How to fix a leaky washer

My washing machine water shut-off valve behind the washer is leaking. I have made sure the hoses are tight but the leak seems to be coming from from another part of the valve. When I put the valve handle in the upright position the water is turned off to the washer. When I pull back on the water valve handle the water turns on to the washing machine. If I turn the valve completely off, no water leaks. The valve is only leaking when I have the valve in the turned on or open position. The water leaks out in the area where the valve handle connects to the valve and sometimes under the things that look like big flat head screws. It is not a very bad leak, it is not spraying everywhere. It is just a very slow drip but enough to get the wall wet. I don’t want the wall to get mold on it and I am afraid that the leak could get worse. Can you guys provide a me a very simple, easy fix that a non technical person can follow?

The easiest way to fix a leaking washer water valve is to replace the o-rings or bushings. This is an easy fix and involves turning off water, disassembling the valve, and replacing the old worn out o-rings, bushings, or Teflon rings. The most common reason for a leaking washing machine water valve is loose hose connections or worn out o-rings/bushings.

NOTE: There are various types of washer shut-off valves. This page will help you to better understand the different types of valves and how to fix a leak yourself. See the images and videos below for the different types of valves that may be behind your washing machine.

First, check to be sure the water hoses are tight. Also check the o-rings in the water hoses where the hose screws onto the valve. Make sure the water hose o-rings are smooth and not ripped, broken, or too compressed. If the hoses are not leaking and the leak is coming directly from the valve itself, then replacing the o-rings should fix the leak. If the water valve has a crack in it, then it cannot be repaired. If you do find an actual crack in the valve itself, it will need to be removed and replaced.

Exploded view of a typical washer water shut-off valve

To replace the bad leaky o-rings or bushings fast and easy, look up the exact type of valve you have. There are usually 3 different types of water valves used for washing machines. Find the correct type you have by searching Google for “Washing machine water valve” and search under images to find a picture of one that looks just like yours. Once you know the exact water valve type you have, search for a valve kit or plumbing valves for your water on/off valve. A repair kit will consist of o-rings, bushings, plastic packing nuts, and possibly plastic or Teflon inserts that are used to rebuild the valve and fix the leak. O-rings and bushings can wear out over time so replacing them is needed when leaks occur.

O-ring replacement instructions for typical washer shut-off valve

Try this easy fix if the leak is at the handle:
1 – To repair certain types of washer water valves, first turn off the leaky valve with the handle. Use a crescent wrench and tighten the nut (clockwise) at the base of the stem while holding the handle in place.

2 – Open and close the valve multiple times. If the leak has stopped, you have fixed the leak by simply tightening the nut. If the valve still leaks, the o-ring or bushing on the packing nut needs to be replaced. Replace and test. If no leaks you have successfully fixed the leak. If not see below…

How to replace a common washer connection head

To fully rebuild your washer water valve, use this method below:
1 – Turn off the water supply to your complete home (usually located outside and under a panel or along the exterior of the house).

2 – Remove the screw or nut that holds the handle of the washer valve to the valve stem and remove the handle off the stem.

3 – Take off the nut (counterclockwise) with your crescent wrench. Remove the rubber o-ring or fiber Teflon disk bushing inside the valve by sliding it off the stem. You may need a flat head screwdriver to remove the bushing if it is compressed.

4 – Get a new bushing/o-ring/fiber Teflon disk and put it onto the stem where the old one you just removed was. Put the nut on the stem and tighten it down with your crescent wrench.

5 – Put the handle back on the stem.

6 – Once fully assembled and tightened, put the valve in the off position.

7 – Open the main water supply valve to the house and test the washer water valve for leaks.

Another type of washer water shut-off valve – notice hot and cold are separate and color coded

Another type of washer water shut-off valve – notice hot and cold are old style handle

Leaky Washing Machine Valve Fix

Have a better way to repair a leaky washer shut-off valve? Please leave a comment below to assist our other readers.

Here are tips to fix a washer that leaks water from the bottom. When your washing machine leaks, there can be several factors causing it. These troubleshooting methods will cover washer water leaks from underneath, during fill, when not in use, during wash cycle, in front, behind washer, around door, and leaks from the detergent drawer. The information covered can be used on all front load and top load washing machines as the information below is generalized for all washer water leak issues.

