Washing Machine Repair Self-Help Guide

UK Washing Machine Repair Self-Help Guide

Fault Codes | Known Faults | Book a Repair Engineer


Here is a page of basic self help advice designed to prevent unnecessary service calls.

If you are following this advice or want to look inside the cabinet of the machine click here to read an essential warning first. The idea here is simply to give a few tips that might help to get you out of trouble.

If you require an engineer to repair your washing machine click here.  Click here you if you require washing machine spare parts. Or Click here if you have decided to buy a new machine.

It is worth remembering that many washing machines get thrown away every year and as a general rule it is always cheaper to get a washing machine repaired than to buy a new one. The choice comes down to you and when decideding you need to consider the age of the machine and use of the machine as a 15 year old washing machine that is used 3 times a day probably isn’t worth repairing.


  • 1. Dead Machine
    You go to use the machine and it is completely dead.Make sure that the power is on and plugged in. Make sure that the door is completely closed. Check that the control knob is pulled out or that the on/off switch is on. Try a few different programs. Plug in another appliance such as a table lamp to test the socket.

  • 2. Dead but hums quietly.
    If it is dead but there is a slight humming noise, check that you have the hot and cold water supply turned on. Sometimes only the plastic tops of the taps turn but not the actual tap shaft itself, so it is worth unscrewing the pipe from the machine (if you feel confident to do so) to check that you have a good supply of water to the machine. Check that the water inlet hoses are not kinked, stopping the water supply. In cold weather consider the possibility that the pipes are frozen, particularly if the machine is in an out-house or garage.

  • 3. Not draining, Machines with filters.
    If your machine has a filter this is a prime suspect. Do not take the filter out when the machine is full of water as this will give you a massive flood. If you have access to the waste hose of the machine the water will usually drain out if this is laid down on the floor into a washing up bowl. A bucket is usually too high. You may have to release the hose from a clip at the back to do this. On most machines it is only the height of the drain hose that keeps the water in, so if the waste hose comes out of the machine at the top it is not possible to use this method. In these cases there is often a small drain down pipe at the front behind the kick panel. The water flow may be very slow. Once drained, check and clear the filter. If the filter is not blocked, do not refill the machine with water until you know why it did not drain.

  • 4. Not draining, General advice.There may be a blockage that is stopping the water from flowing. On machines that have their waste pipe connected under the kitchen sink it is always worth checking that the plumbing is not blocked with fat or lint at this junction. Check for kinking of the waste hose, this may of course release itself as you pull the machine forward. As for blockages and obstructions inside the machine itself it would be difficult to give any real guidance as there are so many models.
  • 5. The drum does not rotate.
    The belt may have broken. The drum may be jammed by an item of clothing. The main motor may be faulty. There may be a broken wire to the motor. The main thing in all these cases is to be absolutely sure of the diagnosis before proceeding. It is very common for people to assume that a major component is faulty, when the fault is really quite minor.

  • 6. The drum fails to strike into spin.
    If the machine has out-of-balance spin protection, then a small load or single heavy item may prevent the machine from striking into spin, even though all the water has pumped away. The control system for the fill level may need attention, or there may be a broken or shorting wire somewhere. More serious faults may be due to module, timer or motor failure.

  • 7. The door won’t open.
    This is often caused by the fact that the water has not pumped away. Refer to the not pumping section if this is the case. Forcing the door open is never a good idea as it usually breaks parts that are not at fault and increases the cost of repair. If the door will still not open the machine is empty, it may be because the lock is defective, parts of the actual door handle are broken or the mechanical parts of the interlock system inside the machine have been damaged. Unless you are confident of your diagnosis it is probably best to call a repairman.

  • 8. Timer sticks in one place.
    This is a common problem that can be caused by many different faults. The least common of these is the failure of the timer itself, although this can happen and is usually expensive to replace. It is much more commonly caused by the failure of other components.

  • 9. Noisy spinning
    Often this is caused by wear of the drum bearings. If the drum bearings are worn there will often be a brown rusty stain under the machine towards the back and/or the drum will seem loose on its spindle. Getting the machine repaired before the bearings collapse is a good idea, since persistent use in this condition often results in other parts getting damaged! If there is no rusty stain and the drum does not seem to be excessively loose on its spindle, the noise may be coming from the motor or the pump or from a foreign object inside the machine somewhere. Clonking can be caused by loose components or loose concrete weights inside the machine, or even simply because the machine is not standing squarely on all four feet or wheels.

