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Dishwasher Making Loud Grinding Noise During Wash Cycle

My dishwasher has been making loud grinding noises during the wash cycle. It cleans the dishes fine but the noise has me concerned. It seems to only make the grinding and vibrating noise when the wash cycle starts up and then every so often it will make the loud noise again. Can you tell me some DIY repair advice on what I can check myself? Also, it is a Whirlpool brand dishwasher that is about 5 years old. It is in good condition and we run a wash cycle with the machine empty with vinegar every month. We are on a budget and cannot call a repairman right now. Hope you can help!


A dishwasher that makes a loud grinding noise is a very common issue. Whether the dishwasher is brand new or many years old, there are common reasons this will happen. An older dishwasher making noises can be a few different things. Normally, when a dishwasher makes strange loud noises, it is because a piece of hard food or something that was being cleaned broke and fell into the bottom of the dishwasher. Many times the foreign object has lodged itself inside of the gears or pump of the dishwasher.

You can avoid calling a repairman by taking the dishwasher apart and try to find the object that is causing the loud grinding or vibrating noise. No matter what brand of dishwasher you may have (Bosch, GE, Whirlpool, Frigidaire, KitchenAid, Maytag, Kenmore, and LG) this is a standard method of taking apart almost any dishwasher.

how-to-disassemble-a-dishwasherUse this dishwasher disassemble schematic to guide you when taking your dishwasher apart.

The first thing you must do is look under the sink and find the power cord for the dishwasher and UNPLUG it from the outlet. Then remove the top and bottom racks (assuming it is not filled with dishes) to make it easy to access the bottom of the dishwasher. Next, you will need to remove the lower spray arm assembly at the bottom of the washer. This is usually removed by unscrewing a screw that holds it in place. The screw may be a reverse thread screw, so you may need to turn it clockwise instead of counter clockwise. If you are unable to remove it Google “How to remove the lower spray arm on my model X dishwasher”. Once you have that removed, take a look in the bottom to see if there may be anything that could be causing the noise. If not, continue removing the parts underneath to get to the very bottom of the dishwasher.

lower rackThis is the lower spray arm of the dishwasher that needs to be removed first.

The next piece you will need to remove is the dishwasher screen. The dishwasher screen is located right underneath the lower spray arm. To remove this you may need a set of Torx screwdrivers as it may have torx screws holding in place. Once removed check that there are no visible debris that could be causing the noise. This is a good time to clean the screen/filter with soap and water to remove any food grease and grime. NOTE: There may be other parts on top of this that may need to be removed. This will depend on your specific dishwasher brand. If you still have not found any debris that may have been causing the noise, continue removing in the next step below.

remove screenThe part under the spray arm is the screen or filter which needs to also be removed.

Next (depending on your dishwasher brand) you will need to remove the pump housing cap. This is a plastic piece that covers all the other things inside the dishwasher. The pump housing covers things such as the food disposer blade that will sometimes have big chunks of food or debris in it. This is a common cause for a noisy dishwasher. The pump housing will usually have 2 screws in it that need to be removed. Once you have this removed, check and make sure you see no debris that may be the root cause of the noise. If there are debris such as food and pieces of plates, cups, etc, remove the objects and put the dishwasher back together. If nothing is found then continue to remove items by reading more below.

debris stuck in food bladeOnce parts are removed, you will be at the bottom of the dishwasher where most debris go.
Clean everything out thoroughly and put everything back together and test the dishwasher.

The next would be the upper impeller. This is normally held in place by a bolt or screw. Remove this and the food grinder plate should be visible. This is pretty much the bottom of the dishwasher. If you find broken pieces of plates, cups, toothpicks, food, screws, washers, etc… then this is most likely the cause of the noise. Remove all the foreign objects and put the dishwasher back together reversing the way you took it apart.

The above is the most common reason for a noisy dishwasher.
Here are a few other parts of your dishwasher that could go bad to cause a loud noise…

Wash Impeller
The motor spins the wash impeller pushing water through the dishwasher spray arm(s). If the blades have broken off of the impeller or chaffing the sides, the dishwasher will be super loud.

Circulation Pump
If the noise is a continuous drone type of sound, it may be that the circulation pump motor bearings are bad.

Drain Impeller
The drain impeller might be broken or cracked.

Motor and Pump Assembly
The motor bearings, drain impeller and or wash impeller may have become worn out.

Drain Pump
The drain pump could be bad or might have some debris in it.

Here is a sound clip of a dishwasher that has debris in it causing a loud grinding noise. This particular noisy dishwasher had 3 small flat metal washers in it which was causing the loud noise. They followed our procedure above and was able to remove them and fix the problem without calling a repair person!