NOTE: If a washing machine is leaking from the back, it may seem like it is leaking from the bottom as the water will flow forward and make you think the washer leaks from bottom. The best thing to do when a washer is leaking, is to verify the LOCATION of the leak before you begin troubleshooting as this will help you to pinpoint the issue.

MOST COMMON REASON A WASHER LEAKS: If a washing machine is leaking, first try to determine if a water hose is leaking. This is the most common issue when a washer leaks. A water hose at the rear of the washer might be loose and simply needs to be hand tightened.

Troubleshooting what is causing the washing machine to leak (MOST COMMON FIX):
1. Unplug the washing machine from the power outlet.
2. Slide the washer out about 12 inches (Be careful to not damage the water hoses).
3. Find the water hoses behind the washer.
4. Find where the water hoses connect to the wall and the back of washer.
5. Hand tighten both water hoses connected to the water outlets on the wall (Hot and Cold).
6. Hand tighten both water hoses connected to the washing machine (Hot and Cold).
This is the most common reason a washer leaks, if you still have a water leak, see below for more info…

Troubleshooting what is causing the washing machine to leak at back:
1. Inspect water hoses and connections to find if they are the source of the water leaking.
2. Using your hand, feel around on the connections for moisture.
3. If you find moisture or a connection leaking check to be sure it is installed correctly and secure.
4. Turn off water, remove water hose, and check the water hose washers in the threading.
5. If water hose washers are damaged, replace all 4 water hose washers with new and reconnect.

Water connection at back of washer – Water hose washers (seal) may be causing leak

Troubleshooting a water leak from the detergent drawer:
1. Check that the detergent being used is being used as per directions/manual.
2. Be sure the detergent in the detergent drawer does not go past the marked max line.
3. If washer detergent drawer leaks water, use less detergent.
4. Always be sure that when running the washer the detergent drawer is fully closed.

Troubleshooting that the washer drain hose is not the issue:
1. Make sure the drain hose is not put more than 6 inches into the tub or standpipe.
2. Be sure the drain hose is properly secured so it does not slide down.
3. Use a zip-tie to secure the drain hose into the standpipe.
4. The standpipe needs to be no shorter than 18 inches and higher or longer than 96 inches.
5. Check to be sure the drain hose and the standpipe are not airtight as this can cause issues.
6. Make sure the drain hose has a hose retainer to keep it in place.
7. If the drain pipe is correctly placed, be sure the washing machine is 100% level.

Troubleshooting if the washer drain pump is causing the leak:
1. Check the drain pump area for any type of leak.
2. Inspect the water hoses going to and from the drain pump.
3. Check all the hose clamps on the water lines on drain pump to be sure they are tight and not damaged.
4. To fix a leaking water hose on the drain pump, tighten it to stop the water leak.
5. If you find a damaged water line or hose clamp on the drain pump, replace it with new.
6. A drain pump that leaks will need to be replaced.

Once you have troubleshooted all the above issues, run a quick wash cycle and inspect to see if the water leak has stopped.

If you still have a leaking washer after checking all the above troubleshooting methods, you will need to further troubleshoot the washer water leak. We recommend finding the washing machine service manual for your washer (Amana, Bosch, Frigidaire, Haier, HiSense, Kenmore, LG, Maytag, Samsung, Whirlpool) and then checking the following parts in the list below…

Check the following washing machine parts to be sure they are not leaking:
1. Hoses – May be leaking in washer or on wall water tap causing a back leak.
2. Drain Pump – May be clogged or a hose loose causing a bottom leak.
3. Water Inlet Valve – May be faulty, loose, or clogged therefore causing a leak from back/bottom.
4. Tub Cover Gasket – May be damaged and letting water leak out on front.
5. Door Catch – Holds door locked, if damaged can let out water leak in front.
6. Boot Seal/Tub Seal – On transmission shaft where basket shaft enters the tub and if damaged can leak from bottom.
7. Bellows Or Door Boot Seal – On front loaders during fill or spin cycle and may be damaged and causing a front water leak.
8. Water Level Switch/Pressure Switch – Determines the correct water level and if bad can cause overfill.

If you need more assistance when your washer is leaking, please leave your washer model number and question below and we will assist.

