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    Washing Machine Troubleshooting Guide

Usee this chart to find out what is causing a problem with your washing machine. Look up the symptom and then review some of the possible causes. Follow links from the possible causes to videos on how to verify the cause and how to repair the problem.
     Electric Shock can cause injury or death.
Never assume the electricity is off. Before servicing an electrical device, disconnect it from its electrical source either by unplugging the appliance, or turning off the power at the breaker fuse box. Mark the service panel with a note so that no one will restore power while you are working. After turning off the power to the circuit, test the circuit to be certain that there is no power before attempting service.

 

Symptom

Click on underlined items for further course information

Washer is plugged in but no  noise  and not filling with water

Electric Shock can cause injury or death

BEFORE REPAIRING

Disconnect washer from its electrical source either by unplugging the appliance, or turning off the power at the breaker fuse box

 

  • Check that the washer is plugged in securely

  • Check the circuit breaker or fuse box

  • Test the outlet for current, use a volt meter, or simply pug in a household lamp

Check the outlet voltage, volt meter should be 110v.
  Check water inlet(mixing) valve   Test for power to cold and hot water side's   Check continuity of valves solenoid*** See:
               

Noisy or vibrates too much or load goes off balance

Usually not the problem with the machine. Problem is cause by the way the machine is loaded.

*General tips: Do not put heavy clothing(Jeans) or  with light clothing(nyon) together, bath towel's should always be put only with towels. 

  • Balance the load: Large item such as a comforter or blanket can 'hug' one side of the washer during the spin, throwing the washer off balance and causing it to vibrate. Adding one or more towels or redistributing the weight and resetting the washer, can often solve this problem.

  • Level the machine: Most brands of washer machine have  self-leveling feet so all you have to do is slightly lift from the back  of the machine forward(about inch) off floor  and than drop it to level and for the incorrect foot to self-adjust. Check the level.

  • Insufficient floor bracing: Can cause washer vibrations. Stable floor and minimize vibrations. This problem usually with top load machine.

  • Adding Support: If bracing is suspected but it's impossible to get at the area to add bracing, you can place a 5/8" or 1" sheet of plywood under both appliances, to increase the stability of the floor.

  • Anti-Vibration Products: There are full size anti-vibration platforms as well as small pads on the market and trying these may solve the problem. Since full platforms are rather pricey, you may want to try other solutions before going this route such as the above. The small anti-vibration pads are a more affordable cushioning choice.
  • Separate clothing from heavy clothing from lighter clothing, such as towels from jeans, or redistributing the weight and resetting the washer, can often solve this problem. See  General tips. 

No water is entering the wash, washing machine on

General tips:

Check First that the water supply cold & hot water faucets are turned on

  • Turn water facet on

General Information: * Test the water mixing inlet valve / SEE: Water inlet valve* SEE CONTINUITY TEST BELOW.

Cold & hot  Water inlet mixing valve* on the back of the water, fill hose connect to cold & hot water mixing valve. In each end of the water supply hoses there is a filter screen and inside the water mixing valve to catch small grains of sand to prevent mixing valve from being damaged, DO NOT REMOVE SCREENS PROMINENTLY. If the filter screens become clogged, the result is low water pressure, or no water. KEEP SCREENS CLEAN OUT, same times a screen will be inside the fill hoses at the faucet.

Clothing is damaged

  • Inspect agitator for cracks or rough spots

  • Check to see if in-tub is moving with the agitator

  • Inspect for rust spots  

The water fills the wash tub too slowly

General tips:

Check that the faucets are turned on full

  • Check the water pressure at the tap - usually caused by screens plugged with sand*

  • Check the filter screens SEE: Water mixing inlet valve*

  • Test the water inlet valve -  SEE: Test for continuity Below

  • General Information:

Water inlet mixing valve* Is mount on the back of the washer, with fill hose connect to water mixing valve. In each end of the water supply fill hoses there is a filter screen and  inside the mixing valve to catch small grains of sand to prevent valve from being damaged, DO NOT REMOVE PROMINENTLY. If the filter screens become clogged, the result is low water pressure, no water. KEEP SCREENS CLEAN OUT, same times a screen will be inside the fill hose at the faucet.

