Can You Run A Hot & Cold Fill Washing Machine With Only A Cold Water Supply?

If you have purchased a washing machine that has a hot and cold feed and your home only has a cold water supply connection you might be wondering if you will need to get a hot water connection installed. This is an option but there is an easier way to solve this problem.

Keep reading to find out more.

How to Supply Water To The Hot & Cold Connectors Using Just The Cold Fill Supply

If your washer needs to be connected to both a hot and cold feed and your home only has a cold fill pipe all you need to do is connect a Y connector to the cold water pipe and then connect the hot pipe on one side and the cold pipe on the other side and run them to your washing machine.

Your washer will work properly but some cycles may take longer than they otherwise would. This is because there is no hot water and the machine will need time to heat the cold water to the required temperature for that particular cycle.

What Would Happen If The Hot Fill Hose Was Left Unconnected?

open washing machine door

If you were to leave the hot fill unconnected and just connected the cold water hose to the cold valve, there’s a good chance that some cycles wouldn’t work at all. Particularly hot wash cycles which typically would usually only fill from the hot water fill.

You might get lucky and the machine would adjust and heat up water supplied from the cold supply. But that’s not the usual way these things work out.

If the cycle doesn’t start or starts and then aborts shortly afterwards, then you’d need to select a different cycle which doesn’t rely on hot water.

It will be far better to connect both the hot and cold fill valves to the cold supply using a Y connector which will then allow you to use any wash cycle. This is because even washing machines with hot and cold feeds still have an onboard heating element to ensure the water reaches the correct temperature for the cycle selected.

Will The Washer Use More Electricity?

As the washer will need to heat up the water before the wash cycle commences, it will use extra electricity. However, if it’s relatively new (10 years or less) it won’t use a great deal of extra energy as they don’t use that much water compared to older models.

So unless you regularly use 60 or 90o C wash cycles, you shouldn’t notice too much difference in your energy usage.

Many manufacturers agree that on 40o C wash cycles it’s more energy efficient to use a cold water fill and slowly heat the water to the required temperature.

Why Have Manufacturers Removed The Hot Fill Option From Modern Washing Machines?

laundry room with pile of clothes

The washing machine business is like any other, in as much as they’re all competing for the same customers. This means they need to keep their production costs as low as they can.

By removing the option for a hot fill system they have reduced their costs significantly. There is no need for any of the following;

  • Hot Fill Inlet Hose
  • Hot Fill Inlet Valve
  • Connecting Hoses (to the dispenser and hot valve)
  • Wiring

How Does It Benefit The Customer?

Saving the manufacturer money is all well and good, but what’s in it for us, the humble customer? Well, decreased manufacturing costs should result in a lower purchase price which should save you money.

Plus, unless the washing machine is situated close to the boiler or water heater, even with a hot fill, the on board heating element will need to reheat the water to the required temperature. With many modern washers having 20o C wash cycles, the heating element doesn’t need to work for too long.

The only way it will cost significantly more to run is if you run frequent 60 or 90o C washes.

SEE ALSO: Does Washing Powder Work in Cold Water?

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you run a washing machine with only a cold water line?

If your new washing machine only has a cold inlet valve it is designed to only be connected to the cold water supply, However, if your washer has a hot and a cold water inlet it will need to be connected to both. Or you can connect the hot and cold to the cold supply via a Y connector.

Can a hot and cold fill washing machine be connected to cold only?

Yes, a hot and cold fill washing machine can be connected to a cold supply only. All you need to do is fit a Y connector and run both hoses from that. The washer will heat the water to the required temperature for the cycle selected.

Does a washing machine need a hot or cold inlet?

Most modern washing machines only need a cold inlet. However, there are still some that require both a hot and cold inlet.

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