How To Fix A Washing Machine That Fills And Drains At The Same Time

Question: Every 3 out of 5 washes our washing machine will fill with water and just keep filling and filling. During this time, the water will drain out normally at the same exact time. Our washer is in an endless fill/drain cycle. It is stuck filling and draining until we unplug the machine. We sometimes just set the load to the end of the wash cycle and wait a few hours before trying again. Sometimes this happens and other times it does not. What could be causing this to happen?

If your washing machine (top load or front load) is filling with water WHILE it is draining, here is a simple quick fix. This issue happens frequently and about 90% of the time it is NOT THE WASHER MALFUNCTIONING. This “washer fills and drains at same time” issue can be fixed in a matter of minutes. See below for how easy this repair solution is. This easy fix solution will work on all washers including GE, Whirlpool, Kenmore, Samsung, LG, Frigidaire, Maytag, and more.

Washer Fills and Drains At Same Time

Answer: Your washer DRAIN HOSE is causing a siphoning condition. Your washing machine drain hose is pushed way too far into the stand pipe in the wall. There needs to be an air gap and by having the drain pipe pushed too far there is no air gap. This creates a vacuum or siphoning affect and the water is pulled out of the washer as it fills with water. What you need to do is pull the drain hose out of the stand pipe and put it back in making sure it is not in the wall too far or too deep. There needs to be a bend at the apex of the drain hose. It needs to be above the height of the wash tub. Once you have the drain pipe or hose in the exact position you need it to be in to not cause siphoning, tie the drain hose to the water fill hoses with a plastic zip tie so it can’t fall back down deep or pull out.

Top Load Washer Fills and Drains At Same Time

If you know of another way for a washing machine to fill and drain at the same time, please leave a comment below to assist our other readers.

ALLEN VETTER - DIY Repair Assistant
Allen is a Home Maintenance/Appliance tech and the author/creator of this website. He has 30 years of experience troubleshooting and repairing all types of machinery. Contact here

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{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

1 royette January 10, 2019 at 12:24 pm

I have a top loader fully automatic washing machine LG that keeps emptying while filling and really stressing me out been trying what was said about the drain hose but nothing


2 Edward schroedel August 15, 2018 at 2:09 am

I have the same machine that UWL 15 and when I start the machine ifills and starts to pump out the water at the same time I recently replaced the pump diverter valve and I replaced the board and it still does this with the new board in it and second light from left is not lit when you start a cycle


3 Cathy May 28, 2018 at 7:20 pm

Thank you so much. I just bout a portable washer and put the hose in the tub to drain. The washer was in an endless cycle of filling and draining at the same time and I had no clue what to do. I hung the drain hose on then shower head and it fixed the problem! Thank you!


4 Karl March 6, 2018 at 2:11 am

Omg this fixed my issue! I have a LG Inverter Direct Drive 5.5kg top loader washing machine. I had the drain hose on the back of my washing machine super tight. The hose was just running along the floor and in to a drain pipe (because our laundry tub still needs to be fitted off). The washing machine would try to fill with water but drain out at the same time. I read this article, I lossened off the screw clamp on the back so it wasn’t super tight and raised the other end up higher than the back of the exit on the washing machine as stated. Done a tub clean and the washing machine is filling up and doing a cycle. Thank you, thank you!!!


5 Pat September 4, 2017 at 7:32 pm

Simple as that! I was about to go looking for replacement parts.


6 Kelvin June 11, 2017 at 7:44 am

Thanks for the advise…worked by simply elevating the height of the drain pipe.


7 Johan June 9, 2017 at 11:07 pm

My old washer pump copper wires were burnt, i bought a new pump and fitted it, but now it does what the old pump had never done.
Although it was not draining out water but it had a burning smell from a pump.
This new one it drains and fill at the very same time, and i did everything and never change the hose pipe.
It is still 30 inches above the base as it was.


8 Frehiwot January 19, 2019 at 12:36 pm

Hello Sir,
I have faced same problem like yours. Changed the pump but drains and fills at the same time after the change. Did you get a solution. Pls let me know.


9 Alex Frantzis June 3, 2017 at 4:06 am

This was incredibly helpful. Thank you for saving me a lot of money and hassle. I even heard the vaccume suction sound when I removed the electrical tape attaching the drain hose.


10 Jackie May 30, 2017 at 3:51 am

Thank you very much! I thought my Haier portable washer was malfunctioning when it tried to fill and was draining at the same time… glad I didn’t angrily call the girl who sold it to me from Craigslist because it turns out that I just had the hose sitting too low in the bathtub to drain, and when I hung it up higher (with some string and a hanger), it worked just fine.


11 Sally Birge April 17, 2017 at 1:02 am

I just bought a portable Haier washer from a friend. Everything turns on properly. The water fills up then drains and will not wash. What could be the problem.