How to fix a leaky washer

Washer faucets work with a rubber washer that closes onto a metal washer seat. When the unit hardens or wears out, it causes a leak. You can close the faucet tighter to stop the leaking temporarily, but doing so risks further damage to the faucet. Leaky faucets are annoying. You don’t need a plumber to make it stop. Follow these simple steps to fix a leak in a washer-type faucet.

Step 1 – Turn Off the Water

Turn off the water at local the valve, if applicable. If not, turn it off at the main valve in the basement, utility room, or crawlspace. Turn off the hot water supply as well.

Step 2 – Take the Faucet Apart

Remove the handle and loosen the screw, which is located beneath a decorative cap at the center of the handle. The cap either unscrews or snaps off when you pry it with a knife blade.

After removing the screw, pry the handle from the stem and remove the packing nut. Once that is done, the entire stem will be exposed. Twist the stem to thread it out. To avoid damaging the faucet with a wrench or pliers, pad the area with electrical tape or a cloth.

Step 3 – Examine the Stem

If the stem is simply dirty, you can clean it and reuse it. If the threads are badly corroded or worn, then you must replace the stem. Take it your local hardware store to find one that matches.

Step 4 – Check the Washer

A brass screw holds the washer in place on the lower end of the stem. Replace the washer if it is worn out or misshapen. Doing so should stop the drip. To get an exact match, take the old washer with you to the store. If the brass screw is damaged, replace it with a new piece.

Step 5 – Inspect the Washer Seat

If you find that you are constantly changing the washer, chances are that the faucet has a damaged seat. The washer seat is located inside the faucet body. The seat should either be refaced with a seat-dressing tool or replaced.

Step 6 – Replace the Washer Seat

If the faucet has a square or hexagonal hole through its center, or if it is slotted for a screwdriver, then the washer seat can be replaced. If upon examination you see that the seat simply has a round hole through its center without any slots, it is not replaceable.

Using a faucet seat wrench, turn the washer seat counterclockwise to loosen it. Apply silicone rubber sealant (RTV) or pipe joint compound around the threads of the seat before you install it. Doing so makes it easier to remove for future repairs.

Step 7 – Reface Washer Seat

If your washer seat cannot be replaced, then you must reface it with a seat-dressing tool. Use the tool according to the manufacturer’s directions, placing it in the faucet along with the packing nut. Rotate it until the seat is smooth.

Step 8 – Put Everything Back Together

Replace the parts in the reverse order you took them apart. Apply lubricant to the threads of the stem.

Step 9 – Faucet Leaks Around the Stem

Install new packing to repair leaks around the stem. Nylon-covered or graphite-impregnated packings make a great choice. Their lubrication allows the faucet handle to turn more freely.

Wrap a single turn of this packing around the stem, just beneath the packing nut. Use 3 complete wraps if you’re applying string-type packing. If your stem uses O-rings, then replace it. Hand tighten the packing nut, then tighten it another half-turn.

How to fix a leaky washer

Modern appliances offer time-savings and convenience — until they stop working efficiently. Take, for example, a washing machine that begins spewing, dripping, or pouring water on your laundry room floor. This is anything other than timely, favorable, or opportune. Don’t worry though. Your DIY skills can handle it. When your washing machine starts leaking, here’s a guide to help you find the problem and fix it.


Obviously, the first step is to figure out where the leak is coming from. Begin by evaluating when the water comes out of the machine.

Problems During the Fill Cycle

If the leak occurs near the beginning of the cycle, you may have a defective pressure switch. The pressure switch is in charge of telling the machine to stop filling with water. A faulty fill valve can fail to stop the fill at the appropriate time. Watch for the water overflowing the tub at this point.

With either a front-loader or a top-loader, too much laundry detergent or not using a high-efficiency detergent can cause too many bubbles and a mixture that will also overflow.

If the machine is not overfilling but appears to leak during the fill, check the intake hoses that bring water from the faucet to the washing machine. If you see a leak where the hose attaches to a faucet, you may need to remove the hose, apply plumber’s tape to the threads of the faucet head, and reattach the hose. A new washer inside the hose might also fix the problem.

Problems During the Spin Cycle

How to fix a leaky washer

Once you’ve made sure the machine is filling correctly, check the seal around the door. In the case of a front-loading machine, these can become dried out, cracked, or caked with grime, causing water to leak out the front. Water can also be forced out the door when the combination of laundry detergent is not correct.

