How to Troubleshoot a Whirlpool Washer That Won't Drain

Chad Buleen

When your Whirlpool washer doesn't drain, your first reaction may be to call for service. But hold off: While there is a possibility that service is necessary, it is possible that the cause for the washer's failure to drain is something you can remedy yourself.

Whirlpool washer owner's manuals include a collection of troubleshooting actions you can take that often will determine the source of the problem and allow you to fix it without having to contact a repair technician.

  1. Move the washer away from the wall far enough to allow you to access the drain hose. Check to make sure the drain hose has not been pinched in any location, which would make it hard for water to flow through it. If the U-shaped form is not fitted on the end of the drain hose, put this on. Move the drain hose to a lower level if it is higher than 96 inches. A drain hose that extends that high will have trouble moving water out.

  2. Press on the washer lid to make sure that it is tightly closed. The washer ceases to operate when the washer lid is open. If the lid is open, close it and the washer should drain.

  3. Measure the amount of detergent you place into the washer before you turn the washer on. Including too much detergent can cause unnecessary sudsing inside the appliance. When over-sudsing occurs, it is more difficult for the washer to drain, and draining occurs more slowly. If the washing machine owner's manual requests you to use HE (high-efficiency) detergent, use only HE detergent.

  4. Unplug the washer from an extension cord and insert the plug directly into a wall outlet if you use an extension cord. For the washer to get the adequate amount of voltage needed, it must be plugged directly into the wall outlet.