Some of us do it on a regular schedule. Some of us get it done when we can. None of us wants an ordinary laundry day ruined by the washer leaking from the bottom.
We’ve helped Chicago homeowners deal with flooded laundry rooms for over 25 years. Let us help you figure out why there’s a big pool of water under your washing machine.
Our guide outlines DIY repairs that work with most major brands, including Maytag, LG and Whirlpool.
Read on for ways to solve this soggy laundry day problem and prevent it from happening again.
Why Is My Washer Leaking From the Bottom?
Washing machines are built to work hard. They’re designed to handle different load sizes, spin speeds and temperature settings. The results are multiple components housed inside a heavy waterproof cabinet.
Fixing a leak inside the washer housing starts with finding its access panel. The location varies depending on brand and model, so check your owner’s’ manual.
If you can’t find the owners’ manual, it should be available on the manufacturer’s website. Many brands offer operating manual replacements for a small fee.
You can also purchase a separate repair manual with details about your washer model. Both manuals can help identify these parts that cause water to leak under the washing machine.
• Supply lines damaged by general wear and tear or hard-water sediment buildup
• Hot and cold water inlet valves leaking around defective rubber seals
• Drain pump lines clogged by accumulated lint or small objects
• Drain pump damage due to broken components, such as impellers and bearings
• Front-loading door gasket failure caused by a dirty, moldy or damaged rubber seal
• Top-loading washer tub seal leaks due to excess vibration from spin basket
• Pressure switch failure that allows water to overfill the tub and spill inside the cabinet
• Detergent dispenser clogs due to accumulated dirt, hard-water residue and rust.
Quick Safety Tips for Repairing a Leaking Washing Machine
Before you get started on repairing the leaky washer, make sure the area is safe. If the water level is near any electrical outlets, turn off the electricity coming into the laundry room.
Once you’re sure there are no electrical hazards, unplug the washing machine and any other appliances in the room. Next, turn off the water supply at your home’s main shut-off valve.
Stay safe on the wet floor by wearing rubber sole work shoes, and keep a pair of heavy gloves handy. Some washing machine components have sharp edges, so be ready to protect yourself.
7 Ways to Fix a Washer Leaking From the Bottom
1. Damaged Supply Hoses
When a washing machine supply hose begins leaking, it needs to be replaced. You may want to upgrade to durable braided stainless steel supply hoses.
Move the washer away from the wall, disconnect the bad hose, and let it drain into a bucket. Connect the new hose to the correct supply valve and then to the machine’s inlet valves.
2. Loose Inlet Valves
Check for a loose connection between the supply lines and the inlet valves. Also, inspect the valve filter screens.
Your repair may be as simple as tightening a connection or cleaning out the screens. Otherwise, it’s best to replace the part. Appliance dealers carry inlet valves for most washing machine brands.
3. Clogged Drain Lines
Internal drain hoses, attached to the drain pump, can clog with small objects that get past the washer’s filters. Disconnect the hoses, drain, and inspect for blockage by squeezing the hose.
The problem might also be a kink in the line that can be fixed with a quick twist. If neither approach works, you’ll need to replace the old drain lines.
4. Bad Drain Pump
Remove the back panel of the washing machine, and then slightly elevate the housing. This should give you access to reach inside and disconnect the pump.
If you find a clog, such as a small piece of fabric, pull it out with pliers. If you see broken impellers or loose bearings, it’s time for a new drain pump.
5. Damaged Door Gaskets
Worn or damaged rubber door gaskets on front-loading washers need to be replaced. Access the gasket by removing the washing machine door.
Tilt the washer against the wall to shift the basket out of the way. Pull out the gasket, and clean its channel before installing the new rubber seal.
6. Leaking Tub Seal
You might want an extra hand with this washing machine repair job. Start by taking the cabinet apart so that you can access and remove the outer tub.
Lay the tub on its side, and work the leaking seal out of the tub’s bottom. Position the tub upside down, and press a new seal into place. Reposition the tub, and reassemble the cabinet.
7. Faulty Pressure Switch
The washing machine pressure switch controls water levels according to load size. If it isn’t working properly, there may be a clog in its pressure hose.
Disconnect and inspect the hose for debris, twists or punctures. You may need to replace the line. The problem could also be faulty switch components. If so, you’ll need to trade it out for a new pressure switch.
How to Prevent Water Leaks From Your Washer
Now that you know how to fix common washing machine leaks, let’s look at ways to prevent them from happening. These tips can help you avoid laundry day disasters.
• Regularly inspect water supply lines and connections for signs of potential problems.
• Clean the rubber gaskets on front-loaders at least once a month with a mix of vinegar and water.
• Install a water hammer arrestor to control pressure fluctuations that can make a washing machine leak.
• Replace supply line shutoff valves with a single-lever model that quickly shuts down both lines.
• Reduce stress on top-loader tub seals by avoiding overloading and keeping loads balanced.
• Don’t overuse laundry detergents and fabric softeners that can buildup and clog drain lines.
Dealing With Water Damage From a Leaking Washer in Chicago? We Can Help!
It’s always our pleasure to share information you can use around the house. Check back with us soon for more tips about how to help prevent appliance leaks, bathroom floods and water-logged kitchens.
If you do find yourself facing a water emergency at home or work, you want the best water damage restoration business in Chicago. ServiceMaster of Lake Shore is here for you with an immediate response and industry-certified solutions.
We’re ready to help, and we’re just a phone call away: 312-707-8597