Model Number: PTD845SSJ0SS
Brand: GE
Age: 1-5 years

Just got back from a good old fashion Griswold family road trip to find my dishwasher unresponsive (no lights, buttons on top would not work, nadda). Checked circuit breaker to make sure it wasn't tripped and it wasn't. Plugged a lamp into the outlet the dishwasher is plugged into and it worked. Broke out volt meter and confirmed it was getting power. Searched the internet with no luck until I stumbled upon a technical service guide for a similar model (Service Guide).

Step 1: run "Diagnostic Fault Code Mode" to determine if there are any faults. Hold down start and select cycle buttons for 5 seconds. In the first 10 seconds the door switch operation will be verified. The lights on the front will flash when the door is open and turn solid after you close the door. If not, your door switch may be faulty. After the 10 second period the dishwasher will display any fault codes you may have. My dishwasher said "none". See above service guide for fault codes descriptions.

Step 2: I entered the "Service Mode" despite what the manual said. I figured I didn't have much to lose because the thing wasn't working anyway. The tech manual states the following: "Consumers should NEVER be advised to enter and use Service Mode!". The service mode can be entered by pressing and holding the "Select Cycle" pad for five seconds while in Diagnostic Fault Code Display Mode. The control display will indicate the test that corresponds to the load being tested. To activate the test, press the start pad and close the door. To proceed to the next test press the "Select Cycle" button.

I ran thru all 6 test and to my surprise the dishwasher was making the sights and sounds it makes when washing dishes. Note: I did add water to the tub before running the first test "Drain Pump". Not sure if it was necessary but was worried about running a pump without water. Also, despite what the afore mentioned guide states you can exit the “Service Mode” by pressing the delay button (far right).

After exiting the “Service Mode” the dishwasher was back up and running. Ran a full cycle just to make sure and all is well. Nothing like saving $100 for a service call plus parts/labor!

BTW, this should not be happening on a dishwasher that’s only 2 years old.