Problems During the Drain Cycle

How to fix a leaky washer

Most front-loading washing machines have a removable drain plug or small hose where all the gunk from the washing machine collects. You should clean it out every few months so that it doesn’t clog and back up into the washing machine system. Clean out your trap and then begin a drain cycle to see if the leak has stopped.

Check the drainage hose that comes out the back and attaches to the wall. Run the machine during a drain cycle. You will hear the water rush through the hose. Watch to make sure there are no drips around the drainage area, whether that is a downspout built into the wall or another type of drain. As obvious as it seems, make sure the hose is firmly inside the drainage area. Also ensure that there is not a back-up inside the drainage pipe that is causing an overflow.

Advanced Problems

How to fix a leaky washer

If you cannot determine the source of the leak after observing it, try removing the back panel so you can access the inner hoses, pump, tub seal, and connections. This way, you should be able to see if the pump is leaking. If it is, it will likely need to be replaced. For leaky hoses, try tightening them down or replacing the washers inside. If the water is coming out of the seal around the tub, the fix is a little more time-consuming. You will need to replace the seal by purchasing a kit that includes the rubber seals and screws for your machine’s make and model.

Washing machines provide an invaluable service to the modern family, but sometimes they need a little love in return. With some investigative skills and determination, you’ll be able to identify the problem and the fix to get your machine up and running again in no time.

(Disclosure: I research online to find the best products, and As an Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.)

  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Pin

A pressure washer is one handy tool you can use to create high-level pressure cleaning all-around your property. You can use it to clean your home, your swimming pool, and also your car. It’s also ideal for dealing with weeds around the home or fence cleaning. However, all these are feasible if the pressure washer works correctly, including the pressure washer pump.

Since it’s a piece of the machine with multiple moving parts and prone to wear and tear, you will face some problems here and there while using it. Some issues are quite common than you may think. This post is here to give you an insight into the various problems you’ll face while using a pressure washer and how to fix a pressure washer pump if you experience any related to it. Read along!

Common Pressure Washer Pump Problems and How to Fix Them

Most of the time, the one piece that fails most is the pressure washer pump. Of course, this is the same part that might make your worries over the bar when there is an issue with your pressure washer. And thanks to this piece, you will not face the same problems with fears and worries.

But first, before anything else, safety first. You need to make sure the pressure washer is switched off and disconnected from the power socket before starting. If you’re using a fuel pressure washer, you’ve to take out the spark plug wire.

#1) Leaks

The most common problem experienced with a pressure washer pump is pressure leaks. These leaks are more likely caused by worn out, faulty, or damaged components. The most vulnerable parts include;

#a. O-rings

If the leak is coming from the pressure washer hose, that will not make you panic. The problem of a leaking hose is a sign of worn out or perished gasket or O-ring at the hose base. Repairing it is straightforward – replace the old perished gasket with a better, new one.

#b. Case

If the leak is coming from within the pressure washer case, the problem might be some leaks in the cylinder head or the inlet or outlet elbow. The cause of all these might be quite simple as trapped water is not drained correctly before winter. It this water freezes, it will expand and result in damages to the plastic and rubber parts.

#c. Identifying Leaks

If the leak is happening inside the case, it can be hard to visually identify where the cracks are, either on the cylinder head or on the inlet and outlet elbows. Troubleshooting the problem requires you to take out the front case, apply the water hose while the unit is unplugged and turn the water on. The water pressure will help you identify the specific piece of these three parts, causing the leak, and after that, you can replace it.

#2) Pulses

If the issue is caused by a faulty or a problem in the cylinder head, the pressure will pulse and trigger the pressure that stops the unit when not used to disperse quickly. That leads to the motor restarting or pulsing.

Another problem that can cause your pressure washer motor to pulse can be water starvation. If the water inlet filter is blocked, there be less to no water reaching the pressure pump. Solving the problem is relatively easy.

All you need is to remove the filter and clean it off the blockages. Do this if the unit is your machine is pulsing but not when it’s leaking.

#3) Worn Pump

A worn-out pump isn’t standard, but it can happen if you operate your machine without changing oil leading to premature wear. It can also be because you used the wrong lubricant or oil. Water could also get into the pump housing, or you might have run the machine with no water. If your pressure pump is worn out, you have to get a qualified technician or do a pump replacement.

