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Washing Machine Parts and Their Functions11 min read

washing machine parts

A washing machine is a complex appliance. During a complicated process, different parts and pieces of the washing machine work together to clean the clothes. Here we will introduce the leading washing machine parts and their functions. Since every washing machine has its design and characteristics, we will introduce features that are common among all of them.

Main washing machine parts and components

Drum or tub

Let’s start with the most significant part, the drum or tub. Do you know your washing machine has two tubs? The one that you see and put your clothes in is the inner tub, which rotates and has some holes for the water inlet and outlet. The outer tub holds and protects the inner tub and keeps water from entering other parts of the washing machine. The outer tub is stuck to the appliance body.

Water inlet valve

After turning on the washing machine and setting the program, the inlet valve opens automatically to allow water to enter the inner tub. The type of washing machine and the program chosen determine how much water is in the tub.

Drain pump

As the name indicates, the duty of this washing machine part during washing and spinning cycles is to drain water.

Drain hose

The water will leave the washing machine after the washing cycle is completed with the help of the drain pump and the drain hose. This is a specific washing machine part but a beneficial one.

Heater element

This washing machine part heats the water inside the tub to the desired temperature according to the washing program. It is located under the leading tub and is completely sealed.


This part of the washing machine turns on the heating elements when the water needs to be heated. It also checks the temperature of the water as it goes into the engine. The thermostat is in charge of temperature control. The element’s electric current is cut off once the temperature reaches the specified level.

Electronic board

The information in this part of the machine is coded to help the machine do things based on the type of clothing. This component is, in fact, the brain of the washing machine.


This washing machine part is responsible for adjusting the level of inlet water in the appliance. It stops the water inlet when the water level in the tub reaches the adjusted level.

Micro switch

The primary duty of this washing machine part is to make sure the door is entirely closed before starting the washing operation. If the door is not closed, it prevents the electricity from reaching the water inlet valve. So water doesn’t enter the tub. The micro switches inside the washing machine control the water level in the tub, the tub angle, and the filters.


The washing machine, called a “pulley,” can be seen at the tub’s rear and resembles a massive wheel. It has a belt wrapped around it that connects it to the motor. The inner tub also rotates as the pulley begins to turn. In other terms, the washing machine’s little and large pullies move power from the motor to the tub.


This machine part connects the motor to the pulley at the back of the tub and makes it rotate during the washing cycle. Now that you are almost familiar with the washing machine’s main parts let’s briefly describe its operation in washing your clothes.

Washing procedure based on the function of washing machine parts

  1. Put the clothes inside the tub and select the desired washing program.
  2. The washing machine electronic board commands the valves to open and fill the tub with hot or cold water. Some water enters the detergent drawer to wash the washing powder and take it to the tub.
  3. The Inlet water valve closes when the water level reaches the desired level based on the washing program.
  4. The thermostat measures the water temperature and lets the heater element heat it if necessary.
  5. The inner tub starts rotating. So, the clothes are mixed with warm water and washing powder or detergent. Turning the tub in 2 separate directions removes all the dirt from the clothes, and the detergent help with this operation.
  6. The water valves open again. Now the dirty water should leave the tub. The drain pump leads the water out through the drain hose.
  7. The clean water enters the tub and starts rotating.
  8. The tub starts spinning at high speed to send out the extra water when the washing cycle is over. This water enters the outer tub via the small holes of the inner tub and leaves the washing machine.

What is the washing machine process?

Let’s delve further and go into more detail about how a washing machine operates. We will go through different types of top loaders, front load washers, high-efficiency washers, automatic washers, and semi-automatic washers.

Top Load Washers

There are two top load washers: impeller washers and agitator washers. Both appliances have a control system and a mechanical mechanism. The control system includes the timer, temperature selection, load size selection, control boards, and lid locking switch. The automated system includes pumps, a water valve, a transmission, a clutch, washtubs, a suspension system, and a motor coupling. Water is poured into both, submerging the clothing. How the impeller or agitator washes the garments makes a difference, though.

With Impellers

A shallow cone or disc called an impeller operates more like a front-loading washer and rests on the drum’s floor. The drum is more water-efficient and revolves around a horizontal axis. Less water and detergent will be used when the machine is spinning.

