Sometimes the washer finishes its cycle and leaves the fabric softener compartment full of water. The fact that the fabric softener has gone, and been replaced by water shows that the function has worked. The water is left behind due to a blockage, or a missing siphon tube.
How fabric softener compartment works
Here’s how it is flushed into the drum. The small fabric softener compartment in the soap dispenser drawer has a plastic cap or tube at the back. When the time comes for the softener (conditioner) to be released, cold water runs into the small compartment. This flushes the softener over the top and down the dispenser into the drum.
When the water flow has turned off the compartment is left momentarily full of water. This unwanted water should automatically siphon up the inside of the tube and into the drum. Siphoning is triggered when water, or the fabric softener spills over the top of the compartment.
What causes water to be left?
This tube often gets blocked by the fabric softener itself. If you remove the dispenser drawer and take off the cap or device you can give the whole thing a good clean out. Make sure you clean through the hole in any tube leading through to the bottom of the drawer. If any part is missing, the siphoning will not occur.
To test the function, hold the soap drawer under a tap and allow water to fill the fabric compartment to overflowing. When you turn off the tap, hold the drawer steady and level. The remaining water should slowly siphon out of the hole under the cap and run out from the bottom of the drawer.
If everything is clean, and the water drains out ok when doing the above test, but there is still some water left in the fabric softener compartment at the end of the cycle then check the rest of this article for more ideas.
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Still leaving water in drawer?
It shouldn’t be possible for the compartment to be left full of water if the compartment is cleaned and tested as described above. But if there’s only a small amount of water left inside try ensuring the washing machine is level and not tilting towards you. Make sure the washer is level across front to back as well as side to side.
The only other explanation I can think of is that stray water could be getting into the compartment after the fabric conditioner has been washed out – but not enough to fill to overflow which would start the siphoning process and remove it. If you suspect this check out this article for details about deflected water inside the soap dispenser – Fabric softener taken out too soon. You could also try adjusting the cold water pressure on the washing machine tap to see if it makes any difference.
More fabric softener articles and problems
- Fabric Softener not being taken out
- Fabric softener taken out immediately (or too soon)
- Don’t use fabric softener on children’s sleepwear (flame resistance issue)
- Save on fabric softener when tumble drying
- How to remove the soap drawer
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