Miele Washer F20 – Troubleshooting Guide

An F20 error code on your Miele washer typically means there’s a water problem. However, that can lead to several different issues. You will need to diagnose further to determine the exact problem. 

A Miele Washer F20 error code generally means that the drain pump filter is clogged and needs to be cleaned. But for Miele washer models W1113, W1119, W1203, W1213 & W1215 it can indicate that the water isn’t being heated to a certain temperature.

All of these things will need to be checked to figure out exactly where the problem lies. Fortunately, you can check these issues out yourself before you call a service technician.

Check for Clogs

Checking for clogs in the drain hose and filters is the easiest task so you should do it first. Many washers stop draining after several loads cause debris to accumulate in hoses and filters. 

First, go to the back of the washing machine and look for kinks in the drain hose. Many times, hoses get moved after numerous washing cycles and will kink to twist. If that appears to be the problem, fix it, turn the cycle back on and see if that fixes it. 

Next, try unclogging the filter. The Miele washing machine has one of the easiest filters to find and clean. It can be found on the front right of the washing machine under the panel door.

Put a shallow pan and some towels under the panel door to catch any water that comes out. Open the door and you will see the round screw top for the filter. Unscrew it and remove it. Clean out any debris inside the cavity and around the filter. Put the filter back in and screw it back tightly.

Check Water Inlet Hoses

Sometimes, filters in the inlet hoses can also get clogged. Miele washing machines have some of the easiest systems of all washing machines to check and clean.

  • Turn off the power to the washer.
  • Turn off the water to the washer.
  • Now, using pliers, unscrew the inlet hose from the water source.
  • Once it’s undone, remove the rubber gasket from the inside. Below that there is a filter. Remove it.
  • Clean the filter under clean water. Put it back in. Put the rubber gasket back in and reconnect to the water source using pliers.

Washer Heater Problem

If none of the previous remedies work, you will need to check the heater relay and relay circuit. You will need to test resistance on the relay with a multimeter. Getting no reading across two terminals indicates you will need to get a new heater.

Doing that can be tricky as that part of the machine can be difficult to get to. It is possible to get to it either through the back of the washing machine or through the front, depending on your model. 

Disconnect it from the power and turn off the water. You can look in the front to see if there are three screws around the dispenser and a bolt around the door. You can remove those, disconnect the drain pump and the machine should open like a door. 

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If you enter from the back said there are two prongs with wires at the bottom half of the drum. You can remove the wires and unbolt the assembly to check the relay. Be sure your washer is empty of water when you do this. 

At this point, it may be advisable to call a service tech as they will need to replace any heating elements. It shouldn’t be expensive to do.

However, those who want to replace the heater relay can do it fairly easily if you know your way around the washing machine. 

  • First, make sure the power is disconnected. Then, remove the lid according to the manual. 
  • Then, disconnect the plugs from the heater relay. Now comes a bit of a tricky part. Press down the retaining clips on the heating relay and slide the relay up. This is how you remove it from its holder.
  • To replace, you simply reverse the procedure.


Are Miele washers reliable?

Yes, Miele washing machines have good ratings from Consumer Reports. Various models have been nominated for different “best of” awards by well-known publications like Good Housekeeping and the New York Times. 

It’s important to note that every washer will fail at some point, depending on their age and how much they are used. Washing machines that are more than 10 years old are going to need some replacement parts because parts will wear out. 

Fortunately, parts for Miele washers are not pricey and can be easily found and installed. Some can be installed as a DIY project while others will require a service technician to replace them. 

Washing machines that see a lot of use, such as those that do two or three wash cycles a day, are going to wear out faster than others that are used less. 

How do you reset a Miele washer?

It’s super simple to reset a Miele washing machine. There is a basic reset and a master reset. Start with a basic reset by just unplugging it from the wall. Wait a couple of minutes and plug it back in. 

Do a master reset if the error codes aren’t cleared. This is also a simple task. 

You will need to open and close the door to the washer six times within 12 seconds. Run an empty rinse cycle. That should clear all the codes.

How do you run diagnostic mode on the Miele washer?

Miele is a little different from other types of washers in that it doesn’t want users to get into the service mode. It designed the diagnostic mode to be more complicated so that only service technicians can use it. 

Also, recognize that different washer models have different methods of getting into the diagnostic mode. You will need to research your model to see how it’s done but it should be in the instruction manual or online.

To get into service mode:

  • Turn on the washer and open the front load door.
  • Simultaneously, hold the stop button shut the door.
  • Release the stop button. Then, press it three times and hold it.
  • At this point, you will see the menu on your display and you can move through it to check different parts of your washer. 

Can I force drain a Miele washing machine?

A Miele washer can be drained like most other types of machines. Turn off the power to the washer.

Locate the drain hose in the back. Get a bucket. Now disconnect the hose from the drain and let water flow into the bucket.

You may need to stop to empty the bucket. Connect the hose back to the drain to take a break.


A Miele washing machine is designed so some things are easy to check and fix visually. However, the diagnostic modes are more challenging to get into and generally require a service technician to operate within them. 

However, a Miele washer typically won’t give you any significant problems in repairs as they are extremely reliable. It is good to keep the instruction manual to understand how to interpret the codes and what you can do on your own versus calling a repairman.

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