What Causes Washing Machines to Leak?

Steve VanDenBerg Blog, water damage

Discovering a leaking washing machine is a moment that many of us have faced. It’s a scene that can send anyone into a whirlwind of questions. Do you find yourself in the same situation, wondering: What’s causing this unexpected flood? Why does my washing machine leak? Is there a way to prevent the leak from re-occurring? In this blog, we’re here to answer your questions related to washing machine leaks, find the causes, and equip you with the knowledge to handle this water damage.

Top Load Washing Machine Leaks: What’s the Reason?

Top load washing machines have been a staple in many households for decades. However, like any other appliances, they are also susceptible to issues, one of which is leaks. If you’re dealing with a leaking top load washing machine, it’s essential to understand the primary reasons or causes behind this common problem.

Top Load Washing Machine Leaks

Causes of Top-Loading Washing Machine Leaks:

  1. Overloading: Are you overloading your top-load washer? When the machine is overloaded, there’s excessive strain during the spin cycle, leading to water overflowing from the tub. This is one of the most common causes that we often neglect. To prevent over-loading related leaks, follow the manufacturer’s guidelines on what the actual load capacity should be!
  1. Drainage Issues: When drainage problems occur, whether due to a malfunctioning drain pump or clogged drain, they can disrupt the water drainage process, leading to bursts, leaks, and other complications. To prevent this in future, keep checking and monitoring your drainage filter that can mitigate the potential risks.
  1. Excessive Detergent: A common mistake people make is putting in extra detergent, assuming more will ensure cleaner clothes and can remove difficult stains. However, that’s not true. When too much detergent is added, it creates an abundance of suds which can multiply and go into different parts of the machine, bursting out soapy water everywhere.
  1. Loose or Damaged Hoses: Your washing machine relies on a network of hoses to efficiently supply and drain water. However, they can get worn out over time. When they become loose, cracked, or damaged, they compromise the integrity of the machine, causing potential leaks and water damage in your laundry room. We recommend that you regularly inspect, monitor, assess, and replace your hoses when needed to save yourself from potential risks. The problems caused by washing machine leaks need immediate water damage restoration attention.
  1. Broken or Damaged Water Inlet Valve: The Water Inlet Valve is responsible for controlling water flow into the machine. It provides a precise amount of water during each cycle. However, if this valve is damaged or faulty, it can disrupt the harmony, and creates pressure which leads to leaks. One of the prime reasons why the damage happens to the water inlet valve is due to hard water. A mineral buildup can ruin the valve and can cause leaks.
  1. Adjusted Spray Rinse Timers: A major reason why water might leak from your top-loading washing machine is if you fiddle with the spray rinse timers. These timers control how much water is used and for how long a rinse. Manufacturers set them just right to save water and prevent leaks. But if you mess with them without knowing how, things can go wrong and cause leaks.

Washing machine leak may cause room odor issues, read Why Does My Washing Machine Smell Like Sewage? to learn more.

Front Load Washing Machine Leaks: What’s the Reason?

Front-load washing machines are great for laundry but sometimes they leak. If you see water where it shouldn’t be, it’s a problem. If you have a front load washing machine, then let’s figure out why this happens:

Front Load Washing Machine Leaks

Causes of Front-Load Washing Machine Leaks:

  1. Door Out of Alignment: In front-load washing machines, a common reason for leaks is when the door is out of alignment. The door needs to fit precisely to prevent water from seeping out during a wash. If the door is not correctly aligned, it can create small openings that allow water to leak, causing a mess and potentially damaging the surroundings.
  2. Unsealed Drum Seams: Another prevalent cause of leaks in front-load washing machines is unsealed drum seams. The drum in a washing machine should be completely sealed to prevent water from escaping during a wash cycle. If the seams of the drum are not sealed properly or have worn out over time, water can leak through these openings, leading to puddles on the floor. Ensuring that the drum seams are adequately sealed is essential in preventing leaks and damage.
  3. Door Seal or Gasket Damage: The door seal or gasket in a washing machine is a crucial component responsible for holding the watertight seal between the rotating drum and the stationary outer tub. It is made of rubber that is specifically designed to prevent water leaks from the machine during the wash cycle. However, if the seal is old, worn, or torn, it can be the reason for the leakage. If you inspect any damage to the seal, contact the professionals right away.
  4. Tub to Pump Hose: This is a common culprit for causing leaks in front-load washing machines. This hose is responsible for carrying water from the drum to the pump for drainage. If the Tub-to-Pump Hose is damaged, loose, or has developed cracks over time, water can escape from these openings, and leaks.

Now, the question is:

Is it worth fixing a leaking washing machine?

fixing a leaking washing machine

To answer this question, consider the below factors:

  1. Age and Condition of the Washing Machine: If your washing machine is relatively new and in good overall condition, it may be worth fixing the leak to extend its lifespan and avoid the cost of a replacement.
  2. Cost of Repairs: Consider the cost of repairing the leak compared to the cost of a new washing machine. If the repair cost is high, it might be more economical to invest in a new, efficient machine.
  3. Frequency of Repairs: If your washing machine has been requiring frequent repairs, it may be a sign that it’s reaching the end of its usable life. In such cases, investing in a new, reliable appliance could be a better long-term solution.

In conclusion, discovering a washing machine leak, regardless of its type, can be a bothersome problem. The first step in addressing this issue is finding the potential causes of these leaks. Whether you own a front-loading or top-loading machine, leaks can arise from various sources such as damaged hoses, faulty seals, or even issues with specific components like the Tub-to-Pump Hose or the drainage system.

Water Damage Restoration ServiceMaster

In instances where leaks have already caused damage, it’s necessary to take quick action. Water damage can lead to mold growth, structural damage, and other long-term issues. Calling experts in water damage restoration is highly recommended. We at ServiceMaster DRR possess the expertise and equipment to properly assess the damage, remove excess water, and restore your home to a safe and habitable condition. We proudly serve in locations like San Francisco, San Mateo, and Santa Clara County.

If you have experienced water damage, due to leaks from your washing machine, don’t delay. Call ServiceMaster DRR at (800) 439-8833.