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KitchenAid Dishwasher KDTM804ESS2 lower arms spray but won't turn. Clicks when turned by hand. Which part is bad?


Aug 25, 2022
Model Number
1-5 years
I have a KitchenAid KDTM804ESS2 that came with the house. I don't actually know how old it is, I don't see any years on it. It's recently stopped washing the lower dishes, apparently because the lower arms don't rotate.

I looked at the other posts on this forum (wow, what a great resource!), and found the following likely suspects: 1. diverter motor, 2. arm assembly, 3. inlet filter. I'm hoping someone can help me narrow it down.

This is the service manual I've been following: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1IABZRwoDnJElVXGVxsXNrdtXmyUJclAL/view

  • The diagnostics say 9-4, which is a "lower spray arm error"
  • The arm sprays from all holes, and I rinsed it to be sure. The soaker on one of the three arms spins through its own jet force as expected.
  • The dishwasher happily switches water from middle arms to lower arms to back spray, so I'm guessing the diverter motor is fine?
  • If I manually turn the arms, they resist and click
  • If I remove the arm and turn the gears on it by hand, it spins just fine. Nothing appears stripped or cracked.
  • The little gear in the attached photo, which I understand is responsible for turning the arms, is very hard to turn by hand. Is it supposed to be? (I can't tell if it's moving when running without the arm on it)
  • Once I saw the arm jerk a bit, but most of the time it appears entirely stuck.
  • I don't hear any unexpected clicking, scraping, or other noises when it's running. It appears as silent as ever.
  • My water is very hard, if that helps

Any ideas what I should be replacing, or what I should be looking for?


(Marked gear is very hard to turn and I don't know whether that's normal)

Click on this thread:
Like I mentioned in post #11 of that thread--->Either that or the diverter motor/lower spray arm motor.

Here's the complete wash motor assembly which includes the diverter motor/lower spray arm motor--->W10861526 PUMP&MOTOR

--->On Page 6-16 in the service manual it tells you how to test the lower spray arm motor.:)

Also make sure you lock the lower spray arm nut into place.

Watch this video:

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