How to Unlock an Indesit Washing Machine That Won’t Open7 min read

Locked Indesit washing machines can be a pain, especially if you’re in a hurry. Whilst there are many potential causes of the door locking, there’s an easy method to quickly retrieve your laundry.

Indesit washing machine doors lock due to F06 and F17 error codes (a faulty door latch), leftover water, power loss, and hardware issues. You can open the device by draining excess water with a drain cycle, removing the bottom panel, and pulling the latch to manually open the door.

Don’t panic if your washing machine door is locked. This is a common problem with straightforward solutions. Let’s look at everything you need to know to open an Indesit washing machine door that won’t open.

This article has been expert reviewed by Andy Fulenchek, a professional appliance repairman with over 10 years experience. He also owns Grace Appliance and this YouTube channel.

Why Won’t An Indesit Washing Machine Door Open?

The hardest lesson I’ve had to learn in appliance repair is: When it’s not coming apart easily, my natural response is to grab a larger hammer. This isn’t the right mind-set. You’re probably missing something – a hidden screw or clip, etc. It’s always the $100 peice of plastic that breaks because of my impatience. Don’t be like me.

Andy Fulenchek

Normally you should be able to open an Indesit door during a cycle by pressing the START/PAUSE button and the ‘lock door’ symbol will flash amber. 

However, sometimes Indesit washing machines malfunction and the door can’t even be opened after the cycle. This can be due to stagnant water, a malfunctioning door, or power issues.

Additionally, washers will be equiped with a drum rotation sensor (i.e. Hall sensor, tachometer, etc) which will prevent the door from unlocking. This is often overlooked because obviously the user can SEE the drum is no longer turning, but if the sensor is failing it may be communicating to the control board that the drum is turning and thus will not unlock.

Andy Fulenchek

First I’ll cover why your washing machine door won’t open, then I’ll show you how to open the door manually to stop your washing from growing mold!

Water Inside The Drum

Indesit washing machines automatically lock the door if there’s excess water inside the drum. There might be leftover water after a cycle, especially if your machine is older or has drain problems. The red door light may stay illuminated if there’s still water in the drum. 

how to remove water from the drum

Firstly, check your Indesit isn’t switched to “crease care” or “rinse hold” as these options hold washing in the final rinse water on synthetic wash programs. 

Then try running the Rinse, Drain, or Spin cycles to try and drain the water out. Sometimes with Indesit washers, the spin cycle won’t complete causing a pool of stagnant water that prevents the door from opening. 

Here’s a link to an Indesit instruction manual – simply move the ‘wash cycle’ knob to ‘spin cycle’ and hit the START/PAUSE button and you’ll see a green light. After the cycle is finished, try opening the door again. 

If it doesn’t open or there’s leftover water, inspect the outflow hose for blockages and kinks. If your Indesit empties into a standpipe, the hose should not be pushed in further than 4 inches. If cleaning the hose doesn’t resolve the problem, you may need to drain the washing machine manually (I cover that later in the article). 

Power Loss And Power Supply Issues

Power outages, power supply issues, and faulty outlets can cause a washing machine door to become locked. 

Indesit washing machines use an electronic locking system where the machine instantly locks or unlocks by pressing the pause/start button, but the downside of this is that if the door is locked during a power cut then it will remain locked. 

Inspect the power outlet for any problems and plug another device into it to see if it’s working. Look for any damage to the power cord, like tears, frays, or burnt portions.

It’s also a good idea to check your circuit breaker. If the circuit breaker has tripped, switch it back on to see if the issue is resolved. Otherwise, set your washing machine on an individual circuit to ensure it’s getting enough power.

Faulty Door Lock

Some Indesit models have a door lock or switch that signals to the machine when the door is closed. A faulty door lock can signal the door position incorrectly to the machine which prevents the door from opening. 

An F06 or F17 error code indicates a problem with the interlock or handle unit and the door cannot be opened or closed. You should be aware that some machines manufactured prior to 2020 had an inherent door interlock problem causing a severe fire hazard. You should check your machine here to make sure it hasn’t been recalled. 

You may need to replace the door lock mechanism to fix the problem. Inspect your owner’s manual for instructions, or consider calling a professional repair company.

Here is a great video on how to repair a faulty door interlock system: 

Broken Door Handle

In some cases, your Indesit washing machine door won’t open due to a broken door handle. The door handle can become worn out or damaged over time, causing it to get stuck. Unfortunately, Indesit washers are also known for their door handles malfunctioning. 

Excessive force or slamming the door can also cause issues and are more likely if you have young children who might not always use the machine with care. 

And try not to let your temper get the best of you! Laundry is already an unglamorous chore, so issues can make you want to slam that lid down pretty hard. Try to resist the urge, but if you do, be honest with your repairman about it!

