Dishwasher Door Gaskets
Dishwasher door seals are a little bit misunderstood so, we’ll try to demystify them a little for you.
For most dishwashers there’s two seals or gaskets fitted around the door commonly called the door gaskets. However, they’re fitted to the cabinet normally and not the door although the lower door seal can be fitted to the bottom of the door on some models.
The large one around the door top and sides is often called a goalpost seal in the trade just to differentiate it from the lower seal.
It is a bit of a stretch though as they’re more splash guards than actual seals as such so far as water goes and, of course they need to keep steam in on the drying cycles.
The goalpost seals rarely fail. They do go but it’s not terribly common on most dishwashers.
The lower seal is far more liable to fail as it gets warped and all bent out of shape allowing the machine to leak. It’s also the one that takes the brunt of the work and will attract bits of food and grease all over it over time.
Which brings us to…
Door Seal Maintenance
Every now and then it’s a good thing to give the seals a wipe over.
The goalpost seal shouldn’t be a problem, a quick zap with a cloth and some kitchen spray cleaner of almost any flavour will do the job nicely as they don’t tend to get gunked up.
The lower one, different story as that can get gunked up with food particles and grease then over time that gets compacted and baked from the heat in the dishwasher and it’s just horrible. That can also cause bad smells or odours as it can get a bit stinky, especially in the summer months.
It can also be tougher to clean.
Usually we’ll use a kitchen spray with bleach and elbow grease, it’s a pain to do it but it has to be done.
You can use some of the liquid dishwasher cleaning stuff that can make it easier but it’s still a pain to do and not all that much easier. You might be told otherwise in certain quarters but, our experience says that’s not true.
Keeping the lower seal clean though will help it last longer and, we’d strongly advise cleaning it every couple of months or so.
Changing The Seals
The goalpost seals are usually a doddle to change, two minute job as almost all of them just pull off and push on.
The lower seal is usually wildly different.
Normally, where it’s fitted to the bottom of the door you need to take the inner panel off the door to get to it and swap it as shown above. Sometimes it can be a bit more complex but normally not.
Some just clip or press in at the bottom of the cabinet and they’re not too bad normally although a bit fiddly at times.
Then there’s the ones that someone with a serious sadistic streak in them came up with!
There’s some that are kits with block either side, some you’ve got to get in under the cabinet to get to and so on, there’s loads of permutations on how it can be done.
Thankfully though, most are easy enough to do and not normally a big problem for even a moderately competent DIY’r.
For both of them though no glue or sealant is usually required at all, it is extremely rare to need that on dishwasher door seals.
Ordering A Door Seal
Like many spare parts dishwasher door seals are model specific. Well actually, they are specific to the cabinet and door more than the actual model but the model tells us what that is exactly.
And with dishwashers as with many other appliances there are a garage of own label brands these days so, the part for one dishwasher will often fit other brands and, often at wildly different prices. The trick is being able to cross reference that information to save money.
Which is where we come in as, we do that. Most members of the public and even a lot of the trade will not be able to do that for you.