Home bathroom and sanitaryWashing machine does not draw water - possible causes

Washing machine does not draw water - possible causes

  • Nine causes
    • Inhibited feed
    • Clogged inlet
    • Blocked aquastop
    • Operating error on the door
    • lint
    • filling chamber
    • Clogged drain
    • Clogged air trap
    • Drain pump
    • check valve
  • Call a mechanic
  • Tips for quick readers

You start a wash and go to the usual time to see if it is already finished. But instead of a freshly laundered and hurled laundry awaits you only a sadly flashing washing machine, possibly with a cryptic error message in the display. Many washing machines have a separate LED light, which is marked "check feed". Here you will learn everything that can be a cause and what damage you want to fix yourself.

Many washing machines - a principle

Washing machines have always been working on the same principle for many years. First, the water enters and is mixed with the detergent to the wash liquor. Subsequently, the wash is pumped through the laundry several times and warmed up. The wash liquor is pumped off and rinse water is allowed to run in. Also the rinse water is pumped through the laundry several times. Then the rinse water is pumped out and the laundry is thrown. On the way there may be some disturbances. A typical washing machine failure is the lack of fresh water. The programs differ only by the temperature and the spin speed. Otherwise, this principle always remains the same.

Nine causes

... for striking inflow

The fact that the washing machine no longer "draws" water can have many different reasons. Nine causes have proven to be particularly common for this disorder. We'll show you these causes in the order of difficulty of their troubleshooting. The typical causes of a dry washing machine are:

  • locked or insufficient supply
  • clogged inlet
  • blocked aquastop
  • Operating error on the door
  • clogged lint filter
  • dirty dishwashing chamber
  • clogged drain
  • clogged air trap
  • Clamping suds pump
  • triggered / defective shut-off valve

Inhibited feed

If the washing machine gets no water or only a drop of water, it locks automatically after a certain time. In the case of a striking washing machine, therefore, first check whether the tap is turned on at all. It is generally recommended to open the faucet only for washing and to keep it closed when not in use. This prevents water damage. For example, household insurance can refuse or severely restrict payment if the faucet of the washing machine is left open during a holiday.

If the faucet is opened, go to another faucet in the house and turn it up. If there is no or too little water, you have found the cause. With a bucket test, you can accurately determine the flow rate per minute: A 10-liter bucket must be full in about 30 seconds with the tap turned up. If a fully opened faucet does significantly less, the cause lies in the water supply of the house.

Clogged inlet

Unscrew the inlet from the washing machine and keep the hose in a bucket. Check the plastic strainer on the washing machine for dirt. Especially with calcareous water, this sieve can settle with time. If necessary, clean it with vinegar essence, then you have usually fixed the error. But do not screw the inlet back on, but first check the Aquastop.

Blocked aquastop

The Aquastop is the weird box attached to the inlet hose of the washing machine. This locks after the inlet, if too much or too little back pressure is registered in the hose. Turn on the tap. If there is no water flowing through the inlet hose, the aquastop has triggered. But this is usually just an indirect consequence of damage that exists in the washing machine.

There are electronic and mechanical aquastops. Electronic aquastops need a power supply and have a small flash symbol printed on them. How to unlock it, is in the manual. As a rule, it is sufficient to disconnect it from the power supply and reconnect it. Mechanical aquastops lack the power supply and the lightning symbol. Here you simply turn off the water supply and back on. If there is no water after unlocking, the Aquastop is probably broken. Replace it with a new one, then the machine should run again.

TIP: If your washing machine fails on the famous Saturday night, you can also mount the inlet hose from the dishwasher. Technically, these components are identical.

Operating error on the door

In the door of a washing machine is an electrical contact. As long as this is not closed, locks the washing machine all other functions. On older machines this contact sometimes jams. It can help to press hard against the door's lock here. With the knee you can develop a lot of power here. But do not use violence. You can completely destroy the lock and the contact when violently slamming the door. If the fault proves to be persistent, the lock can also be replaced with contact. The manufacturers list this component as a spare part in their order catalogs.