#4) Air in the System

When there is air in the system, the pump will cause shuddering and vibrations. You may also experience low pressure or even sporadic pressure. The problem is between the machine’s water pickup and the pump itself.

When the pressure pump is on, it sucks water with air, and it creates a vacuum leading to pulsating. You need to check the hoses or the fittings; replace them if damaged or if there is a leak

Final Word!

Panicking is allowed when one reaches a point-blank with an unsolvable problem, but that shouldn’t be the case when a pressure washer breaks down, and the pump is the culprit. Next time you face the issues I have listed here, there is an easy way to fix it, as I have explained here.

How to fix a leaky washer

Repairing a leaking washing machine can be unreasonably expensive. Frequently, the service technician will charge you a fortune only to visit and diagnose a minor technical issue, a problem which anyone with some technical knowledge may quite easily resolve. The guide offers essential information on diagnosing and resolving the problems you may face when repairing a leaking washing machine.

Step 1 – Identify the Source of the Leak

You first have to first find the source of the leak. These leaks are typically related to the hose, pump, and tub, but be advised that like all machines, your washing machine may have brand-related specifics which may be a source of an uncommon leak.

A word of advice: Always turn off the power supply or unplug your washing machine prior to conducting any repairs on it.

Step 2 – Diagnose Hose Leaks

Leaky supply hoses may be the reason for a leaky washing machine. You may first check if the drain is clogged. If this is the case, simply unclog the drain, and the source of the water puddle on your floor will be removed. If the drain isn’t clogged, move all furniture out of your way and relocate the washing machine into a position, which is comfortable for inspection. Empty the washing machine and start the filling cycle. Pay attention if there are any drips around the supply hose connection. If, while filling it with water, you spot some drips at the back of the machine, then stop the water supply and undertake the necessary steps to remove and replace the old, corroded hoses with new ones. Special no-burst hoses cost twice the regular ones, but they are much better quality. If the hoses look good, you may replace the internal washer. Carefully pull out the old washers by means of a flat-blade screwdriver. After placing the new gaskets in both supply hoses, reconnect the supply lines.

Step 3 – Diagnose Pump Leaks

The washing machine’s pump may be another source of leaks. There are two types of washing machines on the market: a belt-drive washing machine and a direct drive. Open the washing machine’s cabinet. If you don’t notice any belt, your machine is a direct drive type. If the pump is leaky, you cannot do much but replace the whole unit. When you open the cabinet to access the pump, you have to relieve the tension on the belt. Loosen the two motor mounting bolts to do that. One of the bolts is always at the rear of the cabinet, the other is nearby. Next, you have to disconnect the pump hoses. Unscrew the pump bolts, tilt the pump pulley away from the washing machine’s belt, and get the pump loose. Direct-drive pumps will have to be simply unscrewed or unclipped. Then install the new pump.

Step 4 – Diagnose Other Reasons for Leaky Washing Machines

Further sources of leaks may be the internal hoses or worn-out tub fittings. If you are unsure of the leak’s source, it may be best to call a professional.

by Luke Armstrong · Published 01/29/2018 · Updated 09/13/2019

The convenience of the washing machine is irreplaceable for modern-day households. Just toss in garments and hit start. Then walk away with confidence knowing the washing will take care of saturating your clothes with water and detergent, spinning them to clean within the hour. What happens, though, when you return after an hour only to discover a pool of suds and water on the floor? Your initial sureness turns to panic. Your trusty washing machine has sprung an unexpected leak.

After your initial shock, heave a sigh of relief, because you can fix a leaky washing machine in the same amount of time it takes for a load of clothes to be cleaned in one. Repairing your washing machine with a little know-how saves you the expense of calling in a repair technician or the rare event of replacing it with a new machine. Before you start, make sure the sudsy water on the floor is not due to a blocked floor drain!

Washing Machine Types: Belt or Direct DriveHow to fix a leaky washer

Experts say there are just two types of washing machines: belt drive and direct drive. You have a direct drive machine if you find no belts when you open up the cabinet or access panel in the machine. The direct drive is typically easier to perform repairs on.

