If you live in a hardwater area, or your dishwasher leaves your glassware will streaks, then you know how important dishwasher salt is for your machine. But what if you keep your salt compartment is well topped up, but your dishwasher salt indicator is flashing to tell you that it’s empty?
This is a surprising common complaint, especially amongst Indesit dishwasher users.
The sensors and indicators on your dishwasher are useful for optimal running. But it is not uncommon for faults to occur, namely the blinking salt warning light. If this gives off a false reading, you won’t be able to tell when salt needs to be topped up.
In this quick guide, we’ll troubleshoot this fault and provide some solutions to get your dishwasher back to normal.
Salt Compartment Condition
The first thing you should do is make sure that the salt container is in good condition. Open the filling container (it is usually at the bottom of the dishwasher) and stir the salt with a small spoon. Does the salt move around freely, or has it solidified?
If all looks good, take note of the fill level, close the lid and run some cycles. After a few cycles you should notice a decrease in the salt level, if it looks the same, there could be a problem with the salt being drawn through the machine properly, in this case, call in a technician.
Reset Dishwasher Memory
If there is enough salt in the chamber and it moves freely, there may be a technical fault. Think of your dishwasher as a computer with programs and a memory. If your computer has crashed or developed an error, sometimes a hard reset can put things back on track.
Unplug the dishwasher from the electrical main to erase existing memory and reset the electronics. With built-in dishwashers, it can be difficult to access the power plug if there is no isolator switch. In this case, you can switch off the dishwasher by cutting the power to the kitchen at the mains breaker. Sometimes it can be enough to switch off the dishwasher by pressing a button on the device – check you manual.
Tip: Leave the dishwasher switched off for at least 5 minutes to allow of electricity from the circuits to dissipate.
Check Seal Rings
A common problem with the dishwasher salt compartment is the rubber seal rings leaking. Over time, they can show signs of wear and tear and no longer function correctly. Dishwashers have a sealing ring inside the lid of the filling container. Check that it is intact and replace the seal if necessary. The costs depend on the respective model and the availability of the seals, but are usually very cheap.
In many salt containers there is a float built into the cap, which is used for measuring the fill level. If excessive incrustations form on the float, its mobility is restricted. Open the container and check that it’s clean and free to move, if not, clean thoroughly with a brush and warm water.
When cleaning parts, always take care to avoid damage. In theory, you can also use your finger. However, it is better to have as little contact as possible with the dishwasher salt so that it does not stick to your fingers afterwards.
Technically, floats can be implemented in different ways. Often it is a small block that moves up and down on a rail. If it has slipped out of the rail, or broken off completely, then this will need replaced. Empty the container, which takes a little effort. You can suck up water with a cloth, a suction syringe can also help. Then put the float on the rail.
Emptying the salt container and refilling it is often enough to solve the problem. After emptying, run several rinsing cycles and check the function again.
Dishwasher Salt Sensor
If all manual checks of compartment, seals, lid, and float looks good, and the problem persists, you could have a faulty sensor. It could be that the sensor thinks the salt level has dropped, when levels are actually adequate. In the case, the sensor is at fault which will cause a warning light to flash or low salt level symbol to display.
If it is not possible to rectify the problem with these steps above, you have two options: you can seek advice from a specialist or you can ignore the false display and continue suing your machine as normal. Most of the time, the malfunction is not based on a safety-related problem, so many people put up with the lit display.
Since the salt is used up as usual, you will have to check regularly yourself in this case to see whether new salt needs to be refilled, because the indicator does not work.
With that said, if there are defective cables in the appliance, they represent a safety risk, so it is always best to have faults checked by a qualified specialist.
- Hard memory reset by switching off the dishwasher from mains power
- Check salt compartment
- Check float device
- Check rubber lid seals
- Check and test if salt level drops to indicate sensor fault
- Call in specialist of error persist
The salt ensures the optimal performance and functionality of the dishwasher. The filling containers are usually located on the bottom of the dishwasher, next to drain filter and can be opened by hand. The dishwasher salt is refilled as required and runs through the softener.
It does not really come into contact with the dishes, but has an indirect positive effect on the cleaning process. Most devices have a display so that you don’t have to check whether the fill level is correct before each wash cycle. Next to the corresponding symbol there is a light that should normally only be active when the salt level is too low. If it lights up continuously and you have checked whether the salt level is sufficient, you can choose between different approaches.