How to Repair Whirlpool Cabrio LF Long Fill Error with Pictures


The issue we are repairing today is how to fix the LF “Long Fill” “Low Flow” error on a Whirlpool Cabrio Platinum in about an hour for less than $100.

If you are reading this then you likely have a Whirlpool washing machine that is giving an LF error partway through the cycle, in which you have to push the start button again to get it to finish. I am writing this to help out because I had the same issue and had to do a lot of research to figure out what part number to order.

It really isn’t that big of a job to do and you can save yourself hundreds of dollars by not calling a technician or having to buy new. You will have to remove some screws and possibly extend some wires though. Having said that, try this repair at your own risk.

What is the LF error?

The LF error stands for Long Fill or Low Flow (not exactly sure which but either applies) what I do know is that the washer stops until you hit the start button again which is frustrating. From what I have gathered it throws the LF error after not detecting a change in water level over a period of 10 minutes or so.

How do I fix the LF error?

Well first we need to do a little diagnosing. Since the error has to do with the fill rate of water, lets start there.

Check the fill screens

  1. Unplug the washers electrical supply from the wall
  2. Turn off the water shutoffs at the wall then unscrew the hot and cold water supply lines at the washer (make sure you have a rag to soak up any extra water upon removal). You might need to grab some adjustable pliers to help you get off the hose.
  3. Once you get them off, look inside the blue connector they were screwed on to and you will see a little metal screen. If it is blocked with debris then this was likely your problem. Could have been from junk in the water lines or hard water. Grab a tiny flathead and gently scrape the debris off or maybe even use a can of air like you use to clean computer parts.
  4. Before reassembling, try the next step while you already have the hoses off

Check the water supply

While you have the water supply lines disconnected, we might as well test flow

  1. Stick the hot and cold line ends that were on the washing machine into a 5 gal bucket or the laundry room sink (if you have one that is close enough).
  2. Turn on the water supply and see if you have flow. Should come on just like a garden hose would.
  3. If you don’t have any flow or it seems blocked then your next steps are to check the supply lines, valves, or worst case further upstream like the regulator to your house which I won’t cover here.

If you have cleaned the screens and have sufficient water flow from the supply lines then reassemble and try a load or two of wash to see if the LF error goes away. In my case, it did not go away.

How to Find Your Model Number and Further Diagnosis

Since we checked the water supply already, we know it is something inside the washer that is not working. If the control board is not bad (which it probably isn’t since it is lighting up and giving you the LF error) then the only other thing that likely failed is the Inlet Valve Assembly.

Our washing machine is now 8 years or so old. This valve has gone through thousands of loads of wash (we have 2 kids and a dog afterall) and it likely either clogged with hard water deposits or is just worn out. There are 6 little electric solenoids on the valve and it is not surprising that eventually one or more of them would fail.

As a side note, if you only have one part of the washing machine that doesn’t work like the bleach or laundry softener cycles then the inlet valve can still be the culprit as it controls where the water goes when it enters the machine. So if just one of these six solenoid valves failed then just that one function might not work.

To determine what part to use to repair it, first grab the model number off your machine:

How to Repair Whirlpool Cabrio Platinum LF Error Low Fill Inlet Valve
Locate your part number at the back of the washer inside when you open the lid. Mine was a WTW8240YW0

Ordering the Parts

I have a Whirlpool Cabrio Platinum, but the same underpinnings were used on the normal cabrio and some other models also. I found a diagram online of the control board and figured out the part number for the inlet valve for mine was PS11731257

How to Repair Whirlpool Cabrio Platinum LF Error Low Fill Inlet Valve
found a diagram online of the control board and figured out the part number for the inlet valve was PS11731257

Next do some googling. Here is where it got a little foggy for me and why I ended up writing this article. I had a hard time finding anybody that had that exact part number that actually had it in stock. Apparently the valve used on my machine is no longer made and has been replaced by a newer part number that is not a total plug and play solution.

Eventually I stumbled upon the below Amazon listing which seemed right but had some exceptions. The listing says it replaces W10853723 W10342320 W10326913 W10853723VP WPW10326913 PS11731257 (the bold one was the part number I was looking for).

After reading (probably too many) Amazon reviews I was able to determine that it was the orientation of the solenoid electric connectors that was the issue because some the wires don’t reach on certain models. There was some discussion of a replacement wire harness but it was hard to find and well over $100, I wasn’t going to spend that much. This is DIY Metal Fabrication and we ain’t skeered of some little wires.

