Why Does My Washing Machine Keep Shutting Off?

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Avoid overloading the washing machine, which may cause the motor to overheat and shut off.

Many washing machines now have several automatic features, such as automatic detergent dispensing, automatic time and soil sensors, automatic load size sensors and water level adaptation, and even automatic energy saving modes. However, if the washing machine keeps shutting off automatically, this one feature that owners may not appreciate. Determining what is causing the washer to shut off will help determine a solution as well.


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Water Supply

The washing machine may shut off unexpectedly and stop working if the water supply is cut off or slowed. Make sure that both the cold and hot water faucets are turned on and the hoses are attached firmly to the water faucets as well as the washing machine. Clean the inlet screens on the hoses and the washing machine, and straighten out the hoses.


Power Supply

If the power supply to the washing machine is altered or reduced, the washing machine may stop. The power cord should be connected to a grounded three-prong outlet and never to an extension cord. Check the household fuse or circuit breaker box and replace or reset as needed.



If the washing machine is a high efficiency model, it may stop automatically if it senses that there are too many suds in the washing machine tub. Some models will automatically rinse and drain the suds. Other models will remain stopped until the situation is resolved by selecting a new rinse and drain cycle and allowing the water and suds to fully exit the machine. Check the user manual for specific information regarding your washing machine and oversudsing. Note that only HE detergent should be used in HE machines.


Motor Overload

The washing machine may stop unexpectedly if the motor overheats in order to protect the motor from serious or permanent damage. Look for reasons why the washing machine may overheat, such as problems with the power or overloading and resolve if possible. Disconnect power to the washing machine and wait 30 minutes to reset the machine and then restore power. Contact a service technician if the washing machine continues to stop after troubleshooting has been performed.