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What Does “FH” Mean on a Washing Machine?

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The world of washing machines is more complex than you might initially think, with various error codes and symbols that can appear on your machine’s display. One of these is the mysterious “FH” code. But what does this mean, and how can you resolve it? This comprehensive guide will provide you with everything you need to know.


The “FH” error code on a washing machine, commonly seen on Whirlpool and Kenmore models, indicates a water inlet problem. This means there’s no water entering the machine or the water supply is insufficient. Causes can include water faucets not being completely turned on, clogged screens at the water inlet hose connection, kinked or frozen water inlet hoses, or water pressure below 10 psi.

Understanding the “FH” Error Code

The “FH” error code on a washing machine signifies a water inlet problem. If you see this code on your machine, it indicates that there is no water entering the machine or that the water supply is insufficient. This error is commonly associated with Whirlpool and Kenmore washing machines, including the Whirlpool Duet and Kenmore Elite HE3 models.

Common Causes of the “FH” Error Code

There are several reasons why the “FH” error code can appear on your washing machine. Here are a few common causes:

  1. Both hot and cold water faucets are not completely turned on.
  2. The screens at the water inlet hose connection to the washer are clogged.
  3. The water inlet hoses are kinked or frozen.
  4. The water pressure is less than 10 psi.

Immediate Steps to Take

If the “FH” error code appears on your washing machine, there are several immediate steps you should take:

  1. Select PAUSE/CANCEL twice to cancel the cycle.
  2. Unplug the washer or disconnect the power for one minute.
  3. Plug in the washer or reconnect the power.
  4. Re-select the cycle and press Start.

Troubleshooting the “FH” Error Code

If the error code persists, you should check the following:

  1. Ensure both hot and cold water valves at the water source are turned on all the way.
  2. Check for plugged or kinked inlet hoses or plugged screens in the inlet valves.
  3. Verify inlet valve operation.
  4. Ensure the drain is elevated roughly as high or tall as the washer before it goes into a drain.

When to Seek Professional Help

If the “FH” error code remains on the display after checking all these conditions, it is recommended to call for professional service. The issue could be related to the pressure switch, flow meter, or other components that may require specialized knowledge and tools to diagnose and repair.

Preventing Future “FH” Error Codes

To prevent an “FH” error code from occurring in the future, users should address the common issues related to water supply problems. Regularly inspect the water supply and the condition of your water hoses. Maintain proper water pressure and clean the inlet screens regularly.

In conclusion, while the “FH” error code might seem alarming at first, it’s often something you can troubleshoot at home. By keeping a close eye on your water supply and maintaining your machine, you can keep your laundry days running smoothly.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does “PSI” stand for in the context of water pressure?

“PSI” stands for Pounds per Square Inch. It’s a unit of pressure commonly used to measure the pressure of water in various settings, including washing machines.

How often should I clean the inlet screens of my washing machine?

It’s recommended to clean the inlet screens of your washing machine once every six months. However, if you live in an area with hard water, you might need to do it more frequently.

What is a flow meter in the context of a washing machine?

A flow meter in a washing machine is a device that measures the amount of water entering the machine. If the flow meter is not working correctly, it could cause the “FH” error code to appear.

How high should the drain be elevated for my washing machine?

The drain should be elevated roughly as high or tall as the washer before it goes into a drain. This helps to prevent water from flowing back into the machine.

Can I use any type of water hose for my washing machine?

It’s recommended to use high-pressure water hoses designed specifically for washing machines. These are built to withstand the high pressure and temperature of the water used in the machine.

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