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How to clean a washing machine drain hose

Updated February 21, 2017

Washing machines are a true time-saver--most of the time. Sometimes washing machines back up, leaving you with a tubful of dirty water and dirty clothes. The culprit in these cases is a clogged washing machine hose, which carries the dirty water from your wash into your home's sewage system. Don't panic, however, as cleaning out your washing machine drain hose is a fairly simple process.

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  1. Unplug the washing machine from the wall. This will help prevent accidental electrocutions while you are working.

  2. Move the washing machine away from the wall far enough for you to be able to work behind it.

  3. Detach the hose from the back of the washer. In most models, you'll unscrew the coupling that holds the washer in place and then remove the hose. Some models have a hose that screws straight into the back of the washer. Don't let the hose fall to the ground after removal, or you'll have a floor soaked with dirty wash water.

  4. Remove the other end of the hose from the drainpipe. It might be clipped or tied into place, so remove that first.

  5. Empty the hose outside or in a sink, removing as much of the water and anything backing it up as you can.

  6. Attach a sprayer to your garden hose if it is not already on there. Aim the sprayer down the mouth of the washer hose and give it a full blast of water. If the hose still isn't draining properly, take a piece of wire or coat hanger and run it through the hose to push anything inside out the other end.

  7. Warning

    Always use caution when working around water and electricity.

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Things You'll Need

  • Garden hose with sprayer attachment
  • Wire or coat hanger

About the Author

Nathan McGinty started writing in 1995. He has a Bachelor of Science in communications from the University of Texas at Austin and a Master of Arts in international journalism from City University, London. He has worked in the technology industry for more than 20 years, in positions ranging from tech support to marketing.

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