Why Is Washing Machine Not Rinsing Soap Out? Here Is Why

Do your clothes still have soap on them after the wash cycle has ended?

If your washer isn’t rinsing the clothes as good as it used to there’s probably a problem.

The fact is anytime your clothes aren’t rinsing properly it is a definite sign your washing machine isn’t functioning the right way.

We’ll help you identify issues that can lead to rinse problems in a washing machine.

The following information will not only help you troubleshoot potential issues, but it will also inform you on to fix the rinse problem yourself and save money.

Potential Issues

There are 7 common reasons why your washing machine is not rinsing the soap out.

These fixes also apply if the rinse cycle isn’t working at all, the rinse cycle isn’t filling with water, or the water is filling extra slow during the cycle. Some reasons are simple, while others will require repairs.

The potential issues are:

Adding Too Much Laundry Detergent

While adding extra soap to extremely soiled clothing may sound like a good idea, it’s actually counterproductive.

When you use too much laundry soap it can cause your clothes to come out with residue still in them.

This can also happen if you don’t use the correct type of soap recommended for your washer.

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For example, if you have a high-efficiency washer, then you need to use soap that specifies “HE”.

So, if your problem is as simple as this just remember don’t use too much or the wrong type of detergent.

Overfilled Machine

Much the same, adding too many clothes to a wash cycle can also cause issues with rinsing.

For instance, washing an oversized item can prevent your machine from being able to provide the best possible wash and rinse.

So, rather than trying to do much at once keep the loads to manageable sizes.

If this is the issue you should be able to cut down the size of the load and rewash with fewer clothes inside the machine. 

Obstructed or Malfunctioning Drain Pump

If the drain pump is clogged or malfunctioning it will affect your rinse cycle.

You will need to access the drain pump and see if there is something inside blocking it.

When the pump is clogged it will cause the water to become restricted and it will not be able to flow through the washer properly.

You’ll need to remove the drain pump to see if there’s debris inside it.

The location of the pump will depend on if you have a front-loading or top-loading machine.

Once you locate the drain pump you’ll place your finger in the drain outlet, you should feel the impellers of the pump turn freely.

If they don’t move, check to see if something is jammed in there.

If there’s not a jam, then you may notice that pieces of the flywheel are broken.

If you can visually see something is broken or find pieces of broken plastic at the bottom of the pump housing, you’ll need to replace the pump.

After the clog is removed or the pump is replaced your machine should work correctly.

Obstructed drain pump filter

Obstructed Or Bent Drain Hose

While you have the drain pump off the machine be sure to check the drain hose that’s attached to it.

This hose leads from the pump to the wall to allow the water to drain.

A bend or obstruction in the hose will cause the washer to improperly rinse, thus leaving behind residue and soap.

A blockage in the drain hose can also allow dirty water to back up inside the drum.

If you notice debris inside the hose you’ll need to blow it out.

Alternatively, if you see a bend in the hose you’ll need to either straighten it out if possible or replace it. 

Twisted Or Bent Water Supply Hoses

Next, you’ll want to check the hoses that supply water to your washing machine.

If these hoses become twisted or bent it can prevent the correct amount of water from reaching your machine.

This is a common issue as machines get pushed too far back against the wall, thus bending the hoses.

If these hoses are restricted in any way you’ll need to resolve the issue and then try your rinse cycle again.

Partially Closed Water Supply Valves

If you look behind your washer you’ll notice 2 water valves on the wall.

These are hot and cold valves which supply your washer with the water it needs to clean clothes.

Both of these need to be fully open in order for the machine to work right.

Simply turn each valve to ensure they are both on all the way.

Malfunctioning Switch Or Control Board

Every washing machine uses a control or switch board to change from one wash function to the next.

If your machine isn’t rinsing at all, this is probably your culprit.

When the switch or control board goes bad it can make your washer stop just before the rinse cycle is about to begin.

To troubleshoot this issue you’ll need a meter to check the function switch.

If you’re not receiving any power you’ll need to figure out where this part is on your specific model and remove it.

Before replacing it you may want to check the wiring harness to ensure it’s not loose, and that there are no damaged wires.

If you find that there are damaged wires you’ll need to reconnect or replace them.

If the harness is loose, simply tighten it back in place.

If you do both of these things and there’s still no power you’ll need to purchase a new switch or control board for your model, and replace it.

In conclusion, these are the most common reasons your machine is not rinsing the soap from your clothes.

If you try all of these fixes and you still have an issue, you should consider calling your manufacturer for further troubleshooting tips.

Leave a comment below and let us know what you think.

Reader Comments (2)

  1. None of the washing machines rinse properly anymore as they don’t use enough water. I just select the rinse option 3 times following any wash/rinse program. Ridiculous but necessary.

    • Thats what I’m hearing from everyone! Crap i want my old kenmore back. I’m using more water just to rinse

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