Troubleshooting a Noisy Washing Machine

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  • 2 hours
  • Beginner

Figuring out why your washing machine is noisy is part of troubleshooting washing machine problems. There can be a number of reasons behind it. It’s often a matter of checking different things to see what’s working and what’s not. It also depends on whether the washing machine itself will work or not.

Not Working, but Noisy

If your washing machine isn’t working, but it’s noisy when you try to start it, there could be a number of issues. The first thing to check is whether the valves supplying water to the washing machine are turned on. If they are not, turn them on. You also need to test the water inlet valve to ensure it’s letting water in properly. If not, you’ll need to replace it.

The problem could also be with the water pump or the motor. You can test the pump by removing it and trying to turn the pulley by hand. If it won’t turn, then you are going to have to replace the entire pump. If the motor has burned out, it will also need to be replaced.

Finally, look at the filter screen. If it’s clogged, clean it out and try the washing machine again; it should work well now and stop producing noise.

Noisy When Spinning

If the washing machine is especially noisy in the spin cycle, there are several ways of troubleshooting. One very common problem with older washing machines, and one which can cause a lot of noise in the spin cycle, is when the drum bearing fails. To take care of the problem, you’ll need to replace the bearing, as well as add new bearing seals. In the short term, you can remove the belt and spin the load by hand, although this won’t be especially effective.

The sound can also be caused by coins or other tiny objects that are stuck in the tub. Once the spin cycle kicks in, this can cause an unbearable noise. You’ll need to unload the wash in order to locate the source and remove it before resuming the spin cycle. The vast majority of noise occurs in the spin cycle because the tub is moving fast and the motor is working harder.

It’s also possible that the load in the washer could have become unbalanced during the spin cycle. When this happens, the noise is quite distinctive and sounds like a definite rhythmic thump. To fix this problem is easy. Simply stop the washing machine, open it up, and redistribute the load inside the washing machine before resuming.


Overheating is a common occurrence that can cause a noisy washing machine. This will be most likely to happen if you’ve washed several loads one after another. The simplest way to troubleshoot a washing machine for this problem is to let the machine cool down for a couple of hours and then try starting it up again. If the noise persists, the problem is very likely in the motor.