If you still need help, assistance, or answers to fix your Dishwasher Making Grinding Noise problem, ask the
experts over at Appliance Repair Questions for free answers to fix your broken appliance!

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40 thoughts on “Dishwasher Making Loud Grinding Noise During Wash Cycle”

  1. My KitchenAid new dishwasher KDTM404KPS has a grinding sound coming out when it starts to run and that sound stays as is when spray arms are spraying. Late in the cycle when pump turns on, sometimes it has a moaning sound to it. Most of the time the pump sounds okay. Any idea if this is normal…

  2. My dw has been making an awful sound for quite awhile. My husband has been too busy to look at it, so I’ve decided to try to fix it myself. This video has been very informative and to the point-thank you!

  3. Our GE gdf510pmd0sa is making a loud grinding noise during the wash cycle. Initial filling is normal and draining is normal (now – see below).
    The design is not the same as the one in your post. I have taken all the parts out on the inside bottom: spinner, fine filter, filter, the cover of the inlet that feeds water to the channel going up the back (under which are two openings with the orange ball inside), and then the ring holding a little tower in place that seems to house a sensor that has wires connected from underneath. On the underside of the dishwasher a cylinder attaches to the side of the central basin via a boot – I’m guessing it’s the inlet. That’s where the grinding is coming from if I grasp the boot I can change the tone of the noise.
    Other info: we’ve had a terrible time with it not draining properly and starts to stink. I went through all the checks and thought it was a kink in the drain tube. (No compactor, no air gap, canceling will fully drain it.) Taking everything apart on the inside was originally a cleaning project. Rotting food was stuck in and behind every single part throughout. Maybe something may have gotten pushed back down the inlet from inside?
    So besides asking for opinions and advice, my questions are: what is the part that is connected by the boot (it’s half white, half black), and do I tip the dishwasher over some way to get at it?
    Bonus question: is that part something that can be opened and looked at to see if something is stuck inside?
    Thanks VERY much for any help.

  4. So many reports of noise from your dishwasher. Mine is without the food grinder.Of course check for objects that might get stuck. BUT, I have found that noise can come from using to much soap or bad soap. Sounds crazy! If the soap suds to much, the pump can suck up the suds causing the pump motor to cavitate. Making a very load noise. Use less soap or better soap. Very easy to do.

  5. DIY Project Help Tips

    Use the parts manual online and it will show the screws or bolts that need to be removed to get deeper into the dishwasher to remove the foreign objects causing the noise.

  6. It sounds like something is stuck. The noise usually occurs right when it starts for a minute or two and a couple of other times during the washing process. The manual only shows how to clean out filters, which I have done. I could not figure out how to disassemble any further to get the rest of the debris.

  7. DIY Project Help Tips

    If you have gotten out some glass from the bottom of your Whirlpool Dishwasher and there is still a grinding noise, there may be more foreign objects stuck in the sump or near the drain that is causing the issue.
    Is the sound a mechanical noise or does it sound as if something is stuck and causing the noise?
    At what point of the wash cycle does the noise occur?
    Here is the manual from Whirlpool for WDT710PAY dishwasher for you to see how to further take the dishwasher apart to find the issue.

  8. I have a Whirlpool WDT710PAY that is making a grinding noise. I have taken off filter and screen and cleaned those and found one piece of broken glass but there still seems to be a noise at the bottom of the machine. My unit is not made as the same as the illustration above. I can only take off the arm, filter, screen, and pull out the hose. I can’t seem to dissemble an further to find more debris. Do you have instructions on how to disassemble my unit? Thank you!

  9. DIY Project Help Tips

    Check inside your GE dishwasher to be sure there is nothing down in the sump/drain area that may be causing the noise. Try running the dishwasher empty and see if the noise is still there. Sometimes dishes or cups placed wrong will hit the swing arms and cause noise.

  10. GE dishwasher making moaning, drone like sound that stops after cycle. This is the first time it started.

  11. My LG dishwasher was leaking and a water puddle would appear at the end of it’s wash/sanitize cycle. The repair required was discovered when I removed the kick plate and kept checking for leakage through each cycle. During the wash cycle there was none. During the sanitize process I observed steam coming out from under the front of the machine. A puddle formed and ran out onto the floor. With further inspection of the inside panel of the door I found there to be a bend at the bottom. This slight bend caused the rubber flap to not seal in steam. The damage to the inside door probably occurred when closing the door and the dish washing soap brick was under that part of the door.