12 Andrew April 12, 2017 at 2:32 pm

Richard wrote (17 March 2017) that his toploader samsung machine seems to have the drain pump turn on when power is on and runs continuously. I have the same problem with mine. Initially I could see that the drain pump had burnt out, changed it but now face this problem. Can these machines be reset (WA13V5)? Or does it mean the PCB needs replacing?


13 Richard March 17, 2017 at 11:50 pm

I have a Samsung top loading washing machine and it is draining and filling at the same time – but it seems the drain pump is permanently on. Drain pump starts up as soon as I turn the power on (before even hitting start etc)


14 Lol February 25, 2017 at 3:20 pm

Brilliant and clear, understandable advice thanks. Bought a new machine today and on the first wash couldn’t figure out why it was just pouring water the entire time – zip tied the drain pipe and it is fixed.


15 doobiedoo January 28, 2017 at 9:30 pm

I have a haier HLP24E washer it fills with water at the start wash , then drain , on the rinse cycle the drain valve closes and rinse water starts to come in but the drain valve slowly starts to open up , so it is draining while filling , i turn the machine off and then put it in rinse and spin cycle to finish the wash ,, next i go through the cycle again but it does not always happen like that sometimes it will go through the cycles and does a wash the way its suppose to ? i have the drain hose the proper level 31 inches high into drain does anyone have this problem, if so whats the fix


16 danny January 27, 2017 at 6:10 pm

Thanks much for this easy simple and very helpful diy tips on filling and draining washer problem. It really works. You guys are so wonderful people and helps a lot. May God Bless You All!


17 Blessing December 2, 2016 at 5:28 pm

Oh am so grateful for this advise. My front loader washer had not be washing for two weeks but just following this simple instruction on this DIY repair, I got it working again. Am wowed…..


18 brian van vlymen November 13, 2016 at 4:59 am

Youtube video is excellent I have not been fixing it for almost 4 months and I had decided to pay the washer service. I never knew about the siphoning means. Thank you so much for this create an awesome website!


19 Johnny Garcia October 19, 2016 at 3:28 am

I have been trying to figure out my problem with a GE washer that spins from the start while filling and draining all simultaneously.
I took your advice by pulling hose out with only 6 to 7 inches of hose in the drain but it still does the same thing.
I have even changed the timer switch.


20 DIY Project Help Tips October 19, 2016 at 10:20 pm

Johnny Garcia,
Can you give us the model number of your GE Washing Machine?
Have you checked the drain pump as it may be faulty and letting water drain as the washer fills with water.


21 Mike March 26, 2016 at 4:19 pm

Wow what a simple fix to a problem that had our washer out of commission for 2 weeks (family of 7)

Thank you so much!


22 St June 23, 2015 at 6:53 pm

My machine has been filling with water while I was doing a load of laundry, but it would also drain at the same time. I thought this was rather strange, so it’s good to know that there’s something that I can do about it. It seems like fixing my drain hose so that it isn’t pushed too far into the stand pipe is a good way to fix the problem. I should check out the drain hose on my washer to find out if that’s exactly what’s causing it to drain while filling up with water.


23 Denise June 22, 2015 at 12:19 am

After trying to do our part in drought stricken California by buying biodegradable soap and allowing the washer to drain out onto the lawn…the washer started filling and draining at the same time. Initially thought it might be a bad pump because of back pressure…thinking we’ll just have to buy a new washer. Went online came across your site and low and behold the solution to our problem!! Thank you for posting this advice!! Most appreciated!


24 DIY Project Help Tips June 22, 2015 at 7:46 pm

Your drain tube is not vertically located in the right spot. Our WASHER WILL DRAIN AND FILL AT SAME TIME page will help you.


25 Jeff Kosman March 7, 2015 at 7:23 am

What a helpful site. With just a few paragraphs and a YouTube video it immediately answered a problem I have been looking up for hours on other sites.


26 Deanna R. Jones March 4, 2015 at 12:34 am

Thanks for the advice. I didn’t know that it’s a common problem for washers to keep filling with water while it’s draining. I’ve always thought that it was something strange that would cause my washer to malfunction. It’s good to know that the washer isn’t really malfunctioning, but the drain hose. I’ll be sure to make sure that the drain hose has an air gap so that it won’t siphon.


27 Jim Begg February 6, 2015 at 3:10 am

I have a GE front load. At the rinse cycle, the water turns on and does not turn off during the spin cycle. It continues to add water even after the timer goes off. I need to turn the water off manually and do a drain and spin cycle to get my clothes to a damp condition.


28 DIY Project Help Tips February 6, 2015 at 8:34 pm

You probably have a faulty water inlet valve. First check to see if you are getting proper voltage to the valve. If in doubt remove and replace the water inlet valve and test your washer. GE may call this part something different but similar.


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