GE dishwasher (pump removal)

I have a 6 year old GE dishwasher that is only used about twice a week (bachelor), so I consider it to be near new..
Up until about 3 months ago it worked great and cleaned dishes in the top and bottom rack better than the more expensive models I (we) had in the past.. Now it just isn't really cleaning the dishes in the top rack and does a poor job on those in the lower rack.. Additionally, it dosen't sound like the washer spray is as strong as before..
I have checked and cleaned the screen and made sure that the rotor and spray elements clear and working freely..
I've got a feeling that I have a plugged or defective pump..
This is a built in (I installed it myself) and I dread pulling it out, but I guess that is the only way to check/remove the pump..
Once I pull it out and tip it on the back, how much of a job is it to pull the pump out??
Thanks,
Steve
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Not necessarily. Is it filling with the proper amount of water?
Is the water staying in the tub the whole time until drained?
Is it draining the water out at the end of the cycle?
Is any water draining back into the machine at the end of the cycle?

The pump on G.E. built dishwashers is designed to be able to be removed without removing the whole dishwasher (depending on how it was installed) but taking it out of its enclosure often makes it easier.

I don't think tipping it on its back is necessary and may actually make reinstalling the motor more difficult (if not impossible).
If you post your dishwasher's model number, we can check to see if it has any other components which might cause such a problem without doing all the work you propose. You can find tips for locating the model and serial number tag on your appliances in the 'Repair Parts' section of my site linked below.
Dan O. - Appliance411.com http://ng.Appliance411.com/?ref411=+GE+dishwasher
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It is full to it's normal level when I open it during mid cycle.

It seems there is always enough water during they cycle.

Water drains fine.

No, the machine is dry and stays dry at the end of washing.

You may be correct (and I expect you are). I don't remember the pump and motor location from when I installed it.. However I do remember that the water supply tubing was a bit of a bitch since it goes through the back wall and hooks to a bath room sink on the other side.

I just happen to have the model number right here since I did do a check to see if it was on the recall. Model Number is: GSD500P-45AW (not on the recall list that I looked at)
Thanks Dan..
Steve
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There is a small valve in the lower wash arm support see
http://ng.appliance411.com/images/WD22X114-CheckValve.gif
(although not exact the same support as used on your model)
If it is not sealing properly or has broken and fallen off and got 'flushed', the arms won't get enough water pressure to tun them.
A replacement 'check valve' is available separately http://ng.appliance411.com/data.php?rc#53 or included with a new spray are base http://ng.appliance411.com/data.php?rc !69 (that one is the one for your model) if you find there's any play in yours and it should be replaced too.
If that's Ok, you might need to look into the pump.
BTW. GE has a redesigned pump and motor assembly which has a more powerful, yet quieter motor which fits all GE built dishwashers from about 1970 - 2001. You can see it at the following link:
Revised GE Dishwasher Pump and Motor Asm. http://ng.appliance411.com/data.php?rc 0985
Dan O. - Appliance411.com http://ng.Appliance411.com/?ref411=+GE+dishwasher
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I removed the sprayer HUB assembly and the check valve is ok but there is a lot of wobble when the spray arm is raise (as it would be under pressure). Arm hub raise about 3/16" and would have that much of a gap for water to escape. I'm considering replacement even though the cost is about 1/3 the cost of the machine. Glad it's isn't the pump..
Thanks a lot Dan
Steve
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Just to follow up and thank Dan O for his help and advice..
I follow Dan's link the the part he was referencing.. Noting the price was about 1/3 the amount I paid for the dishwasher and being a very frugal person I decided to see if I could repair the Wash/spray arm hub and support..
Once I saw a picture of the assemble I began to suspect that I could remove it from the inside without pulling the machine..
Very easy, only hand tight. Once I had it off I could see that the Wash/Spray Arm hub was lifting about 3/16" when under water pressure, thus opening the clearance between the hub and the support. I could imagine that was where all of my wash water was going..
I then discovered that the vertical wand was left hand threaded into the wash/spray arm. Once this part of the assembly was opened up I could see that the pivot was just a phillip screw into the support.. Removing this screw I found that there was a plastic spacer that had worn to some unknown degree.. I couldn't simply tighten the screw since it has a bearing shoulder (body-bound). I started installing washers until I settled on a clearance of about 1/16" between the hub and the support lip.
I have it running a large dirty load of dishes now and I can how hear the water blasting against the top of the unit.. Something I haven't heard for about a year..
I'm glad to have it working properly again. But would fault GE for not putting a metal washer between the scew head and the plastic spacer.. Who knows how many repairs have been accomplished using a $53 part..
However, I do thank our resident Appliance Repair Guru.
Thanks Dan O.
Steve
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