Washing machine does not drain properly

Washing machine will not drain

First of all try not to panic, this is a very common problem with washing machines and, in most cases,can be resolved quickly and without recourse to an expensive call out to a service engineer.
If your washing machine is still under Warranty, you may think that you will be able to use this to resolve the problem and be back in business quickly. Unfortunately this may not be the case, if the reason for the washing machine not draining is due to one of the most common causes.
The most likely reason for your machine’s problem is a small item/s getting trapped in the filter.  Among these can be keys, coins, small toys etc. Obviously the first thing to do is to drain the washing machine. Generally, this can be done via the drainage pipe located within the filter or, if you have an older machine you may need to drain this manually.  If you still have the washing machine manual, you can check where the filter is located for your particular model

Draining by the filter

You should be able to locate the filter easily as it is usually either on the left or right side at the very bottom of the machine (check in your manual if you can still find it). Obviously you will need to find a suitable receptacle to drain the water into, otherwise you might find the whole floor will be soaked.

When you’ve located the filter, open the small flap, you should see a small tube which you will have to release. Before unscrewing the filter, place the end of this tube into the receptacle you have chosen to drain the water into. Release the filter slowly, and be ready to do it up again when you need to empty the water away, as the water will gush out very quickly if you open the filter too much. Once you have completed the draining exercise, remove the filter completely and check to see if youcan locate the object which may have blocked the drain.

If there is nothing obvious, you will have to carefully feel around behind the filter to see if there is anything there. Hopefully you find the obstruction and are able to remove it without too much trouble.You will then need to clean and replace the filter, making sure it is nice and tight. Return the small hose to where it was originally clipped, and close the flap.

Run the machine through a rinse and spin programme initially to check everything is working well before starting a full load. If, however, this does not resolve the problem, you may need to remove the filter again, but this time pay particular attention to the area behind the filter, as there could bea small coin, for instance, blocking the actual hose. Very often these small coins can rotate andbecome firmly stuck in the narrow hose, completely stopping the water from flowing. Take extra care when you remove the obstruction as you don’t want to cause the damage the hose itself.

Manual Draining

If you have an older machine, the filter may not be as accessible as on more up to date models andyou may well need to tip the front of the machine bakwards in order to slide the draining receptacle under the machine itself. This is generally considered a two-man job as you will need someone to keep the machine steady, and another to manage the speed of the water flow by opening and closing the filter to ensure you do not flood the entire floor! Great caution is required to ensure that you don’t damage yourselves, or the machine, during this operation.

Once you are happy you have cleared any obstruction, again run the rinse and spin programme first to make sure everything is operating as it should do.
Unfortunately, after you have completed either method of draining, checked there are no further obstructions, cleaned and replaced the filter, the washing machine still does not work, it may be necessary to contact a service engineer at this point as the drain pump itself may be faulty.

Machines under Warranty

If your washing machine is still under Warranty, your normal reaction would be to contact the Service Engineer identified in your Warranty conditions. Unfortunately, if the problem does prove to becaused by an obstruction, most manufacturers will not identify this as a problem with the machinei tself, but user error. The result of this is you may well be charged for the call out, as well as the labour costs etc.

Therefore, it is well worth going through the processes detailed above to resolve the situation yourself. If after you have done all this you have identified that the problem may well be a faulty drain pump, then this should certainly be covered by your Warranty. It is definitely worth checking the small print to ensure you are aware of what it is actually covered by your Warranty.


A couple of things you can do to avoid the problems in the first place

  • In order to avoid having this problem in the future, it is probably a good idea to check through pockets before putting the washing into the machine – this will also avoid those dreaded tissues slipping through, and covering everything else in mushy paper that sticks toeverything!
  • Remove and clean the filter on a regular basis.

Carrying out the above recommendations should help to avoid any further problems with your washing machine not draining.

Disclaimer: The information provided has been prepared as a guide only and the steps taken are likely to vary for different appliance models. We strongly recommend using a qualified engineer to undertake major repairs and fault finding.


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