When Your Washing Machine Floods Your Laundry Room, It's Likely A Clogged Drain. Here's How To Fix It

by Claude Walters

You're doing a load of laundry and return to your washing machine only to find a pool of water on the floor. What now? In addition to cleaning up, it's likely that you need to check your washing machine for a clogged drain. Older washing machines don't know when there's a clogged drain – when the rinse cycle starts, the washing machine adds more water to an already-full wash basin, causing a flood. Here's how to check and clear a clogged washing machine drain after it floods.

Look for Obstructions in the Washing Machine's Pump

Washing machines use a pump to drain water from the wash basin, and that's the first place you need to look when your washing machine won't drain. Small items can become stuck in the pump, clogging it and preventing it from operating. You'll need to open up the back plate of your washing machine and inspect the pump – some washing machines have transparent pumps, allowing you to easily see an obstruction. Disassemble the pump, check for obstructions and remove any that you find. You should also note that sometimes the pump motor in a washing machine will simply stop working, which means that you need to replace it in order to fix your washing machine.

Check the Lint Filter and the Drain Hose

The agitation from the wash cycle can produce lint, which is a common culprit for a clogged washing machine drain. Some washing machines have a lint filter, which will be located between the wash basin and the pump. If the lint filter is full, remove the lint and start the washing machine again – unclogging the lint filter may have fixed your problem.

Washing machines without lint filters wash all of their lint into the drain hose, which can easily cause clogs. If your washing machine does not have a lint filter, then you can purchase one from any hardware store and install it in your washing machine. In order to inspect your washing machine's drain hose, you'll need to unscrew it from the washing machine.

You can easily check for a clog in the drain hose by running water through it and seeing if it comes through the other side. If the drain hose is clogged, you'll need to purchase or rent a small-diameter pipe snake from a hardware store. The drain hose can be snaked just like any drain – simply run the snake through the hose and pull out any lint that has formed a clog.

Test Your Washing Machine After Removing Any Clogs

Hopefully, clearing out the pump, lint filter and drain hose has fixed your problem. If not, you can perform one final check by yourself – with the drain hose unconnected to your home's plumbing, start the washing machine and see if it drains out of the drain hose. You'll need to put the drain hose in a bucket to avoid creating a mess.

If the washing machine successfully pumps water out of the end of the drain hose during this final test, it's time to call a plumber. The problem that's causing your clogged washing machine lies in your plumbing system. It may be a problem with your home's sewer line, which requires a plumber's tools and knowledge to fix. Contact a service, like West Sound Plumbing Service, for more help.