The lint filter is located behind the flap at the foot of the washing machine. It filters the lint and other coarse matter out of the brine. Mostly at this point the famous single sock hangs. How to clean the lint filter is in the instructions for use of the washing machine. It is designed in any case so that even a layman can clean it easily.

Tip: For most washing machines, behind this flap is the forced unlocking of the door.

filling chamber

Pull out the detergent drawer and then start a washing process. Look in the filling chamber. If the water just dribbles a bit and you have ruled out all other causes, the inlet nozzles are probably clogged. This can easily happen by swirling and caking detergent. Clean the nozzles with a toothpick, an old toothbrush or, if present, with short bursts from a steam cleaner. When working with superheated steam, keep a close eye. The pressure could damage components.

Clogged drain

As well as the inlet, the drain can also clog on a washing machine. Sometimes the famous single sock wanders to this spot. Remove the drain hose and let it pass through a bathtub once with water. If there is a foreign object in it, you have found the cause. With a bent wire hanger can usually remove even deep-seated blockages again. The machine usually works properly after installation. Also check if the drain on the siphon itself is possibly clogged. This can happen with washing machine drains that have to share their siphon with other suppliers (sink, dishwasher ...).

Clogged air trap

Now we come slowly to the areas where some technical courage is required. From this point, we recommend the consultation of a professional housewares technician.

The air trap is inside the washing machine. It measures the air pressure in the washing machine. The more water in the washing machine, the higher the pressure increases. Swirling lint and detergent deposits can also clog the air trap. The instruction manual shows exactly where the air trap is installed. Disconnect the washing machine from the power supply, then remove the air trap and clean it thoroughly. Install it again and test the washing machine.

This error occurs particularly quickly if too much detergent is used permanently. The excess detergent residue continues to trap the air trap until it is completely blocked. Caking detergent is very persistent and can not be replaced by "flushing" again and removed.

Drain pump

The named sock can also penetrate to the drain pump. Likewise, there pinch money or other items from pants pockets. Removing the drain pump is also a technical challenge that you should only face if you are confident in doing this job.

check valve

The washing machine has another, integrated Aquastop. This triggers when a water damage threatens. The check valve should definitely only be checked and repaired by a specialist. It sits deep in the washing machine and is hardly useful for technical laymen to identify. But you can try to carry out an emergency repair.
Turn off the tap and start a wash program. Now turn the tap on quickly one full turn. A pinching solenoid shut-off valve can be released sometimes. However, you can assume that the valve will gradually arrive at the end of its life and the failures will pile up. Sooner or later you should have it replaced by a specialist.

In addition, especially electrical and electronic problems can lead to failure of the washing machine. Often corroded plugs or faulty boards are the cause when the washing machine is on strike. Here laymen have reached the end of their technical possibilities. To remedy this damage, a trained technician must be assigned.

Call a mechanic

This guide should help you narrow down the cause of a blocked washing machine as much as possible. What you can fix yourself and what you do not have to decide for yourself. However, we do not recommend doing any repair attempts for which you need to open the washing machine. However, you save a lot of money if you could exclude all other causes in advance. This allows you to better inform the home appliance technician about the actual problem of the washing machine and save a lot of time for its repair. Clarify the technician already when placing the order about the measures taken. Also tell him the error code if it appears on the washing machine display. This speeds up the repair process considerably. And your mechanic is always happy about a fresh cup of coffee.

Tip: get advice.

The art of treating a washing machine properly is greater than you think. What consequences permanently excessive use of detergent, we have already described to them. In addition, the expert can give you many more tips that can significantly extend the life of your washing machine. This helps you to save a lot of money - and not just for the machine.

Tips for quick readers

  • work from simple to expensive
  • do the bucket test: 10 liters in 30 seconds
  • exchange broken aquastops for the dishwasher
  • always pull out the mains plug when the washing machines are open
  • Limit the problem
  • make a note of the error message
  • always turn off the water supply when finishing the washing process
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