How to reset the Anti-Flood Device on your Electrolux Dishwasher

Have you ever had that heart-sinking feeling when an appliance makes a noise you’ve never heard before? An alarm sounds and all you can think of is how much it’s going to cost you to call an engineer out to fix it. This happened to me a couple of evenings ago. I have an Electrolux integrated dishwasher, model ESL 4200LO. It’s only just out of warranty, typical!

I checked the machine out and found that the empty pump was running constantly, even when I opened the door, usually everything stops at this point, but it didn’t. The alarm was beeping 3 times intermittently along with a flashing “end of cycle” LED. The only way I could get everything to stop was to turn off the power, not the ideal situation.

I checked the manual to see what the alarm meant and it turns out that the Anti-Flood device had been activated. This activates if the machine detects a leak, handy to know that your kitchen won’t be flooded if something goes wrong.

So how to fix it? With the help off Google and some common sense I managed to do it and it was surprisingly easy. Why am I writing this post if it’s easy and you can find the information online? I found the information from lots of sources, there was no one site that told me the full story and definitely none with pictures.

Please make sure the power is switched off for this method, we don’t want any accidents.

Here goes…

1 – Remove the kickback (this is the narrow piece of wood found below your cupboard doors that hides the area under the kitchen cupboards).

2 – Use a screwdriver to remove the screws that hold the lower cover in place on the base of your dishwasher. It’s a little awkward but doable.

3 – You should now be able to see into the lower part of your dishwasher. If you have a torch or a phone with an LED flashlight this will help. You will be able to see into the “reservoir” and hopefully be able to see the water. Here’s a picture of what mine looked like:

Dishwasher anti flood device

Reservoir filled with dirty water, polystyrene switch in the background

You can see the water and also towards the back you can see the anti-flood device activation switch. It’s the white polystyrene float that’s in the water. This is what has floated in the water and activated the empty pump.

4 – Get a small sponge or cloth and empty the water from the reservoir into a bucket. This may take some time as you can only do a little bit at a time but it will work.

5 – Once all the water has been removed the polystyrene switch should be fully down. If not gently pull it down so it sits on the plastic base. Here’s how it should look:


6 – Now reattach the cover with the screws and replace the kickback.

Your dishwasher should now work as normal. If not then you’ll unfortunately have to contact an engineer to fix the issue.

I fixed mine last night so I am hoping it’s either a one off job or something I have to do yearly. If it’s something I have to do any more often than every quarter then I think I have a proper leak.

Please note, this way worked for me. I can’t accept any responsibility it doesn’t work for you or if your dishwasher is broken as a result. This is done so at your own risk.

Let me know how you got on, feel free to comment as I always reply.

Good luck with the fix!

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Also published on Medium.

87 thoughts on “How to reset the Anti-Flood Device on your Electrolux Dishwasher

  • Evening!

    Thank you! I live just down the road in Farnborough and my Electrolux dishwasher broke on Saturday exactly the same thing, followed your instructions and hey presto working again. Ironically mine was 1 month out of the the 2 year warranty.
    Great detailed instructions, same as you i’m waiting to see if its a proper leak.
    just the boiler now but that wont be a diy job!
    Thanks again


    • Hey Huw, I’m really pleased to hear it worked for someone else! Mine was 1 month out of warranty too, typical or what! Fingers crossed if we have to do it again that it’s a good long way away haha. Good luck with your boiler! M

  • Spot on worked a treat very simple fix took about 15mins soaking up water with sponges and kitchen towel and resetting float. Waited through cycle after switching back on no further water leak.

  • Wow! Just followed the instructions posted here after the dreaded beeping last night and this am and it appears to be fixed. Always wondered if I would ever find a use for those old Disney towels.
    Thanks very much!

  • Mark you’re a star. Not sure why it did it but it is under warranty so I’ll get the buggers to replace it if it keeps happening
    Happy :-)))))

  • What is the white plastic screw in front? Wouldn’t that open a drain of the water? It is accessible even without removing the metal cover. I could easily catch the water into an old towel then…

  • Thank you for this manual! Do you happen to know what is the white screw in front? Isn’t it a drain? It is accessible without removing the metal cover, and I can easily catch the water into an old towel…

  • Thank you so much – this advice worked like a dream! Money is so tight and this dishwasher issue had added to my worries.

    • I’m so glad it worked for you too! I know exactly what you mean, when you hear beeps like that all you can think is how much is it going to cost. Fingers crossed it’ll be a while yet before you need a new dishwasher 🙂

  • I followed your steps and had the same thing,I cleaned the water it stopped the sound and when I started the dishwasher,water was leaking after a while from the two plastic black tubes above the float device…I’ll have to find the technician to fix it.It is something from inside.but well done and thank you for the info,you are the only one who found how to stop the alarm.

