How to Replace a Dishwasher Timer



This DIY repair guide explains how to replace a dishwasher timer. The timer is behind the cycle control knob in the control panel. A small electric motor inside the timer advances the control knob and rotates cams inside the timer. The cams turn on and off the electro-mechanical components in the dishwasher such as the wash pump, drain pump, water inlet valve and heating element. Replace the timer with the manufacturer-approved replacement part if it won’t advance or if the cams fail to properly turn on and off components in the dishwasher.

This guide is for GE and Kenmore 363-series dishwashers. You also can use the same basic process to replace the timer in Whirlpool, KitchenAid, Frigidaire, Electrolux, Maytag and Amana dishwashers.

Repair difficulty:
Time required:

Less than 30 min.

Parts Required

  • Timer

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

Tools Required

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Torx screwdriver
  • Work gloves

Before you begin

Wear work gloves to protect your hands.


 Warning: Undertaking repairs to appliances can be hazardous. Use the proper tools and safety equipment noted in the guide and follow all instructions. Do not proceed until you are confident that you understand all of the steps and are capable of completing the repair. Some repairs should only be performed by a qualified technician.

Step 1: Shut off electrical power

Flip the house circuit breaker switch to the Off position to completely disconnect electrical power to the dishwasher (instead of a breaker, some older homes have a fuse that you remove from the fuse box). To verify that power is disconnected, make sure the display on the control panel can't be activated.

Step 2: Remove the timer knob

Pull the timer knob straight off of the front of the control panel.

Step 3: Remove the door latch handle knob

Remove the Phillip screw located under the latch handle knob. Slide the handle knob off the end of the handle.

Step 4: Separate the outer door panel from the inner door panel

Open the door and remove every screw on the inner door panel.

Shut the entire dishwasher door and latch it.

Grasp the sides of the outer door panel and pull the outer door panel down to separate the door panels and access the timer that is attached to the outer door panel. The inner door panel will remain closed. 

Step 5: Remove the timer

Disconnect the wire harness connector from the timer. 

Remove the timer mounting screws and remove the timer.

Step 6: Attach wires to the new timer

Attach the wires to the new timer the same way they were connected to the original timer. 

Reinstall the timer mounting screws.


Step 7: Reattach the outer door panel to the inner door panel

Close the outer door so that it mates up with the inner door panel.

Grasp the inner and outer door panels and open the door. Keep the inner door panel postioned against the outer door panel.

Line up the mounting screw holes and reinstall the screws that hold the inner door panel and outer door panel together. 

 Tip: The mounting screws that fit in the bottom corners of the door are machine threaded screws. These machine threaded screws must go back into the bottom corners of the inner door panel to properly secure the inner door panel to the door frame.

Step 8: Reinstall the door latch handle knob.

Slide the latch handle knob back onto the door latch handle and reinstall the screw.

Step 9: Restore electrical power

Flip the house circuit breaker switch to the On position. The dishwasher display should light up after you restore electricity. Test that the dishwasher control buttons work.