  12. DIY Project Help Tips

    If the repairman replaced the spray arm and the noise is still happening 3 or 4 times per cycle, you could have a bad pump, water inlet valve, motor, or something may be down in the sump causing a rattling vibrating noise when it drains. It would need to be taken apart and checked. Can you tell us where the vibrating sound is coming from? Does the sound seem to be coming from the very bottom of the dishwasher or from inside? Is it kind of a thumping noise? Is the noise in perfect repetition? Have you washed a full wash with the dishwasher empty to be sure the noise is coming from the dishwasher and not some rattling dishes? Can you give us the model number of your dishwasher?

  13. Our Whirlpool dishwasher is just over a year old, and coming into the new year has started making a loud, vibrating sound multiple times throughout the cycle. I’ve timed the last few washes, and the noise lasts for about 1 minute 15 seconds each time, roughly 3-4 times per cycle. It has increased in intensity and frequency since the first time I noticed it. I’m lucky in the sense that we rent, so the repairs are not on us financially. However, I’m also very unlucky because our property manager doesn’t seem to think it’s anything to worry about, and the maintenance man they sent didn’t even stay long enough to listen to the noise. Just removed and replaced the lower spray arm, rinsed out the exposed food trap (which I’d already done) and left saying it looked fine. I know this isn’t fine, and I’m at my wits end with it. Is this something that would be addressed by the above DIY or maybe a problem outside of the dishwasher?

  14. DIY Project Help Tips

    If you have a noisy LG dishwasher and it is not cleaning your dishes very well, remove the bottom rack and look down inside the “sump” pump area where the water drains. You will probably find pieces of food and possible broken dishes and glasses that may be clogging the dishwasher and creating the noise you hear. If the dirty water cannot drain properly, the dirty water stays there and your dishes will not be as clean as normal. Clean out the sump area and see if that makes a difference. Be careful as broken glass can be present. Wear thick gloves to protect your hands.

  15. I have an LG dishwasher about 8 years old. It is very noisy during the whole wash cycle. Sometimes it does not wash dishes well. Any thoughts? Thanks.

  16. DIY Project Help Tips

    The pulsating noise may be a faulty water inlet valve. Does the sound come from the bottom of the dishwasher? You may also have the hose or water line that brings water to the Bosch dishwasher hitting the sides of the cabinet and causing the noise. Check the water line when it is pulling water. If that is not it, replace the water inlet valve.

  17. Our Bosch makes a pulsating noise whenever clean water is drawn. It may happen 2-3 times per cycle. I can get it to stop when it is happening by closing off the water valve and then opening it up again. But the noise returns later during the same cycle or during the next cycle.

  18. Thanks very much for this video. Although my own make is Frigidaire, this gave me a good base-level knowledge to attempt DIY to fix my unit which was washing the dishes fine but making loud thumping noises periodically at various times throughout the cycle and the front panel indicator was flickering and making a fairly loud clicking sound too. At first glance it appeared there was something wrong with the front panel’s indicator unit, but that’s the point folks, do not be misled, the root cause was nothing to do with itself, but evidently the flickering and clicking sound was related to the severe blockage I cleared up, including a piece of wine glass stuck in the moving parts. My unit was much, much simpler to take apart than what this video showed and I did not have to take out this number of screws. I took out components one by one until I had removed the food-grinding cover (which had just 3 hex screws, very easy to takeout) and just cleaned up everything and put back together and viola! – the unit works beautifully, just like how it was when it was nearly installed. Happy to answer any specific questions from Frigidaire owners.

  19. DIY Project Help Tips

    Joe C,
    Can you tell where the sound is coming from? Does the sound happen 100% of the time? Does it sound like the pump, something hitting, or a vibration? Do you smell an odd smell while the dishwasher is running? Can you give us more details?

  20. My LG dishwasher sounds like it moaning, it started soft but now it really loud. It does this for the whole cycle. This doesn’t seem to affect the wash but it’s getting louder and louder. LG model ldf8072st. Any help would be appreciated.

  21. I found 2 small pieces of broken glass from a wine glass near the sump under the filter. Ran it last night and didn’t hear anything. Hopefully that’s what it was.
    You guys have been great! Thank for the help!

  22. DIY Project Help Tips

    David Borella,
    Sounds like there may be small or large particles down in the filter and maybe at the sump. Check down near the sump and be sure there is nothing there that can be causing the noise. If the noise occurs when the water is being supplied to the dishwasher, it may that the water inlet valve is receiving erratic power causing it to open and close rapidly. OR.. Possibly the spray arm is not aligned properly and therefore hitting an area of the dishwasher. Have you looked at the sides and top and bottom of the dishwasher to be sure there is nothing rubbing or hitting it? This may be a clue to what is happening.

