Dishwasher Door Won’t Close? (here’s why & what to do)

If the door on your dishwasher won’t close, it can not only be annoying, it can also prevent the dishwasher from working. This means you need to solve this issue immediately.

In this article we look at all of the most likely reasons why the door on your dishwasher won’t close and offer the best ways to solve these annoying problems.

Why Won’t The Dishwasher Door Close?

There are several reasons that could prevent the door on your dishwasher from closing. These include;

Probable CauseSolution
Obstructed DoorwayRemove any obstructions
Uneven dishwasherAdjust the feet to level the dishwasher
Door Latch MisalignedRealign the door latch
Misaligned Strike PlateRealign the strike plate
Damaged Door HandleRepair/replace the door handle as necessary
Door Seal DamagedReplace the door seal
Loose Door HingesTighten the hinges
Misshapen DoorReplace the door
Worn Door SpringsReplace the door springs
Defective Control PanelReplace the control panel

Let’s take a closer look at each of these issues;

Obstructed Doorway

loading a dishwasher

If there is anything obstructing the doorway of your dishwasher it could prevent the door from closing properly. This would prevent the dishwasher from running because the door sensor registers that the door isn’t closed. 

If the appliance was to operate under these conditions, it’s likely that your home would be flooded.

You need to check that all dishes, plates and utensils are stacked in the racks correctly without any parts obstructing the door area at all. It could be something as simple as sliding the rack(s) back slightly to allow the door to fully close.

If the cause is that you have overloaded the dishwasher, remove the offending item(s) and try to shut the door again. The problem could even be something around the hinge area like a dropped piece of cutlery etc that is preventing the door from closing properly.

Uneven Dishwasher

If the dishwasher wasn’t levelled on installation, it could prevent the door from closing properly. 

This can easily be solved using a spirit level and adjusting the feet to level the appliance.

Door Latch Misaligned

Over time, the door latch on your dishwasher could become worn or get knocked out of alignment accidentally. If the door latch is out of alignment, it can prevent the door from closing properly and that can prevent the dishwasher from starting at all.

You will need to inspect the door latch assembly and check to see if it is attached properly. If the door latch is misaligned you can adjust it by unscrewing the screws that hold it in position.

Then move the door latch either up or down until it lines up with the strike plate perfectly. Then retighten the screws and check whether the door closes correctly.

However, if, on inspecting the door latch you notice that it is damaged, it will need to be replaced. This can be done by a competent DIYer or you can get a technician to do this for you.

Misaligned Strike Plate


In some cases, it’s not the door latch that  is misaligned, it’s the strike plate. The strike plate is the area that the door latch goes into. If the strike plate has become loose or misaligned, the latch won’t go in or catch firmly.

To solve this, all you need to do is loosen the retaining screws and adjust the strike plate to its original position. Some dishwashers use a plastic strike plate which can become damaged.

If your dishwasher’s strike plate is made from plastic, and it becomes damaged, it will need to be replaced.

Damaged Door Handle

On some models, the door will not open or close if the door handle is broken. Some are connected to the door latch where others aren’t.

You should inspect the door handle for any damage and check if it is working properly. If the door handle does prove to be broken it will need to be replaced.

Door Seal Damaged

The door seal or gasket runs all around the edge of the dishwasher’s door and keeps the dishwasher watertight by preventing any water or soap suds from leaking out around the door.

If the seal is worn or damaged,it can prevent the door from fully closing. If this is the case, the door seal will need to be replaced. However, sometimes all that’s happened is something has become lodged in the gasket somewhere.

It could be a piece of food, or a broken piece of glass or china which has fallen from a damaged item and become lodged in the door seal somewhere.

Check all around the door seal for any obstructions and whether the seal is in perfect condition.

Loose Door Hinges


As your dishwasher gets older, the door hinges can become worn and get loose. If this has happened to your dishwasher’s hinges, it’s probably why the door won’t close.

If this is the problem, the door hinges will need to be replaced with a new set. This can be done by a competent DIYer, but we recommend getting an expert to fit new hinges. This will ensure they are fitted correctly enabling the door to shut properly.

However, in some cases, the hinges have just become misaligned and can be adjusted into the correct position again. All you need to do is open the dishwasher door, locate the hinges and loosen the retaining screws.

You can then adjust the hinges into the correct position and then retighten the screws.

Misshapen Door

If the door has become warped or misshapen in any way, it can prevent the door from closing properly. There are several reasons why the door can become misshapen which include;

  • Excessive Heat
  • Intense Pressure
  • Physical Damage

Whatever has caused the door to become misshapen, we recommend getting a technician to inspect and replace the door if necessary.

Worn Door Springs

The door on your dishwasher has springs attached to it to ensure it remains balanced and opens and closes in a smooth manner. If the springs have become worn and loose, they will need to be replaced.

You can check the springs by opening the door and then locating the springs. They are positioned on either side of the door. Inspect each spring for any sign of wear like cracking or stretching. 

If there is any wear or damage visible, the springs will need replacing. This is another job best left to an expert.

Defective Control Panel

person pressing a button on dishwasher control panel

The control panel controls every function and component on the dishwasher.The electrical components that control the door latch will not be able to function if there is a fault in the control panel.

If you have exhausted all of the other items so far, all that’s left is the control panel. You will need an expert to inspect the control panel and diagnose any faults. If it is the control panel that is defective, it will need to be replaced.

SEE ALSO: How To Clean & Sanitise A Dishwasher (to remove smells & dirt)

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is my dishwasher door not closing tight?

If the dishwasher door isn’t closing tight it could be because; the dishwasher isn’t level, the doorway is obstructed, the door latch or strike plate is misaligned, the door handle is broken, the door seal is damaged, the door hinges are loose, the door is misshapen, the door springs are worn or the control panel is defective.

Are dishwashers easy to fix?

It is easy to repair most of the common faults reported on dishwashers. With many taking less than 20 minutes to repair.

What is the most common dishwasher fault?

The most common dishwasher fault is a restricted water flow or drainage issues.

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