Washer: Won't drain
After the wash cycle ends and before the spin cycle starts, the water should drain from the washer. If water remains, first check for a kink or clog in the drain hose, a backup in the house drain system or in a drain hose lower than the water level in the drain tub. If the drain path is clear, the drain pump might have failed or the water-level pressure switch might not sense how much water is in the washer. In a top-load washer, a failed lid switch can keep the washer from advancing to the drain and spin cycle. A failed timer or problem with the drive motor can also prevent a top-load washer from draining and spinning. On a front-load washer, a bad main electronic control board or failed motor control board can prevent the washer from draining and spinning.
Many washers won't spin if they're not level, so performing preventive maintenance checks that include leveling the washer may help you get your washer draining and spinning.
If you have a top-load washer, this video has additional troubleshooting tips to get your washer draining and spinning again.
Cleaning a clogged drain pump filter on on a front-load washer without a drain pump access door often gets the machine draining and spinning again.
Repair or replace the washer drain pump
The drain pump removes water from the washer at the appropriate times during the wash cycle. The pump's bearing can seize, the seal can fail or the impeller blades can break. The belt on a belt-driven pumps can break, and the pulley can shear off. A humming noise when the washer is full of water is a common symptom of a failing pump. In some cases, you can repair the pump by clearing it of debris, fixing wiring failures or replacing a seal. If the pump can't be repaired or rebuilt, replace it.
Replace the washer lid switch
The lid switch on a top-load washer is a safety switch that detects whether the washer lid is closed. The lid must be closed when the basket spins; some top-load models require that the washer lid be closed before the washer drive motor runs. An open lid prevents some top-load washers from filling. If the lid switch isn't detecting whether the lid is closed, replace the switch.
Replace the washer water-level pressure switch
The water-level pressure switch detects the water level in the wash tub. If the water-level pressure switch is defective, the washer won't fill properly. It could not fill at all or it could overfill even to the point of overflowing. If the pressure switch doesn't accurately detect and control the water level in the washer, replace it.
Replace the washer main control board
The main electronic control board, also called the mother board, governs the timing and execution of the washer component functions. It controls the fill valves, the drive motor and the drain pump.
Replace the washer timer
The timer controls the component functions in the washer. Also called a cycle selector, the timer has a motor that advances the internal cams inside the timer body. The cams open and close electrical contacts to energize and de-energize components during the wash cycle. A control knob on the stem of the timer lets the user select cycles on the timer. If the timer motor does not advance or the contacts are defective in the timer, replace it.
Replace the washer drive motor
The washer's drive motor provides the force to rotate the spin basket. It also drives the shaft of the gearcase to move the agitator in a top-load washer. It's either attached to a drive pulley with a belt or is directly attached to the drive shaft. If the motor windings fail or the bearings on the motor lock up, the motor won't run. Replace the drive motor if it's defective.
Replace the washer motor control board
The motor control board is a circuit-control board in a front-load washer that's usually in the bottom of the washer next to the drive motor. It monitors and controls the drive motor speed and direction for the tumble and spin actions during the cycle. If the motor doesn't run, the motor control board might need to be replaced.
Regular washer preventive maintenance check
A service technician does a regular preventive maintenance check, examining the washer for potential problems and testing the functions of the washer. The technician makes adjustments to maximize the efficiency and ensure smooth operation of the washer.
Learn how to repair broken, frayed or damaged wires in your appliances.
Learn how to use a multimeter to check for wiring problems in an appliance that's not working
See where you should look when trying to locate the model tag on a kitchen or laundry appliance.