How To Reset A Whirlpool Washer: Fast And Easy Steps


Is your trusty Whirlpool washer starting to act up and cause frustration? Intermittent glitches like blinking lights, incomplete cycles, unresponsive buttons, and error codes can try anyone’s patience.

Resetting the internal computer on your Whirlpool washing machine essentially works as a power reboot, clearing any software hiccups that are causing the erratic behavior.

While it may sound complex, resetting your washer is actually quite simple and only takes minutes to complete. And just like restarting your smartphone or laptop helps things run more smoothly again, resetting recalibrates the operating system inside your washing machine.

In this guide, you’ll learn when to reset your Whirlpool washer and different ways to reset your washer. Ready to learn more? Let’s dive straight into it.

Reasons to Reset Your Whirlpool Washer

There are several reasons that could make you reset your Whirlpool washer. Some of the most common are:

1. Troubleshooting Error Codes

One of the main reasons you may need to reset your Whirlpool washer is to troubleshoot error codes.

Whirlpool washers come equipped with an error code system to help diagnose specific issues that may arise. These error codes appear on the display panel and typically consist of a letter and number combination, like “F7 E1”.

Error codes often disrupt the normal working operations of your washer. Resetting your washer can help you clear the error codes and restore your washer’s functionality.

However, keep in mind that just resetting the washer doesn’t resolve the underlying problem. While resetting can temporarily erase an error code, if it continues appearing, that indicates you have not fully fixed the problem.

At that point, you likely need professional service to inspect and repair the failing element in your Whirlpool washer. Resetting merely clears the code at the surface level.

Related Article: 11 Most Common Whirlpool Cabrio Washer Problems and Solutions

2. Fixing Control Panel Responsiveness

Another common reason to reset your Whirlpool washer is to restore functionality when the control panel becomes unresponsive. Washers contain electronic control boards and interfaces; temporary glitches can make them unresponsive.

Some common symptoms of an unresponsive control panel include:

  • Unresponsive Buttons: Pressing power, start, pause or other buttons does nothing.
  • Cycle Not Activating: Choosing and pressing start on a wash setting does not begin the cycle.
  • Settings Resetting: Chosen preferences like spin speed randomly clear or return to default.
  • Functions Activating Randomly: Washer starts, pauses, or changes settings on its own.

In any case of erratic or frozen controls like the ones listed above, one of the first troubleshooting steps is to reset your Whirlpool washing machine.

The reset essentially functions like rebooting a computer to clear any temporary glitches or bugs in the system. Rebooting at the software level through a reset can recalibrate the control board and restore normal responsiveness.

If control panel issues reoccur after you reset your washer, then there may be larger electrical issues affecting the computerized functionality and LCD interface. In this case, you’ll have to hire a technician for inspection and repairs.

3. Power Related Issues

Resetting your Whirlpool washing machine can also help resolve problems that may stem from power-related issues.

Like every other electronic appliance, your washer relies on electrical power to activate its display, run cycles, power the motor, and more. Hence, electrical issues can disrupt its normal operation.

Common power problems like short outages, voltage drops, or power surges can essentially “confuse” your Whirlpool washer, causing temporary glitches.

Some power-related symptoms you might observe include:

  • Washer not starting despite functioning buttons
  • Cycles pausing or stopping mid-wash
  • Functions like spin or drain not working
  • Error code related to electrical component failure

Luckily, you can resolve these issues by fully rebooting the computer elements via a reset. When you reset your Whirlpool washer, you are giving it an opportunity to have a fresh start with cleared programming.

This reinitialization of the software allows the unit to operate normally again, despite the temporary electrical issue.

However, take note that consistent or frequent power-related problems can permanently damage the computerized control board itself. So, if your washer’s power problems become frequent, hire a technician to diagnose and resolve the power problem.

4. Routine maintenance

Every electronic device needs to be maintained. Maintenance helps prevent minor issues from occurring. In Whirlpool washers, performing periodic resets helps you do just that.

The Whirlpool washer, like any other washer or appliance out there can accumulate cache and data within its operating system. Resetting the washer clears this temporary data, refreshes the system, and helps keep the appliance running efficiently.

But wait? Just because you perform reset periodically doesn’t mean if there’s a major problem, it won’t surface.

So while major component failures will likely still require a service appointment, routine resets allow you to troubleshoot and resolve many minor hiccups on your own.

