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I have a Roper (by whirlpool) washing machine. When it comes on, the water pours out of the spout, but the basin never fills. I suspect that it has something to do with the plugging mechanism. Does anyone have any experience fixing a problem like this?

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have you checked the hoses for kinks? –  Steven Apr 5 at 17:37

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Some basic troubleshooting: the water has to be going somewhere. If the water is going in but not staying in, that means it's going out, and if it's not spilling out on the floor, that means it's going out through the drain hose. Can you see water going out the drain hose?

If so, is the outlet of the drain hose lower than the level of the washer's spinning basin? If so, then that's where the water is going. You've turned the whole washing machine into a big water level and one side of the level (the drain hose) allows water to escape, so it's escaping. Solution: raise the outlet of the drain hose somehow.

If the outlet of the drain hose is already higher than the level of the basin and water is still coming out of it, then it sounds like the pump is prematurely pumping the water out for no good reason. Can you hear the sound of the pump? I'll defer to someone who knows more about washing machine repair if this is the case?

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I started pulling on the hose, and it must have had some suction with the water in the drain pipe. It sounded like the suction broke and some water spilled out, and now everything is working perfectly! I think the drain hose may have been a bit to far down the pipe, resulting in some suction, causing the water to just flow out of the basin in to the drain. –  sir_charles804 Apr 5 at 20:06
    
Yup, suction will do that. That's the primary reason for the air gap. It breaks the vacuum that's created when water starts its siphon action that would otherwise continue the motion until all the water is drained (which will never happen if it's being continuously refilled, like a washing machine will do :) ) –  iLikeDirt Apr 5 at 22:51

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