, as there are often anchors in there too.

Put a towel or piece of cardboard in front of the dishwasher to protect the floor, and slowly pull the dishwasher forward onto this. Don't pull the door: You can easily damage the hinge. Instead, open the door and put a hand at the top and bottom of the tub and gently pull the whole thing out. If it won't move, check for any anchors that are embedded in the wood or still have screws in them.

While you are pulling the dishwasher out, make sure that the pipes that are still connected aren't getting snagged in the hole that they pass through. It is sometimes easier to push the cables through the hole before you start pulling the dishwasher out, but this isn't always possible because of limited space.


Disconnect the power and water lines. The power lines will be in a junction box that looks like this. 

Chris Monroe/CNET

Pull the dishwasher out until it is clear of the space. If it is the rear connection type, you can now disconnect the water and power lines. It generally isn't a good idea to reuse power and water cables because the threads and seals can degrade over time and may leak. Even if you are reinstalling the same dishwasher after a repair, buy new cables and pipes to make sure they don't leak, especially if they have been installed for a few years.

Your dishwasher should now be ready to be hauled away for disposal or repair.