  • 10. Machine jumps about.
    Sometimes a large item or a few items of clothing form into a ball and cause the machine to become unbalanced. Reloading the machine will cure this. If the machine is not installed so all the feet or wheels are firmly against the floor it will jump about. If there is a partial blockage of the waste system and the machine begins to spin with some water still in it may cause this too. On the more serious side many machines can develop a fault which causes the motor to drive the drum at the wrong speed at the wrong time which causes sudden violent lurching of the machine. If this is happening do not use the machine until it is repaired.Some machines give an occasional lurch as the motor adjusts to the load of the washing. As long as this is not too bad or too often it should not cause a problem.

  • 11. Major flooding or Overfilling.
    If there is a sudden major flood from the machine without warning, first check that wherever the machine drains to is not blocked and overflowing. This cannot usually happen if the machine is connected to the plumbing under the sink. If the machine itself has much too much water in it the control system for the fill level needs to be checked. The same fault can cause the machine to begin washing and heating with no water, causing smoke inside the drum, which can be very alarming.

  • 12. Leaking during use.
    Leaks coming from the actual machine can be caused by component failure such as the door gasket, various hoses, the pump, or from defective or loose seals or joints.

  • 13. Leaking when not in use.
    This is usually caused by faulty washers on the inlet hoses, faulty inlet hoses themselves or defective inlet taps. If the pump is leaking very slowly it may take a day before the water stops seeping out after the machine has been in use, as there is always some water left in the sump of the machine at the end of the wash.

  • 14. Smoke inside the drum.
    This is commonly caused by a problem with the control system for the fill level. The heater may have come on with no water in the drum. Switch off the machine and do not try to use it until the problem has been properly diagnosed and fixed. If the machine appears to right itself, do not be tempted to use it as there is a danger that the fault will happen again or even worse cause a major flood

  • 15. The fuse blows.
    First check to make sure that you are not trying to run too many appliances on one socket with a multiple socket extension lead or plug adaptor. The washing machine should be plugged direct into a socket on its own, or wired up to a spur on its own. Assuming this is the case, if the fuse on the washing machine blows, or the household electricity cut out switches off the power when the machine is used, take it as a warning that there is a fault on the machine that requires expert attention. Avoid repeatedly changing the fuse as this can cause further damage to the machine itself.

  • 16. Fills with water when not in use.
    If the machine waste is connected directly to the plumbing under the sink, it may be that the water draining from the sink is flowing back into the machine rather than going to the main drain. Unless the waste pipe to the main drain is blocked, this can be rectified by raising the height of the washing machine waste hose at some point so that it is higher than the outlet pipe from the sink. The only other cause of this fault is one or both of the inlet valves of the machine letting water in all the time, much the same as a dripping tap that will not turn off completely. Turning off the water supply to the machine should stop this until the valve(s) can be replaced.

  • 17. Fills and drains at the same time.
    This is normally caused by a faulty installation where the end of the waste hose is below the fill level of the machine and syphoning begins at some point in the cycle. Never poke the waste hose right down into a u-bend, have the waste pipe too low or the open end below the water level in the machine (even if part of the hose is above the normal water level)


Please note that all the advice given is intended only as a guide and that no responsibility for loss or damage will be accepted as a result of implementation of such advice. If you are not confident about what to do, leave it to a repairman. Under no circumstances remove the top cover,the backcover, or access the underside of the washing machine when the electricity supply is still connected. If you do look inside the washing machine, always disconnect the power completely rather than just switching it off at the switch as there may be an error in the house wiring that means that the live side of the supply is still running through the washing machine.

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34 Responses to “Washing Machine Repair Self-Help Guide”

  1. b e roberts says:

    the conditioner is still in the powder drawer after the cycle has finished every thing seems to work ok no noises flashing lights ect and does the full cycle as far as can tell can not see any blokage in the powder tray

    [Reply]

    Washing Machine Man Reply:

    do you have a make and model number? The model number should be on the inside of the door.

    [Reply]

  2. nina says:

    My washer is a whirlpool model #LSR8223EQ1, the drum won’t spin and the spin cycle doesn’t spin to ring out the clothes. Please help thank you.

