How to Fix A Washer That Fills and Drains At The Same Time

How to Fix A Washer That Fills and Drains At The Same Time

About this repair:

  • Rated as REALLY EASY
  • 609 repair stories
  • 4 step by step videos

Water Inlet Valve

The water inlet valve on your washing machine is used to fill the tub with cold, warm or hot water for the wash and rinse cycles. The valve is operated by electric solenoids that are controlled by the timer or electronic control board and the water level control/water level selector switch or pressure switch. If your washer continues to fill during a drain cycle, the water inlet valve could be at fault. To verify that the valve is at fault, unplug the washer when the symptom occurs. If the washer continues to fill, then the inlet valve is defective. If the washer stops filling, then the problem is related to the electrical circuit that controls the valve.

How to test the water inlet valve in a washing machine with a multi-meter:

  1. Disconnect the water supply as well as the power source from your washer before beginning.
  2. The valve must be removed in order to test it; it will be found behind the hose connections. You will need to disassemble all or part of your washer’s cabinet to remove it.
  3. Inside the valve you will find screens that may have buildups of dirt or other debris. Carefully clean out anything you find, but use caution as these screens are not sold separately from the valve and if they become damaged you will need to replace the entire valve. You should also inspect the outside of the valve for damage, wear, or cracking.
  4. Refer to your owner’s manual as the resistance reading for a functional valve varies between different models of washer’s. Once you know the reading you should receive, set your multi-meter to Rx1 and touch the probes to the valve’s terminals.
  5. If this test shows that your valve does not have continuity, you will need a replacement water inlet valve.
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Water Level Switch Or Pressure Switch & Air Dome Tube

The water level switch is a pressure activated switch that is used to determine the correct water level in the tub. This part is normally located behind the control panel and will have a hose or air dome tube that connects it to the tub. On washers that use an electronic control, this switch may be located at the sump area below the tub. As the water fills in the tub it will compress the air in the tube and push against a diaphragm inside the switch. The switch will control the water inlet valve and turn the valve off at the correct water level.

How to test the water level switch in a washing machine:

  1. Since you will be working with electrical components, verify that you have unplugged your appliance before beginning.
  2. Begin by opening the washer’s cabinet and removing the air dome hose. Place the hose in water, seal one end, and blow into the other. If any bubbles rise to the surface, you will need a new air dome hose.
  3. Inspect the switch and the hose for any signs of cracking, fraying, wear, or damage.
  4. If you find your switch is damaged, you need a replacement water level switch.
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