Are you interested in learning how to bypass washing machine water level sensors? Then you’re in the right place. We provide detailed explanation here. So let’s go…
For decades now, washing machines have become an indispensable fixture in many homes. In fact, for some people it is difficult to imagine how clothes were cleaned before washing machines were invented.
Nowadays, a quick visit to the laundry, and you could wash your entire wardrobe in a few hours.
With continual innovation in technology, you can be sure that washing machines will tend towards higher efficiency and automation in the coming years. However, for now, we have to settle with manually bypassing the level sensor.
However, before we go into that, let’s look at the different kinds of washing machine:
Table of Contents
Types Of Washing Machines
Top Loader Agitator
The top loader is about the oldest type of washing machines still in use today. This traditional washer has been around for decades and has firmly taken its place as one of the more loved washers.
They are so named because the laundry is loaded from the top of the machine. They usually contain an agitator in the middle of the work basket.
This agitator supplies washing power. It swashes against the clothes being washed, thereby removing dirt and stains from the clothes as they rub against it.
This kind of washer is easy to operate as the control panels are simple and intuitive.
However, its relative simplicity means that wash cycles cannot be easily adjusted to meet specific washing needs. In terms of operation, the top loaders have minimal vibrations.
Front Load Washing Machine
Unlike the top loaders, front load washing machines are loaded from the front of the machine. They do not have agitators as the top loaders do.
During the washing cycle, the clothes are made to run against one another as the wash basket spins at high speed.
Because of the absence of an agitator, the washing cycle in front load washing machines are gentler on the clothes.
Front load washers could have a complicated control panel, which could appear intimidating on first look. However, one gets used to them with time.
Modern front load washing machines have sensors and automation to choose specific and desired wash settings.
Nonetheless, if you choose not to be bugged by needless details, you can often choose to simply make use of manual settings.
Top Load Impeller
These washing machines are also called high efficiency washing machines. Like the traditional top loaders, laundry is fed into these washing machines from the top.
However, unlike the top loader which has an agitator, these washing machines have impellers instead.
The impellers are found at the bottom of the wash bin. The motion of the bottom impeller causes the clothes to move back and forth. And the rubbing action of the clothes is what enables the cleaning.
Bypassing A Water Level Sensor
Modern washing machines, especially the high efficiency washing machines are equipped with special sensors.
These sensors are designed to control the water level during the washing or rinsing cycles. The objective of high efficiency washing machines is to be eco-friendlier by reducing energy consumption.
This is achieved primarily by reducing the water level. The sensors detect the weight of the laundry by using pressure switches in the control panel.
And these pressure switches in turn control the water level within the wash bin.
The idea behind water efficiency is truly laudable, however, its execution is not quite popular. More often than not, insufficient water is supplied for washing and rinsing.
This leaves the clothes poorly washed or not washed at all. Clothes that have been badly soiled stand no chance with this “water efficient method.”
This is what has led to the search for easy to bypass the sensor system, with the ultimate goal of increasing the water level within the wash tub.
The objective is to ensure there is enough water to properly clean the clothes. Insufficient water levels require repeated cleaning of clothes.
Having to clean your clothes multiple times due to low water levels is counterproductive to the original water efficiency design.
In this section we have considered a few methods that can be used to bypass the sensor system and ensure higher water levels in the wash tub.
Some ideas are pretty basic while some will require getting your hands dirty. Either way, they ensure your washing machine properly does its job.
Trick The High Efficiency Washing Machine
As earlier pointed out, high efficiency washing machines struggle to supply sufficient water levels for clothes.
It’s especially worse for very smelly and dirty clothes. The fact is that badly soiled clothes simply need more water!
Smaller dirty clothes could also be quite troublesome to spin in these high efficiency machines.
It’s likely that the water level supplied for the smaller clothes will be too much and the washer will be imbalanced. The clothes could be clean but might remain wet.
One simple solution to this problem would be to trick the water level switch. The water level switch will increase the water level required if the load in the wash tub is bulkier.
The washer is also more balanced during spinning if the load is bulkier. This ensures more effective spinning. So, in summary more bulk is required.
To create more bulk in your wash tub, old thin towels can be used. Select old towels whose colors can no longer wash off into the other clothes.
Also ensure they are already clean. Remember you don’t want more clothes to clean, you just need more bulk for higher water levels.
Another way to trick the water level switch into raising the water level, is to make the clothes in the wash tub heavier by getting them wet.
After loading your clothes to the wash tub, pour a jug of water over the clothes. The clothes will absorb the water and become heavier.
The pressure switch will trigger higher water levels due to the density of the damp clothes.
