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  #1  
Old 12-30-2003, 09:49 PM
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Jetfire Jetfire is offline
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Thumbs down Any appliance gurus out there? Washer issues...

You'd think that a two year old house would not have appliance issues. The day before Thanksgiving, our oven ignitor crapped out on us. Tonight I was running a load of laundry, only to find that the washer is no longer draining.

I started the washer and checked on it about an hour later, to find a tub full of water and wet clothing and a slight electrical smell. After playing around with the controls, I've observed that the washer will start to spin after agitation, but stops after a few seconds. It looks like the washer isn't draining. What could be wrong? If the water pump is fried, would the washer stop spinning if it detected that the tub was not draining properly? What could the electrical smell have come from? Some suggest burnt wires going to the water pump.
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  #2  
Old 12-30-2003, 09:53 PM
PropellerHead PropellerHead is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jetfire
What could the electrical smell have come from? Some suggest burnt wires going to the water pump.
Electrical smell could be from motor trying to spin full tub o' water and clothes. Worst case, your pump stopped, didn't drain, whatever.. and the motor tried to spin the clothes burning up in process.

THe GOOD news is that both are easy and cheap DIY's. Watched a friend take his out. While he opted to make the wife happy and buy new stuff, the replacement parts would have been about $300 from Sears.
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  #3  
Old 12-30-2003, 10:04 PM
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Interesting. I think the motor is okay. I tried to "redo" the laundry and saw the agitator work, and saw the spin cycle attempt to run again. Still won't drain, though.

Some Googling brought up the possibility that the wires to the pump may have burnt out. I hope it's that simple...if I have to replace the pump (or get to it for whatever reason), do I have to empty the tub first?
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  #4  
Old 12-30-2003, 10:30 PM
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Kaz Kaz is offline
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Hey, you mentioned an igniter. Was this from a forced-air furnace? If so, mine is out. Did you diagnose/fix it yourself or have it done professionally?
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  #5  
Old 12-30-2003, 10:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaz
Hey, you mentioned an igniter. Was this from a forced-air furnace? If so, mine is out. Did you diagnose/fix it yourself or have it done professionally?
I did diagnose it, but I didn't fix it. It was our oven and we were supposed to cook Thanksgiving dinner for my parents the following day. Since I'd never touched an appliance, I opted to call a service and got it replaced later that day. I got absolutely reamed by the price of the service. The labor charge wasn't bad, but I was easily charged double for the part. Possibly triple.

Anyway, I saw what the service tech did. If it's just the ignitor/er, it's a pretty easy fix -- a matter of disconnecting the old one and installing the new one. If you can track down the right part number, it should be a breeze.
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  #6  
Old 12-30-2003, 10:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jetfire

Anyway, I saw what the service tech did. If it's just the ignitor/er, it's a pretty easy fix -- a matter of disconnecting the old one and installing the new one. If you can track down the right part number, it should be a breeze.
Darn... At first, before looking at it, I figured it couldn't be too complicated. a couple of wires out of a control circuit to drive the igniter. Um, no, there appear to be two halves of the igniter system, and WAY too many wires than I could figure without a wiring diagram, so I could at least see where I need to probe around.

hmm...

As for washer problems, I'm hoping to replace mine while the old one still works so then it'll become someone else's potential problem.
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  #7  
Old 12-30-2003, 10:57 PM
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Our townhouse is only two years old, and all of the kitchen and laundry appliances are made by GE. I'm surprised at my unreliability streak.
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  #8  
Old 12-31-2003, 12:26 AM
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Terry Kennedy Terry Kennedy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jetfire
I started the washer and checked on it about an hour later, to find a tub full of water and wet clothing and a slight electrical smell. After playing around with the controls, I've observed that the washer will start to spin after agitation, but stops after a few seconds. It looks like the washer isn't draining. What could be wrong? If the water pump is fried, would the washer stop spinning if it detected that the tub was not draining properly? What could the electrical smell have come from? Some suggest burnt wires going to the water pump.
Top loader, right? (there'a really obscure joke in there about an RDOS SYSGEN and a DG 4234 disk drive, but I don't think anybody here will get it ). Anyway, there's usually a clutch that engages which will convert the motor's motion from agitation to spin. It usually engages with a slight "clunk". If you smell burning, then the problem might be in the control dial, since the clutch is activated for the spin cycle and will stay engaged due to friction until the spin cycle stops - it doesn't need continuous power.
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  #9  
Old 12-31-2003, 07:54 AM
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Try this web site. It's helped me before.

repairclinic.com
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  #10  
Old 12-31-2003, 08:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jetfire
Our townhouse is only two years old, and all of the kitchen and laundry appliances are made by GE. I'm surprised at my unreliability streak.
I know it's probably too late, but consider a home warranty. You should be able to get one at any point, however, it usually costs more if you didn't start in the program when you first bought your house. For about $300+ a year plus a $100 deductible for each incident it would cover all these issues and just about anything that goes wrong on the interior of your home (electrical/plumbing/appliances, etc). When we bought our 10 year old home it came with a warranty. We extended it an additional year. In the 2 years, I had to replace an entire central AC unit, replace an ice maker, and replace a garage door opener. Replacement of the AC unit would have been nearly $2200 itself.

