Kenmore Washer Code 5D – Troubleshooting Guide

Having a washer and dryer in your home is a convenience that few of us think about very often-until they stop working. Then it’s all we can think about as we try to figure out what went wrong and where, or even worse, if it needs to be replaced. But what is the appropriate course of action when your Kenmore washer is displaying code 5d? Does it need to be fixed or replaced?

When Code 5d (also known as SD) pops up, it means that you have too many suds in your washing machine and they or something else is blocking the water from draining. Modern washing machines sense water and suds levels inside and can adjust the amount of water and rinse cycles accordingly.

Fortunately, many problems with washing machines are a simple fix. The first step is to enter diagnostic mode. From there, you should be able to see errors with the washer. The following is a quick guide for anyone who owns a Kenmore washing machine and what they need to do if they see a 5d error code. We will discuss what it means, potential causes, and what you can do to prevent it. Read on to find out more. 

How to Enter Diagnostic Mode On Kenmore Washer ?

Before you can fix the problem, you need to know what the problem is, and in order to do that, you need to enter diagnostic mode. If you have a front-loading model, to get to diagnostic mode, take the following steps:

  1. Make sure the washer is completely empty. This will ensure that nothing is in the way or may affect the sensors. Close the door. 
  2. Next, depending on the model of your washer, push a button labeled “Control/On” or “Start.”
  3. Once you have pushed the start button, press the button labeled “Drain” or “Spin.”
  4. In the option for Spin Speed, press “No spin.”
  5. Then push the button labeled “Pre-wash” or “Rinse” four times. It is very important that you press the button four times within five seconds.
  6. From there, C:00 will light up, and the diagnostic will start. 

If the error that is displayed is 5d, keep on reading to find out what to do. 

Why Should I Clear Error Code 5D?

Too many suds can be problematic for a number of reasons. When it comes to diagnostic issues, in particular, the two main issues are that:

  • Impurities that are washed out of your clothes aren’t completely rinsed out of the machine. This can, in turn, lead to malfunctions.
  • It can block up the system. When suds block the drains, the water doesn’t drain, or drains more slowly, and creates even more suds which exacerbate the problem further. 

Read: Maytag Washer Code 5d/SD – Troubleshooting Guide

How Can I Fix and Clear 5D / SD Error Code?

There are preventative measures that you can take to keep this error from happening, but before we get to that, let’s talk about how to fix the problem if it’s already happened. First, run a rinse cycle on an empty washer. Make sure to not add any more soap, as you want to use this time to clear out any suds that may be blocking the drain. Taking this step will ensure that the suds have been cleared and that the drain pump is working properly. 

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If the error has not cleared, then the suds may be affecting the pressure switch. In order to access the pressure switch, remove the top of the washer. You should see a clear plastic hose. The pressure switch is behind it, so you will need to remove the hose to access it. Next, blow through it towards the pump. If the air moves through easily or you hear bubbles popping, then the pump is good to go. If you don’t, then there is likely a kink.

Straighten out the kink, replace the hose, and screw the top of the washer back on. This should clear the 5d error. You might want to run an empty test cycle to make sure the machine is now in working order.

Read: Amana Washer Code 5d – Troubleshooting Guide

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Why Does It Happen and What Can I Do to Prevent It?

The two main reasons that there are too many suds in your wash cycle are:

  • You’re not using the right kind of detergent. High efficiency washing machines need high efficiency detergent. Detergents that aren’t high efficiency will naturally create more suds to get the cleaning job done and simply don’t work as well with high efficiency washing machines
  • You’re using too much detergent. In this case, even if you are using a quality, high efficiency detergent, you can have too much of a good thing. 

In response to these issues or to prevent it from happening in the first place, the best thing to do is switch to a high efficiency detergent such as Seventh Generation Natural Powdered HE, Tide 2X Ultra with Color Clean Bleach Alternative HE, or All 2X with Oxy ActiveTM. Once you have switched over, make sure to only use the recommended amount. It may not seem like a lot, but it will get the job done.  


A washing machine suddenly not working can be a stressful event. However, with some research and using your diagnostic mode, you can ascertain what the problem is and most likely save yourself some money fixing it yourself. If the problem is a 5d error code, then run the washer on rinse mode without any soap to clear out any suds. If that doesn’t work, take off the top of the washer, remove the plastic hose, blow through it and remove any kinks.

Once you have fixed the error, you can take some steps to prevent the 5d code from happening again. First, check your detergent and make sure that you are using a high efficiency detergent that doesn’t produce an excessive amount of suds. Second, never exceed the recommended amount of detergent, even with an HE detergent. Too many suds can cause blockages and can keep your clothing from becoming fully clean. 
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