You want to know how to unclog a washing machine’s drain pipe. We’ll walk you through the entire process of unclogging the washer drain in this article. On your own, you can easily accomplish it.
When the drum fills up with water at the end of each wash cycle, indicating a clogged drainpipe, report the problem.
After each wash, the washer removes the waste. Threads and buttons from your clothing can get stuck in the drain pipe when the soapy water runs down the sink. Once every six months, you should clean the drain pipe on your washing machine. Having a clogged washer drain pipe means that water will build up in the drum and you’ll end up with wet clothing after you’re done washing. You can avoid future problems with flooding or spilling if you keep your washing machine in good working order. Let’s get started, then, my friends. There are a few additional things you should be aware of.
Diagnosing Washing Machine Drain Problems
Diagnosing the Problem
Make sure you read your washing machine’s owner’s manual first before trying anything else. Drain difficulties can have a variety of causes, some of which are listed in the troubleshooting section. Many new washing machines have diagnostic codes that let you know exactly what’s wrong. If this doesn’t reveal the source of the issue, watch your washing machine drain for a while. While seeing it in action, you are likely to notice one of the following issues.
- Blockage in the washing machine’s rubber drain hose’s standpipe
- clogging the water pump’s filter or impellers with debris
- The water pump had a mechanical problem.
- Defective or missing driving gear.
- Faulty switch on the lid.
- It’s clogged up in the drains
Drain Hose Problems
Even if you hear the washing machine’s pump running, no water should be draining out of the machine due to a clogged rubber drain line to the drain standpipe or washtub. When you wash objects like carpets, which may shed a lot of fabric fibers, or if the drain hose is squeezed, this can occur. A clogged hose might prevent water from being pumped out of the machine, making it less efficient.
Remove the drain hose from the washer and check to see if it is clear. Drain hoses can be checked by blowing air through them. If there is nothing clogging the drain tube, the washing machine pump is most likely to blame. It is possible to increase the machine’s ability to pump water by replacing the hose, if it is damaged or worn out.
Drain Pump Problems
There could be anything blocking the pump’s mechanism if you can hear it running but it sounds labored. Disconnect and empty the washer before removing its front panel so you can inspect the water pump. The blockage could be in the corrugated tube that leads to the pump, or the pump itself.
The filter screen on the pump is usually located inside the pump’s lid, which can usually be removed. After cleaning and reassembling the pump, this screen should be free of debris.
As a rule, the pump is positioned on the back of top-loading washing machines, while on front-loaders, it is normally located below the door. Rinse the filter screen with water to remove any lint that may be visible. Also, check the impellers on the pump to make sure they move smoothly and aren’t clogged up. Test the machine after reassembling the pump and the cover panel.
A faulty water pump may be the cause of the lack of any noise from the pump or drain hose, in which case you should have it replaced. In most cases, this is a job for a professional appliance repairman, although it is possible for an experienced homeowner to order and replace the item.
Drive Belt Problems
The washing machine’s pump is powered by a belt that connects to pulleys on the bottom of the motor. The washing machine may not drain at all if this belt is faulty or not properly attached to the pulleys. In order to inspect the belt, you’ll need to turn the machine over on its side. This can be done by the homeowner, but many prefer to hire a professional for this type of repair.
Lid Switch Problems
A little plastic switch located just beneath the washing machine’s lid or door detects when the door is closed, allowing the machine to work. The machine may not drain properly if this switch is defective. Listen for a clicking sound when you press the switch by hand while the machine is running. The switch may need to be replaced if you don’t hear it.
Plumbing System Problems
Drain clogs are the most common cause of water backing up in the washtub or pouring out of the drain stand tube after the machine has effectively pumped water out of it. Drain clogs are prevalent in the plumbing pipes into which the washing machine empties because little fabric fibers flood through the system on a regular basis. An overflowing standpipe spills water because of a blocked drain. In most cases, unclogging the clogged drain will take care of the issue.
The hose from the washing machine drains into the plumbing drain standpipe at a depth of around two feet. It’s no longer appropriate to merely clamp a drain line to the side of a washtub in some machines. The water then enters a drain trap from there. If this trap region is clogged, the problem could be farther down the drainage system.
