How to Remove a Dishwasher Properly

Paradise Appliance
July 31, 2023
Dishwasher Repair

Does your old dishwasher need removing? Whether you’ve got a new one to install or are about to remodel your entire kitchen, removing the old dishwasher is easier than you think! 

Our easy-to-follow guide walks you through the process step by step – read on to get started! 

Remember, the removal process will differ depending on the specific make and model of dishwasher you own, so not every step may apply in your case!

You’ll need:

  • Pliers 
  • A wrench
  • A screwdriver
  • A furniture dolly
  • A drop cloth
  • A bucket
  • Old towels

Step 1 – Unplug the Dishwasher

Safety first! Before you do anything else, make sure you disconnect your dishwasher from the power supply. You can either unplug your dishwasher or turn off the circuit breaker. 

Step 2 – Turn off the Water Supply

Some water spillage is inevitable when disconnecting a dishwasher, but if you don’t want to end up with a flood, make sure you turn off the water supply. 

The location of the supply line can vary, but it’s usually either under the kitchen sink or right next to the dishwasher itself. It will look like a small round knob that is connected to a water supply line. 

Once you find it, turn the valve clockwise to fully close off the water supply and reduce the chance of leaks.

Step 3 – Empty and Clean the Dishwasher

This goes without saying, but make sure your dishwasher is empty before removing it! Now is also a good idea to ensure no water is sitting at the bottom of your dishwasher, as this can lead to spills when the dishwasher is moved. 

Remove the dishwasher filter and use the old towels to dry up any excess water sitting in the bottom of your dishwasher. If you notice any large chunks of old food or debris, clean that up too to prevent it from going rancid or smelling bad – this is particularly important if you plan to store your dishwasher before disposing of it!

There is no need to do a full clean of your dishwasher unless you plan on selling it or donating it to someone to use secondhand. There is also no need to remove the racks or any other internal parts before removing the dishwasher. Just make sure the interior is dry. 

Step 4 – Detach the Water Supply

You should have already turned off the water supply to your dishwasher. Now you need to disconnect the water supply line! The supply line is a thin, flexible hose that usually connects to your dishwasher at the bottom. Make sure you have an old towel or bucket on hand before disconnecting it to ensure you don’t end up with water all over the floor. 

Sometimes the water supply line can be unscrewed by hand, but you might need to use a wrench on some models. 

Step 5 – Disconnect the Drain Line

The drain line is the hose that drains the dirty water away from the dishwasher. This is usually a thicker hose than the water supply line and is usually pointed into a drain pipe. When you remove the drain line, be prepared for some water to come out – there will usually be some water remaining in the line. 

There will be a clamp holding the drain line in place – use your pliers to loosen the clamp, then disconnect it from the back of the dishwasher. Use your old towel to soak up any water that comes out. Your dishwasher should now be disconnected and ready to move!

Step 6 – Remove the Dishwasher from the Cabinet

This is probably the most variable step of removing a dishwasher. If you’re lucky, your dishwasher may just be slid inside a cavity in the cabinetry, and all you’ll need to do is slide it out! In this case, simply slide it out and then use a furniture dolly to move it to where you want to take it. 

In other cases, the dishwasher may be held in place by screws attached to the underside of the countertop, or there may be screws holding it in place at the sides of the dishwasher. To remove the dishwasher:

  • First, open the dishwasher door. This will give you better access to the mounting brackets securing the dishwasher in place. Locate these brackets – they’ll either be screwed into the countertop or connected to cabinets on either side of the dishwasher. 
  • Using your screwdriver, remove the screws from the mounting brackets. If you’re going to be installing a new dishwasher right away, keep them somewhere safe to use again. 
  • Once all the screws are removed, the dishwasher should come out without resistance. Pull it carefully towards you – if it isn’t moving, other brackets may be holding it in place, or you might have missed a prior step. Double-check to make sure it isn’t connected to any hoses or screws, and then try again. 
  • Once the dishwasher has slid free of the cabinetry, you can use your furniture dolly to move it. Ensure you tip it backward instead of forwards when moving it, as this will prevent the door from opening unexpectedly. 

Step 7 – Dispose of Your Dishwasher

Once you’ve removed your dishwasher, don’t forget to dispose of it responsibly! Try calling the store where they purchased your dishwasher – many stores have disposal services. You can also check if your local area offers a recycling program for old appliances.


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