How to Reset Your Whirlpool Washer (All Methods)

Unfortunately, Whirlpool washers don’t come with a reset button but that doesn’t mean that they can’t be reset.

There are several ways to reset your Whirlpool washer. In this section, you’ll find some of the most common methods Whirlpool washer users like yourself utilize to reset their washing machines.

But before you go on to try any of the methods in this guide, first check if your washer has no lights, power, etc. If it doesn’t, verify if the Control Lock has been activated.

This is very important because if the control lock is activated or set, your controls will not operate at all, and you may see a light or “Padlock” sign illuminated.

In this case, you don’t have to perform a reset, simply check your manual for your model’s steps to deactivate the Control Lock.

1. Unplugging Method

The most straightforward approach to resetting your front-load or top-load Whirlpool washing machine is to unplug it from the power source for at least one minute.

This unplugging method allows any residual electric charge in the machine to dissipate, effectively rebooting the washer.

Now, let’s look at the steps involved in more detail:

Step 1: Turn Off The Washing Machine

The first rule before unplugging any device is properly powering down first. Start by locating the Power button on your washer’s control display. Press it to turn off your washer if it’s still on. If your model lacks a clear Power button, consult your owner’s manual on how to manually switch off the machine.

Pro tip: Some Whirlpool models may involve turning a dial or pressing a button combination instead to power down.

Step 2: Unplug The Washing Machine

Now that your washer is off, it’s safe to unplug it. Find the power cord that connects from the washer to the wall outlet and remove it completely. Don’t yank too forcefully as you don’t want to damage internal parts. If your machine is hardwired into the wall without an outlet plug, simply flip the correct circuit breaker off instead.

Step 3: Wait For 1 Minute

Before plugging your washer back in, wait one full minute. This brief 60-second break allows any leftover electric charge inside to fully discharge. Think of it as draining any lingering power, prepping for a fresh restart when electricity reconnects.

Step 4: Plug the Washing Machine Back In

The minute is up – time to plug your washer back into the wall outlet again or flip its circuit breaker back on if hardwired. Make sure the electrical connection feels snug.

Step 5: Turn on and Test Your Washer

Turn your Whirlpool washer back on and confirm the display resets and buttons operate normally. As one final check, go ahead and run a short test cycle. Verify the washer can complete a whole wash without any hiccups. Just like that, your washer is back on track and restored to reliably handling load after load.

2. Circuit Breaker Method

If your Whirlpool washer does not have an accessible power plug that you can disconnect, another option is to reset the washer by turning off the circuit breaker that provides power to the appliance.

Here are detailed steps for this reset using the circuit breaker method:

Step 1: Locate the Circuit Breaker Box

First, find the main circuit breaker box, usually found in utility rooms, basements, or garages. This electrical panel controls power flow to all appliances in your home.

Step 2: Identify the Circuit Breaker for the Washer

Scan through the labeled circuit breakers until you find the one specifically for the outlet your Whirlpool washer plugs into. It may be marked with a “Washer” or a circuit number.

Step 3: Flip the Circuit Breaker Off

With the correct circuit located, flip its switch to the Off position. This cuts power to the washer so it can discharge internally.

Step 4: Wait for 30 Seconds

Now we wait! Leave the breaker switched off for a full minute or two. This gives time for any leftover electric charge in the washer to fully dissipate.

Step 5: Flip the Circuit Breaker Back to “On”

The waiting period is over, so flip the washer’s circuit breaker back to On. Electricity will resume powering the machine.

Step 6: Turn On the Washer and Test

Congratulations! You are done resetting your washer and it’s now time to test it.

To do that, turn on your Whirlpool washer at the control panel and then run a test cycle. While you are at it, check if the prior problems have now been resolved by the circuit breaker reset method.

3. Touch Screen Method

Many Whirlpool washing machines can be reset directly through buttons on the control panels touch screen. This method involves pressing certain button combinations to reboot the washer.

To reset your Whirlpool washing machine using the control panel, follow these step-by-step instructions.

Step 1: Consult Your Owner’s Manual

Before you do anything, the very first thing you should do is consult your user manual. The manual will provide the exact button combination and reset process for your specific model.

Some common buttons used are “Power”, “Start/Pause”, “Temp”, “Soil”, and numbered option buttons. Write down the precise sequence before proceeding.

