There are several parts in the door assembly of a washer that can fail. The door latch, the lid switch, even a control board malfunction can keep a washer door from opening or unlocking after the cycle is finished. However, before you can make the right washer repair, you first need to get that washer door open. Here is how to do it.
Before opening the door to your washer, you will first want to make sure that all the water from the interior is drained away. This is more important if you have a front-load washer, but ideally, you still don’t want sopping wet clothes coming out anyway. Your washer should drain if you hit the designated drain button or, if not applicable, the cancel button.
Once the water is gone, unlocking a stuck lid on a top-load washer is as easy as unplugging your washing machine. The lid on top-load washers is activated by heat, so by disconnecting the electricity and letting the washer cool down, it will eventually unlock on its own.
If you own a front-load washer, then things are a little more complicated. You will want to start by disconnecting the power. You will then want to look for an access panel on the front of your washer. Once the cover has been taken off, you will be able to get your hand in there and manually disengage the door latch. This will allow you to open the door. If you have very large hands, you may want to use a screwdriver instead as this can be a pretty tight squeeze.
Once open, now is the time you want to check any potential problems. You may need to replace the door latch or lid switch. If it is a control board problem, then you will likely notice more than just lid latch problems manifesting with the machine.