The Maytag washer is one of the most reliable washers on the market, and it’s known for its durability. However, the Maytag washer, like all electronic appliances, can face errors over time.
One of the errors of the Maytag washer is the F21 error code, which is considered a frustrating one when experienced. This is because the F21 error is displayed mid-cycle (drain cycle or wash cycle), and the washer’s door gets locked.
The washer stops working, and it doesn’t drain; it may seem like a big problem, but you don’t have to worry about it. Because in this article, I will discuss the reasons for the Maytag Washer Code F21.
In addition, I will explain the solution to each of the causes and how to prevent and avoid them in the future.
Causes Maytag Washer Code F21
Maytag washer code F21 means the washer has a long drain issue, which can be due to different causes. For example, the drain hose of the washer can be twisted or blocked, the detergent is not suitable for your washer, or there is an issue with the drain pump or valve.
Determining the reason for the error code F21 will help you solve the problem and take the proper measures to prevent it in the future. Therefore, I will guide you through the troubleshooting steps to determine the cause.
1. The drain Hose is Blocked
A blocked drain hose is considered one of the leading causes of the Maytag washer F21 code. What happens is that over time the lint and different debris from the wash cycles accumulate in the drain hose. As a result, the hose becomes blocked, making the washer take longer to drain.
The longer time that is taken by the washer to drain results in the F21 drain error displayed on your washer to alert you. The right solution here is to unclog the drain hose to get it to proper drainage.
2. Malfunctioning Drain Pump
The drain pump is responsible for draining the water from the washer through the drain hose, specifically during the spin cycle. If the drain pump in your washer is malfunctioning, it will result in a longer draining time.
As a result, the washer displays the error code F21. There are some ways to determine a defective drain pump; if it is not working correctly, it will need to be replaced.
You can check your drain pump by using a multimeter and setting it to continuity to test the drain pump.
3. The drain Pump is Not Secured
The drain pump is located at the bottom of your washing machine, making it easier to access and replace. However, the drain pump must be secured to drain the water properly from the washing machine.
If the connection between the washer and drain pump is loose, it will affect its functionality. Consequently, it increases the drain time, and as a result, the washer senses that and displays the error code F21 to warn you.
4. Clogged Drain Filter
The drain filter also interferes with the draining process, so if the drain filter is clogged, it will make it harder for the water to flow, which makes the draining time longer.
As a result, the washing machine will display the F21 error code, and the drain filter is behind the front panel of the washer. Therefore, you will need to remove the front panel and check the filter pump to determine if it’s clogged with debris and lint.
5. Defective Pressure Switch
The pressure switch or sensor is essential to your washing machine because it detects the water level inside the washer. The water level helps the washer regulate its cycles; when it reaches a certain level, the washer starts to drain the water.
Therefore, if the pressure switch is defective, it will affect the draining time, and it can increase it. So, the washer senses something is wrong with the draining time and displays the error code F21. However, you don’t have to worry; the pressure switch can be replaced easily, fixing the issue.
6. Unsuitable Detergent
Some washing machines (High-Efficiency washers) use a high-efficiency detergent (HE); if you try to use a regular detergent, it will result in too many soap suds. The soap suds makes it hard for the washing machine to drain.
If you use a suitable detergent type for your washer, you can face the same issue if you apply too much detergent, as it will also result in too many soap suds. As a result, the draining time increases, and the error code F21 is displayed.
How to Fix Maytag Washer Code F21
After going through the troubleshooting and determining the causes of the F21 code on your Maytag washer, now, I will explain the necessary steps to solve each cause.
1. How to Fix Drain Hose is Blocked?
If the drain hose is clogged or blocked, you will need to get a long thing to unclog it, remove any debris clogging the drain hose and ensure the water flows freely through it.
If the drain hose is kinked or twisted, you must straighten it out. If the drain hose is irreparable, you will need to replace it with a new one to ensure it doesn’t get bent again after straightening it.
2. How to Fix a Malfunctioning Drain Pump
If the problem is that your drain pump is malfunctioning, you will need to inspect it for any visual signs of damage before checking your drain pump power off your washing machine for your safety.
If the drain pump is damaged, you will need to replace it. If you find no damage to the drain pump, you will need to move to the next step.
3. How to Fix the Drain Pump is Not Secured
If the drain pump is in perfect condition and has no damage, the problem may be that it’s not connected correctly to the washing machine. You will need to check the electrical connections between the pump and the washer, so power off your washer before checking the wiring.
If there is any damaged or frayed wiring, you will need to replace it. If the wiring is loose, you will need to tighten it to ensure the top performance of the drain pump, especially during spin cycles.
4. How to Fix a Clogged Drain Filter?
First, you will need to access your drain pump filter by removing the front panel of the washer. Then, clean and remove any debris clogging the filter, and ensure to have a container nearby to collect any water coming out from the filter.
5. How to Fix a Defective Pressure Switch?
If the drain hose is not clogged and the drain pump is functioning correctly, this narrows the issue down to a faulty pressure switch. If you have enough experience to determine if the pressure switch is faulty, you can replace it yourself; it’s a straightforward process.
However, if you feel uncomfortable replacing your pressure switch, you can hire a technician to check and replace it. The following steps will help if you want to replace your pressure switch:
- Power off your washing machine and unplug it.
- Open the washer door and push the agitator to one of the sides.
- Move your hand underneath the console through the space you created by pushing the agitator.
- Reach the clip holding the console and release it.
- Repeat for the other side.
- Remove the water level knob from the console control panel.
- Gently pull the console forward and tilt it backward to access the presser switch.
- You will find the pressure switch on the left side of the console.
- Disconnect the tubes and wires connected to the switch.
- Twist the pressure switch counterclockwise to remove it.
- Install the new pressure switch.
- Push the console into its place by inserting the rear clips and then the front clips.
- Place the water level knob.
- Plug your washer and power it on.
- Test the new pressure switch.
6. How to Fix Unsuitable Detergent?
If you use the wrong detergent or too much detergent, you will create too many soap suds. You will need to scoop the suds out to fix this issue manually. You can use either a bucket or a pitcher. The last step is to run a rinse (cleaning cycle) to eliminate any remaining suds.
Preventing Maytag Washer Code F21
After discussing the cause of the Maytag washer F21 code and the solutions to each cause, I will explain how to avoid and prevent the F21 code in the future.
1. Regular Maintenance
All electronic or electrical appliances require regular maintenance to avoid possible issues and error codes. Therefore, the first step to prevent the F21 is to do regular maintenance for your Maytag washer. For example, you will need to clean your drain pump every month.
The pump filter is behind the front panel of the washer. Therefore, you will need to remove the front panel and clean the filter pump of any debris to ensure it doesn’t get clogged.
In addition, the drain hose also has to be cleaned regularly to ensure it doesn’t get clogged. After cleaning the drain hose, ensure nothing obstructs it or makes it kinked or twisted.
2. Don’t Overload the Washer
The drain pump has limits; pushing these limits by increasing the load on the washer can lead to the drain pump failing. If the drain pump fails or is damaged, it will result in the F21 code error.
Therefore, ensure you don’t overload your washer and remain within its load capacity to avoid damaging the drain pump.
3. Use Suitable Detergent
If your washing machine requires a high-efficiency detergent (HE), don’t try to use a regular detergent because it will create soap suds which will result in the F21 error code. In addition, please don’t use too much detergent because it can result in the same problem.