To find the clog, fill the washing machine with water first. Set the dial to “spin/drain” and begin the process of removing the water. While still having access to the washer dial, position yourself such that the drain standpipe is clearly visible. You’ll be keeping an eye on the standpipe to monitor how long it takes for the water to come out of the drain.
If necessary, turn off the washing machine before it starts to fill up.
- As soon as your washing machine begins to back up, it’s time to get your hands on a power drain snake and clear the blockage from the standpipe. Even a small hand-operated snake may be able to get the job done.
- There is a problem with the drain if it backs up for a long time, possibly even past the trap. To unclog the drain, you’ll need to use a medium-sized drain snake and a clean-out.
Drain snakes, which are required to clear these types of clogs, are not commonly available to the general public. However, if you prefer to do it yourself, you can rent them from a home improvement or tool rental company. The drain pipes can often be snaked out through a clean-out fitting found behind the washing machine.
The Common Causes of Washing Machine Clogs
Before you attempt to fix a clogged washing machine drain on your own, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the most common causes of drain clogs. If you don’t take care of the buildup in your home laundry drains, it can cause a lot of difficulties with your plumbing system.
The most common cause of a clogged washing machine drain is:
- The accumulation of soap scum on the surface of the skin.
- Fragments and lint from the dryer.
- Before washing, clothes may have grease, oils, or other materials on them.
The drains in your washing machine may have become blocked over time as a result of regular use if you observe water accumulating after cycles and don’t perform routine drain inspections. Taking fast action in these situations will make drain cleaning easier in the long run and reduce the amount of damage that washing machine clogs and debris materials do to your pipes.
What You Can Do: Manual Removal and Snaking
Clogged washing machine drains may be fixed quickly and easily with the appropriate plumbing gear. In the absence of these instruments, however, you could inadvertently inflict more harm than good on your pipes.
You may need the following items to clear a clogged washing machine drain line:
- Hex-shaped wrenches and a basin
- Snakes” are the term used to describe industrial drain augers.
- Cutters for wire and piping
- Screwdrivers and other traditional hand tools
When it comes to self-cleaning your washing machine’s drains, having these items on hand can make all the difference. Removing the drainage pipe from your washing machine is the first step in manually clearing the blockage. This is usually done with a screwdriver, but you should also have a bucket handy in case any water backs up during the removal process.
A second drain hose must be disconnected from the drainage pipe after the drainage pipe has been removed from the washing machine unit. Main connection between washing machine and home plumbing system, this hose is commonly where washing machine drain blockages develop. Drain hoses can be cleaned like any other drain if they are separated from the washing machine’s drainage line.
To use a drain snake to clean out your hose, follow these three simple steps:
- When the drain snake encounters resistance, use the snake’s rotation knob to latch onto obstructed materials and debris.
- Continue to force the drain snake through stuck muck with fluid, twisting motions until there is no more resistance.
- To remove any obstinate, displaced material, slowly remove the drain snake from the hose. In order to remove the snake more easily, you may need to turn the snake’s knob in the other way.
Alternative Ways to Clean Your Clogged Washing Machine Drain
As an alternative to using a drain snake and dismantling your laundry unit, you can flush your drainage pipes using non-caustic cleaning concoctions, commonly consisting of baking soda, vinegar, and hot water, to clear your clogged washing machine drain.
Helping to break down organic material, these items’ natural acids can break down stuck muck. It is possible to get your laundry drains back to normal if they are used correctly There are major health and environmental consequences to utilizing chemical cleaning products, so be careful.
For Severe Clogs, Don’t Hesitate to Call a Professional
As with any plumbing issue in your home, it’s critical that you understand your own DIY capabilities. In order to avoid further damage, do not try to unblock your washing machine pipes without the proper instruments or knowledge by employing ineffective clog clearing approaches. When you’re not sure you can handle a project on your own, it’s time to call in the experts at Express Sewer & Drain. There’s nothing we haven’t encountered in our years of service in the Sacramento area when it comes to clogged pipes. If you’d want to get started on repairing your home’s plumbing, give us a call right away.
Steps To Unclog Washer Drain
In order to unclog a washing machine drain pipe, follow the instructions outlined below:
Step #1. Switch off the washer
Ensure that the washer is disconnected from the electrical outlet before you begin. To ensure your safety, tape the washer’s power wire to the top so that it won’t get wet if water spills. A trip to the hospital is possible if the electric outlet becomes moist and causes electrocution.