Step 2: Prepare To Press Buttons

Once you know the proper button sequence for resetting from your manual, prepare to press those buttons accordingly.

Turn on your Whirlpool washer and navigate to the control panel. You may need to switch the machine on to access certain reset modes.

Avoid running a wash cycle or selecting functions prior to the reset. Have your owner’s manual nearby for reference while pressing the buttons as failing mid-sequence may make the process more difficult.

Step 3: Press & Hold Reset Buttons

Refer to your manual and initiate the control panel reset process by pressing your model’s designated sequence. Hold the buttons as directed by the manual, which is typically around 5-10 seconds.

For example, the sequence may be Temp + Spin for 5 seconds, then Soil twice + Start/Pause once. Make sure to follow the guidelines precisely to effectively reset the machine.

But if you can’t find any specific instructions for your model, then you can try the following combinations:

  • Press the Pause/Cancel button twice
  • Press the Power button one time.
  • Now listen for a beep or a display panel flash.

Once you notice either the beep or the flash, wait a few minutes before trying the cycle again.

Now if you found the specific instructions for your model, continue with step 4.

Step 4: Wait For Reboot

After pressing the tailored reset button combination, wait as your Whirlpool machine reboots and resets. The control panel may flash and you may hear beeping sounds. This indicates that the internal computer is recalibrating based on the input button sequence.

Give it a few minutes to fully complete the reboot procedure. Avoid additional inputs and listen for auditory cues that the reset was successful.

Once fully reset, your machine will return to a ready state.

Step 5: Test With A Cycle

With the control panel reset process complete, run a test cycle to verify that the machine is functioning normally.

To do that, add a few items and select a Regular or Quick cycle. If the cycle proceeds smoothly without errors, your reset was effective.

4. Turn Dial Reset Method

The turn dial reset, also known as the master reset, is an effective way to reset calibration and clear error codes on Whirlpool washers with a dial control instead of digital buttons.

Before proceeding with this method, you’ll need the following:

  • Phillips head screwdriver
  • Gloves for safety

Once you have those ready, follow the steps below to reset your Whirlpool washer:

Step 1: Unplug the Washing Machine

Before doing anything, first unplug the washing machine from its power source. This is not only for your safety, unplugging it also helps clear the memory.

Step 2: Remove the Control Panel

Using a Phillips head screwdriver, carefully remove the screws on the control panel and detach it to access the internal wiring.

Step 3: Locate the Wire Harness & Plug Connector

Find the wire harness connecting to the cycle selector switch/timer assembly. Trace wires back to locate the connection plug.

Step 4: Disconnect Plug from Wire Harness

With gloves, grasp the plug connector and pull firmly to detach wires and override the computer.

Step 5: Turn the Dial Through Sequence

Now, turn the dial to NORMAL, then counterclockwise once – you should hear a click if done right. Next, clockwise 3 times (or 3 clicks). Then counterclockwise one click and finally, clockwise one click.

Step 6: Reconnect the Wire Harness Plug and Reattach the Control Panel

Reinsert the plug connector back into the wire harness slot until it clicks and locks. Next, secure the screws to refit back control panel over the wiring.

Step 7: Plug In the Washer and confirm the Reset

Plug the washer back into its power supply. Initiate a test cycle to confirm if it has been successfully reset and the error fixed.

To confirm the reset, press the Start button. Now check if the cycle indicating lights are illuminated. If they are, press Start/Stop one time.

Next, rotate your dial until the Rinse, Wash, and Stop lights are illuminated. When they are all lit up, turn off your washer and unplug it for 10 seconds.

Now turn it back on. Your appliance should be reset. You can now test it by running a test load without any clothes to see if it works properly without any errors.

How To Reset Whirlpool Top Load Washer



If you own a Whirlpool top loader model and the other reset tips in this guide aren’t working for you, try this top lid method.

To perform the top lid reset method, do the following:

Step 1: Unplug the Washing Machine

Disconnect the washer from the power source completely by unplugging the power cord from the electrical outlet. This cuts off electricity flow and allows the internal computer to reset.

Step 2: Open & Close the Lid Rapidly

Once unplugged, stand in front of the unit and locate the lid. Then, swiftly open and close the lid 6 times within 12 seconds. Make sure the lid opens fully and closes completely each time. You must perform this step rapidly or it will not initiate the reset mode.

