So last Wednesday the house power tripped out while I was away at just before midnight, Joseph did the right thing, checking for burning things before pushing the trip back on. All appeared well again. Chalk one up to weirdness.

Then on Thursday it happened again, while I was present. We checked for obvious failures again, pushed the trip back on and it popped straight back out this time. Pulling all the plugs around the house got it to stay on, so we worked through the list of ’things we turned on about midnight Weds and 10pm today’ - the dishwasher was the only option. Plug everything except the suspected kit back in - all good, problem identified.

Grab the multi-meter, measure the resistance between live and earth on the plug pins, above 20 Mohm with the power off, below 1 Mohm with the power button in. Time to pull it apart and find the short…


This is where it gets tricky as there are no disassembly instructions for my Bosch SMS40T42UK/09 that I can find on the ’net and no obvious way in (like screws on the back on the lid). I’ll have to wing it, possibly break stuff and document as I go. If you are going to follow along at home, you’ll need a Torx T20 and a large flat screwdriver. Here’s the teardown photo stream :)

the lid

Two catches, accessible through the rectangular apertures just below the lid hold the whole lid on at the front, which then slides off the back on hooks. I discovered these the hard way by breaking one :(

the side panels

Once the lid was off, the rest was easy, a series of three (different) screws hold each side panel on. All Torx T20 heads. Once the screws are removed, the panels tilt outwards and drop down from hooks underneath.

trouble spotted

No need to remove any more panels, at this point I spotted moisture where it shouldn’t be, above the electronics and in the base tray. What I thought especially odd was that there was a sheet here to deflect water away from the electrics at all, looks like a known issue!

confirmation of short

Pulling the cover off the electrics revealed a wiring loom with one obvious fat connector for the heater, which I disconnected and measured for resistance to the earth / chassis: <1Mohm, confirmation that the heater had lost integrity and making the whole machine suspect.

abandon hope

At this point it looks like a known sealing / leakage issue around the side of the wash tub has resulted in considerable water ingress to the base tray and thus the heater (which practically rests on the tray), destroying its insulation from the outside. Further disassembly and possible replacement of the failed part might resurrect the machine, but its over 3 years old, and the pipework on the other side (not shown) looked pretty manky / furred up, so I abandoned further attempts at fixing and bought a replacement washer. I figured it had depreciated at under 2 pounds/week so didn’t owe me much!