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Washing Machine Trips RCD

This web page provides information that helps you to investigate a washing machine tripping an RCD.


What Causes An RCD To Trip?

An RCD trips because the current flowing into an electrical circuit is not the same as the current flowing out of an electrical circuit.


A difference between the current flowing in and the current flowing out of an electrical circuit means the circuit has a serious problem.


If the ‘electrical circuit’ is your washing machine, an RCD tripping means your washing machine has a serious problem.


The RCD is tripping for a reason – do not ignore the problem.

Investigate ‘Washing Machine Trips The RCD’

Read the possible solutions below. If the solutions below do not work call a qualified electrician.

  • Is the mains outlet to the washing machine capable of carrying 15 amps?
    • Most washing machines are ‘rated’ at 5 amps but can draw 15 amps when starting up.
  • Unplug other electrical appliances – does the RCD still trip?
  • Is the supply socket hot?
    • Could be a loose wire in the electrical socket.
  • Is the drum stiff to turn?
    • A stiff drum can draw too much current and trip an RCD – take the back off the washing machine and see if anything is jammed near the drum.
  • Has there been a water leak recently?
    • Water can short electrical circuit – leave a couple of days and try again.
  • Is there a lot of black dust about?
    • A worn motor can give off carbon particles.
    • You will need to change the washing machine motor.
  • Is the door stiff to open?
    • A stiff door lock mechanism can draw too much current during the wash cycle and trip an RCD.
    • Investigate the door locking mechanism – try some oil or WD40.
  • Is the washing machine far enough away from the wall?
    • Lack of ventilation can cause condensation – condensation can short an electrical circuit and cause the RCD to trip.
  • Does the washing machine sound the same as before?
    • A different noise suggest something is wrong with the washing machine.
  • Check the power cable – is the power cable damaged? Repair or replace if necessary.
  • Plug the machine into another socket. If the RCD does not trip the problem is the wall socket or associated circuit.
  • Does the RCD trip at the start of the washing cycle?
    • If yes, likely to be the washing machine pump.
  • Find out what part of the washing cycle the RCD trips.
    • Always the same part of the cycle?
    • What is the washing machine doing? Heating water? Draining water? Spin?
  • Are you loading the washing machine with too many ‘absorbent’ clothes?
    • Some clothes soak up a lot of water and are heavy – this can cause too much current to be drawn and trip the RCD.


Judge Electrical Limited
15 Mulberry Court, Huntington, York, YO32 9TU
Telephone 01904 764845 (Landline), 07919 033113 Mobile)
Email info@judgeelectrical.co.uk
VAT No. 852917405. Company Number 6359328