Why Are My Clothes Tearing In The Washing Machine?

Taking a load of clothes out of the washing machine only to discover some of them have tears or rips in them is a discouraging sight to the say the least. After all, the whole point of washing clothes is to keep them clean so you can wear them again. The only thing you can really do with torn clothes is toss them out and replace them with new ones, and this can easily become a financial burden. Instead of allowing your washing machine to literally eat your clothes, you should try to determine what's causing the problem and fix it.


There are a number of reasons why you should never overload your washing machine with more clothes than what it's designed for, one of which is to keep them from tearing. Naturally, trying to force too many clothes into a washing machine increases the risk of a tear, snag or some other form of damage. The excessive load changes the weight and integrity of the washing machine; therefore, some of the clothes may snag inside. To prevent this from happening, be aware of how many clothes you wash at once and never fill it with more than what it's designed for.


Front-loading washing machines typically have a large cylinder pole in the center known as the agitator. When the washing machine is turned on, the agitator spins rapidly to spread water and soap throughout the load. During the spin cycle, the agitator goes even faster to help dry the clothes. If you're experiencing torn clothes in your washing machine, there's a good chance it could be related to the agitator. Once a shirt or pair of pants get caught up around it, the agitator can rip them apart. So, how are you supposed to fix this? Take a flashlight and shine it down around the agitator to see if there are any loose or broken parts. If a protective plastic piece has broken off, parts of clothes might be able to get trapped in it and stuck around the agitator.

In rare cases, the problem can be related to a malfunctioning washing machine belt. If the belt is torn or not working like it should, it may cause the machine to spin faster than usual. Depending on the make and model of your washing machine, this may or may not be easy to spot. If you're unable to find the belt, give a professional technician a call to come out and see exactly what the problem is.