Walking into the laundry room to discover that the washer has deposited a puddle of soapy water on the floor is never a good thing for any homeowner or renter. In addition to damaging floor coverings and sub-flooring materials, ongoing leaks from appliances can cause mold and mildew issues to develop, creating a health hazard for the occupants of the house. If your washer is beginning to leak during operation, the following DIY tips may help you solve the problem quickly at no cost.
Check the inlet hoses
If the leak is relatively small and seems worse when the washing machine is filling or draining, the problem may involve the inlet hoses for hot and cold water or the drain hose that drains away the soiled water. To check the inlet hoses:
- turn the washer off
- unplug the washer from the electrical supply
- turn off the water supply to the washer
- pull the washer out from the wall—you may need assistance with this—until you can access the back of the appliance
- using pliers, carefully unscrew the hot and cold water inlet supply lines where they enter the washer to reveal a screen over each opening
- carefully remove the screen and check for sediment or corrosion that may be inhibiting the proper flow of water and causing incoming water to be forced out at the coupling, forming the leak you noted on the laundry room floor
- clean and replace each screen
Check the drain hose
While you have the washer pulled out from the wall, it is wise to go ahead and check the drain hose to make sure it is clear of any clogs that could be causing a leak to form.
To check the drain hose:
- remove the curved end of the drain hose from the drain pipe
- using a screw driver, loosen the clamp that connects the drain hose to the back of the washer and remove the hose
- take the drain hose outside and use your garden hose to direct a jet of water through it to remove any clogs or debris that could be causing a leak
- examine the hose for cracks or splits, especially if the washer has been in use for more than a couple of years
- once you are certain that drain hose is free of any clogs and is in good condition, put it back on the washer, making sure the clamp is securely tightened
- replace the curved end into the drain pipe
- return the washer to its normal position
- reattach both inlet hoses, after examining them for any splits, holes, or wear marks that could be causing them to leak
- plug the washer in and turn on the water supply
Once you have checked the inlet and drain hoses as outlined above, run a test load of laundry to see if the leak is still occurring. If it is, you will need to stop using the washer and call a reputable appliance dealer like Automatic Appliance to have the problem professionally diagnosed and repaired.