"Clothes Washer Hose - Replacement"
10 September 2005
Summary: the hoses from the hot and cold water faucets that supply water to your clothes washer need to be replaced every 5 - 7 years. This is very wise preventive maintenance as washer hoses have been known to burst without warning and cause a major flood. Replacement of hoses is an easy do-it-yourself for most people.
Connecting your clothes washer to hot and cold water faucets are 2, probably rubber, hoses and believe it or not, these hoses have a finite life span, Problem is that there is no good way to just look at the hoses to determine if they are approaching the end of their life span. What’s to worry? Well if one of the rubber supply line hoses burst while you are home, you will probably, eventually, hear the rushing of the water, but if you are not home, your basement or room holding your clothes washer can become flooded. Thus, do yourself a favor and replace your clothes washer supply line hoses every 5 - 7 years.
Tools and supplies needed:
- New hoses. Like everything else, you have choices when it comes to clothes washer hoses. Hoses come in various lengths and construction. The cheapest hoses are shorter than other hoses and probably made of cheap rubber. I think you increase your risk of an unexpected hose rupture if you use one of these. I prefer metal clad hoses as the metal clad prevents a balloon from forming on the hose. I also do not short myself on hose length. The shorter the hose, the less room to work in behind the clothes washer. Finally when you procure replacement hoses, make sure there are rubber washer in each of the 4 hose connections.
- Teflon tape. This tape is used on all connections where there is constant water pressure and helps seal the connection.
- Perhaps a monkey wrench or pair of vice grips.
- Bucket. There is going to be some water in hoses than having a bucket will allow you to drain the hoses into the bucket instead of the water simply running onto your floor.
To replace clothes washer hoses:
- Unplug washer.
- Move clothes washer out from wall such that you can get in behind it. This may mean moving your dryer but you need to be able to work in behind the washer.
- Turn off hot and cold water faucets supplying water to clothes washer.
- Trace hose running from hot water faucet to clothes washer and make a mental note as to which clothes washer connection gets the hot. If you do not do this, you could easily misconnect hoses such that hot water is being supplied to your washer when the washer asks for cold water.
- Remove end of hose from hot and cold faucets. If you can do this by hand, ok, but if not, use a monkey wrench or vice grips. Once you remove these hoses, they are going to have some water in them and drain this water into your bucket. The hose connector on the faucet should come off by turning the connector in a counterclockwise direction. Before
- Remove hoses from back of clothes washer by hand for wrench or grip. The hose connector on the washer should come loose using a counterclockwise turning direction. Be careful here as clothes washer male connectors are probably plastic.
- Wrap threads of clothes washer hose connections with Teflon tape. Wrap the Teflon tape about 5 times around each clothes washer connection.
- Attach new hoses to washer. Always start hoses by hand and once properly threaded and hand tight, use wrench or grips to gently tighten just a little bit more. Hoses should attach to the washer with a clockwise rotation. If when attaching, the connector become too tight or meets resistance almost immediately, stop and back the connector back out. It is easy to cross thread any connector junction. Yes, the Teflon tape will make hose connection a little more difficult than if the Teflon tape was not in place but hose connector should attach fairly easily if threaded properly.
- Wrap threads of faucets with Teflon tape. Because of space limitations this may not be possible but try.
- Now connect the hose from the washer that gets hot water to the hot water faucet. Again, before connecting, make sure there is a rubber washer in the hose connector and start the connector by hand. A clockwise rotation of the connector is used here. Once connected, use grips or wrench to tighten down a little bit.
- Connect the cold water supply line hose to the cold water faucet by hand and then tighten down using wrench or vice grips.
- Check everything. Clothes washer hot connected to hot faucet? All connectors visually down on their male counterparts?
- Slowly turn on faucets and watch for leaks. Unless a connector was cross threaded, should not be any major leak but possible that a junction will weep or seep water. You determine this by running your hand all over the connection junction and if when you look at your hand it is wet at all, you have a weep, seep and need to tighten that connection down a little bit more. Tighten slowly and then test for weep, seep.
- When you sure no leak, weep or seep, plug washer back into wall outlet and set up a limited time wash cycle. This will make the water inlet control valves to open and water will rush into the washer. Again, check for leaks.
- Abort your wash cycle and have washer drain all water out.
- Move washer back in place.
- Using a tag or some other method, note when you replaced the clothes washer hoses and post on one hose or near the clothes washer faucets.
Vacation or extended period away from home:
If you are going to be away from your home for an extended period of time, it is always a good idea to close the clothes washer water supply faucets. It would be terrible for your clothes washer hoses to burst while you away and water to gush freely for days or even weeks.