Frigidaire Dishwasher Drain Pump Test

When it comes to your Frigidaire dishwasher, ensuring that all its components are functioning properly is essential for efficient and effective dishwashing. One crucial component is the drain pump, which is responsible for removing dirty water from the dishwasher’s tub. If you suspect that your Frigidaire dishwasher drain pump might be faulty, it’s important to perform a test to determine if it needs repair or replacement. In this article, we will guide you through the process of testing the drain pump to help diagnose any issues.

Understanding the Frigidaire Dishwasher Drain Pump

The drain pump in a Frigidaire dishwasher is a motor-driven pump that works in conjunction with the dishwasher’s control board. Its primary function is to expel water from the dishwasher tub during the draining process. This prevents water from pooling at the bottom, ensuring that your dishes are properly cleaned and rinsed.

Signs of a Faulty Drain Pump

Before proceeding with the drain pump test, it’s crucial to identify potential signs of a faulty pump. Here are a few common indicators:

  1. Standing Water: If you notice standing water at the bottom of your dishwasher after a wash cycle, it could be a sign of a malfunctioning drain pump.
  2. Unpleasant Odors: A faulty drain pump may not effectively remove food particles and debris, resulting in lingering odors inside the dishwasher.
  3. Incomplete Drainage: If your dishwasher is not draining completely or if you find water at the bottom at the end of the cycle, it could be due to a malfunctioning drain pump.
  4. Strange Noises: A drain pump that is struggling or has become clogged may produce unusual noises during the draining process.

Tools and Materials Needed

Before starting the drain pump test, gather the following tools and materials:

  • Screwdriver set
  • Multimeter
  • Safety gloves
  • Safety goggles
  • Replacement drain pump (if necessary)
dishwasher troubleshooting

Step 1: Disconnect the Power

Ensure your safety by disconnecting the dishwasher from its power source. This can typically be done by unplugging the dishwasher or switching off the circuit breaker connected to it.

Step 2: Access the Drain Pump

Locate the drain pump, which is usually situated at the bottom of the dishwasher. You might need to remove the lower front panel or kickplate to access it. Refer to your dishwasher’s user manual for specific instructions on accessing the pump.

Step 3: Inspect the Drain Pump

Visually inspect the drain pump for any visible signs of damage, such as cracks, leaks, or loose connections. Ensure that the pump impeller can rotate freely without any obstructions.

Step 4: Testing the Drain Pump for Continuity

Using a multimeter set to the continuity or ohms setting, test the drain pump for continuity. This test determines if there is a continuous electrical path through the pump’s motor. Follow these steps:

  1. Disconnect the wires from the drain pump terminals.
  2. Place the multimeter’s probes on the terminals of the drain pump.
  3. If the multimeter displays a reading of zero or a very low resistance value, it indicates that the drain pump has continuity and is functioning properly.
  4. If there is no continuity or a significantly high resistance reading, it suggests a fault in the drain pump, and it may need to be replaced.

Step 5: Testing the Drain Pump for Proper Voltage

Next, you’ll need to test the drain pump for proper voltage. This step ensures that the pump is receiving the correct electrical power. Follow these steps:

  1. Reconnect the wires to the drain pump terminals.
  2. Set the multimeter to measure AC voltage.
  3. Start a dishwasher cycle that involves draining.
  4. Carefully place the multimeter probes on the terminals of the drain pump while it’s operating.
  5. If the multimeter displays a voltage reading within the manufacturer’s specified range, it indicates that the drain pump is receiving the correct voltage.
  6. If the voltage reading is significantly low or nonexistent, it suggests a problem with the power supply or the dishwasher’s control board.

Step 6: Replacing the Drain Pump (if necessary)

If the drain pump fails either the continuity or voltage test, it’s likely that the pump needs to be replaced. Refer to your Frigidaire dishwasher’s user manual for detailed instructions on how to remove and install a new drain pump. Make sure to follow all safety precautions and use the appropriate tools.

Step 7: Reassembling the Dishwasher

After replacing the drain pump, carefully reassemble the dishwasher, ensuring that all connections are secure. Take your time to double-check all the steps to ensure a proper reassembly.

