How a Roach Broke My Dishwasher

How a Roach Broke My Dishwasher

My husband and I married young… very young. We were poor college students that struggled through all four years of college in small rentals, usually with no air conditioning and no dishwasher. Those were optional (aka luxury) items after all. We were married almost four years before we purchased our first dishwasher, a used portable unit at a local auction. Thinking back, I would now consider it a huge pain to drag it across the room and hook it up to the sink. Back then, not having to stand in the hot kitchen and wash a sink full of dishes was a blessing to me. With a newborn to take care of, I had many other tasks to tend to that had higher priorities than hand washing dishes.

When we purchased our first home, I was so incredibly excited to see that it had a built in dishwasher. Not only was it “built in”, but it also had a digital display. Talk about “hoity toity”. I loved that dishwasher and it served me well for a few years. Then, it happened. But… it wasn’t the typical sscenario that many experience and there isn’t a fix for this type of thing.

roach-job-028My beloved dishwasher was broken.

Let’s backtrack a little and I’ll catch you up.

It all began with a little roach.

Yep, I said it. We had a roach. As many of you know, if there is one there is probably more… dozens more. I actually smooshed that roach, mostly out of sheer panic (yes, they give me the willies). A few days passed without any other sightings. I made the comment that we must have gotten lucky, which of course jinxed me because then we found another. And another. We researched roach extermination, purchased a gel bait and the sightings would diminish into none. *Sigh*… relief.

After many cycles of the above process I decided to “follow” the next roach. It was a little one, but he was nonetheless a yucky, gross roach. I watched as he walked around the counter and finally made a turn and started back in the other direction. As he slowed for a minute I cringed… he was headed for the dishwasher. Was a nest behind it, under it, beside it, in the wall…. what?! I really didn’t think they would be living in our dishwasher… they would get washed away, right?

I told my husband what I had witnessed and he decided to do the same thing with the next sighting. It took a couple of days for him to be around when I saw it, but it happened… and we watched. As my husband also witnessed this bug disappear in the crack next to my dishwasher he announced that the dishwasher was coming out.

The dishwasher was pulled out immediately that night. There were no signs of any bug next to, beside, underneath, above or anywhere around the dishwasher.

So how did a roach break my dishwasher?

My husband decided to start looking in my dishwasher. Again, there was no sign on any bugs inside, but we knew they were around. On another day, it may have made sense to call the pest control/green practices and services company to deal with the issue, but my husband did what any reasonable man would do. On a whim, he decided to open the front panel. That’s when I started shrieking. Apparently roaches had been breeding for some time inside the front panel of my dishwasher on the digital controls. Just to keep this from making anyone too squeamish, I’ll just say we didn’t have the option of swatting them. Too many, too much chaos, some were jumping… it was a nightmare. Big ones, small ones, tons of roach poop… omg everywhere. My husband did what any good man would do, he grabbed the roach spray and protected his woman.

And so, there you have the story of how a roach broke my dishwasher. Even if we wanted to attempt to clean that area out (eww), the digital panel was gone.

It’s been over 12 years since that incident and it still makes my skin crawl thinking about it. I know if something similar were to happen to my LG TrueSteam I would probably sob… but at least I know (and now you do, too) that they not only live around objects, but they are smart enough to find their way into objects and breed.



This post brought to you by Repair & Protect.


  1. Kelley Johnsen says

    Oh my goodness, I commend you on writing this post. Just the idea of them makes me cringe. I grew up in Fl and we had them in our house. Yep even if you could have saved the panel, the washer would be gone just for sake of being gone. What a great story, Thanks for sharing!

  2. Yuck! We don’t have roaches where I live but I did have mice take up space inside my stove (the insulation) in a rental I lived in 18 years ago.

  3. OoooohMYgoshhhh, Ewwww! That had to be so hard to deal with and get through. Yuk! We had an ant situation once… not fun!

  4. Oh I would have nightmares for weeks! I am so sorry for you! I hope you got every last one of them. They are so nasty! I am just squirming here in my chair thinking about them.

  5. Bekah Kuczenski says

    Ahhhhhh you pooor lady! It was all I could do to read this post, I am completely grosser out and never want to use my dishwasher again. Lol I can’t imagine living through that I wouldn’t have been able to sleep at night!

  6. jamie braun says

    SCARY! and unbelievable at the same time! ive never heard of anything like roaches in someones dishwaher panel! i would have been screaming & running away!haha!

  7. Ned says

    eeewwww~! creepy crawlies give me the hibbie jibbies! you are a brave one survive that and to actually write a post about it! kuddos to you!

  8. Nancy says

    Oh my gosh I thought I would see if anyone else is having problems with roaches in their dishwasher and your page came up. I am scared to death now to take the panel off my dishwasher. I am going to have someone take it outside before doing this as I think I am going to experience the same thing. So creepy and gross to think this is happening, but I bet we have the same thng going on. Thank You for posting this!

  9. Cory says

    This exact thing happened to us. I started searching the web for this situation and came across your post. Looks like they fried the circuit board. Ugh.

  10. Richard Fedder says

    The same thing happened to us.
    Cockroaches destroyed our circuit board.

  11. Randy says

    So if roaches fried the circuit board is it worth
    Trying to replace the circuit board.
    I had a warranty rep come to my house and tell me my warranty is void because he thought roach droppings all around the inside components of my expensive Bosch quiet dishwasher.
    They started giving me an error code of a clogged drain and being it’s still under warranty I thought it would be covered but not

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