Common Causes of Washing Machine Clogs, and How To Fix Them

Your washing machine washes your clothes – but do you need to wash your washing machine? While it isn’t a maintenance item most homeowners are aware of, cleaning the washing machine should be done somewhat regularly, especially if you suspect a clog.

Washing Machine Clogs

What causes washing machine clogs?

Soap residue, dryer lint debris, and soiled clothing can all lead to clogs in your washing machine. Here are a couple of ways to fix the problem.

Approach 1: removal and snaking

What you’ll need: Wrenches, an auger or snake, and pipe cutters, screwdrivers, separate drainage pipe from the washing machine, and bucket.

Before you attempt a DIY approach to removing a washing machine clog, you should know that you can end up doing more harm than good. A novice do-it-yourselfer should steer clear from solving the problem alone. If you’re confident in your abilities, continue reading for some tips.

  • Remove the drainpipe at the back of the washing machine. Use your screwdriver and have a bucket handy for any overflow water that might leak out.
  • Disconnect the secondary drain hose (the main connection between the washing machine and your plumbing system).
  • Snake the line. Insert the drain snake into the hose until you feel resistance. This means you’ve located the clog. Rotate the snake so it grips onto the debris. Use twisting motions (but not too much sudden movement) to manually break up the clog. While twisting, gently continue moving the drain snake further into the line. To remove the snake, turn it in the opposite direction and slowly remove it (along with the debris) from the hose.

Sound complicated? It can be. That’s why we have a simpler method to try.

Approach 2: baking soda and vinegar mixture

What you’ll need: Baking soda, vinegar, and hot water.

This trio is a much less risky approach to removing a clog from the washing machine. To see it in action, access the drain pipe and fill a bucket with near-boiling water, vinegar, and baking soda. Slowly pour the mixture into the drainpipe, giving it time to react to the clog. If necessary, use a funnel to keep from making a mess. Continue pouring the mixture into the drainpipe until you’re confident the blockage has been dissolved or pushed through.

Call a plumber to unclog your washing machine

If you try the above approaches and still can’t unclog the washing machine, it’s a good idea to call in a professional before any further damage is done. For drain cleanings of all kinds in Murrieta and Winchester, CA, call Liberty Plumbing today at (951) 760-4215.