Child Lock

Some Indesit washing machines have a child lock feature that prevents the door from opening.

If the child lock is enabled, your appliance won’t open until you disable the feature. The steps to disable the child lock will vary from model to model. But for most Indesit machines all you need to do is hold the child lock button for 2 seconds. 

Check your owner’s manual or the manufacturer’s website to learn how to disable the child lock setting.

Hardware Or Software Malfunctions

In some cases, mechanical components can break or get jammed, preventing the door from opening. Malfunctions with various electronics, like sensors or software, can also cause issues. You may need to contact a service technician or repair your machine if you suspect these problems.

How to quickly open A jammed Indesit Washing Machine Door

As a general rule of thumb, you have to wait 2-3 minutes after a cycle before you can open the door of an Indesit washing machine. Instruction manuals say you should always wait until the ‘door locked’ indicator vanishes before attempting to open the door to prevent damage.

That said, if the door is locked after five or more minutes, your machine might require additional repairs or troubleshooting.

These situations can happen from specific settings, slow draining times, and hardware malfunctions. Fortunately, Indesit washing machines have a built-in latch you can use to release the door.

Let’s break down the steps on how to unlock a stuck Indesit washing machine door.

Step 1: Turn Off The Machine

First, press the power button to turn off the machine. The control panel will remain on for around five seconds after you turn off the unit. Give the machine two to three minutes to cool down.

Note: some machines (like my Samsung) have capacitors which ‘store’ a certain amount of power so will appear to still be ON even when unplugged. For me, this is usually be less than 30 seconds at most.

Step 2: Drain Leftover Water With A Drain Cycle

An Indesit washing machine won’t open if there’s water in the drum. You can run a rinse, drain, or spin cycle to remove leftover water. However, you’ll need to drain the machine via the garbage filter if the cycle doesn’t finish the job.

Your spin and drain cycle icon probably looks like this one:

Indesit spin cycle

Step 3: If That Doesn’t Work, Drain The Water Manually

If the drain cycle doesn’t remove the leftover water, you’ll need to drain the machine manually using the garbage filter. To do so, locate the filter area. Place dry towels around the site and a bucket under the filter to catch the water.

Following the manufacturer’s instructions, unscrew the plug from the filter. Wait for the water to drain into the bucket before moving on.

This video shows you how to drain water from your Indesit:

Step 4: Take Off The Bottom Panel

Indesit washing machines have a bottom panel that can be removed. You can typically pull the panel off using your hands. If it’s stuck or too tight, you can use a butter knife or a similar tool.

Indesit washing machine panel

Slide the butter knife or tool in between the two panels. Now, lift the knife towards you to open the panel. Remove the panel and move on to step 5.

Step 5: Locate The Latch And Open

There should be a visible latch after you remove the bottom panel. It may be green or brightly colored. Pull the green tab with one hand and open the door with the other until you hear a click. The door should open normally. You may need to move the latch up and down and fiddle around with the tab to get the door to open. 

Indesit washing machine door latch

Step 6: Re-Insert Latch And Panel

Now, you’ll need to re-insert the latch by putting it back in the place where you found it. There should be a hole where you can secure the latch in place. Afterward, snap the panel you removed back into place.

Step 7: Start The Machine

Lastly, restart the machine. The door should open as usual. Start a cycle to see if everything is resolved. If you’re still experiencing issues, it’s best to contact a professional service technician for further diagnosis and repair.

How To Prevent Indesit Washing Machine Door Locking

Obviously, preventing the problem entirely can save you the headache of figuring it out! Here are some preventative measures you can take to avoid this issue in the future:

  1. Regular Maintenance: Keeping your washing machine clean and well-maintained can prevent many issues, including a locked door. Clean the filter regularly, and replace any worn-out parts, such as the door handle or latch.
  2. Use the Correct Detergent: Using too much detergent can cause buildup and blockages in the washing machine, leading to issues such as a locked door. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for detergent use, and use the correct amount for your load size.
  3. Use the Correct Washing Cycle: Using the correct washing cycle for your load can prevent issues such as excess water buildup, which can cause a locked door. Use the appropriate cycle for your load size and type, and avoid overloading the machine.
  4. Keep the Door Handle and Latch in Good Condition: Over time, the door handle and latch can become worn out or damaged, leading to a locked door. To prevent this, avoid slamming the door shut or using excessive force when opening or closing the door.
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Hi, I'm Ed, and I run BuildFanatic! I enjoy providing the best possible information on a range of home improvement topics.

Andy Fulenchek
Owner at Grace Appliance | Website | + posts

Andy is a professional appliance repairman and business owner with years of hands-on experience. He co-authors and reviews appliance articles, ensuring accuracy and top-notch information for readers.

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