  • Just for reference, I had the exact same problem with my ESL5310lo dishwasher. Followed the same steps, remove the lower front plate, clean the tray of water using kitchen towels, and the machine was back in operating condition. Then ran the machine without front plate on the maximum temperature setting, to see if anything leaked. Everything stayed dry, the water must’ve accumulated over a longer period.

    Note for others: the front plate does give some structural stability to the machine (keeping the bottom plastic plate in shape), so it’s not wise to leave it off for too long, but it’s apparently OK to run just one program with the plate removed, to be able to verify there are no structural leaks in any of the equipment.

    • I agree, however, I also think it’s caused by pouring liquids into the machine as it’s being filled before running a cycle. Plus the accumulated liquids over time build up and it drips below. I may be wrong though haha

  • Your are an absolute star – thinking we needed a new dishwasher. Done exactly what you said and my husband is amazed I have repaired it with your help. Much appreciated

    • I’m really glad it worked for you! I’ve had to do it once or twice over the last 6 months, but certainly cheaper than a new dishwasher haha

  • I can think of better things to do on a Saturday night, but Thank You very much for your advice, I followed your instructions and it’s worked, and mine too is 1 month out of the 2 year warranty. Have never had this problem with with a BOSCH.

  • Hi,

    This helped me too.

    Great photos that really helped.

    Once the water was removed from the drip tray the Micro switch float fell down flush back onto the drip tray. Just a little addition maybe its an idea to run the machine and observe if there are any leaks in the pipes and hoses with the metal cover removed.. In my case it was a blocked filter causing the water to run through the overflow into the drip tray.

    Ps. Always rinse off before putting shepard’s pie dishes in the dishwasher. Lol

  • Hi from sunny Scotland

    Our dishwasher failed last night in the exact way you described and your fix worked perfectly today. So pleased at not having to call out an engineer. You’re a star – many thanks David

  • Mark – thanks you so much for doing this. We had the same problem and thanks to you have fixed it without any cost. You’re an absolute star. Best wishes Emma

  • Thankyou sooo much Mark- followed your instructions and it’s worked!!! No payouts!!!! You’ve made me very happy!!! (No more washing dishes!!!)

  • Hi Mark found your thread on another site (how to mend it). Thank you so much for your helpful advice, just putting it on a 70 wash now so fingers crossed 😀

  • Thank you very much, it helped a bunch.

    The problem wasn’t the fact it was filled, but the problem was a hose which was unconnected.
    Basically pouring water into the dishwasher I discovered all of it was running directly to the resevoir, nearby the hole was an hose with clamp attached in the end, simply reattached the pipe, cleaned the resevoir and reconnected the dishwasher.

  • You are a legend. Perfect fix for my dishwasher. Reading the manual there was no apparent fix for the 3 beeps!!! Your instructions were spot on. Thanks pal

  • Thank you sooooo much!!!! I’ve just done this as I’d googled the product manual and it told me it was the anti flood device but says call an engineer!!! Keep on googling and I found your advice, just done it and it worked!! Thanks for saving me no doubt a fortune in engineer fees!! 🙂

  • I couldn’t believe looking at the replies how many times this problem had occurred and how many times your fix Mark has saved the day. Last night I had the same problem, dishwasher full of pots and all I could hear was a constant intermittent bleep and the panel displaying the end cycle. The thing that seemed strange was when I opened the door it didn’t stop anything and all I could hear was the drain pump constantly running. I googled as you do looking for a solution, I came across your solution, read the thread and thought ok it’s a job for the morning, isolated the dishwasher from the mains and went to bed. I am absolutely so pleased with myself after spending 30 min following your instructions this morning, substituted the cloth for a wet n dry vacuum and sucked up the water. Reset the float to lie flat and guess what 100% success.
    I couldn’t see any leaks or probably understand where the water came from in the first place but I had fixed it and still have my Sunday to myself.
    Thanks again Mark, perfect set of instructions

  • Thanks. Worked a treat on my neue (Electrolux by a different name). What a stupid design though. The Miele I had in my old house was much easier to do and didn’t involve takin it apart.

  • Awesome! This has happened before and had to wait for hubby to come home and mend it. Sorted it myself in no time at all. Very good instructions….tvm

  • So, snowed in, got to get the cat to the Cattery, flying in 12 hours time and then the dishwasher went caput with the anti-flood alarm! Thanks to your great instructions our AAG is now fixed and last load of pots clean. Cheers Mark

  • Just followed your excellent advice, it was full of dirty water… machine is now giving me a single beep and end of cycle light though (instead of the previous three beeps)….. any ideas?