    [Reply]

    Washing Machine Man Reply:

    Does the washing drum just not turn? or does it just not go into fast spin ?

    If the drum isn’t turning its more than likely to be one of the following two things.

    1: Problem with the belt
    2: Carbon Brushes have worn out (most likely)

    It could be something else but for the moment these should be investigated first.

    [Reply]

  3. jlackey says:

    I have an electrolux washer and the drain hose jumps and makes a thumping noise when draining.

    [Reply]

    Washing Machine Man Reply:

    Hello,

    If the rest of the machine is functioning currently then I would assume there is a problem with the drain hose itself or the waste plumbing.

    It might be worth replacing the drain hose as its cheap and hopefully should solve your problem.

    wm1

    [Reply]

  4. John says:

    my kenmoore elite front load, has code SUD. and wont drain ? any sug.?

    [Reply]

  5. Jennifer says:

    Hi – a housemate of mine was cleaning out the space behind the detergent drawer with a toothbrush (with the drawer out obviously), and the toothbrush fell down the detergent-supply hole! I’m not sure if there’s any way we can get it out, short of dismantling part of the machine. Supposing we left it there, would that be likely to cause a problem? Could the toothbrush get into the outer drum, or is there some kind of grid to prevent that happening?
    Thanks for any advice.

    [Reply]

  6. Sheila says:

    Hi – I have an indesit WG1130 washing machine. Bought approx 11 years ago. Drum feels like it is catching on something on rotation and some fibrous white tapelike material came out with the last wash. Have read various sites on advise on drum bearings etc – but drum is not loose so unsure if this is the problem? Have taken back off the machine, belt for drum seems fine and still tight and no other obvious loose parts. Due to the age of the machine I am reluctant to spend much on repair / call out incase this is a more serious problem and end with new machine anyway – any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks

    [Reply]

    Washing Machine Man Reply:

    It might be something caught between the outer and inner drum. When you take off the back of the machine you should be able to remove the heater from the back and put your hand in to feel if there is anything.

    Let me know how it goes…
    wm1

    [Reply]

  7. Paul says:

    we have an Indesit washer dryer WDG1295. When switching on, it fills with water, hums away as though it is working (including draining) but the drum doesn’t turn. The belt looks fine, and if you move the belt by hand the drum turns. Any ideas?

    [Reply]

    wml Reply:

    The most common fault would be the carbon brushes in the motor as the motor is humming.
    The motor is located at the rear of the machine. The brushes are at both side’s of the motor.
    If they are not worn then it will either be the motor itself or the printed circuit board.
    I hope this helps, hopefully its the brushes as they are much cheaper than the other parts.

    [Reply]

  8. Barry says:

    My Hoover HNWF7168-80 is making a loud buzzing noise throughout the wash. It seems to be coming from the little plastic box of electrics at the rear base of the washer (maybe a covered PCB) – do I need to replace it and what might have caused this problem?

    [Reply]

    wml Reply:

    I have looked at the parts in your appliance.
    The part you have seen i believe is the dryer pcb, this will only activate when the dryer is in use.
    The most common part to make a buzzing noise is the inlet valve usually at the top rear right of the machine but again would only be when it is in use.
    The only part that can make a noise that would be in use during the whole cycle is the motor which is also at the bottom rear of the appliance.
    It could be a dry bearing which would mean changing the motor or the carbon brushes but that would usually be a arcing noise.
    I would advise you to call a service engineer as they can test the parts to find what is causing the problem unless you can check the parts and eliminate them yourself.
    I hope this helps!

    [Reply]

    barry Reply:

    Wanted to avoid the cost of calling an engineer but as it’s nothing really simple, think that will be the only answer. Thanks for your help though – really appreciate it.

    [Reply]

  9. donald says:

    i have an indeset wg 1130t just out of warranty when it spins almost at end it trips the elcce tripswitch on the board washes ok just on fast spin is there a filter?

    [Reply]

  10. Paul Bexon says:

    I have a Zanussi ZWF14070W1 washing machine. It is in a utility room and when I last tried to use the machine it was struggling to fill due to frozen water pipes, at this point I immediately turned the machine off. The pipes have now thawed but when I have tried to turn the machine on and select a program there is no power. I have changed the fuse in the plug but this has had no effect and checked that the socket works, which it does. I was hoping for some kind of answer to the problem.

