Why would a washing machine leak from underneath?

So, why would a washing machine leak from underneath causing water to pool (on the floor)?

Well, there are quite a few possible reasons.

Here they are and what you should do to stop the leak (at some point you may find a giant water puddle -on the floor- beside and under your washer if you don’t do something).


Why would a washing machine leak from underneath?

Below is what causes a washer to leak underneath normally…

Could it be the drainage port?

You might not even need to start with complicated stuff- There are many instances where the cause is the internal drainage port.

The reason is blockage – it starts to bring gradual water leaks once  blocked with errant coins, socks, and the like.

So can you start there-Open up the top of your washer and remove the drum. 

Next, check on the bottom -you will notice the drainage port there. 

Keep in mind that it could be necessary to disconnect the numerous house fittings (below the washer) to be able to remove any stuck items (in the port).


Check the dispenser drawer

The machine can also leak due to the dispenser drawer not being completely closed or ripped.

So also check the drawer and replaced it, if necessary.


The drain pipe could be the issue

If the drain pipe is blocked, water could be finding an alternative way to come out when the washer drains eventually dripping from underneath the washer and finally ending up onto the floor.

So the first thing you need to check is if the main drain pipe is either backed up or has a blockage.

Also check the drainage pipe that it feeds into since if there’s a blockage, water could be back feeding out.

In short, check for bent /clogged drain pipe(and any other pipe along the water supply line) and straighten/unclog the pipe(you might need a plumber to help you snake it)

why would a washing machine leak from the bottom

I should add that if you need to double-check that no hose has become disconnected…the drain hose does become dislodged sometimes, for example, if a wayward piece of laundry with enough weight to make it yank out has fallen behind your washer-and onto the hose, making it disconnect from the wall drain. 

Oh, and replace any leaky/punctured/rusted pipes because they could be causing water to drain into the wall then leaking out underneath

Remember there is a chance too that the drain fitting might have become loose over time – and again that might lead to water just coming out of the drain pipe and onto your floor.

So check if the drain fitting has been rattled loose and tighten it as well.

Why would a washing machine leak from underneath? – More answers

There might be a problem with the drain pump or tub seal

Question: is the water soapy? 

If yes, there’s a huge probability that it is either a drain pump or tub seal fault. 

To be clear, if your drain pump is broken, it quite often leaks- leading to water flowing out down the washer.

The good thing is that it’s a super easy fix- the problem should disappear once you get a replacement (and there are some nice videos on YouTube that will show you how to do that).

Still on the drain pump, it is important to look at the pump filter, if it’s clogged – and many folks forget they need periodic cleaning- then it could leak.

So be sure to clean it even as you explore the option of replacing it- you may have to get a new one if the old filter is completely messed up.

The next part that’s worth checking (and it’s the victim many times) is the tub seal- water leaks out  the seal (and it may end up flowing out down) if cracked.

Your best bet? Installing a replacement (see replacement tub seal prices)

Reminder: Usually the tub bearings will begin making noise (when on spin cycle) which is a clear indication that the tub seal is shot.

And did I tell you that the door seals could also be the source of the leak more so for front loaders?

So, yeah look at your front loading washer’s door seals(door boot seal/gasket)….they might turn out to be the source of the leakage – be sure to change them out too (they’re not very pricey these days).

Worth trying before replacing the rubber boot seal/gasket: 

Buy gasket sealant stuff -and simply add a layer (on your washer’s gasket surface) to create a better seal. Avoid keeping the lid shut while the stuff dries otherwise you’ll end up sealing your washing machine ‘permanently’.


Why would a washing machine leak from underneath?

The filter could be the culprit

Another very common reason especially for side loading washers is the filter (at the bottom) getting loose.

To be clear, when it’s loose, water starts to slowly ooze out of the base (water will be escaping out of the filter) until it floods your basement. 

So do this if you have a side loader:

Check whether the filter (again at the bottom) is actually tight and secure- tighten it if need be.


Washing machine leaking from underneath when filling

Could you be overloading it?

You see, when overloaded or you have piled clothes close to the fill spot, it might start leaking from the bottom during the fill cycle.

This is what happens:

During the initial fill cycle,some  water tends to get sloshed back typically over the rim (or around). 

That’s what may be resulting in puddles forming on the floor. 

So stop overloading it (check its balance too)and see what happens during your next load.

I should mention that the same problem is there with top loaders..

But here I recommend that you pull up a couple of camp chairs then try to watch a laundry load run.

Let me explain:

If the load is very unbalanced on your top loading washer, chances are it might be sending water out of the machine’s tub due to the unbalance.

The other probable issue when you have overloaded a top loader is something getting in the way (of incoming water), shooting it either at the lid/ even over the side (of the tub) making it leak from the inside.

You will see what’s happening once you watch the load – you will want to first balance it properly because it could be the primary cause.

Needless to say, when up there watching the load, be sure to look everywhere to try and figure out where the water is running from.

That will give you a solid idea about anything errant that could be coming in the way of water


The fill-level switch might be the cause

The other part we suggest you check is the fill-level switch. 


Because nearly all have a reset point – and it occasionally gets stuck when the switch gets dirty leading to the drum overflowing. 

So take a couple of minutes to clean the switch up and see if it helps.

Something else: the water-level sensor (Water-level pressure switch) in some washers goes bad occasionally, causing the washer to keep rising (subsequently flooding the floor) so it’s another component you may want to replace.

top loading washing machine leaking from bottom

If the leak persists, you may have to try the fixes we had recommended previously – there could be a loose drain fitting, a broken drain pipe, etc. 


Why is my washing machine leaking from the bottom – Conclusion

There are many things that could be leading to the leak as we have seen above some quite simple to fix and others not so straightforward.

By the way, it could even be due to a cracked tub – and the best part is that replacing the tub is not that expensive or difficult.

So take your time and evaluate all options – any of the multiple internal hose couplings/fittings might have failed or worked loose so you might need to take it apart at some point during the diagnostic process and inspect things. 

Bear in mind that the owners manual for your specific model may be very helpful so check it in the troubleshooting section for further ideas too (You can Google for it online). 


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