Inside your washer, you will find a plastic tube that fills with air that is connected to a sensor that tells your washing machine when it is full. This is the water level switch. When this switch goes bad, the washer can have all sorts of problems. Here, you will learn the issues that can arise if the water level switch goes bad and how to determine if the switch is causing the problems you are having with your washing machine.
How the Water Level Switch Works
This part works by using air pressure. As your washing machine fills with water, so does the plastic tube. As the water rises, the air pressure inside the tube increases. When it reaches a certain level, the sensor is tripped and forces the water to stop flowing into the machine.
Issues Caused By Failing Water Level Switches
Typically, a failing water level switch could cause several problems. These include:
- The agitator does not move.
- The washing machine does not work at all.
- The drum does not spin.
- Clothes are left wet after the spin cycle is complete.
- Not enough water fills in the tub.
- Too much water fills the tub.
- Hot, cold or both temperatures of water do not fill the tub.
Water Level Switch Troubleshooting
What you will need:
- Owner’s manual – provides you with a diagram of the parts in the washing machine.
- Masking tape and marker
Unplug the washing machine and pull it away from the wall carefully. You do not want to pull the hoses too tightly or you could damage them.
Step 1: Remove the screws on the back of the machine that hold the back panel in place. Put the screws in a small dish to ensure that they are not lost as you complete the rest of the process.
Step 2: Look for damage to the plastic tube. If the tube is damaged or has any kinks in it, it will not properly gauge the air pressure inside. Kinks can carefully be undone, but in some cases, the kinks cause damage to the tube and the tube will need to be replaced.
Look at the connections – Are they all tight? If you find any lose connections, tighten them up.
Step 3: Use a multitester to test the switch. Look for the three connections on the switch and label each wire and each connector. These labels will help to ensure that you connect the wiring correctly when you are done testing the system.
Disconnect the wires and begin testing. Test every possible pair – connection 1 and 2, 1 and 3 and 2 and 3. The reading on the multimeter should be infinity on two pairs and the other should show continuity.
Now, blow a little bit of air into the air pressure connection and perform the same test as above. The connection pair that had a reading of continuity in the prior test should now read infinity and one of the pairs that previously read infinity should now read continuity.
If this test does not provide such results, the water level switch is failing and must be replaced. For more information, contact a local appliance repair company, like All Appliance Service Inc.