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Washing machine stopped working

My washing machine is 3 years old and stopped working. I have isolation switches in my kitchen - one for the washing machine. How do I check if the switch has fused rather than the machine being broken? I have checked my main fuse box and none have flipped.

2 Answers from MyBuilder Electricians

HI Dave,
The simplest way to do this is to plug something else in to the socket to check if it still has power. If it does then the appliance has a problem. If not then the circuit needs to be checked at any termination points starting with the fuse to see how far power is getting through the circuit. Once you know this you can start to isolate where the fault is. Some of the possible termination points such as fused connection units and the isolation switch will have to opened up to be tested with a meter. Needless to say this is best done by a competent electrician with the correct test equipment to ensure it is done safely.
Another question to pose would be whether you've done any DIY on the wall that the cable is embedded in. The cable for the isolation switch will run horizontally or vertically from the switch. If any pictures have been put up in this area for instance could the nail have been put through the cable?

Hope this is of some help.

Mordey Electrical Services


Answered 9th Feb 2015

There are two methods of connecting an appliance. Most appliances have an LED indication that power is being provided:

1) Socket - If the washing machine is connected to a socket, unplug it and plug in another device - lamp or kettle. If the replacement device doesn't work, then there is no power to the socket or the fuse in the washing machine plug is blown. REPLACE the fuse in the plug and try it again. If the washing machine is on a ring with other kitchen appliances which are plugged in, then check if they are working. Then you use a COMPLETELY UNWOUND extension lead(you need to unwind all reel extension leads to prevent the insulation from melting) to plug the washing machine into another WORKING socket and try it? If the washing machine still doesn't work, there is a problem with the washing machine itself or the electrical connection in the washing machine. I would suggest that you call in a washing machine engineer.

2)Fused Spur - Turn it off and REPLACE the fuse in the switch. If it still doesn't work, then you can use a non-contact mains detector (from a DIY store) for a few pounds which you can run close to the cable going into the washing machine. It will beep if there is a supply going into the machine(after you have calibrated it against a known live cable). If there is no beeping near the cable going into the machine, then put it very close to the face plate of the fused spur. It should beep. If it doesn't, then there is probably no power to the fused spur from the consumer unit. I think it best that you call in an electrician at this stage.
Once you have one of these detectors, you can identify power going into all your appliances so it is a good investment. Best to use one of these first before opening up accessory boxes.

I hope this gives you a few ideas.


Answered 9th Feb 2016

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