Uncleaned dishes in Frigidaire dishwasher

When my Frigidaire dishwasher (Model FDB636) has gone through all of the cycles and shuts off, the dishes are not clean and the detergent is only damp.
I've turned the control knob through each of the cycles. The motor runs through the various cycles but, in the "fill" cycles, I can barely hear water entering the tub. (During the "drain" cycles, any water in the tub is being pumped out).
During the "fill" cycles, when I open the door, I notice water just trickling into the tub through an opening on the left wall of the tub (above the Overfill Protector).
Shouldn't that flow be stronger so the water would dissolve the detergent and get pumped throught the spray arms onto the dishes?
P.S.: The owner's manual shows a "nozzle and upper spray" on the top of the tub. Should water be pumping through that nozzle, too?
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I'd guess you need a new solenoid valve (the electric valve that lets the water in) or there is a clog there somewhere. In some washers, the valve stays open for a set period of time so there's no way for the washer to know if there is enough water in there. Others have a sensor that detects the water so the valve doesn't shut off until the level is adequate. You may have the former type.
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Hi Frank,
Please describe the route the water travels through my dishwasher:
1. Does the incoming water first mix with the detergent, then flows through the self-cleaning filter and gets pumped up into the lower spray arm?
2. Does some of the water get pumped up through the funnel and into the middle spray arm?
3. Does any water get pumped though the nozzle at the top of the tub and out of the upper spray?
Thanks,
Gary
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Hi Frank,
When you say "new solenoid valve", do you really mean "new water valve"?
Also, can you describe the route the water travels through my dishwasher:
1. Does the incoming water first mix with the detergent, then flows through the self-cleaning filter and gets pumped up into the lower spray arm?
2. Does some of the water get pumped up through the funnel and into the middle spray arm?
3. Does any water get pumped though the nozzle at the top of the tub and out of the upper spray?
Thanks,
Gary
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Hi Gary- As I am unfamiliar with your model and the more recent technologies, I hope I am not misleading you. The solenoid valve is the "water" valve. Here's what I think is happening. The water flows into the tub and the pump then picks it up and sprays it around. If there is insufficient water getting into the washer, the pump won't pick up enough (or any.) NOW the pump could be bad as well. (Didn't mentiion this because you seemed to think the tub inflow was inadequate.) Under this condition the dishes won't get clean because the pump doesn't spray with adequate force. This is quite common. Sorry, can't describe the way the water routes because I don't know the model, but at some time all the spray arms get water. Hope this helps some. You may need a professional to further diagnose your problem. But it's either the pump or the solenoid valve or a clog in a line somewhere. Frank
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gary wrote:

... There is often a strainer hose washer right where the supply hose connects to the water solenoid valve. It could be clogged up with crud that it kept out of your valve. Check it and clean it and see if that fixes your problem. Do you have a lot of crud in your water system? Galvanized iron pipes? Do your faucet aerators plug up?
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I turned off the water supply to the house and disconnected the water supply hose from the water valve on the dishwasher. (The screen was clean).
I then blew air through the hose that runs from the water valve to the opening on the left wall of the tub (above the Overfill Protector) but no crud was in the hose.
I turned the water supply to the house back on and the water flowed at full strength through the water supply hose.
I then took the water valve to my local appliance parts store and they tested the continuity of the solenoid. Even though it checked out OK, I ordered a new water valve - it cost about $20.
Hopefully, a new water valve will solve the weak stream of water going into the dishwasher tub.
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dump pan of water in dishwasher at begining of cycle to see if it cleans better
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If dumping a pan of water in dishwasher at beginning of the cycle cleans better, what does that indicate is wrong?
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not enough water is entering at beginning.
plus its a quick fix to wash your dishes.
plus lets say you add water and they still dont clean?
this could indicate the drain line is too low and water is siphoning out of machine while its washing.
or the pump is somehow clogged or spray system clogged preventing good cleaning........
add pan of water a lot. if you add too much the machine should automatically pump out the excess....
run machine open FAST! is spray arm turning? good spray? check both arms!!
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if dumping works then your solenoid valve is probably the trouble
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