RL Code On Whirlpool Washer: What Does It Mean?

Whirlpool washing machines are top-of-the-market washing machines that massively reduce the workload of household chores. But, sometimes these washing machines can show some error codes that can leave us baffled.

One such type of error code is the RL code on Whirlpool washer. When this particular error code is shown on the washing machine display, you might have the impression that the washing machine has malfunctioned. However, this specific code simply means “Remove Load”.

Now, in order to deeply understand this error message on your Whirlpool washing machine, you have to read this discussion till the end. So, see you below.

RL Code On Whirlpool Washer: The Full Form

As we have mentioned above, the RL code on the Whirlpool washing machine means “Remove Load”. This particular message is usually seen when people put some loads (clothes) inside the washing machine drum during the Clean Washer cycle.

During the Clean Washer cycle, the washing machine is supposed to be empty. That means you should not put any clothes inside the washing machine drum when running the Clean Washer cycle. 

RL Code On Whirlpool Washer

However, if you mistakenly keep any load/clothing in the washing machine drum at the time of the Clean Washing cycle, the washing machine will show you an error code “RL”.

When you see this code, you have to understand that the washing machine is telling you to remove the load from the drum. Therefore, if you don’t want to see this error code, all you have to do is remove the clothing from the washing machine drum.

What Is A Clean Washer Cycle? How Is It Related To The Rl Code On Whirlpool Washer?

Like many people, you may think that washing machines are the machines that only do the cleaning. However, what you don’t know is that your washing machine itself requires to be cleaned on a routine basis.

When your Whirlpool washing machine has been used for several weeks, it needs to be cleaned with Affresh® Washing Machine Cleaner tablets. 

More specifically, firstly, you have to empty the washing machine drum and put an Affresh® Washing Machine Cleaner tablet into the washing drum.

Then, you have to run the washing machine several times in the Clean Washer cycle mode. This process removes the existing mildew, fungus, contaminants, and limescales from the inside walls of the washing machine. 

Now, when doing this cleaning process, it is normal for people to be forgetful. As a result, they attempt to start the Clean Washer cycle without emptying the washing machine drum first. Consequently, the washing machine shows the RL code on Whirlpool washer.

This simply means that the washing machine is telling you to remove the load and then run the Clean Washer cycle. 

What To Do When You See RL Code On Whirlpool Washer?

When you see the washing machine showing you the “RL” code in its display, you can do the following things:

1. Removing The Load / Clothing:

This step is the most obvious one. Since your washing machine is telling you to remove the load, you have to remove the load. So, go ahead and pull out any clothes that are left in the washing machine drum.

Remember, sometimes small clothing such as small socks or ties can remain in the washing machine drum without you noticing it. And, this can also cause the error code RL to show up. So, be careful to check if the washing machine drum is indeed empty or not. 

2. Try Rotating The Basket:

If you want to further ensure that there’s no clothing left in the washing machine, you can use your hand to try and rotate the washing machine drum. As the washing machine runs its cleaning cycle by rotating the drum, you should have no problem being able to freely rotate the drum by your hand.

However, if you feel that you cannot rotate the drum by using your hand, you have to understand that there’s something which is restricting the motion. 

Chances are that some clothes have been stuck between the washing drum and the outer tub.

Relevant: Whirlpool Washer Stuck on a Wash Cycle

As a result, the free rotation of the drum is restricted. So, in this step, you’ll have to attempt to remove the clothes/objects that are restricting the rotation of the drum. 

3. Run The Clean Cycle Without The Belt:

As the final step, you can take the belt out of the washing machine and then run the clean cycle. By doing this, you can determine if the problem indeed lies in between the washing machine drum and the outer tub.

Now, if you don’t see the RL code when running the clean cycle without the belt, you can be certain that there is no object in between the washing machine’s drum and the outer tub. 

However, this also indicates that your spin basket bearing is somehow damaged. And, that’s why the washing machine drum is not able to rotate freely. That’s also why the washing machine is showing the RL error code.

So, now you have to replace the washing machine spin basket bearing. In order to replace the bearing, you might have to take help from the customer care service of Whirlpool.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Does the error code RL indicate that my washing machine is permanently damaged?

The error code RL only indicates that your washing machine has something in its washing drum in the process of Clean Washing. Therefore, you just need to remove the object that is in the way of the Clean Washing process.

However, the RL code can also sometimes indicate that the washing machine needs a touch of professional care. This occurs when the spin basket bearing is damaged in your Whirlpool washing machine.

2. Is my warranty invalid if the RL code is showing?

Generally speaking, the warranty service applies to any damage that is caused because of a manufacturing defect in a washing machine. So, if your Whirlpool washing machine is showing the RL error code without any reason, it is pretty certain that it has manufacturing defects.

Therefore, your warranty will still be valid. However, if the RL code is showing because a machine part is damaged due to overuses, your warranty might not be valid anymore.

3. Can I fix the RL code error myself?

In most cases, you’ll be able to fix the RL code in your Whirlpool washing machine yourself. However, it is possible that the RL code is being displayed by the Whirlpool washing machine because a machine part is permanently damaged.

For instance, the RL code can be displayed if the washing machine’s spin basket bearing is damaged. Now, if this is the case for you, you won’t be able to fix the code on your own. Rather, you should seek professional care right away.

Related: Whirlpool Washer Error Code e01 f01- The Ultimate Solution


The bottom line of this discussion is that, if you see the RL code on Whirlpool washer, there is no need to panic. Rather, you have to take informed approaches to tackle the problem.

Or, you can also take help from the official customer care line of the Whirlpool company. In any case, we bid you the best of luck.

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