When your dishwasher mysteriously stops working, your first thought may be to grab the nearest sledgehammer and let loose on the machine. Unfortunately, as good as it feels to smash up failing appliances with a sledge, it's not going to fix it. Here, you'll find a short list of things to check if your dishwasher has stopped getting power.
Check the Breaker
The first thing to check is the easiest and is oftentimes overlooked. Go to the breaker panel and make sure that the breaker isn't tripped. Try shutting it off and turning it back on to reset it. Afterwards, go to your dishwasher and press a button to see if the power has been restored.
Check the Outlet
You will probably have to pull the dishwasher out from under the countertop to gain access to the power outlet. To do this, you will likely need to remove a few screws that hold the machine in place. These screws are typically located along the top of the dishwasher and are screwed into the countertop.
Once you've removed the screws, carefully and slowly pull the dishwasher out of place. Use care so that you don't cause any wires or hoses to come loose.
After you've pulled the machine out of the way, get a lamp and plug it into the outlet. If the lamp works, the problem is somewhere in the dishwasher.
Look for Rodent Droppings
It's probably been a while since you've pulled your dishwasher out of place, so there's likely going to be quite a bit of dust and dirt built up underneath and behind it. As you're cleaning up the mess, look for mouse droppings. Mice can chew the wires under the dishwasher without you even knowing they're there. If you see droppings, set out some bait to get rid of them before the situation gets worse.
Inspect the Wiring
You'll have to tip the dishwasher to inspect the wiring underneath. There's probably going to be water leaking out of it when you tip it, so get some towels or set down an absorbent comforter to absorb the water as it leaks.
Now, look at all of the wiring — if there are any nibbles, breaks or corrosion, they will need to be spliced back together or replaced.
Talk with your local home appliance repair technician for assistance. Hopefully, the above information will help you get the dishwasher running before you beat the snot out of it with the sledgehammer.