    [Reply]

  11. john says:

    hi! ive gotta slight problem wiv me washing machine! the drum won’t spin and the spin cycle doesn’t spin to ring out the clothes, i av checked the belt, n Carbon Brushes ive checked 4 blockages non found! im at a slight loss! can u give me n e elp? the washin machine is a beko 5kg A+A class 1200 rrm wm5120w.

    [Reply]

    Washing Machine Man Reply:

    hi john,

    if all those problems have been checked then it is probably the washing machine pcb (i.e. the brain) which isn’t functioning properly.

    [Reply]

  12. Shena says:

    My washing machine is 10 months old therefore still under manufacturers warranty. I have rang to book an engineers visit with Hotpoint who are trying to get me to take out an extended warranty just in case the problem is a blockage which they say would not be covered. Is this correct?
    My machine washes but once the cycle/display gets to the pump out stage it stops. Water is left in the drum and then all the lights on the front panel flashes continuously… ie… the small load, extra rinse, less creases etc buttons. In your experience what would you think is wrong with my machine. Would appreciate your comments. Thanks

    [Reply]

    Washing Machine Man Reply:

    hi,

    sorry for late reply.
    it does sound like you have a problem with the draining function. it could be quite possible it is blocked and if it is hotpoint will charge you!

    let me know how it goes.

    [Reply]

  13. Matt says:

    We have an indesit wg1432 washing machine that has stoped draining the water. Even after an extra spin there is still a drum of water. I have checked the drainage pipe and it is clear. Im not sure if there is a dust tray or some sort of filter that i should be checking?
    Thanks

    [Reply]

    Washing Machine Man Reply:

    there should be a filter right at the bottom maybe behind a kick plate.

    make sure you have some towels ready as all the water will come out when you unscrew it!

    [Reply]

  14. nicky says:

    hi we have a hotpoint wml540p washing machine it makes alot of noise when it spins is this going to be the bearings? when do i find them?
    thanks

    [Reply]

  15. caroline says:

    hi i have an indesit washer wib101 when its turned on its pumps water in fast then on second pump it only trickles is and isnt filling machine or even ckeaning out detergent drawer.any ideas

    [Reply]

  16. jill says:

    Hotpoint Aquarius WT540 The machine seems to stick in wash programmes and just goes on for hours (if I let it) I can move it onto the rince and spin or then the fast spin it drains and completes the single programme. I cleaned out the filter (I think) I removed the drain from behind the kick panel. Is there another fiter behind the screw cover? Lots of gunk in there.

    [Reply]

  17. Sue says:

    LG washing machine direct drive WM16225 FD. All programme panel lights lite and can select programme.Option 3 speed button lite but cannot change speed. option 2 can be selected. Option 1 cannot be selected. Washer won’t start.Have checked child lock but does not say anying on the panel about it being on.

    [Reply]

  18. bibi says:

    My washer is Fisher n Paykel, model Frigidaire, Fresh 5.0 smartdrive. After the earthquake last Tuesday it does not start inspite of all the light being on.
    Appreciate your help.

    [Reply]

    Washing Machine Man Reply:

    Unfortunately we only generally deal with UK machines. I believe Fisher n Paykel don’t do washing machines over here so I’m afraid I can’t help you. Good Luck

    [Reply]

  19. sher says:

    i cant seem to find were the brushes in my hot point machine are its one of the newer models aqualtis can you help pls

    [Reply]

  20. margaret may says:

    hi
    i have zanussi zwf 16070w and it does not empty the fabric conditioner, it’s all left there at the end of the wash.can you help?thank you

    [Reply]

    Washing Machine Man Reply:

    It’s probably because it’s all blocked up!
    Take the draw out by giving it hard pull. Then take as many parts as possible off it and give it all a good clean.
    A great tip is to put it all in the dishwasher :)

    [Reply]

  21. ken morgan says:

    my washer has a rapping noise,when it agitates,but not on spin,any idea what it maybe.Also washer is going on 19yrs old,is it worth looking to repair it,ty.

    [Reply]

    Washing Machine Man Reply:

    Might be worth checking the Carbon Brushes, given its age.

    [Reply]

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