Why Your Washer Won’t Fill With Water and How to Fix It

By Fix4U Team
Washing Machine, Laundry Appliances

Having your washer not fill with water can be a frustrating problem. You go to start a load of laundry, only to find the washer tub remains empty. No matter how many times you check the settings or push start, the washer just won’t fill.

While a washer not filling with water may seem like a major repair, there are several easy troubleshooting steps you can take to get your washer filling again. Read on to learn the most common reasons a washer won’t fill and how to fix the issue yourself.

Common Reasons a Washer Won’t Fill With Water

There are a handful of parts in your washer that work together to control the water flow. An issue with any of these components can prevent the washer from filling. Here are the most common culprits when a washer won’t fill with water:

1. Water Supply Issues

Fix4U Repairs' Technicians Fixing Water Wont Filling In Washing Machine Problem In Gta

The most obvious place to start is checking that water is actually getting to your washer. Start by making sure both the hot and cold water taps are turned on fully. Check that the water supply hoses are securely attached at both the faucet and washer.

Inspect the hoses for any kinks, cracks, or bulges. Damaged hoses can restrict water flow. Turn off the water supplies and inspect the washers inside each hose connection. Make sure they aren’t worn out or flattened. Worn washers may not seal properly, resulting in leaks and low water pressure.

While you have the water turned off, remove and inspect the water inlet filters inside the valve connections. Clogged inlet filters can block water flow. Rinse out any debris and reattach the filters.

2. Faulty Water Inlet Valve

The water inlet valves control the flow of hot and cold water into your washer. Over time, mineral deposits from the water supply can build up on the inlet valve screens and restrict water flow. Valves can also just wear out over time.

Test the valve by turning off the water supply and disconnecting the hoses. Set the washer to a wash cycle and see if the valves click. If not, or the click is faint, the valves could be failing. Inspect the valves visually for damage. If the valves look faulty, replacing them should get your washer filling properly.

3. Lid Switch Failure

All washers have a lid switch that prevents the washer from filling and running if the lid is open. This is an important safety feature. If the lid switch fails, the washer control board thinks the lid is still open, so it won’t start filling.

Test this by starting a cycle and then pressing down on the lid, making sure it clicks into the proper closed position. If the washer starts filling as soon as you do this, you likely have a faulty lid switch. Inspect the switch for any damage or jamming. Replace if needed.

4. Bad Control Board

The control board is the brains of your washer. It controls when the valves open to fill the tub and start the wash cycle. If it’s defective, it can fail to send the signal to the inlet valves to start filling.

Control boards often fail if they get wet. Check the board for signs of moisture or water damage. You may see water stains, mineral deposits, or corroded connections. If the control board looks damaged at all, replacement is the fix.

Step-by-Step Guide to Fix a Washer Not Filling

Once you’ve diagnosed the potential cause, fixing a washer that won’t fill with water is usually straightforward. Here are the steps to get your washer filling properly again:

1. Check the Water Supply

  • Make sure both hot and cold taps are fully open.
  • Inspect the hoses for damage and tighten connections.
  • Check the water inlet screens and clean out any debris.
  • If rubber hoses are swollen, replace them.
  • Replace worn washers inside the hose connections.

2. Clean or Replace Water Inlet Valves

  • Turn off water supply and disconnect hoses.
  • Remove any mineral buildup from valve screens with vinegar.
  • Check valve operation and listen/feel for click when activated.
  • If valves are faulty, replace inlet valve assembly.

3. Test and Replace Lid Switch if Needed

  • Press down firmly on lid to engage the switch.
  • Start a cycle to see if washer fills now.
  • If no fill, disconnect power and remove console to access switch.
  • Test switch with multi-meter. Replace if faulty.

4. Inspect and Replace Control Board if Damaged

  • Check for signs of water damage or corrosion on control board.
  • If damaged, disconnect power and remove board.
  • Install new control board and reconnect wiring.
  • Program new board if needed.

5. Verify Repair and Test

  • With repairs complete, reconnect hoses and power.
  • Turn on water supply and verify no leaks.
  • Run washer through a test cycle to ensure proper fill.
  • Check underneath washer for leaks during fill test.
  • Make additional repairs if needed until fill issue is resolved.

