How to Cancel a GE Dishwasher Cycle

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Dishwashers can get confused after a power surge or outage or maybe you set the wrong wash cycle. Whatever the case, knowing how to reset your GE dishwasher after power outages and other kerfuffles is on the list of need-to-knows.

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If You Forgot to Put in a Dish

If you're just wanting to put a wayward dish into the dishwasher, most modern dishwashers from the last decade or so can be opened carefully, and if you wait a second, the cycle stops itself. Make sure nothing is spraying, then put the dish in, latch the door shut and the cycle should resume.

Canceling a Cycle: “Cancel/Drain”

With so many different cycles available on GE dishwashers today, as detailed by GE Appliances, it's understandable that you could need to change modes sometimes. On some models, you'll be able to simply push the "cancel/drain" mode if you've erroneously started the machine. This will commence a two-minute drain cycle, if required. It's recommended you allow drainage to fully complete before you start a new cycle.

If you'd rather change your cycle for some reason, usually you can change the cycle mode or options while the machine is filling with water in the first cycle. If, however, you've blown past the first cycle and need to change settings, then some models will allow you to press the "cancel/drain" button, beginning that two-minute drainage. Have a look to ensure the detergent dispensers are still full or top them off as needed, because any dispensed soap will have been drained by now. Close the door and select the cycle or options you'd like to run.

Canceling a Cycle: “Start/Reset”

For integrated control models with a start/reset button, you'll carefully open the door a crack to stop the cycle. Ensure spraying has stopped before you lower the door more to access the control panel. Once you can do so, press and hold the start/reset button for one second. Now close the door and the draining cycle will commence and run for two minutes. Allow it to fully drain before you start a new cycle.

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If a cycle is running and you'd like to change it or a specific setting, then open the door and press/hold the start/reset button for a second until the start/reset light goes off. Select the new cycle or option, then press start/reset again. This should make the start/reset light glow. Now check the detergent dispensers to ensure they're full for the new cycle, and then close the door and the machine should begin.

GE Dishwasher Thinks Door Is Open

There's an electrical problem called "noise" that can send strange signals to appliances, causing hiccups or malfunctions. But sometimes parts just die or sometimes they get dirty and interference affects circuitry performance. For the dishwasher door, there's a door sensor that can misfire or go awry, causing a situation where the GE dishwasher thinks the door is open.

You can clean around the door to ensure debris isn't the problem. If cancel/drain or start/reset don't help jog the machine's error, then the last option is to do a hard reboot by resetting the dishwasher completely, which you can do by unplugging it for a minute, then plugging it back in.

If you're comfortable taking panels apart, you can use an ohmmeter to test the responsiveness of the door sensor, but this could cause more problems than it solves. If you suspect the door sensor may be broken, it might be time to call in a service pro. Remember, any time you cancel a cycle, always let the GE dishwasher drain cycle complete before you restart it. You never want a surplus of water in the basin before a new cycle begins.

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Steffani Cameron is the daughter of a realtor and interior decorator mother and a home contractor father. Steffani is a professional writer with over five years' experience writing about the home for BuildDirect and Bob Vila. Raised with a mad love for decorating, Steffani gave up her Art Deco apartment to travel and work remotely for five years. She's in love with experiencing traditional decor around the world, including stays in Thai teak plantations on the Mekong River and cave homes in Turkey.