How To Fix A Washing Machine Leaking From The Bottom?

A leaking washing machine is everyone’s worst nightmare, besides one that’s not spinning! When a washing machine leaks, you can’t notice it right away, and it’s a headache to find the source of the leak. And when you finally manage to see where your washing machine leaks, it’s the time when you start wondering what to do: Is it worth repairing it or should I start looking for a new one?

A woman wiping the floor in front of her washing machine

Water leak, though, is a kind of damage that you might be able to fix yourself and save money. Once you find your washer leaks, things are pretty easy, as long as you follow the below troubleshooting steps! The following DIY tips will help you fix the most common causes: damaged hoses, leaks during the spin cycle or rinse cycle, when it’s not in use, leaks from the detergent drawer or the door seal.

What to do if my washing machine is leaking?

Water leaking is a common problem in all washing machines. Some of the most typical reasons for a machine leak are a loosen drain pump, hoses or a hose clamp, a faulty tub seal, a clogged water pump, a drain hose, a filter, an inlet valve or the water level.  

The first step is to identify the root of the problem. Once you’ve found the problem, and before trying to make any repairs, you should always turn off the power supply to avoid any further damages. Also, make sure your washing machine is on a level surface. 

A washing machine with a leakage problem

So, before replacing all the hoses, valves and seals like a plumber, the next step is to check out some quick fixes that might save you from all the hassle. 

  • Check the manual. You might be using it the wrong way. 
  • Be sure you don’t overload it. Each appliance has a certain amount of garments that can wash. If you add too many, it can cause water to drip.
  • Finally, make sure you don’t interfere with the rinse cycle time, especially if there’s a spray rinse function. If you add extra time during spraying, it can cause the process to last longer, resulting in leaks.

If you’re sure that you’ve done the above correctly,  it’s time to move on to checking the device internally and start the washing machine repair.  

Check the hoses

Checking the hoses should be on the top of your list. With the drain and fill hoses being more common and responsible for leaks. These connect the water supply hoses to the water inlet valve and are usually located at the washing machine’s back. 

The water hoses of a washing machine

Here’s what you have to do:

  1. Check the hose connections at the back of the machine. Be sure that they’re secured and the leak isn’t caused due to the house drain. 
  2. If you can’t find any leaks to the external hoses, remove your machine’s cabinet and check the internal hoses, most of which will be connected to the tub. 
  3. Check these hoses for any cracks and damages
  4. If there’s a damaged hose, then replace it. 

Check the pump

Depending on your machine’s model, the drain pump can be a direct-drive, belt-drive, or it might have an electric pump. Either way, the pump is connected to an outlet hose and gets water from the tub through an inlet hose. You’ll probably see an outlet for the circulate hose, as well. 

A washing machine's drain pump

You can fix the pump following these steps:

  1. First, locate the pump behind the machine’s front or back panel, depending on the type. Check the manual to find where the pump is. 
  2. If you see water leaks during the wash cycle or the drain cycle, you can fix a drain pump problem. Check the hose clamps. If they’re loose, tighten them.
  3.  If the clamps aren’t the cause of the leaking and the leak comes from the pump, you need to replace it.

Check the cover gasket

The cover gasket on both the top and front load washing machines seals the outer tub and the tub cover. The tub cover gasket might cause the leak if you notice a water leak during the wash and the spin cycle

What do you have to do to check and fix it

  1. First, remove the front panel of your appliance.
  2. Find it by removing the tub cover. 
  3. Look for any damage. You should also take a close look at any soapy watermarks. 
  4. If it is, indeed, damaged, then it needs to be replaced.

Check the water inlet valve

The water inlet determines the temperature of the water. Whether hot or cold, water will enter your machine. You can find it at the washer’s back, where the hoses connect. You should remove the back panel to access the valve. 

A woman checking her washing machine parts

To check this valve, you have to:

  1. Remove the back panel and find the inlet valve. It’ll probably be behind the hose connections
  2. Remove the valve from the machine and check the screen inside it for dirt or detergent build-up. Clean it if you find any. What’s more, check that the inlet and outlet hoses are in the right place.
  3. Check if there are any damages or cracks on the valve. If it’s damaged, you’ll have to replace it. 

Note: Be careful when cleaning the screen. If you damage it, you’ll have to replace the entire valve.  

Check bellows or door boot seal

If you own a front load washer, you’ll find bellows or a door boot seal. It’s used to seal between the outer tub and the door. Leakings close to the door will be due to wear or tear of the rubber bellows.   

A washing machine's door boot seal

These are the steps on how to check the bellows or door boot seal. 

  1. Open the washer’s door and look at the bellows for any damages or dirt and soap build-up, which might prevent a tight seal to the door. You may also need to check the fold of the bellows, where usually objects are trapped and might cause tears. 
  2. If you notice any damages, you should replace the bellows.

Check the water level switch or the pressure switch & the air dome tube

All washers have a water level switch or a pressure switch to determine the tub’s correct level of water. If it doesn’t work correctly, then the machine will overfill, leading to leakings. This switch is usually located behind the control panel

A man checking the water level switch on a washing machine

To check this switch on your washer, you have to:

  1. Remove the switch. It will have an air dome tube connected to the tub. 
  2. Check first if the air dome has any cracks or damaged spots on the hose. To do so, you have to remove the hose and sink it into water. Cover one end and blow air into the other. Check out for any bubbles or blockages in the hose. 
  3. If the air dome is ok, then you should replace the switch

Check door catch

The door catch holds the door tightly locked. A mechanism will activate the door hook holding the door closed during a cycle. When the door catch is damaged, the door will be still locked but with no watertight seal. That’s the reason why there might be a leak. 

A man checking the door catch on a washing machine

To check the door catch, you need to:

  1. Remove the front panel to access the catch. In some models, you may have access to the door catch by just removing the bolts. 
  2. Look for any cracks and damages on the door catch, if it is discoloured or any objects blocking the door from closing.
  3. If you see any damages and cracks, you need to replace the door catch

Check the tub seal or the boot seal

If you notice leaking water underneath the machine it might be because of a broken tub seal. It is located on the top of the washer’s transmission. Faulty seals usually lead to a small leak at first, ending up in the main tub bearing’s failure. A sign that the seal is damaged is leaking during the filling of the cycle. 

Thus, you’ll have to:

  1. Remove first the front panel of your machine and let the washer fill with water as usual. Watch for any signs of leaking. 
  2. If you own a front load washer, you have to remove the machine’s back and check for water leakage from the weep holes near the rear bearing housing
  3. If there’s a leak, replace it

When to call a plumber 

If you’re having trouble identifying the problem, don’t know which part is damaged or can’t fix it, you better let the expertises help you. They’ll be able to resolve the issue using the right replacement part to have your device like new.

A man calling the plumber to fix his washing machine

The most common problem with washing machines is a faulty/broken/damaged part causing leaking water. However, you can, from now on, repair it yourself without spending a fortune on professionals. Check if there’s something wrong with the drain hoses, the water inlet valve, the door catch, the pump, and repair it yourself. Once you’ve done the necessary repairs, run a quick wash cycle to ensure that the leakage issue has been stopped. 

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