  23. Thanks for getting back. Bosch Model #SHE45M06UC/50. It seems to happen when the water is running in or cycling, not when it’s actually washing. There is no smell and the noise is very loud and hard to tell where it’s coming from. It goes on for about a minute but then stops. The noise is very repetitive, really loud and kind of high pitched. One time we turned the dishwasher off and it carried on for about 5 seconds? It doesn’t seem to effect the washing. (I did find some small broken glass under the filter today. )

  24. DIY Project Help Tips

    David Borella,
    Can you give us the model number of your Bosch Dishwasher? When you say “then stops”, do you mean the dishwasher stops or the loud sound stops? When the loud noise occurs, does the dishwasher have a burning or odd smell? Are the dishes completely clean even when the noise happens? Is the noise coming from the top, bottom, or side of the dishwasher? Is the sound repetitive like something bumping the side or spray arms when the dishwasher is running? Or is it a one time noise? Does the noise happen on a certain cycle? Let us know.

  25. I have a Bosch dishwasher about 6 years old. It makes a load noise somewhere in the cycle, then stops. Almost like a loud fan bumping against the side? It doesn’t happen all the time and doesn’t seem to effect the washing. It even happens when we turn off the dishwasher for a few seconds? Any ideas? It has a filter to catch large food from going down.

  26. DIY Project Help Tips

    It may have fallen down into the drain area. DO not run the dishwasher until it is removed as it may damage the pump. The screw should be steel. Get either a long extendable telescopic magnet to get down in there or use a high power shop-vac to suck it out.

  27. I was cleaning filter on my maytag and dropped a screw straight down the center. I cannot see it and a magnet didn’t pick it up where could it have gone what should I do

  28. DIY Project Help Tips

    Can you tell us the model # of your Smeg dishwasher and where exactly the noise is coming from? How old is your dishwasher?

  29. My Smeg dishwasher makes an awful noise when we first start it up and then at the end of the cycle. It is washing fine, very clean. I have taken the bottom arm off and the bottom part of the inside of the dishwasher. Please help. Thanks.

  30. DIY Project Help Tips

    I believe you are the same person having issues with your refrigerator clicking. An appliance that clicks is NORMAL. There are relays and other components that click. If the dishwasher works, do not worry. If you hear clicks but the appliance is NOT working then you have a problem. If the dishwasher works perfectly but clicks here and there, it is working normally.

  31. I have bought a Bosch sms69u78eu dishwasher recently and i have used it just two times by now. In both times just before final rinse (when LED shows 23 minutes is remained, eco program, used with various speed option) a clicking noise was heard 3 times. What is this? I hadn’t heard any sound like this in other dishwashers.

  32. DIY Project Help Tips

    Sounds like a control board issue. You may want to run some tests to be sure it is a control panel issue.

  33. My dishwasher is doing this too. We took it apart but didn’t see anything. Its a Kitchen aid and will start washing. In about 15 minutes of the cycle it will stop and blink to the rinsing cycle and stop. Sometimes it may take many hours but it will turn on again and run for a little while. If it goes to the rinse cycle it will not come on again.

  34. Maryellen Miller

    Thank you!!! We were able to take apart our dishwasher only to find a toothpick and a small metal disk in the food grinder. Wish we’d found this article before ordering and installing a new inlet valve as another site led us to believe was the issue but super happy we didn’t need to pay for a dishwasher repair guy!

  35. Thank you so much for the information & the sound clip of the dishwasher! The link you provided sounded exactly like the noise my dishwasher was making. Thanks to you, I was able to diagnose the problem and fix it myself. It was a major pain in the neck but I’m sure it saved me lots of money since I didn’t have to call a repairman. The sound clip was so helpful! I only wish you had sound clips of every possible problem you listed so that others can diagnose their issues as easily as I did. Thanks again and keep up the great work!

  36. DIY Project Help Tips

    Pull out the bottom rack. Look into the bottom of the dishwasher to see if there is anything that may have fallen down into the dishwasher. You may need to take the bottom spin arm off to get to the bottom. Most likely something is down inside where the spray arm turns and causes the noise.


  38. DIY Project Help Tips

    Hi C Amorese,
    It sounds as if there may be a seed, bone, or chunk of glass stuck in the pump motor. Take the machine apart and check to be sure that nothing is stuck in the pump making the sound. If it seems the noise is coming from the front panel, it may be that the vibrations are moving up through the machine making it seem that the noise is coming from the front.

  39. Our Amana dishwasher is making a loud, high-pitched squealing noise throughout the wash (plus periodic clicking/buzzy sounds like it’s moving through a cycle). The noise seems to be coming from the front panel. Nothing’s visible in the bottom grinder area, the arms all look right, and everything’s coming out clean, but this has happened for three consecutive washes and seems to be getting louder. Diagnosis?

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