By Gene and Katie Hamilton
The dishwasher is a workhorse in most kitchens, and when it stops operating and a repair doesn’t solve the problem, it’s not a difficult decision to choose between doing without or replacing it. To complete the swap most easily, find a unit of the same size and with the same electrical and plumbing connections as the old one so new work isn’t required.
A plumber will charge $877, which includes the labor and appliance, to remove an old unit and replace it with a good quality new one. If you’re handy, you can make the swap for $580, the cost of the appliance, and save 39 percent by doing it yourself. You will need basic tools such as adjustable wrenches, screwdrivers, pliers, a level and a tape measure. Have a bucket and sponges nearby to catch water as you disconnect the old unit, and lay an old rug in front of it to protect the floor.
Remove the doors of the base cabinet and empty them so you can work under the sink to make the drain connections. Before you start, turn off the water at the shutoff valve and turn off the power to the old unit at the main electrical panel or unplug it under the sink.
Since a dishwasher requires a designated 20-amp electrical circuit, it's a good idea to have an electrician run two 20 amp circuits underneath the sink and wire them into a split duplex receptacle. This will allow you to plug the dishwasher into one outlet and the garbage disposer into the other and both appliances will be in their own 20-amp circuit.
DIY Hassle Alert
You might run into difficulty if new flooring has been added, raising the level of the floor in front of the dishwasher. That will cost require carpentry work to adjust the unit to fit.
Here's a link to a Home Depot video Installing a Dishwasher.
Wrapping up, given the average cost to replace a dishwasher you can compare the price of a contractor’s bid with doing it yourself. For a local cost input your ZIP Code.
Improvement and Repair Cost Updated 2019
The cost and time data is generated by averaging labor and material data from annually updated cost books used by contractors and refined by the authors'
experience remodeling 13 houses. They are authors of 20 home improvement books and Do It Yourself or Not, a weekly column syndicated by Tribune Content
Agency. The national cost can be adjusted by ZIP Code.