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Washer not washing properly but cant figure out why

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Hi, I have an indesit EWDE7125 washer / dryer.

There is something wrong with it, but I can't figure out what.

I have read through the various troubleshooting on this site, but nothing quite fits.

Apologies if this post gets long, but I will try to describe in as much detail as possible.

The net result, is that even after washing my clothes just really aren't clean. They don't smell very clean overall, sometimes they actually smell a bit musty, and even at best they just smell neutral, they never smell really "fresh". Particularly then if you get into the armpit of a t shirt say, it still kind of smells sweaty and not nice.

What I think is happening:

I think something is wrong with the soap cycle. I think effectively the machine is just washing the clothes in water and not using the soap properly.

With most machines, I feel like there is a part of the cycle, where the drum is half full of standing water, which will be soapy, and you can see the suds etc. Is that right? On my machine, there is no part where the drum is full, and you never really see obviously soapy water.

My hunch is that maybe there is a fault with the drainage pump, in that it can't actually close off the drain, so can't hold water in the drum? Therefore the soap gets put in the drum, but immediately gets rinsed out again?

Things I have tried:

After starting to realise there was a fault, I checked the little drainage valve thing on the front for blockages, but there was nothing. I have also run it on a hot empty cycle, with some of that washing machine clean and descale stuff in there. That made little difference.

So I fully disconnected the machine, and opened it up. There is a rubber hose running from the drum to the drainage valve, I disconnected this, and it was very dirty and gunky inside, so I gave that a really good clean. Everything else inside, (to the untrained eye) seemed ok and certainly not overly covered in limescale or dirt. I then ran the hot cleaning cycle again. I feel like since doing this, the clothes are a fraction better, but there is still definitely something not right. I guess it's just using cleaner water now.

I have tried different types of soap and different cycles. I have tried soaps that go in the drawer, and also tablet/pod things that go in the drum, and the result is generally always the same.

The machine is about 5 years old, but I have had it from new and never had any specific problems with it. I live alone and travel a lot for work, so I don't actually use it that much. I do have a cat, so it inevitably gets some cat hair through it. I half suspected when I opened it up to find a big clump of cat hair stuck somewhere, but I did not see any.


Any advice or tips I would be very grateful for. I would like to work out if it's something I'm doing or an actual fault with the machine. If a fault, could it be the drainage pump, (which I'm confident I could replace myself) or is it more likely a fault with the management chip, in which case I guess theres not much can be done.

Many thanks

PS. The model number listed above is what's on the front of the machine. I googled it and couldn't find much matching it, but I did find this machine listed on the indesit website, which looks almost identical to mine, just very fractionally different buttons etc.


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Hi there. Yes it's quite a lot to take in but appreciate the detail.

First things that spring to mind are, if the washing machine wasn't holding on to the water as you speculated could be an issue, the washing machine would be regularly having to top up the water lost. 

Does the washing machine seem to constantly keep filling up with water at regular intervals?

Also, have you gone through everything in this article washing not getting clean after wash cycle

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hi @s.fuller- I can try and suggest a couple of things I think it is but i am no expert sorry. 

When you took that large pipe (Sump hose) from the bottom of the drum to the pump did you find a big white plastic 'ping pong ball' is what I can describe it as? 
Hotpoint and indesit used to love using these for the reason as not to put the first lot of detergent into the sump hose and therefore not get the benefits of the detergent actually being in the drum - the idea being the ping pong ball 'floated' to the top of the hose and seal off the hose so the detergent stayed inside the drum instead ..... then when it was time to drain the drum the drain pump 'pulled down' the ping pong ball and then the water escaped. sometimes these got gunged up with unisolved soap detergent and grime ad stopped loating to the top and shutting off the sump hose , but i dare say you would not have missed this ball when you took the hose off, if you did, did you give that a mice clean? 

Secondly , have you ever seen your machine fill the water level halfway up the door over the 5 years you have had it? - there would be an awful lot of washing machines over the years that have gone so eco friendly the water now hardly goes over the lip of the grey door gasket, and thats not a fault thats just how they make them these days and have for a while now. 

Have you been setting the right amount of cycle time for your load you are putting in? - if you are using a load of 1 hour quick washes designed for 3kg in a 9kg drum (I dont know what kg drum yours has I have not checked) but if you have been over filling it for shorter washes you arent going to get good results. 

How many drum wash cycles have you done in the 5 years you could have done with doing a 90'c cycle once a month in an empty drum with no clothes in it and no powder or liquid , just clean water or washing machine cleaner liquid to keep a clean drum - and i dont know if your model of washing machine has but most have a special 'drum cleaning cycle' .

If you have an idea that the detergent is going in and straight into the sump hose or being pumped out try this test . 
Start your wash cycle - but instead of putting the detergent in the soap drawer first, let the machine fill up (IE once its stops making a noise of rushing in water and the drum starts turning) then open up the soap drawer , put in your required liquid detergent then 'wash down' the liquid with some jug fulls of clean fresh water . 

Also in the final rinse instead of putting  your fabric freshener at the start of the wash cycle, when the final rinse goes in after the drum has stopped filling up with water on the final rise then put the fabric conditioner in ... but not in the normal fabric conditioner compartment put it in where the soap detergent goes ... and then wash that down with a couple of jugs of clean water . 

This will test out if your suspicions is correct about that the detergent / fabric softener is going in and then somehow emptying out of the drum instead of staying in the drum for the wash and rinse cycles. 

Also make sure your grey convoluted washing machines drain pipe at the back of the machine is going vertical upright and then hooked into a tall 'standpipe' at the back of the machine at the required height .... if not, water could be 'syphoning' out of your washing machine even if the pump is not on. 

When was the last time you cleaned your washing machine's water inlet filter at the back of the washing machine? ... or have you even done it since you bought the machine? - you will have to turn off water to the machine , then unscrew the cold pipe to the back of the machine then pull out mesh filter from the water inlet valve with a pair of pliers, then with an old toothbrush wash it under tap water and get off all the crud like limescale, dirt and anything else that the filter has caught over the years.

Another drastic thing you could do (but it will void warranty) and throw out wash times and heating times nut is a trick to put more water into the drum but that would involve removing lid of washing machine (if you would be confident at such a thing) and if your Indesit has an adjustable water level pressure switch (which an awful lot of Indesit and hotpoint machines had) this can be adjusted to put more water into the drum. If you at least got it over the bottom lip of the grey door gasket  you would at least see whats really going on and how many soap bubbles are going on in your wash cycle ... it will also help with the final rinses because there will be more fresh clean water going into the rinses and rinsing your clothes more thoroughly  - if you got a water meter at your house then the water bill might go up a bit because your washing machine will be using more water , shouldnt be much more though. 

Hope these tips help and we get to the bottom of why your clothes are not coming out smelling cleaner. 

Good luck and let us know how you get on. 


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