The tub does not fill with enough water

General tips:

*Check the small clear plastic tube going to the WLS* and washer tub from any hole(mouses will eat this tube cause the washer to over fill.

Water inlet valve* on the back of the water, fill hose connect to water valve. In each end of the water supply hoses there is a filter screen inside the valve to catch small grains of sand to prevent valve from being damaged, DO NOT REMOVE PROMINENTLY. If the filter screens become clogged, the result is low water pressure, no water. KEEP SCREENS CLEAN OUT, same times a screen will be inside the fill hose at the faucet.


  • Check that the drain hose is positioned roughly as high as the top of the console
  • Test the timer control
  • Test the water level switch / Test for continuity
  • Inspect the air tube for damage, a clear plastic tube connected to water level switch*
  • Inspect the filter screens*
  • Test the water level switch See: Test Instruments tutorial
  • Test the timer control-See: Test Instruments tutorial*
  • Test the lid switch-broken Actuator, attached under lid on top load models or broken caused by off-balance loads. test for continuity
  • Test the water inlet valve-SEE: Water inlet valve* and continuity test

Foul or stale odor coming from washer or clothes

General tips

Run a load with out clothing, fill tub with cold water an put 2-cups of cheap white vinegar in the tub, let the load agitate 4-5 minutes than turn washer off let set for 1-2 hours, restart let washer finish the cycle.


  • Mold buildup in the rubber gasket of the door and the resulting odor on clothes.*
  • Check that the drain line is clear
  • Check the drain hose for kinks or blockages
  • Check pump for blockages
  • Check for build up of soap in the outer tub
  • Check for article of clothing stuck in the outer tub
  • Wash water temperatures below 60 are a breeding ground for bacteria. To save energy  wash in low temperature or cold water. But then you have the bacteria problem. Lower temperatures of water also fail to break down the grease that comes out of the clothing. Even small amounts of grease and oils that come from the skin can contribute, over time, to a greasy build-up.

*Front-loading washing machines having a mold problem

Mold issue with front-loaders:

  • Front-loading washers  required different upkeep than top-loading machines. See UpKeep

General Tips:

  1. Wipe the door gasket and glass dry once you’re done washing.
  2. Clean the detergent dispenser and any attachments once or twice a month.
  3. Run a dehumidifier if your laundry room is damp.
  4. If you see mold buildup in a front-loading washer, call the manufacturer for service

 Help with mold problems

  • Mold buildup in the rubber gasket of the door and the resulting odor on clothes.
  • The mold problem is so widespread that class-action suits are targeting LG, Whirlpool, and Sears, whose Kenmore front-loaders are made by Whirlpool. The Maytag Neptune front-loading washer line has been part of a similar lawsuit, for which a settlement was reached.
  • When washing, use warm or hot water unless a load requires cold.

Mold, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, can cause symptoms that include nasal stuffiness, eye irritation, wheezing, or skin irritation, fever, and shortness of breath. For people with chronic lung illnesses, mold infections can develop in their lungs. And exposure to mold can also bring on asthma attacks.

Front-Load Upkeep and maintenance

Suggested remedies to the mold problem abound. Whirlpool sells Affresh tablets as a way to clean washer residue and mold. Sears warns against using non-HE detergents, cleaners that could create conditions for mold growth. And LG recommends that once or twice a month you run a special hot cycle to which you add bleach to clean the washer.

Other ways, see Blog

Learn to use multimeters   Testing for Continuity, Use of voltmeter and  Ohmmeter. SEE:

A continuity test is the checking of an electric circuit to see if current flows in a solanold, contact is made inside a switch or motor winding are good.(that it is in fact making a complete circuit). A continuity test is performed by devices that can be used to perform continuity tests include multimeters which measure current and specialized continuity testers which are cheaper, more basic devices, generally with a simple light bulb that lights up when current flows. SEE: Electrical Fundamentals Course

When a bad motor winding cannot be found by a physical inspection, many times an ohmmeter may show that there is a defective winding. Read more: How to Test Electric Motor Windings Ohmmeter usages. While the ohmmeter may not show potential failures, it can be used to determine if the windings are good or bad. How to Test Electric Motor Windings.

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