Taking methodical steps to diagnose the specific issue and then making the necessary repair is the key to getting your washer functioning properly again. With the right replacement part, you can likely fix a washer not filling with water yourself and save the cost of a service call.

What to Check if Your Washer is Still Not Filling After Repair

While the steps above should resolve most cases of a washer not filling, you may still have an issue after making repairs. Here are a few other things to check if your washer still won’t fill:

  • Water pressure – Very low water pressure in your home can prevent the valves from opening fully. Check pressure at other faucets and contact your utility company if pressure is low throughout your home.
  • Clogged water pump – Sediment buildup can clog the washer’s water pump and prevent proper water flow. Disconnect hoses and inspect the pump for debris. Clean out or replace pump if needed.
  • Kinked internal hose – The internal rubber hoses that carry water can become kinked or cracked. Inspect hoses carefully and make sure there are no obstructions.
  • Bad water level pressure switch – This switch stops the fill when the proper water level is reached. If it’s defective, it may prematurely shut off the valves. Test with a multi-meter and replace if needed.
  • Obstructed drain tube – If the drain tube that siphons out water is clogged, water can back up and prevent proper filling. Disconnect and inspect drain tube.

If you’ve checked all of these items and the washer still won’t fill, it’s time to call in a professional repair technician to properly diagnose and fix the issue.

Preventing Future “Won’t Fill” Problems

While washer components can always fail at random, you can take a few steps to prevent future filling problems:

  • Use a water softener – Hard water is tough on inlet valves and water hoses. A water softener will minimize lime and mineral deposits that can cause clogs or valve failure.
  • Replace hoses every 5 years – Rubber hoses become brittle and prone to bursting over time. Swap hoses out for new stainless steel ones.
  • Clean washers and filters yearly – Regularly cleaning inlet filters, pumps, and hoses prevents buildup that can impede water flow.
  • Avoid overloading – Overstuffing the washer tub strains components like hoses and valves. Only wash recommended load sizes.
  • Level the washer – An unlevel unit causes undue strain as the tub shifts. Keep the unit properly leveled to prevent leaks.

With proper care and maintenance, you can maximize the life of your washer and minimize issues like failure to fill with water. But when problems do occur, this guide will help you troubleshoot the issue and identify the necessary repairs.

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Professional Washer Repair Services

If you don’t have the time or feel comfortable making washer repairs yourself, Fix4U Repairs offers expert washer troubleshooting and repair services throughout the GTA. Our experienced technicians can diagnose any issue, including problems with filling, and make all necessary repairs. We stock most replacement parts on our repair trucks so we can get your washer back up and running again promptly.

We provide upfront pricing and guarantee our workmanship. If your washer won’t fill, won’t drain, leaks, or has any other common problem, contact Fix4U Repairs at (647) 363-5205 to schedule a fast repair appointment. We’re available when you need us – evenings and weekends included. Trust our appliance experts to get your washer working its best again quickly and affordably.

FAQs About Washers Not Filling With Water

What should I check first if my washer won’t fill?

Start by confirming that the water supply faucets are fully turned on and inspecting the fill hoses for any kinks or damage. Check the inlet screens for debris as well. This helps confirm water is able to get to the washer.

Why does my washer fill slowly or not at all?

Low water volume is typically caused by clogged or damaged inlet valve screens, restricted hoses, or low home water pressure. Mineral buildup in hoses or valves can obstruct flow over time.

Is it safe to use a washer that’s not filling properly?

No, you should stop using a washer that isn’t filling and repair it. Running the washer repeatedly with no water can damage components. The lack of water balance can also cause excess vibration and noise.

How can I test if my lid switch is bad?

Use a multi-meter to check for continuity through the switch contacts when closed. You can also start a cycle, then press down on the lid to engage the switch. If the washer then starts filling, the switch needs replacement.

Should I replace both inlet valves if one fails?

Yes, it’s recommended to replace both the hot and cold water inlet valves at the same time when one fails. The other valve likely has similar wear and tear and may fail soon.

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