Kenmore dishwasher diagnostic mode (How to enter)

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How do you put a Kenmore dishwasher in diagnostic mode?

Now, running the diagnostic mode (or Customer Service Program) can help you zero in on the exact issue that is making your Kenmore dishwasher act up.

This article will show you how to enter Kenmore dishwasher diagnostic mode- running the Kenmore dishwasher diagnostic mode might give you precious clues on what is wrong with your machine.

In fact, having the dishwasher go through the self-diagnosis tests can occasionally help you fix issues that could be causing it to flash some lights (among other minor problems).

Below are the typical steps to follow to run a service diagnostic cycle on a Kenmore dishwasher:


Kenmore dishwasher diagnostic mode – how to put Kenmore dishwasher in diagnostic mode           

Here is how to put Kenmore washer in diagnostic mode (these instructions apply to most Kenmore brand dishwasher models).             

Kenmore dishwasher diagnostic mode (Step-by-step)

To switch to diagnostic test mode, press the following buttons in quick succession:

Heated Dry – Normal Wash- Heated Dry – Normal Wash

Bear in mind that the above buttons should be pressed one after the other (and quickly).

Now, that should activate Kenmore dishwasher self diagnostic processes.

A good signal that the test mode has been turned on is all the lights (on your dishwasher) illuminating.

What should I do next?

If you have noted the lights illuminate, immediately close the door and wait a couple of minutes.

During this time, the dishwasher will perform a number of tests by itself (and in the programmed sequence) to try and identify what the fault is (and eliminate it, if possible).

Of course, it is important to follow the tests since you may stumble on some vital pointers (to the issue) as it goes through the self-diagnostic procedure.

What you should expect

If the machine succeeds in resolving the error (triggering the malfunction), the flashing lights eventually go off (usually).

Otherwise, if the blinking lights persist (indicating it is detecting other faults), you might need to perform other fixes (depending on the error code or indicated problem).

Quick Tip: If you are troubleshooting the flashing “Clean” light error, pressing the Cancel/Drain button after the dishwasher has finished running the diagnostic test could fix it (pressing it resets your dishwasher’s control panel).


Kenmore elite dishwasher diagnostic mode (How to run diagnostic on Kenmore elite dishwasher)           

“How do I run a diagnostic on my Kenmore elite dishwasher?”  

Well, if this is the question on your mind, you already understand the steps:

Just press these four buttons consecutively: Heated Dry – Normal Wash- Heated Dry – Normal Wash

This commonly instructs Kenmore elite dishwashers to commence self-diagnostic tests.


Kenmore dishwasher model 665 diagnostic test   / Kenmore elite dishwasher diagnostics model 665.127

To enter the electronic diagnostic test mode on a Kenmore dishwasher model 665 including model 665.127, again press these buttons (in quick succession):

Heated Dry – Normal Wash- Heated Dry – Normal Wash


Kenmore ultra wash dishwasher diagnostic mode          

To run the test mode on Kenmore ultra wash dishwashers, you still follow the same steps.

In other words, simply press Heated Dry, then press Normal Wash then Heated Dry once more and finally Normal Wash (again)- in rapid succession.


How to reset Kenmore dishwasher

There is something I need to point out: The self diagnostic cycle can itself experience problems.

For example, it may run endlessly (It does not finish and keeps you waiting infinitely).

Now, if you realize that the diagnostic checks keep running, you will need to act.

And the best way is to restart the diagnostic testing mode cycle and have it run from the start again.

To do that, you must reset your Kenmore dishwasher.

Here are the steps to follow to reset your Kenmore dishwasher successfully:

  • Push and hold down the “Start/Resume” button for a few seconds.

For the most part, should trigger a forced system reset on your Kenmore dishwasher (you might notice the lights illuminate once the reset process has started).

To add, the reset may be complete within about 2 minutes.

Alternative reset procedure

The other way of resetting your dishwasher is by shutting off power supply to your entire kitchen via your home’s fuse-box (or flipping the circuit breaker off for a few minutes).

Try that if pressing the “Start/Resume” button did not quite reset the appliance’s diagnostic cycle.

Quick Tip: If your Kenmore dishwasher model is not built-in, try to unplug it for a few minutes to force it to reset.

Please remember that either way, the “Start/Resume” button must be pressed to power the machine back on after the reset procedure is completed.

Finally, try to start a new diagnostics cycle (by following the procedure given earlier) – it will probably run to the end smoothly thanks to the forced restart.


Parting words

If you are unsure how to initiate the diagnostic mode in your specific Kenmore dishwasher model, look for the tech sheet (it traditionally includes complete instructions).

So, where can you find the tech sheet?

Well, it is usually found behind the kickplate (try to feel around there for the paper).

However, in some models, you may need to get the bottom metal toe-panel out by removing the screws and then feel around the backside of the supports.

Here the tech sheet may be folded up and tucked into a u-channel around somewhere there.

The other solution is searching for it online.

One final point: If the self-diagnostics do not help, consider reaching out to a technician to troubleshoot the issue.

Oftentimes, the repairman bill will be cheaper than buying a new dishwasher.



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