A washing machine is a complex piece of kit – and a major headache to fix when something goes wrong. Spotting the warning signs early could save you tons of time and money – so we’ve put together this helpful guide.
Prevention is always better than cure – and spotting these common issues and faults with your washing machine could save you a lot of bother.
So from cracks in the glass door to leak in the hose or just about anything else, here’s a few early warning signs that it might be time to call in the professionals!
A major crack in your washing machine’s glass door is hard to ignore: if it’s large enough to let water through, there’s no doubt you’ve got a serious problem with your washer!
But what about smaller hairline cracks, with no obvious effect on your machine’s operation? Well, you’ve still got a serious problem with your washer. Your machine might operate perfectly well for months with a hairline crack – but these things have a funny way of growing, and you could end up with a major breach before you know it.
Getting sorted it now is much less hassle than dealing with a door that’s finally shattered, covering your floor in broken glass and dirty water – so we recommend getting any and all cracks looked at as soon as possible.
Any leaks, puddles or pools of water around your washer while it’s in use indicate a serious issue: it’s only a matter of time until small leaks develop into major ones.
This could be down to any number of issues with the machine, from a faulty door seal to a ruptured hose – but unless the cause is immediately obvious, we’d always recommend getting it checked out by a professional.
If your washer won’t fill with water, it could be a sign of a faulty inlet valve, which needs to be fixed by an engineer – but there are a couple of other things you can check for first:
First, unplug your washer and move it away from the wall, and check the hot and cold water valves. Open them up if they’re closed.
Next, take a look at the inlet hose. If it’s kinked, bent or otherwise obstructed, try to straighten it out.
If this doesn’t work, then either the hose itself or the inlet valve probably needs replacing – and it’s time to give the engineers a call.
If your washer’s draining slowly, or not draining at all, this could be a sign of serious damage – but here’s a couple of things to try first. Before you do, though, you should disconnect the machine from the mains, and bail out as much of the water as possible manually.
First, check the machine’s debris filter. You’ll usually find this behind a panel on the machine’s front – but check the manual if you’re unsure.
Put a bowl and a towel down to catch any water, then unscrew the filter behind the panel. Allow the water inside to drain out – be warned, there may be quite a lot – then remove any hair, coins or other blockages from the filter.
Next, check the machine’s outlet hose for blockages: you may need to pull your washer away from the wall slightly to access it.
Gently feel along the length of the hose for any obstructions. If you find any, place some towels or rags on the floor to catch any water, then gently disconnect the hose from the machine and the drain.
Over the sink, use a tap to check the flow of water through the hose. You can use a ‘drain snake’ or other flexible tool to gently dislodge any blockages. For really stubborn clogs, you could also try sprinkling a little baking soda into the hose, then add some vinegar with a turkey baster or similar. Rinse the hose thoroughly with warm water before reattaching it.
If it’s not a clog in the hose or the debris filter, chances are the problem’s with your washer’s pump – and you’ll need to call an engineer to get it sorted.
If you’re hearing bumps, clunks or rattling noises when your washer’s in use, it could be a sign of damage.
First, though, make sure the noises aren’t just zips, buttons or poppers from your clothing banging around inside the drum, which generally isn’t a cause for concern. To find out, run a wash containing only items without zips or other accessories.
If you still hear the noise, there could be something up. It’s often caused by something like a coin getting stuck in the drum’s inner workings, which can cause tears and damage to the drum over time – so if you can’t see or remove any obstructions yourself, it’s time to call in the professionals.
If you’re noticing an odd smell coming from your washing machine, it’s not normally a sign of serious damage – but it’s still worth looking into.
Bad smells in washers are typically caused by stagnant water collecting somewhere in the machine, allowing bacteria to grow. Bacteria can also flourish if you’ve gone a while without running a really hot wash.
Helpfully, we’ve put together a guide on how to diagnose a smelly washing machine, and what you can do about it.
It’s always worrying to find holes or other damage to your clothes after running a wash, and you’ll want to get it sorted as a priority.
This can often indicate tears or holes in the drum, so check carefully for these – and call in the professionals if you notice any obvious damage.
If there are no signs of damage, holes or tears in your clothes can sometime be caused by using too high a spin speed, overly harsh detergents or an overloaded machine. But if the issue persists, you should definitely get an engineer to take a look.
If your washer’s showing any of the above symptoms and our suggested fixes aren’t working, it’s probably time to give an engineer a call.
At Team Knowhow, we’ve got a nationwide team of local experts standing by to help, no matter where you bought your washer – find out more about our washing machine repair service.