Pinpoint the Source of the Leak

Tackle the washing machine leak by first locating the source of the leak. Remember to unplug the machine as a safety precaution before you begin. Remove all garments from the machine. Position the washing machine away from the wall so that the hoses are accessible. Fill the machine with water by starting the fill cycle.

Check the Hoses to Find the Leak

While the machine is gradually filling with water, inspect the hose connections for leaks. The water supply hoses should not be rusty, cracked, perforated or severely corroded. If they are, replace the hoses with new ones from your local hardware store or appliance parts center. If the hoses are in good shape, simply replace the internal washers only.How to fix a leaky washer

Drain and fill hoses are the most common of the many types of hoses found in a washing machine. Check the fill hose at the back of the machine for leaks. Ensure the faucet is not causing the leak and that any threaded fittings are tightly secured. The drain hose, which is found at the rear of the machine, also requires examination. Make sure the drain hose is properly installed and seamlessly fits into the household drain.

A worn spring clamp around the hose is often the culprit in washing machine leaks. Experts recommend replacing an old spring clamp with a brand new worm-drive clamp.

Replace a Leaky Washing Machine Pump

The washing machine pump drains the water from the interior tub. If the leak springs during the wash cycle or drain cycle, look at the drain pump for signs of a worn hose or loose clamp. The pump, when it leaks, often does so around the pulley. When you inspect the machine and see the leaky pump, replace the pump.

Getting to the underside of the machine to replace the pump will take a bit of muscle. Lean the machine over onto a wooden block or car jack so it does not tip over fully. You can then access the pump by reaching underneath the machine.

Address Overfilling

Any leaks that become noticeable during the fill cycle may be caused by overfilling. When water levels rise too high inside the machine, the issue may be due to a leaky hose that prevents a pressure-activated switch from receiving enough pressure to correctly fill the tub. As a result, the machine overfills, spilling water over the rim.

Check the efficacy of the water level switch by looking for cracks or wear on the connecting air dome hose. If the hose is functional and has no problematic obstructions within it, then the switch may be defective and require replacement.

Seal the Washing Machine DoorHow to fix a leaky washer

Ensure a watertight seal on the washing machine door is firmly in place. The door catch, experts say, keeps the door tightly closed while the machine is in cycle. You may discover the door catch is worn, allowing water to leak. If the door catch fails to provide a watertight seal, replace the door catch with a new one that does the trick.

The above scenarios are just a few of the most common reasons washing machines leak. Other causes may exist and may require professional repair services. If you decide to attempt a do-it-yourself repair, the right parts for your washing machine may be found online by entering your machine’s model number or via a local appliance shop.

Water Damage from Leaking Washing Machines

When your handy washing machine has sprung a leak that fills your floors with dirty, gray suds and liquid, water damage is highly likely. Water damage can spread quickly. Moisture that seeps into the flooring and nearby drywall can cause harmful mold growth within hours. Wooden structures in your home can also become warped and weakened. Furnishings affected by moisture can become infested with toxic mold and become unusable if left untreated.

Water Damage Restoration ProfessionalsHow to fix a leaky washer

Contact a water damage restoration professional right away upon discovering water leaks anywhere in your home. One trusted water damage restoration company serving the Lincoln, NE communities of residences and businesses is ServiceMaster of Lancaster County. The company’s trained technicians begin the water damage cleanup process immediately to thwart the ruinous effects of the leaking water.

Advanced water extraction equipment removes excess water, while high-tech dehumidifiers thoroughly dry out the affected spaces. ServiceMaster of Lancaster County takes immediate steps to also repair any severely damaged structures. Their water removal technology extracts moisture from household goods, including furnishings, flooring and building materials.

Limit the extensive damage water can cause by contacting a professional water damage restoration service at the first sign of a leak, flooding or pipe burst. You can also count on ServiceMaster of Tri-Cities to respond swiftly to emergencies. ServiceMaster’s team of specialists are available 24 hours a day.

How to fix a leaky washer

About Luke Armstrong

Expert in emergency fire and water restoration services, fire cleanup and water damage cleanup, mold removal, as well as carpet and upholstery cleaning services. Contributor to several restoration and cleaning blogs.

Sometimes you need to play detective to determine the source of a washing machine malfunction. Use the following clues to help find the cause of your leaky washer, so you can decide if it’s a DIY fix or you need to call in a pro.