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Use The Bulky Sheet Option
The reason why high efficiency washing machines use less water is laudable and reasonable. It’s really not something to scoff at.
Understanding the need to cut down on energy consumption might help us find a way to work within the high efficiency washing machine environment.
What is most likely assured is that these high efficiency machines will not do a very good job at getting rid of stains or cleaning badly soiled clothes.
This means that if you’ll need to clean off tough stains, you will have to pretreat the fabric before putting them in the high efficiency washing machine.
To further wash it, you can make use of the simple settings on this machine. Like the previous method, this is also a sort of trick.
Firstly, load the laundry into the wash tub. Put your detergent in the detergent drawer and fabric softener, if desired.
To increase the water level, most of these HE machines have a deep fill setting that allows higher water levels than normal.
If this is not sufficient, then consider using the bulky/sheets setting on the control panel.
Now ideally, this setting is to be used when you are washing sheets and bulky materials. However, there’s no rule that says you can only use that setting when sheets are in the wash tub.
That means you can ‘trick’ the water level switch to consider your load as bulky and deliver higher water levels for washing.
Now this method might not raise the water level nearly as high enough as should be.
Washing with smaller loads may help maintain a good load to water ratio whilst using these settings.
Adjusting The Set Screw Pressure
For most of the high efficiency washing machines, the water level switch is actually a pressure switch.
This water level switch could be seen on the control panel of some washing machines. And this pressure switch can be adjusted to increase the water level in the wash tub.
To do this, the control panel will have to be opened. Behind the water level switch, the pressure switch can be seen.
In some energy saving washing machines, a second pressure switch can be seen. This second pressure switch is for the rinse cycle.
It is usually installed where the water level for the rinse cycle is designed to be lower than the wash cycle.
Oftentimes the water level switch for this rinse cycle pressure switch does not exist on the control panel.
Before adjusting the pressure switch for the wash cycle, ensure that the drain hose is not below the highest water level in the wash tub. If that is not the case, the hose could siphon water away from the wash tub.
The pressure switch has a rubber diaphragm in its housing. As the water level rises in the wash tub, air pressure in the plastic tube attached to the diaphragm increases.
The pressure compresses the diaphragm to shut off the water at the appropriate level.
The water level switch works together with this pressure switch. Ss the water level switch is turned from low to high, a plastic spring-loaded disc is pushed inwards. The disc is pushed farthest inward at the highest water level switch setting.
A factory sealed adjustment screw presses against the spring-loaded disc. With a screwdriver, this screw can be adjusted and tightened to push the spring-loaded disc further inward.
This increases the maximum water level. When the desired water level has been achieved, a thread locker glue can be put on the set screw so that it doesn’t vibrate out of place.
With this, you can be sure that the water level in your wash tub will be well increased during the wash cycle.
Install A Water Hose
This method is quite ingenious but requires that you get your hands dirty. Also, it will only work for a top load washing machine. Firstly, there are materials that you will need to buy.
- 6-foot water hose.
- A splitter.
- Plastic hose caps.
This solution involves installing an alternative water hose to supply the water you need for your washing. It completely bypasses the entire water level switch and pressure systems.
Firstly, turn off the hot and cold taps that supply water to your machine.
Then connect the splitter to the cold or hot water tap supply, depending on which water temperature you use for your washing cycle.
Ensure that the splitter you buy has a screw in its main channel. You will need to screw the splitter to your hot or cold water tap so that it fits properly.
That done, connect the normal wash cycle water hose to one of the two splitter channels.
Then, go ahead to connect the 6-foot hose to the other channel of the splitter. The 6-foot hose should be channeled to the wash tub.
This won’t be possible in a front load washing machine. Which is why this method is only suitable for a front load washer.
After the connections are well made, the new 6-foot water hose can be opened using the valve at the splitter.
When your washing machine fills up your wash tub with water, open the valve to allow extra water flow through the 6-foot hose.
This way you can always have your desired water level for your washing needs. You don’t have to worry a bit about the pressure sensors in your high efficiency machine.
When the 6-foot water hose is not in use, cover it with the hose cover, to ensure it remains clean.
Now check out this video:
Bypassing The Factory Default Rinse Water Fill Level
Some machines are designed to have a lower water level in the rinse cycle than in the wash cycle.
This is usually part of an effort to conserve energy. In some cases, it is a feature mandated by the government in order to curb energy usage.
Unfortunately, sometimes the water level for the rinse cycle just won’t do. Luckily there is a way to bypass this setting.
Typically, the water level during the rinse stage is controlled by a pressure switch that can be identified behind the control panel of the washing machine.
