Why Does My Washing Machine Shake Like Crazy?

Washing machines are standard in many households. With busy lives, it is convenient to be freed of the time-consuming chore by simply reassigning that task to a machine. However, like many household appliances, washing machines can begin with or develop problems. For example, the machine may start to shake aggressively at points during its cycle.

Key Points:

  • Washing machines are commonplace in many households and save us time with tedious laundry tasks.
  • However, they can develop problems over time, such as excessive shaking.
  • Common causes of a shaking washing machine include an unbalanced load, improper installation, and loose or worn parts.

Today, we’ll take a look at what causes your washing machine to shake and how to fix it.

You’ve dedicated a portion of the day to cleaning up your living space, and along with that comes laundry. After putting the clothes in the washer and starting the cycle, it begins to sound like someone is banging pots and pans around in your laundry room. The good news is there aren’t any pots and pans responsible for the noise, not so good news is the washing machine is.

Why Does My Washing Machine Shake So Aggressively?

Let’s start with what causes a washing machine to shake so violently. There are a couple of reasons why your machine is shaking. Remember that there will likely be some vibration, even light shaking when running a washing machine. Now, if your machine is practically walking across the floor, it’s shaking so badly, then there is a problem.

Over Loaded Washer

Let’s begin with the simple problems. One is the amount of clothing placed in the washer. Because there are different-sized washers, each can effectively clean a certain amount of clothes at any time. When the machine is filled with more than it is designed for, it will begin to shake and make a loud noise.

Clogged Pump Filter

In every washing machine is a pump filter. The filter’s purpose is to prevent any foreign items from entering the drain hose. There will likely be some vibration if something is stuck in the pump filter.

Unlevel Supporting Floor

The floor that the washing machine sits on needs to be level for it to stay put. If the floor is not level, the machine will not be level either, causing it to shake during cycles such as the spin cycle.

Loose Drum

A drum sits inside the washer and is very common on front-load washers. As the machine ages, the drum bearings and shock absorbers start to wear out, causing the drum to be out of balance. If the drum is off balance, when the machine is running, there will most likely be a loud banging noise accompanied by shaking and water leaking from the machine.

Faulty Installation

During the transportation of the washing machine from the factory to your house, Styrofoam and protective bolts are placed to hold the drum in place and protect it against any damage. The Styrofoam is often under the machine, be sure to remove it for proper installation. The bolts keeping the drum in place are usually located in the back of the machine. Remove them (be sure to check the owner’s manual so you’re not pulling out random bolts).

How Do I Fix My Violently Shaking Washing Machine?

Washing Machine

Now that we’ve looked at everything that could go wrong with your machine let’s take a look at how to fix it.

Over Loaded Washer

Beginning with the most common issue is an overloaded washer. To fix this problem, stop the cycle, remove some clothes, and evenly distribute the remaining clothes around the washer. To prevent this issue in the future, only fill the machine to the max fill line located on the inside of the washer, or check the owner’s manual for the max fill amount.

Clogged Pump Filter

Now, let’s take a look at how to unclog the pump filter. First, begin by locating the filter (the owner’s manual will definitely be your best friend here). Once located, remove the filter by turning it counterclockwise. Remove debris building up on the filter and return it to the washer. Once finished, add “washing machine repairman” to your resume; congratulations!

Unlevel Supporting Floor

If the floor supporting the washer is not level, the washer will not sit on the floor level either. To combat this, use a level on both the front and back of the washer to determine which side is problematic. Then, lower or raise the leveling legs accordingly. You will need a wrench to turn the leveling legs.

Loose Drum

If the drum is loose, excessive shaking will likely be accompanied by a loud clanging noise (we know exactly what you want to hear). Front loader machines have shock absorbers to help mute noise and reduce excessive movement from the drum during the spin cycle. If the absorbers are worn, when the spin cycle begins, it will probably sound like your machine is dying.

Our best advice is to schedule a repairman, but if you’d like to, grab that owner’s manual, and we’ll walk you through the fix. Begin by removing the washing machine’s front panel (this includes removing the rubber seal on the drum) and locating the shock absorbers. Remove and replace with new ones. The fine details on where to find the absorbers and how to remove the panel differ from machine to machine and can be found in the owner’s manual.

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