    • Glad to hear it sorted one of the errors on your dishwasher!

      With regard to the single beep, if your machine is beeping once and flashing the end indicator once then it may be something to do with your water inlet. Did you turn off the water in order to fix the first problem? This is what my manual says:

      Problem and alarm code:
      The appliance does not fill with water.
      • The end indicator flashes 1 time intermittently.
      • Acoustic signal sounds 1 time intermittently.

      Possible cause and solution:
      • Make sure that the water tap is open.
      • Make sure that the pressure of the water supply is not too low. For this information, contact your local water authority.
      • Make sure that the water tap is not clogged.
      • Make sure that the filter in the inlet hose is not clogged.
      • Make sure that the inlet hose has no kinks or bends.

      Hope this helps.

  • It’s beeping three times again now and there is water back in the reservoir… I could cry!! Haha. Perhaps there is a leak? Should I call an engineer? I thought I was doing so well with your massive help.

    • Hi Kate, I have exactly the same problem. It beeps once so I turn the power off at the wall for a couple of minutes, then restart the programme. It then beeps 3 times, so I drain underneath as Mark says and restart the programme, it then works fine. I have to go through this routine every time I use the dishwasher! Mine is an Aeg Favorit 34502VIO.
      What I can’t understand is, if it was a blockage or permanent leak, why does it eventually work? It’s doing my head in

  • Thanks. Googled it seen it might be anti flood. Googled that. And this comes up. Worked a treat. Wasnt much water in it but none the less.

    Dishes been cleaned as I type happy days.

  • It was all going so well but then the same error is back. The white bit would go right down. There was a gap and we didn’t want to force it although we did get rid of all the water. Any other suggestions welcome…I can’t inagine an engineer is going to come out this side of Xmas now 🤦🏼‍♀️

  • Brilliant – So far so good. I thought I was going to buy a new dishwasher but this seems to have solved the problem. Thank you so much!!

  • Thank you so much, this has worked a treat. I was told to put washing up liquid in dishwasher to clean it but my kitchen floor was covered in foam so won’t do that again. Thank you again and happy new year 😊

  • Thank you Mark! Excellent tip. Just saved me 500 bucks on a new dishwasher! This is the third time i extend the life on this old sucker 😀

    • Oh! I should add that this was for an Electrolux ESF 45010 model, so the error code (The end of program green led flashes 3 times with appr. 3 secs intervals between while the drain pump keeps running) applies to that model too.

      BR and happy new year from Sweden.

  • Worked perfectly for me. Clear and concise. This has happened before but got an engineer out as machine had an extended warranty. Saved waiting a week for a call out (hate washing dishes!!) lesson learned…… always clean out the filters. Bizarrely there were Christmas tree needles in mine. Mmmmmm…….

  • Hi Mark, first off great piece of advice re anti flood device. Good to see lots of people where helped out by this advice. I am currently dealing with mother in laws Electrolux ESL7220 which has started out with a kinked drain hose fault then went on to the anti flood tripping. My question is about the two drain hoses that pass unwanted water into the reservoir from inside of the machine. If this is caused by excess fluid in the machine before starting then why does it not drain out the fluid used during the wash cycle. P.S. Manually tripping the flood device is also a good way of emptying the machine if you have to stop the machine mid cycle to empty it out. Just be extra careful as the machine is still live!! Keep up the good work.

  • Electrolux ESL6211LO with the same problem, end indicator flashing 3 times & acoustic signal sounding 3 times so followed the above instructions (found via google) & problem solved, cheers Mark 🤓

  • Hi ,I have just had the same problem and this sorted it 😊,I was just wondering,in the first picture there is a bar leading from the float to the foreground which has a white piece at the end,does anyone know what this is for?Thanks

  • So glad we found you! Our dishwasher (again, typically out of warranty now too) did the whole beeping / pump running thing tonight (couldn’t figure out where the beeping was coming from at first!) and had a mini panic. Luckily, my OH was the sane one, told me to google it and we came across your how to. Thank you! He’s currently just (trying with some swearing) to put the plate back on. Our kitchen is now mercifully quote and now steam free again.

  • Just done it and it worked!!!! Happened just over a year ago and we called and engineer out. Won’t be doing that again! Thanks!

  • Hello. Many thanks for taking the time to write and publish this. Was woken up by the running pump and beeps in the middle of the night. Followed your instructions and had it all sorted out in no time. Used a calpol pippette to get the water out. Here’s hoping it’s another 3 years until I have to do this again!

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