So I took a small gamble and ordered this valve knowing it would take a little bit of modification to get it to work. Turns out it worked just fine with a tiny bit of modification on two wires.

How to Replace the Inlet Valve Assembly

Remove the lid

Start by taking out the 2 outside screws on the rear with 1/4 inch nut driver or socket and wrench then open the lid and slide the top forward about 3/4 inch then lift up at the front
There are multiple tabs at the front holding the front down, that is why you have to slide it forward before you can lift it up. Don’t grab a flathead and start prying on stuff or you wil break it.
Once it is up you can lean it back until it touches the wall. If there is no wall behind your washer, don’t let it flop back because it will fall off and break.

Remove the hoses

Taking a quick look against the new valve to be sure they looked similar.
With my favorite pair of adjustable pliers, I squeezed the hose clamps and removed the 4 tubes. These are the different tunes that run the water out to the bleach, detergent, laundry softener and to fill the drum.

Remove the control panel

Lay the top back down then loosen 3 screws from the back of the control panel (they don’t come all the way out). Gently lift up and forward on the control panel. Be gentle.
The control panel has enough wire to set it to the side and get a good look at the fill valve. Here you can see how the orientation of the solenoid connectors on the new valve is different from the originals.

Remove the Inlet Control Valve

Now is a good time to take a picture of how all the electrical connectors were before you take anything else apart.

Remove all the connectors on the inlet fill valve. There is a little barb in the middle of each clip holding it on, so lift gently in the middle of the colored clip and slide it off.
Close up of the factory valve on the left and the Amazon valve on the right. Almost exactly identical other than the orientation of the connectors.

Extending the wires

I removed the two screws holding the valve then slid the new one into its place and reattached the screws. I took the electrical tape off the harness and the only wire that doesn’t reach is the red one.
To extend the wires, you need a set of strippers and some butt connectors at a minimum. I use some fancier tools listed below because I do this all the time for automotive type wiring.
This is one of my favorite tools. You set the little clear plastic backstop at how much wire you want to strip then stick the wire in and squeeze! Exact strip of the casing on the wire every time. Saves a lot of time and frustration.

Wire strippers:

Heat shrink butt connectors. Spend the extra couple of bucks and get the heat shrink kind. These add an extra layer of security because both the crimp and the heat shrink end will still keep the wire secure.

First cut about a 3″ length of 20 gauge stranded copper wire, strip back the end of each side about 1/2 inch and crimp on a butt connector. Then cut ONE of the wires leading to the solenoid in the middle. Here I stripped the wire from the connector and since it was a little bit smaller than the connector I folded it over so it fit better in the connector. Then crimped it on.

I didn’t take a picture of it, but to crimp the red connectors, there is a little area on the backside of the stripping tool with a blue, yellow, and red dot. This is the area you stick the connector in then squeeze the pliers to crimp (squeeze) the wire inside.

Cut strip and connect the other wire also. I like to stagger my cuts so all of the butt connectors aren’t bunched up in one area. Not a big deal here but it is in automotive applications sometimes. The little butane torch is used to melt the heat shrink tubing on the butt connectors, a lighter would work fine too though.

Reassembling the Inlet Control Valve

How to Repair Whirlpool Cabrio Platinum LF Error Low Fill Inlet Valve
Once the red wires are extended, plug all the wires back in and tuck the wires down, make sure nothing gets pinched. PLUG THEM BACK IN THE RIGHT SPOTS because each does a different function.

Once the solenoid connectors are back on, replace the control panel and tighten the 3 screws back down. Tilt back the top lid again and reconnect the 4 hoses underneath (again, make sure you put them back in the same spots!). Lower the lid back down, slide it back to engage the tabs then put the two rear screws back in with the 1/4″ nut driver.

How to Repair Whirlpool Cabrio Platinum LF Error Low Fill Inlet Valve
Put the washer inlet hoses back on and turn on the water. Check them to make sure they don’t leak.
How to Repair Whirlpool Cabrio Platinum LF Error Low Fill Inlet Valve
Run a load with some non-delicate laundry while staying in the general vicinity to make sure everything goes alright.
How to Repair Whirlpool Cabrio Platinum LF Error Low Fill Inlet Valve
Bingo bango, you saved yourself $800 and/or a bunch of annoying trips from repair companies to come out and diagnose then order parts and come back again.

Hope this helps you. If you can remove some screws and crimp a couple of wires, YOU CAN DO THIS. However if you do decide to, do so at your own risk, I’m only trying to help.

Now YOU go fix something!

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