In some models, the pressure switch for the rinse cycle is not adjustable with a knob. So, in such models, the water level in the rinse cycle is always kept fixed and kept at a low level.
Before the control panel is opened to unveil the rinse cycle pressure switch, ensure the machine is disconnected from the mains.
The pressure switch has a plunger with a screw attached to it. And there is a fixed plastic switch regulator in the pressure switch.
This regulator can be moved between two positions. Each position either shifts the plunger into the housing or shifts it outwards from the housing.
To move this regulator, the plunger is pressed in. This releases the pressure between the plunger and the regulator.
The regulator can now be adjusted to raise the water level in the rinse cycle.
Usually this has to be the position where the regulator fixes the plunger deeper into the housing.
After this adjustment is made, the water level in the rinse cycle will be increased.
Now, here is a visual representation:
Samsung Washing Machines
We have considered how to adjust the water level of top load washing machines so far. For this method, it is applied to many Samsung High Efficiency Front load washers.
Many of such Samsung models notoriously dispense very little washing water. It turns out, however, that it can easily be fixed.
Firstly, ensure that your washing machine is disconnected from the mains. Next, use a screwdriver to unscrew the top of your washing machine set. Keep the cover away safely.
Very close to the control panel of the washing machine, you will locate a pressure switch. It will have a tube pass over it.
You will need to loosen the noose around the tube to clearly expose the pressure switch.
Next, identify a simple screw connected to the diaphragm of the pressure switch. This pressure switch is different from the pressure switches that have plunges as previously described in other methods.
To adjust this screw, use a screwdriver to tighten it. Tighten the screw a little, put on the unit and observe how high the water level goes.
You might have to keep tightening the screw until you observe your desired water level.
Once the adequate water level is reached, replace the top of the machine and screw it back in place. Your washing machine is now ready to be used.
Check out this video:
With all that said, we are sure you’ll appreciate this run through how an HE machine does the washing:
How To Use High Efficiency Washing Machines And How They Work
High efficiency detergents are best used alongside high efficiency washing machines.
These detergents can easily be identified by the presence of the “HE” (High Efficiency) logo on them.
The detergent should be added to the detergent dispenser in the dispenser drawer.
The machine automatically dispenses the detergent onto the wash tub at the appropriate time.
This feature is present in other types of washing machines as well.
It’s important that when you load the wash basket of HE washing machines, clothes should not be placed over the centre of the wash plate.
Laundry should be placed around the center of the wash plate.
Once the wash basket is loaded, the desired washing cycle is selected. Each washing cycle has been optimized to clean specific load types and soil samples.
When the start button of the machine is pressed, sensors within the machine begin what is called load sensing.
The sensors detect the weight of the load of the laundry in the wash tub. This is done to determine the amount of water that will be automatically added for cleaning.
In the first few minutes of sensing, no water enters the wash tub. The machine attempts to determine the load through a number of spins.
During this sensing phase, the washing machine also identifies potential unbalanced loads. The load is balanced through a number of repeated spins and an intermittent supply of water.
Once the load weight has been determined, the washer adds the required amount of water intermittently to allow the clothes to soak in the water.
During the wash cycle, the water level in the HE washing machine is very low when compared with other traditional washing machines.
In the washing cycle, the wash plate moves the clothes against one another to loosen and lift dirt and stains.
The clothes systematically move from the centre of the wash plate to the walls of the wash tub.
They then go below the water level and reappear at the center again. This motion is determined by the specially designed plate washer.
Due to this low water level cleaning method, items will get wet but may not always be completely under the water during washing.
The machine is so designed for the efficient use of water. It saves water and energy. It also reduces wear on the fabric.
Towards the end of the wash cycle, short back and forth movements of the wash plate ensure that the washer is evenly balanced.
At the end of the cycle, the water is drained out through the drain hose. The washer then thoroughly rinses the load with optimized water levels.
During drying, the washer spins the load at variable speeds to protect clothing, maintain balance and maximize water removal. This saves drying time and energy.
If the load is not balanced during spinning, the washer goes through some agitation and slow speeds with intermittent supply of water to balance the loads.
This, however, increases normal cycle time. Once spinning is complete, the washer stops, and the laundry can be retrieved.
Check out this video to see how they work:
Energy savings and water efficiency are reasonable targets that most people will likely want to be a part of.
However, effectiveness and functionality should not be sacrificed at the altar of energy conservation and efficiency.
We all want our washing machines to literally wash our clothes clean. The current high efficiency washing machines still leave a lot to be desired.
So, until the technology of pressure sensors can be improved to satisfaction, we might just make do with finding ways to bypass or truck the sensor system.
Or better still, look for the good old top load agitator washing machines.