Step #2. Close hot and cold-water supply
Behind the washer is where the drainpipe usually is. It’s possible that you’ll have to move your washer away from the walls in order to get to the drainpipe. The drainpipe, hot water supply, and cold water supply may all be seen once the washer’s back has been removed. Washer water is supplied via these hot and cold water lines. The water supply pipes have the corresponding markings on them. Typically, the hot water supply pipe is red, the cold water supply pipe is blue, and the drain pipe is grey; however, these colors might vary. In order to stop the delivery of clean water to the washing machine, simply turn the valves clockwise. As a result, it won’t get in the way of the next few steps.
Step #3. Eliminate the collected water in the washer
The washer’s drain pipe is normally connected to the standpipe. Disconnect the standpipe end of the drain pipe and hold it firmly in place. You don’t have to remove the drainpipe from the floor if you have a floor drain installed in your laundry room. Use a bucket in this situation. Drop the drainpipe into a bucket. Large amounts of water can be collected by using a bucket with a lower height and wider openings. The washer’s water drains into the bucket against the laws of physics. The information on how to install a washer drain hose and fix a washing machine that won’t drain can be useful.
Step #4. Use cleaner
Rinse the drain with the cleaning solution once the unclean water has been removed. Making your own washer drain cleaning at home is easy, and you probably already have the ingredients in your cupboards. If you have a little washer, you can reduce the volume to roughly 4 liters of water to boil. Mix one cup of baking soda into the heated water after it has sat for 20 to 30 minutes. Slowly pour the cleaner into the drainpipe while holding the drainpipe vertically with its end facing upward. While pouring the solution, make sure the drainpipe is free of kinks.
Wait a few minutes before removing the drain pipe after pouring the cleaner. Chemical drain cleaners may be purchased at most major supermarket chains. Make sure you choose a drain cleaner that is not corrosive, since aggressive cleansers might damage the drain. In order to use this method, you will need to remove and dispose of the drain in order to use it. After a few minutes, add boiling water to the mixture and mix it thoroughly. As with hot and cold water supply valves, drainpipe valves are often found close by them. A bucket or a cleaning cloth should be placed on the floor while you unhook it from the wall. How to clean washer drain hoses may also be of interest.
Step #5. Use of drain snake
After removing the drain pipe from the washing machine, place it in a bucket or on the floor and dispose of it. Remove the obstruction from the washer drain and the drain pipe with a drain snake. Nearly every hardware store carries drain snakes. Insert the snake’s springy head into the drain of the washing machine. Make sure you keep going until you run into a clog. When using a snake, rotate the handle clockwise to unclog a clogged drain.
The clog and debris will be removed from the drain with this action. When there is no more collected trash, keep going. Dislodge the clog by pulling the snake drain out of the washer. It’s possible that you’ll have to go through this process again. To clean the drain pipe, follow the same procedure as described before. Once they’re both clear, pour the hot water down the drain and flush the toilet. Reattach the drain pipe to the valve and you’re done.
How a Washing Machine Drains
A thorough understanding of how a washing machine eliminates water during a cycle is necessary to determine what causes the drain to overflow.
Your washing machine’s drain hose connects to a standpipe near your hot and cold water supply valves at the end of each cycle, allowing the water to be pumped out of the tub and down the drain. Water flows from the hose into the standpipe and finally into your home’s main sewage line if your washer and its parts are functioning properly.
Overflow from the washing machine’s drainage system is conceivable when any portion of the drainage process malfunctions, and quick action is required to diagnose and correct the problem.
How to Diagnose an Issue With Your Drain
To begin, make sure the problem is with your washer’s drain line. You’ll need to run a diagnostic test on most washing machines if you notice a leak, although some modern machines include signal problems that indicate the source of the leak.
Drain the water from your washer and let it sit for a few minutes. The washing machine pumps water into the hoses and up into the standpipe as it does so. Observe this process. If water is leaking from the standpipe, the problem is most likely with the washer’s drain.
Clogs can be pinpointed by the length of time it takes a standpipe to fill and overflow. Each of the following timeframes may have a different meaning:
- Shortly after the water starts to flow, a blockage is most likely to be found in either the standpipe or a washing machine hose. Hand-operated snakes can sometimes be used to remove tiny clogs.