Tips for Maintaining a Healthy Dishwasher

To keep your Frigidaire dishwasher in optimal condition and minimize the risk of drain pump issues, consider the following maintenance tips:

  1. Regular Cleaning: Clean the dishwasher’s filter, spray arms, and interior regularly to prevent the accumulation of food debris and mineral deposits.
  2. Scrape Food Residue: Scrape off excess food residue from dishes before loading them into the dishwasher to prevent clogging.
  3. Use Quality Detergent: Choose a high-quality dishwasher detergent that effectively cleans and rinses dishes, preventing the build-up of residue that can clog the drain pump.
  4. Avoid Overloading: Overloading the dishwasher can strain the drain pump and other components, leading to premature wear and tear.
  5. Address Issues Promptly: If you notice any signs of a malfunctioning drain pump or other dishwasher problems, address them promptly to avoid further damage and costly repairs.

How do I force my Frigidaire dishwasher to drain?

If your Frigidaire dishwasher is not draining, there are a few steps you can take to try and fix the issue.

First, make sure the dishwasher is turned off and unplugged from the wall. Then, locate the drain hose at the bottom of the dishwasher and check for any obstructions or kinks in it that could be preventing water from draining. If you find any, straighten out the hose and clear away any debris that may be blocking it.

If this doesn’t solve the issue, you can try manually forcing your Frigidaire dishwasher to drain. To do this, remove the lower access panel on the front of your dishwasher and locate the drain pump. Disconnect its power supply and then use a flathead screwdriver to spin its impeller blades clockwise several times until all of the water has been drained from your dishwasher. Replace the access panel when finished.

Why is my Frigidaire dishwasher not draining during the cycle?

There are a few possible reasons why your Frigidaire dishwasher is not draining during the cycle. First, check to make sure the drain hose is securely connected to the garbage disposal or sink drain. If it’s loose, tighten it and then run another cycle.

If that doesn’t work, you may have a clogged filter. To clean the filter, remove the lower rack and locate the filter assembly near the bottom of the dishwasher tub. Remove any debris or food particles from the filter and rinse with warm water. Once cleaned, reassemble and run another cycle.

Finally, if neither of these solutions works, you may need to replace either your drain pump or impeller kit as these components can wear out over time. Refer to your owner’s manual for instructions on how to do this properly.

Can I test the drain pump without a multimeter?

While a multimeter is the most accurate tool for testing the drain pump, you may be able to identify visible signs of damage or clogs without it. However, a multimeter provides a more precise assessment of the pump’s electrical functionality.

How often should I test the drain pump in my Frigidaire dishwasher?

It’s not necessary to test the drain pump regularly unless you experience drainage issues or suspect a problem. However, performing routine maintenance and keeping an eye out for signs of a faulty pump is recommended.

Can I replace the drain pump myself, or should I hire a professional?

If you have experience with appliance repairs and feel confident in your skills, you can attempt to replace the drain pump yourself. However, if you’re unsure or uncomfortable with the process, it’s best to seek the assistance of a qualified technician.

How long does a typical dishwasher drain pump last?

The lifespan of a dishwasher drain pump can vary depending on usage, maintenance, and other factors. On average, a drain pump can last anywhere from 5 to 10 years.

Is it normal for a dishwasher to have a small amount of water at the bottom after a cycle?

Yes, it’s normal for a small amount of water to remain in the dishwasher after a cycle. This residual water helps to keep the seals moist and prevent them from drying out. However, if you notice an excessive amount of water or standing water, it could indicate a drain pump or other issue.

How do I put my Frigidaire dishwasher in test mode?

To put your Frigidaire dishwasher in test mode, you will need to access the service diagnostics. This can be done by pressing and holding the high temperature wash and heated dry buttons simultaneously for 3-5 seconds. The display should then show a code that indicates the machine is in test mode. You can then run the cycle and check for any errors or problems with the dishwasher.

Once you have completed running the test cycle, press and hold the start/cancel button for 3-5 seconds to exit test mode. If any errors were detected during the test cycle, they will be displayed on the LCD screen. It is important to note that if any problems are detected, you should contact a qualified technician to diagnose and repair them as soon as possible.
In summary, putting your Frigidaire dishwasher in test mode requires accessing service diagnostics by pressing and holding two buttons simultaneously for 3-5 seconds.


Testing the drain pump in your Frigidaire dishwasher is an important diagnostic step when experiencing drainage issues. By following the outlined steps and performing the necessary tests, you can determine if the drain pump requires repair or replacement. Remember to prioritize safety and consult your dishwasher’s user manual for specific instructions.

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