How to Replace a Dishwasher

Video Transcript

Video Transcript

RON HAZELTON: For our final project today, the rolling workshop heads West to Charlotte, North Carolina.  It boasts a world class NASCAR track as well as NBA and NFL franchises.  Sandi Fix is proud to be a Charlatan as they’re called, and she has bestowed upon me the honor of assisting in the very first project in her new home.  

SANDI: Hi Ron, nice to meet you.

RON HAZELTON: Hi Sandi how are you?

SANDI: Come on inside.  Welcome.

RON HAZELTON: Thank you very much. Now how long have you…

RON HAZELTON: Like many first time homeowners Sandi knows her new house needs a lot of work.  One of the first things that she wants to tackle is replacing the aging dishwasher.  It’s noisy and just doesn’t work the way that it should anymore. 

SANDI: It uh, kind of sound like there’s a little mouse in there running.  Cuchuka, cick.

RON HAZELTON: There’s a mouse in there?  There is.  O.K. alright, so this looks like it’s a candidate for replacement.   Sandi has already purchased a new dishwasher so our first task it top remove the old one.  We start by turning off the power at the breaker box and then taping down the switch so no one will come along and accidentally turn it on a again.  Then we can access the bottom part of the appliance where all the plumbing and electrical connections are.  So you can se the water line is coming in right here.
SANDI: Uh huh, I can see it.  

RON HAZELTON: The electrical is coming in right here and then the drain is this big, this big hose here.  So what I want to do is um, is um while you’ve got the power off, I want to turn off the water, so we can disconnect this.


RON HAZELTON: After shutting off the water supply our next job is to disconnect the electrical lines.  We test the wires to make sure that they’re not live before we go ahead and cut them.  They’re not.  Now we’re ready to move on to the plumbing.  We’ll slip this pan under here, we may get a little bit of water leaking out. 

RON HAZELTON: Sandi loosens up the connection on the water line using one of my favorite tools, the basin wrench.  Then she moves on to disconnect the drain line.   First she releases the clamp, then with a little tug pulls the hose free.  O.K., great a little water in there, not too much.  Now all of our major connection are separated we can detach the dishwasher form the counter.  That’s good Sandi, perfect.  Now let’s each grab a side and see if we can work this out.  It takes a little muscle but Sandi is up to the task.  O.K., how we coming?
SANDI: That’s coming out pretty good.

RON HAZELTON: Beautiful, beautiful.


RON HAZELTON: Got a little hole going back there.

SANDI: Wow, yeah.  I can see that.

RON HAZELTON: Looks like it might be mice.

SANDI: Oh, is that what that’s from?

RON HAZELTON: Mice, rats more like it. 

SANDI: NO! (LAUGHS) Don’t mess with me. This is my first house, I don’t need a mouse in it. 

RON HAZELTON: We want Sandi to have a good start with her new house so before we connect up her new dishwasher I replace that old copper tubing with new flexible water lines.  I have also patched up that big hole in the back with a piece of plywood.  We’re ready to install Sandi’s new dishwasher.  She removes the access panel at the bottom of the dishwasher so that we can get to all of the connection points.  Now installing this new dishwasher is really going to be very simple.  we'll attach the water supply line right here,  the drain hose right here, the make the electrical connections right inside this box.  But before we do that we have to install a couple of fittings, beginning here on the water supply lines.  So Sandi could you grab the Teflon tape.  Teflon tape is used to help make plumbing seal even tighter.  It acts as a lubricant helping the threads make better contact., thus preventing leaks.  Without it you might get what plumbers call a false tight, where it feels tight but really it isn’t tight enough.  Good, that’s perfect we can reach it easily. Now we’re here so we are going to make our electrical connections inside here and we’re going to install what’s called a strain relief  that’s going to allow us to connect our wires to this box safely.  And you can snug it up with a pair of pliers there.  We’ll we’re ready to install our new dishwasher.  Now we’re just going to reverse what we did earlier.  We’ll reattach the drain hose, the electrical wires and the water line.  But let’s start with the drain line right here.  O.K., Sandi, slide this around if you would so we get as close as we can.  With the dishwasher still out  and away from the counter, it’s easy for Sandi to reach the drain hose, slip a clamp on the end and connect it.  Now slip the hose over the end of this fitting right here. 

SANDI: O.K. got, it, got it. 

RON HAZELTON: We tighten the clamp and slide the dishwasher under the counter, making sure that we don’t ruffle up the insulation that surrounds it.  Good, that’s great.

SANDI: Oh, that looks great. 

RON HAZELTON: We level the dishwasher with some minor adjustments to the front screw in feet.  (DRILLING NOISE)  There are two mounting tabs at the top if the dishwasher.  We use these to secure it to the bottom edge of the countertop.  Beautiful.

SANDI: Woo hoo!

RON HAZELTON: Back on the floor, Sandi reconnects the water supply line making sure the nut is wrenched tight.  Then we move on to the final reconnection, the electric wires. 

SANDI: O.K. Oh yeah.

RON HAZELTON: Keep going.

SANDI: Oh yeah.

RON HAZELTON: OK., they’re on you left side now so see if we can tighten them up with that.


RON HAZELTON: We strip the wires leaving about one half inch exposed, then connect them according to the manufactor’s instructions.  The last thing that we do is replace the cover on the electrical box.  Now we can reinstall the access panel.  O.K., great.

SANDI: O.K., great.

RON HAZELTON: Go turn the power back on and the water, O.K.

SANDI: O.K. I’ll get right on it.  Being a homeowner it was empowering to kind of do some plumbing and electrical work.  I feel good about it I am ready to tackle more. 

RON HAZELTON: That’s great.  Well, speaking of empowering let’s see if  it’s, um, empowering the dirt off those dishes.

SANDI: Yes. Yes.

RON HAZELTON: It’s working.

SANDI: It’s working great and it’s quiet, there’s no rattles, there’s no little mice running in there.


SANDI: Thank you for making a HouseCall to my house.   I appreciate it.

Learn how to remove and replace a dishwasher; includes tips on prepping and leveling the new dishwasher; materials/tools lists.

Ron's workshop-on-wheels rolled into Charlotte, North Carolina where Sandi Fix, a brand new homeowner, had invited Ron to help her out with her very first home improvement project. Although this home was new to Sandi, the dishwasher in the kitchen was far from new. It was twenty years old, noisy, and ready to be replaced. Ron is just the man to help with this simple, but rewarding project.