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WDT720PADM2 Whirlpool Dishwasher Won't Advance Cycle

AM Appliance

Premium Member
Jul 26, 2021
Madison, WI
Model Number
6-10 years
Hello, I am working with someone on a Whirlpool dishwasher, model # WDT720PADM2. They came home to find a wooden spoon had fallen onto the heating element and burned causing smoke to come out when the door was opened. Since this time, the dishwasher would always fill but not always advance into the wash cycle. None of the indicator lights blink when this happens. If we open and close the door, it will not engage for about a minute then the drain motor lightly whirs (the pump does not fully engage and drain yet) for about a minute and clicks off with a relay sound and then sits for a minute before successfully draining, filling and running a normal cycle. It currently fails 1 out of 5 attempts. It is important to note that it failed more often before the unit was reset with the circuit breaker. The frequency of failure has decreased since the reset.

I checked service diagnostics for error codes and none were listed. Then I ran a diagnostic cycle and no issues were noted / error codes listed. The heating element is functioning. I did a visual inspection of the turbidity sensor in case there was evidence of smoke decoloration that might cause the sensor to think the dishes are more soiled and it will get stuck in a cycle. The turbidity sensor appears to be clean and clear.

Out of curiosity, the dishwasher has a 1-Hour Cycle. Would this bypass the turbidity sensor on this model? We could do some further testing with this cycle and see if it is non-sensor related.
Out of curiosity, the dishwasher has a 1-Hour Cycle. Would this bypass the turbidity sensor on this model?
That I don't know.

I'm attaching your tech. data sheet below. Look on Page 3. Service Diagnostics Cycle Notes:

NOTE 6 OWI (optical soil sensor) checks:
--->Check OWI sensor for the presence of water during the 5 sec. pause in interval 16 and turn on the Clean LED in interval 15 if water detected.
--->Check OWI sensor for presence of bulk soil during pause interval 13 and turn on the Clean LED in interval 12 if bulk soil detected.
--->Drain until OWI sensor sees the presence of air or a maximum of 1:52 during interval 5 and turn on the Clean LED in interval 4 if air detected.

Here's the OWI sensor for your model, if needed:


  • techsheet-w10610059-revb.pdf
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  • servicepointer-w11224673a-sump-washmotornotstarting.pdf
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Yes, I find that odd too, but it could be related.

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