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I've just had my upstairs washer wiggle itself away from the wall and remove the drain hose from the drain, resulting in water everywhere. The wash room is above the garage, so that's where the water is going thankfully. I've pulled out the drywall on the ceiling everywhere I saw water dripping and I've pulled out the insulation that was wet to let it drip. I plan to put at least one fan up there once the dripping has stopped to get air flowing and hopefully get it really dry in the cavity there where the pipes are. Several questions:

  1. If I've missed some wet insulation how bad is that?
  2. Should I spray some diluted bleach up there before I seal it up to prevent mold?
  3. Any suggestions for keeping the washer in one place for the future?
  4. What else should I focusing on?
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    Usually the wiggling is caused by a not level washer or an unbalanced load. If an unfinished/not fancy floor around the washer, some people nail/screw 2x4s around the outside of the washer, but usually should not be needed. Did the washer move enough to pull the drain or did the drain kind of pop out?
    – crip659
    Commented Feb 26 at 20:11
  • I wasn't there, no one was, but this washer has moved rather far from the wall in the past due to unbalanced loads, so the washer moved enough.
    – Stephen
    Commented Feb 26 at 20:14
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    The best recommendation is to have balanced loads, the movement does the washer no good. Some king of soft straps mounted to the wall should work also, but this is to prevent floods. The washer will still be ruined in time.
    – crip659
    Commented Feb 26 at 20:21
  • Moisture detector?
    – Huesmann
    Commented Feb 27 at 14:09

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  1. If the insulation is fiberglass or plastic foam, I'd not be concerned (cellulose is another matter), since this is just a one-time dump of a few dozen liters. You've done a fairly thorough job of removing water already. It seems unlikely, once dry, that there is any long-term risk of mildew. My thought is to let it dry naturally, possibly aided by a small electric space heater in the area below. Use caution with any heater to avoid fire and shock hazards!

  2. A bit of diluted bleach might not be necessary, but wouldn't hurt. Use caution for safety (use a face shield, working overhead) and to avoid damage.

  3. Off-center loads can make a small washer "walk". You may put in a balanced load, but after some cycles, it can become unbalanced. If you can't watch the machine continually, an elastic strap ("bungee" cord) or two, attached around the machine and to studs in the wall, should restrict motion without causing damage.

  4. Check the floor solidity. Perhaps a piece of heavy plywood underneath the washer might reduce vibration. Washing machine drip pans (examples) are available, but likely would not hold all the water in a full wash tub.

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    + on washer pan - mine holds > 5 gallons don't ask how I know. a water sensor with alarm in the pan. the U bend support that keeps the drain pipe in the stand pipe ( not sure if it would rip if that was the only thing restricting movement though ). Commented Feb 27 at 5:26
  • If the overflow pan is connected to the washer drain plumbing, it doesn't have to hold much, just enough to keep the floor dry while the flooding water flows to the drain.
    – FreeMan
    Commented Feb 27 at 13:48

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