Leaking Washer Soap Is Showing

Soapy water leaks are a sign of washing machine trouble.

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Washing machines are a quick, convenient way to clean clothing and linens. These appliances become less convenient when they begin malfunctioning and leaking. Occasionally, this leaking includes not only water, but also the soap. A number of sources cause this problem, all of which must be quickly repaired to prevent further and more serious damage.

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One reason washing machines leak soapy water is because the soap is too sudsy. A washing machine combines air, water and soap forming bubbles that wash laundry clean. If the detergent in the wash is high sudsing or improperly added, a leak occurs. Low-sudsing detergents, often used in high-efficiency washing machines, produce fewer suds and prevent soapy leaks. If the detergent is high sudsing, use only the amount specified for your particular machine in your washing machine's owner's manual.


A washing machine filled to the top with laundry is likely to leak soapy water. This is because the machine becomes so full of laundry that the added water has no where to go but out. An overloaded washing machine may also become unbalanced, wobbling and tilting during the wash cycle. An unbalanced machine also creates soapy leaks. Run a load of laundry through the machine without soap. If it does not leak, overloading or out of balance is the likely problem. Reduce the amount of laundry you put into the machine and check your owner's manual for rebalancing tips.


If you have a front loading washing machine and it begins leaking soapy water, a clog could be responsible. Leftover detergent, dirt and debris from the wash often collect and remain on the door’s seal. As these substances collect on the seal, they create small leaks. These leaks lead to soapy water messes dripping out of your washing machine. Prevent this problem by cleaning the seal of the door each time your use your front loading washer. Use a clean, soft cloth to wipe off the rubber seal and edge of the gasket on your washing machine door, preventing soapy leaks.

Soap Dispenser Problem

Some washing machines have soap dispensers where detergent is poured and dispensed into the wash at the appropriate time in the cycle. If this dispenser becomes clogged, water fills the dispenser before the detergent makes it all the way out into the wash. The result is an overflow of soapy water from the dispenser and down the side of the machine. Clean clogs from the dispenser by pouring boiling water into the dispenser until the water easily runs out. Excessively high water pressure may also cause your soap dispenser to leak.

ReferencesWashing Machine Repair: Washing Machine is LeakingGE Appliances: Washers - Leaking or OverflowingThe New York Times: For the Dishwasher’s Sake, Go Easy on the DetergentPhoto Credit Jupiterimages/Pixland/Getty ImagesRead Next:

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