Washing machine/cold water won't work?

Discussion in 'Shop Talk' started by ChasingDreams, Oct 9, 2007.

  1. ChasingDreams

    ChasingDreams Well-Known Member

    Apr 8, 2006
    NC (western piedmont)
    Why won't my cold water come out of my washer? The hot and warm work fine, but the cold is nothing. We've added a filter directly behind the washer to no avail. The household filter is changed frequently. Sometimes if we tinker with the filters, we get a little bit of flow for a few days, then nothing again. This has only been an issue since moving to this house - but previous house also had a well... so I am at a loss :( I hate washing with extra energy!
  2. retire2$

    retire2$ Well-Known Member

    Feb 11, 2003
    Sounded like the water solenoid was bad until you said the warm was fine. Maybe the warm was from the hot water heater not being able to keep up.

    First thing I would check is the screen on the cold water inlet. If that is OK it could be some grit has gotten into the solenoid. Easiest solution would to switch the hot and cold water line on the washing machine. Then the hot setting would put out all cold. Next stop would be to replace the solenoid.

  3. Jim S.

    Jim S. Well-Known Member

    Apr 22, 2004
    The cold and hot water on your machine are turned on by a solenoid that controls each. If you are getting warm water, the solenoid for cold and hot would both be on. So both would work. Only the selection for cold water only is when you get no water. Therefore, the trouble is in the wiring to the solenoid from the water sleector switch, the selector switch itself is bad, or the wiring to the switch is bad in some portion. It depends on your machine.

    I would bet on the switch. Using common sense caution, if you open the control panel and trace the wire from the cold water solenoid up to the selector switch, then turn the switch to cold only with the machine plugged in and turn on the timer, you should be able to use a voltmeter between the switch terminal to the cold water solenoid and the neutral wire of the plug to see if there's any juice being produced when the switch is set on cold only. I'll bet that terminal is dead.

    Now I am assuming here that you have pulled the filter screens out from the solenoids and cleaned them, since you talk about all these filters and whatnot you have hooked up.

    There is a possibility the solenoid plunger is balky. Most of them can be taken apart and cleaned. But then I'd think you would not get warm at all, either.
  4. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

    May 22, 2003
    Zone 7
    If you are a cold water user only just switch the cold water hose over to the hot water connection on the washer and then use the hot water settings on the washer. You will not know the cold water inlet is broken and all will be OK
  5. PyroDon

    PyroDon Well-Known Member

    Jul 30, 2006
    S.E. Ks.
    First thing to do is check the little screen in the hose sometimes these get clogged with calcium build up.
    Then make sure the water is coming through the feed line to the washer
    If both these are clear and running
    Its time to check the solenoid your should be able to test it with an 18 volt battery ? not sure on some washers Ours has a step down transformer.
    If it works check the wiring could have had a mouse chew through a wire or one may have vibrated loose. if you still havent found the problem the switch is bad
  6. raymilosh

    raymilosh Well-Known Member

    Jan 12, 2005
    If you really are getting hot water and warm water (make sure by running the warm water and feel the 2 hoses..1 should get hotter, the other should get colder), then I'd agree exactly with Jim S that's it's a bad contact in the switch. Those switches can be expensive. sanding the connections can help, dielectric grease on the contacts can help, bending tabs and knocking it around can help for a while. If you can't get it working, you could switch the hoses like agman said or if you wanted to be really clever and cheap, run both hot and cold to one of those garden hose splitters with the little on/off valves for each one and attach it to the hot inlet for the washer. That way you could set the valves on the splitter to what temp you usually use and reach behind the washer to change the incoming water temp for unusual loads.