- As long as the water doesn’t surface for 30 seconds or more, the obstruction may be further down in the drainpipe system. If the clog is deep in the pipe, a lengthy drain-snake may be needed to release it. You should call a plumber if you can’t get to the clog with your snake.
- After entering the drainage pipe, if the water takes more than a minute to overflow, this indicates a more serious problem with the plumbing. Plumbers are experts at diagnosing sewage-related problems in the home.
If you notice a leak in your washing machine, stop the cycle immediately.
Overflowing drainpipes aren’t generally caused by clogs. Drainpipes that are too small and hoses that are kinked can also lead to overflows. Contact a reputable plumber, like ARS Rescue Rooter, to find out what’s wrong with your plumbing.
How to Operate a Drain Snake
Turning the handle on the drum releases the snake into the pipe, which can be used to clear clogs. Until you encounter resistance, keep inserting the snake’s head inside the pipe as far as you can. Rotate the snake until you feel the blockage dislodge, then turn it the other way. Repeat a drain cycle to ensure the pipe is clear and can drain after removing the snake.
How to Prevent Your Drain From Overflowing
To avoid a washing machine drain overflow, take the following precautions:
- Prevent lint buildup in drainpipes by using a garment bag or lint bag as needed.
- If your washer’s lint trap or filter is easily accessible, inspect and clean it.
- Keep at least a half-inch gap between the drainpipe and the discharge hose to ensure effective drainage.
- To avoid soap scum, use the suitable detergent.
- Washing machine hoses and drainpipes should be cleaned on a regular basis.
Backup Plan for Your Washing Machine
Your washing machine, like all major home systems and equipment, is expected to experience regular wear and tear over time. All homeowners should think about getting a home warranty to protect themselves from unexpected and high repair bills in the event that an appliance in their home malfunctions.
Home warranty policies usually cost between $25 and $50 a month. Owners of a home warranty plan only pay a service fee—typically $75 to $125—to get a covered system or appliance repaired or replaced if it breaks down due to regular wear and tear. Home warranties can save you money in the long run because it costs thousands of dollars to replace some of your home’s most valuable equipment without a warranty.
Why is my washing machine drain backing up?
Your washing machine’s drain pipe may be too tiny for the amount of water it can hold. Consider attempting to funnel a single gallon of water through a tiny funnel. Because the funnel is unable to remove the water quickly enough, it overflows.
Can you put Drano in washing machine drain pipe?
Is Drano safe to flush down the drain of my washing machine? Yes. To clear a clogged washing machine drain, you can use Drano or any other drain cleaner. However, you should first run your washer without any clothing in it.
How do I slow down the water in my washing machine drain?
Your washing machine’s discharge hose can be slowed down by putting a restriction in it, which will keep it from overflowing. Keep it moving, but don’t slow it down so much that your washing machine’s timer expires and the cycle continues!
How do you position a washing machine drain hose?
At least 30 inches above the floor and no more than 8 feet above the ground are required for the drain hose on your Top Load washing machine to function properly. The drain line on your Front Load washer must be at least 24′′ above the floor and no more than 8 feet high in order to perform properly.
How often should you clean washing machine drain pipe?
If you use your washing machine frequently, you may want to wait up to 60 days before cleaning it out and replacing it if necessary. Using a garden hose to spray water on the filter can remove most of the lint and particles.
Why does my washing machine keep draining?
There should be an air gap between the washer’s drain hose and its standpipe to prevent premature drainage if the machine empties while filling. In addition, make certain that the bend in your drain hose is higher than the washing machine’s height.. Zip ties can be used to secure the hose once it has been placed in the right location for installation.
What causes a washing machine drain to overflow?
Overflowing toilets are most often caused by clogs in the drain hoses or standpipes.
Can I put Drano down my washing machine drain?
Yes. To clear a clogged washing machine drain, you can use Drano or any other drain cleaner. However, you should first run your washer without any clothing in it.
It’s A Wrap!
Because you already know how to unclog a washer drain pipe, you can unclog the washer drain on your own. You may need to call a plumber in case you are unable to do so yourself. Cleaning the drain pipe is a very important part of washing machine maintenance. A buildup of soap residues and clothing items in the drainpipe might be difficult to remove. To save yourself a lot of time and effort, do this on a regular basis. Make sure you know how to properly drain a washing machine.