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I'm trying to do something that should be really simple - clean the filter in my GE Triton dishwasher, which won't drain. It has this screen that covers most of the bottom of the dishwasher, and I need to remove this screen to get to the filter in the back. But the screen is attached to plastic posts with these metal objects - I don't know what to call them, but they look like they are designed to go on once and not come off.

The plastic posts appear to be part of the base of the dishwasher and they don't budge. I have pulled pretty hard straight up on the screen and these things don't come off naturally. I've gone at them with a pliers with no effect. Is there a trick to removing these or does it have to be destroyed?

I've found one youtube video where someone removes the same screen and it doesn't appear to be attached at all, so I assume this was installed in a non-standard way. I definitely have to remove it to get the screen out.

overview

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    the pushnut may simply be a shipping retainer and not needed during normal operation ... use two knife blades to take them off .... slide blade under one side, then slide second blade under opposite side .... wiggle the pushnut off – jsotola Mar 25 at 17:01
  • That's a good point. It doesn't really seem necessary to hold the screen down. Thanks for the suggestion. – Rob Lourens Mar 25 at 17:56
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Those are called "push nuts" and they can be quite difficult to remove. I've been most successful by inserting a thin screwdriver underneath the nut and gently prying up as you work your way around.

Alternatively, you can try to snap the nut by prying up an edge and then using a pair of needle-nose pliers to twist the edge until it breaks.

Another approach is to take a pick and pry up the teeth that are biting into the post so that they release. You'll need to bend them far enough so that after you remove the pick they don't bite back into the post. Work your way around and release all the teeth.

In either case the nut is unlikely to be reusable so you'll need to find some replacements. I've seen them at well-stocked hardware stores or home centers and you can find many online suppliers after searching for "push nuts".

Try to avoid breaking the post itself as it appears to be plastic.

Are you sure you need to removed that screen? It doesn't appear that the manufacturer intended for it to be removable, at least not easily for cleaning. It appears to me that nothing large enough to clog the drain should fit through that screen.

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    I agree, you shouldn't need to remove that screen. Aren't there instructions in the user manual? From looking at the picture, I would guess you lift the spinning arm up and a filter might be under that. – Steve Wellens Mar 25 at 15:14
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    There are no instructions on removing the filter in the manual. The filter is right behind the spinning arm. It's under the screen. I can pull the screen back in the rear and almost get the filter out but I end up trapped by the heating element and stiffness of the screen. I'll mess around with it some more tonight. Maybe I'll just try to cut off the push nuts. But thank you for the detailed response!! – Rob Lourens Mar 25 at 15:29
  • You might want to revisit the assumption that the filter is the reason it won't drain. I think you might think that there is an other filter inside what you can see but based on the inability to remove it easily and no instructions in the user manual, I think you are looking at the filter. And the your issue is something else, like a bad pump. Does your instruction manual have a troubleshooting section? If so, what does it say? – Ack Mar 25 at 19:12
  • The instruction manual mentions checking the air gap, which I did, but it does not have any other useful tips at all. (Thanks, GE). There is definitely a filter that can be removed, under the screen, and hidden by the rotating arm in the photo. I removed the top part of it, and found that it was largely clogged with chia seeds, some of which appear to have sprouted (!) which is alarming so I will go down this path a little further at least. – Rob Lourens Mar 26 at 0:48

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