Step 3: Wait 30 Seconds

After quickly opening and closing the lid 6 times, wait approximately 30 seconds. This gives the internal computer sufficient time to clear any stored errors or fault codes.

Step 4: Plug Washer Back In

Reconnect the power cord and plug the washing machine back into the electrical outlet. Make sure the connection is secure.

Step 5: Turn On Washer

Finally, turn the unit on either using the power button or dial. The washer may display default or diagnostic cycle settings indicating it has successfully reset.

Finally, once powered on, you can run a test cycle to verify normal functioning.

Still not working? Try these as well:

  • Turn off your washing machine.
  • Hold the “program” button down while pressing the “water level” button twice. Your control panel should light up after pressing those buttons.
  • Next, press each button on your control panel except the “Power” button.
  • Now open the lid and your machine will beep. Finally, close the lid.

And that’s it. Your washing machine should be reset.

How to Reset Whirlpool Front Load Washer


To reset your Whirlpool front load washer, you can follow these steps:

Step 1: Unplug the Washer

Start by turning off the washer and unplugging it from the power source for at least one minute. This will allow any residual electric charge to dissipated.

Step 2: Wait

While the washer is unplugged, wait for at least one minute to ensure that all the residual power is drained from the machine.

Step 3: Plug the Washer Back In

After the waiting period, plug the washer back into the power source.

Step 4: Test the Washer

Turn the washer on and run a test cycle to check if the reset has resolved the issues.

How to Reset Whirlpool Cabrio Washer


If your Whirlpool washer is a Cabrio model and is displaying error codes or functioning improperly, you can try resetting the appliance as follows:

Step 1: Press Any Button to Clear the Error Code

If your Cabrio washing machine shows an error code on the display, start by pressing any button on the control panel. This should clear the existing error code.

Step 2: Unplug the machine and wait for 5 Minutes

Now unplug for washing machine from its power source and leave it alone for approximately 5 minutes. This allows time for the internal computer to reset itself.

Step 3: Select and Start a Wash Cycle

Browse through the wash cycles on your Cabrio washer and select one. You can choose a normal or delicate cycle. With a wash cycle selected, press the “Start” button to begin the cycle.

Step 4: Evaluate Performance

As the test cycle initiates and runs through, observe the Cabrio washer’s performance. Check if the previous error code appears or if new error codes show up.

Step 5: Repeat if Needed

If the error code returns during the cycle, repeat the process. Clear the code, wait 5 minutes, select a cycle, and test again. Multiple resets may be required.

How to Reset Whirlpool Duet Washer


To reset a Whirlpool Duet washer, you can try the unplugging method.

Step 1: Unplug the Machine

Simply unplug the washer from the power source for at least one minute. This will allow any residual electric charge in the machine to dissipate, effectively rebooting the washer.

Step 2: Plug it Back In

Plug the Washer back in and test its functionality. If the issue persists, you may need to consult the user manual for specific reset instructions for your model.


Inside this handy guide, you have learned a few different reset tricks tailored to your Whirlpool washing machine model. While error symptoms may range from blinking lights to buttons not responding, the resets all followed a similar theme – properly cutting power to allow a fresh reboot.

Specific step-by-step instructions were provided whether your machine is a front-load, top-load, or Cabrio model. Simply reboot via the unplugging method for 60 seconds or use the secret “reset switch” of your circuit breaker. That’s all it takes to recalibrate the washer’s operating system and restore normalcy again.

Resets should resolve minor software glitches, clear pesky error codes, revive unresponsive controls, and have your Whirlpool washer quietly tackling load after load in no time. If issues continue post-reset, there may be larger underlying mechanical problems. Either way – you now have the diagnostic skills to troubleshoot issues rather than immediately paying repair bills.

Related Articles: Whirlpool Washer Stuck on Spin Cycle: 5 Ways To Fix It Now


How to Unlock Whirlpool Washer

To unlock a Whirlpool washer, you can try pressing and holding the “Control Lock” or “Child Lock” button for a few seconds. This should deactivate the lock and allow you to use the washer normally.

If this doesn’t work, consult the user manual for your specific model for detailed instructions on unlocking the washer.

Related Articles: Whirlpool Duet Washer Door Locked: 7 Easy Ways To Fix It Now

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