Check your Rubber Washer Hoses

Check your Rubber Washer Hoses

check clothes washer hoseHome Owner Tip: Check Your Washer Hoses

Rubber Washer Connection Hoses Can Wear Out.

Most clothes washers come with rubber hoses to connect the hot and cold water supplies to the washer. These hoses, like any other rubber product, can wear out over time due to thermal cycling and drying out of the rubber. I note this in all my inspection reports so that home owners can be aware that these should be inspected and replaced if they show signs of wear. If these rubber hoses fail they will start to leak water and they can cause a lot of water damage to your house.

 

dry cracked washer hoses
Look for large and small cracks like these.
bulged washer hoses
Look for bulge areas like the lower hose.

What To Look For

I suggest the home owner inspect the entire length of the rubber hose at least once a year. The areas that tend to show the most signs of wear are the couple inches closest to each end of the hose. You should look for cracks or bulged areas of the hose; if any are found the entire hose should be replaced as soon as possible.

What To Do

If you find worn parts of the washer hoses as pictured above, you should replace the hoses as soon as possible. If there is an option, I would recommend replacing them with a steel braided hose. The hoses should be available anywhere washers and dryers are sold. There is no need to call a plumber to replace the hoses, just follow these steps:

  1. Gather some towels and/or a container you can use to catch the water that leaks out of the hoses.
  2. Turn off the water supply valves to the washer. There should be 2, one for hot and one for cold.
  3. Wait for the hot water supply hose to cool before disconnecting to prevent scalding yourself or others. The rubber should be cool to the touch.
  4. Slide the washer away from the wall if necessary to give yourself some room to work behind the washer.
  5. Disconnect the washer hoses at the washer inlet and the supply valve. Use the towels and container to collect the water that is remaining in the hose. If the hoses have been in place for a long time they may be corroded in place; use a pair of adjustable pliers or a wrench to loosen the connections.
  6. Install the new hoses.
  7. Move the washer back into place and turn on the water supply valves.
  8. Inspect all connections for leaks.

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