As for appliances that come with new homes, regardless of the brands they're usually contractor grade. Typically not on the high end of the scale.
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  #11  
Old 12-31-2003, 08:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Terry Kennedy
... If you smell burning, then the problem might be in the control dial, since the clutch is activated for the spin cycle and will stay engaged due to friction until the spin cycle stops - it doesn't need continuous power.
I have seen the wires leading to the control dial burn up...a quick dab of solder and some tape and it was good as new.
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  #12  
Old 12-31-2003, 08:46 AM
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If it's a top loader, you will have to drain the tub to make any repairs since the motor, pump and transmission are accessed from below.
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  #13  
Old 12-31-2003, 09:46 AM
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Call and get one of these brought over

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  #14  
Old 12-31-2003, 09:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jw
I know it's probably too late, but consider a home warranty. You should be able to get one at any point, however, it usually costs more if you didn't start in the program when you first bought your house. For about $300+ a year plus a $100 deductible for each incident it would cover all these issues and just about anything that goes wrong on the interior of your home (electrical/plumbing/appliances, etc). When we bought our 10 year old home it came with a warranty. We extended it an additional year. In the 2 years, I had to replace an entire central AC unit, replace an ice maker, and replace a garage door opener. Replacement of the AC unit would have been nearly $2200 itself.

As for appliances that come with new homes, regardless of the brands they're usually contractor grade. Typically not on the high end of the scale.
What he said, excpet we pay a little less and our deductible is a little lower. The only issue I have had is that it very tough to get them to replace something if it can be repaired for a dollar cheaper. With as many calls as we've put in on our central A/C, they would have been way ahead if they just replaced it the first, second or third time. Oh well...we've only paid the deductible once for that and the thing didn't break again after late June this year.
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  #15  
Old 12-31-2003, 09:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Phil
Call and get one of these brought over

I thought the Amish used these?

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  #16  
Old 12-31-2003, 10:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ·clyde·
What he said, excpet we pay a little less and our deductible is a little lower. The only issue I have had is that it very tough to get them to replace something if it can be repaired for a dollar cheaper. With as many calls as we've put in on our central A/C, they would have been way ahead if they just replaced it the first, second or third time. Oh well...we've only paid the deductible once for that and the thing didn't break again after late June this year.
I had a similar problem. Rather than replace the entire AC system which would have been cheaper, they wound up replacing all the parts over a two call period.

We didn't opt for renewing the warranty this year. So far, we haven't had any problems. However, if I want to sign up again, I'm pretty sure it will cost me more.
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  #17  
Old 12-31-2003, 12:15 PM
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Quote:
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I thought the Amish used these?



Yep, but my wife is not
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  #18  
Old 12-31-2003, 04:36 PM
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Well, I took apart the sucker today. Washing machines are pretty simple things, aren't they? I saw no signs of burnt wiring anywhere, although I didn't unwrap the portions of the harness that were wound with electrical tape. FWIW, those parts showed no signs of burning or melting at all.

I pulled out the spin basket and poked into the drain tube -- all clear. I then disconnected the pump and checked for any kinks or blockage. My guess is that the pump died on me. Found the part online with Saturday delivery, ordered it. Let's see what happens when it arrives. Thanks for the help! You'd think that I would be unafraid to tear into a simple home appliance after taking apart my engine, but I was honestly quite scared of it for some reason. Silly me.
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  #19  
Old 12-31-2003, 05:59 PM
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I have washer issues too... she won't shut up!

(Okay, okay, I know it's a horrible joke. It was just too easy.)
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  #20  
Old 12-31-2003, 06:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Plaz
I have washer issues too... she won't shut up!

(Okay, okay, I know it's a horrible joke. It was just too easy.)
Mine has a drinking problem.
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  #21  
Old 01-03-2004, 10:43 AM
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Well, so much for that. New pump arrived today, plugged 'er in, still won't drain. For sanity's sake, I re-checked the wires going to the pump (this time with a homebrow continuity tester -- I've got to get a multimeter) and they're fine. Checked the drain hose out the back of the washer, and it's fine.

I put the washer into service mode and put a small amount of water into the tub, then forced it to drain/spin. I hear a click, then a pause before the tub starts to spin. I assume that clicking sound is the relay switching on to activate the pump? At this point, I think it's the control panel, but I can't wait around any more for parts to arrive.

Sigh. Appliance service called, appointment made for tomorrow. Let's see what this guy finds out...
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sold: '99 M3 Coupe
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  #22  
Old 01-03-2004, 12:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jetfire
Appliance service called, appointment made for tomorrow. Let's see what this guy finds out...
How much do they charge for Sunday service calls?
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  #23  
Old 01-03-2004, 01:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ·clyde·
How much do they charge for Sunday service calls?
No more than usual, actually, but that doesn't matter; the guy called after we set up the appointment to say that he could be here in an hour.

Notes to self: 1) Buy a multimeter. 2) Stop calling appliance repair services.

The guy who came was great; he knew his stuff and was a really nice guy. But here's what he did: Check for voltage going to the water pump, then check for continuity of the water pump wires, then mess around a bit with the controls, then proclaim my control panel dead. That's a special order item, so there was no way to get it fixed today. Estimate to get it fixed by them: $270. I paid him the service charge for the visit and sent him on his way (after a discussion over my M3 in the garage). I then found a new control panel online for $92, which won't ship until Monday, but I'm sure the appliance guy wouldn't be able to do much better.

The only thing the service guy did, that I didn't do, was check for voltage going to the pump with the washer set to drain/spin. I couldn't do that since I don't have a multimeter. Despite this, he came to the same conclusion that I did. I half expected this, but fully expected them to have the part at hand. Pamela Martha Focker.

$270 would have put me well on my way to a new washer of the same caliber currently installed in the house. And actually, once all is said and done, I'm not going to be too far away from it even after doing the work myself. Live and learn...
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Conforti chip, Evo airbox/K&N filter, UUC short shift kit, oil pan baffle, Hella H4 lights, OEM glass sunroof
sold: '99 M3 Coupe
Cosmos Black
Airbox baffle removed, ZKW ellipsoid headlights, UUC short shift kit, BMW x-brace, debadged

'96 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo V8
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Last edited by Jetfire; 01-03-2004 at 01:29 PM.
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