How to fix a leaky washer

Did you know the average American family washes eight loads of laundry a week? That translates to more than 400 loads of wear and tear each year! It’s no wonder that our washing machines develop leaks and inefficiencies over time. Fortunately, many symptoms that lead to a waterlogged room can be treated without a visit from a professional. So, if your overworked appliance has left you with a puddle all over your laundry room floor after your last load, check out the following leads to determine if it’s one of these most common problems—in both top- and front- loading washers—that require a DIY fix, not a service call.

How to fix a leaky washer

You just built a pedestal for your washer and dryer, and now your newly situated appliance is spilling water out during the cycles.

An unbalanced machine can cause the entire appliance to shake while it spins and agitates your clothes. The result: Some water spills out and accumulates on your laundry room floor. If you catch the leak in time, adjusting your washing machine pedestal or evening out the floor to stabilize the machine could do just the trick. Just be sure to use a level!

Water is leaking from behind the washer, which you recently installed yourself.

Check to see whether you removed the manufacturer’s temporary plastic drain plug from the new purchase—or if you accidentally left it place when attaching the drain hose. A left-behind drain plug is no problem. Simply turn off the waterline, pull out the plug, and reattached the drain hose.

You observe water escaping during the “spin” cycle.

When you’ve ruled out that it’s not an accidental oversight of leaving the plastic plug in after installation, carefully inspect the hoses for other signs of clogs, loose connectors, or other damage.

A clogged drain hose prevents water from properly flowing down the drain pipe resulting in a backup of H2O, which has nowhere to go but onto your laundry room floor. This common problem often looks like a leak, but it’s actually a blockage. Tackle this easily by softening the clog with hot water and fishing it out with a straightened wire hanger, much like you might a clogged shower drain. Then rinse simply by turning the water back on.

Loose connections between the hoses and the valves could also cause water leak back there. First, turn off the water supply. Then pull the appliance away from the wall to check and tighten the connection of the drain hose, the water hose to the washer valves, and the connections of the water hoses to the inlets.

If not clogged or loose, it might be a damaged drain hose leaking from the connection between the pump and the back of the washer. It’s important to keep enough space between the washing machine unit and the back wall; otherwise the hose may rub against the wall, causing damage to the hose due to constant friction. Inspect the hose thoroughly. If you spot a worn out area or a leak, replace the hose and carefully move your appliance back into place.

When you have ruled out all of the above as responsible for your leak, replace the fill hoses—damaged fill hoses can only lead to bigger problems if they don’t receive immediate attention. If a hole small enough to be missed upon visual inspection is the cause, the end result could cause significant water damage when the line gives way.

It’s official: There’s nothing wrong with the drain hoses, but water continues to seep out during the “spin” cycle.

You’ve exhausted inspection of the hoses and it hasn’t solved the problem, so now it’s time to take a look at another potentially faulty part: the pump. A plugged pump occurs when dirt and other bits of debris (including miscellaneous pieces of fabric, like an orphan sock) build up in this appliance part and cause a blockage. If you’re lucky, an easy-to-clean coin trap accessible at the bottom of the machine will have caught the trouble-making debris; if your machine doesn’t have such a trap, simply remove the drain hose from its outlet and inspect back of your machine for a potential clog at this connection. Seals between the pump and the drain hose could also potentially cause leaks if too brittle or loose, so check to see that they’re secure as a preventative measure.

Only a few minutes into the load, and soap bubbles are everywhere.

Oversudsing common occurs in either top- or front-loading machines, and it boils down to this to the amount of soap used. Repeat after us: Extra soap doesn’t mean extra clean. Instead, too much soap causes clogs in the overflow tubes, which could lead to leaks. Using the right detergent—and the right amount of it—is an easy preventative measure.

  • Top-load washing machineswith a water softening system need simply to use less detergent for future loads in order to avoid oversudsing.
  • Front-load machines take a small amount of a specific high efficiency detergent. If that’s your appliance, check the packaging of your detergent bottle for an “HE” label to make certain you have the right supplies.

If you’ve ruled out all of the aforementioned causes and your washing machine still leaks, the problem is likely even larger and in need of a professional’s skillset. A leaky pump and faulty basket gasket or worn out tub seal and bearing all require specialized replacement parts and extensive disassembling of the machine, so it’s best to call in a pro to deal with that leaking H2O.