The clothes are rubbed against one another as the impeller revolves or spins in place. This friction cleans the clothing impellers and has a spraying system that adds fresh water to the clothes during the wash and rinses cycles. With agitators in top-loading machines, agitators are more frequent than impellers. It is the primary structural support for a device that circulates clothing in water. The detergent is continuously mixed with the water and the clothes during the cycle.

Additionally, it stimulates the clothes to rub against one another to remove stains and grime. Specific designs employ a two-part agitator. The washing is sent to the bottom of the tub by the top portion of the agitator, which moves in one direction. The laundry is then raised again by the agitator’s lower part. Like impellers, many agitators shoot fresh water into the cycle to clean it. While agitators are very effective at washing clothes, they’re less gentle and more likely to damage fabrics.

Front Load Washers

A front-load washer usually has six steps: filling, dispensing, washing, draining, rinsing, and spinning. The machine typically senses the load size to decide how much water to use after you choose the load type and temperature. The machine fills with water as soon as you close the door and start the cycle. When there is enough water in the machine, it stops adding more water and begins the sound stage of the cycle, which is when the detergent and fabric softener is released. The washer cycle continues on the machine. The drum’s dual rotation thoroughly cleans your clothing in a front-load washer. Some designs turn the tub using a driving motor, belt, and pulley. The drum tumbles the garments in one direction, pauses, and then releases them in the opposite direction. The clothing is plunged into the detergent and water during this motion. After the wash cycle, the washing machine empties the water from the drain hose into a pipe. The wash cycle and the rinse cycle both function identically. The fabric softener is now included in your process at this point. Once more, the water drains. The machine then starts to rotate. Your garments won’t be soaking wet at the end of the process because this removes all surplus water much more quickly than in the wash cycle. Thus, drying time is shortened.

How does a washing machine work?

  1. The machine fills with water at your chosen temperature.
  2. The machine dispenses detergent.
  3. The machine washes your clothes using an agitator, impeller, or rotating drum.
  4. Afterward, the device will rinse your clothes.
  5. The engine spins quickly to remove excess water from your clothes.

Additional washing machine features

In addition to washing, rinsing, and spinning clothes, many machines have different functionalities. These features can simplify and improve the effectiveness of your washing process. Let’s examine a few other functions and applications you can discover on a washing machine.

Silent Mode: Silent mode is a feature that several companies, including LG and Grundig, offer. This stops the procedure before the final rinse and skips the spin cycle. A few hours later, it reactivates on its own. As a result, the machine is silent when you are around. To reduce the amount of noise the gadget makes, some companies’ spin speeds are lower, with a maximum of 1000 RPM.

Quick Wash: A rapid wash cycle on many machines may thoroughly clean clothes in as little as 15 minutes. The clothing is spun to wash and dry more quickly. Remember that this is only for lightly soiled clothing. If you also filled it out halfway, that would be helpful. It is not intended for doing heavy loads of dirty laundry.

Eco mode: The eco mode on your machine is usually a good choice for daily laundry. It is the choice that uses little water and energy. Your garments will be adequately washed using low temperatures, less water, and less energy.

Time Delay: To avoid being on when guests come over, or to start at five a.m. so your wet clothes don’t sit in the machine all night, or for any other reason, look for a device with a time delay option.

Various wash cycles: We enjoy washing machines that offer a variety of wash cycles. For instance, a gentle cycle or hand wash should be included. You may scrub delicate attire like underwear, wool, or embroidered things. These outfits and standard cotton or linen clothing must fit in your washing machine.

Self-cleaning: Numerous contemporary appliances offer a self-cleaning setting. You often don’t need cleaning products (although we love adding one cup of distilled white vinegar). The machine will then perform a drum-cleaning cycle for you.

Add clothes during a wash: A machine that allows you to add items during the wash cycle will be helpful if you frequently forget to wash your clothes. You can already accomplish this with a lot of traditional top-loaders. However, front-load washers prevent this because the door locks. However, recent versions frequently have a tiny door you can open to add clothing.

Built-in Wi-Fi: Look for a machine with built-in Wi-Fi if you want to control it from anywhere. This is useful when you start the washing machine after putting clothing in it. Numerous apps also assist in selecting the cycle settings. For instance, it will determine the precise locations to wash everything in the drum (for example, t-shirts, socks, and underwear).

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