Tip & How-To about Washing Machines
The washing machine tub, or basket, generally doesn't cause problems. However, at times it may cause damage to the laundry, make a lot of noise, vibrate, or stop completely.
If laundry is torn during the wash cycle, feel around the tub. If you find a rough spot, you may be able to smooth it with an emery board. Sand the spot lightly. If this doesn't work or if you have to cut to bare metal to remove the roughness -- the tub should be replaced. In this case, it's probably much wiser to replace the entire washer.
The agitator -- the finned part that fits on the tub shaft -- can also tear laundry if the fins are cracked or broken. You may be able to solve the problem temporarily by pinching off the splinters with pliers and lightly filing the plastic smooth, but this is just a stopgap measure; the agitator should be replaced. Replace a damaged agitator with a new one of the same type. To do this, unscrew the cap on top of the agitator. With the cap off, pull straight up on the agitator; it should lift off. If it doesn't move, rap its side with a hammer. If it still won't lift off, drive wedges under the bottom rim of the agitator to dislodge it. Then set the new agitator into place and replace the agitator cap.
Damage to the snubber, a padlike device sometimes located under the agitator cap, can cause the machine to vibrate excessively. The snubber may have a suspension spring in it. Lift off the agitator cap and examine the snubber. If the spring is broken, or if the pad is visibly worn, replace the entire snubber. Snubbers might also be found at the splash guard at the top of the tub, under the transmission, or as part of the water pump housing. Look around until you see it.
If the machine doesn't have a snubber, listen for noise at the suspension unit between the tub and the machine cabinet. The suspension unit has fins or pads that may need replacement. In some cases, the entire unit may have to be replaced. Another noise point is the basket support nut. Tighten the nut or, if you can't tighten it, replace it.
Sudden tub stops can be caused by a broken motor belt, but they are usually due to poor tub loading. Check to see if wet laundry is wadded around the bottom of the tub shaft, or under the basket or agitator assembly. Remove the basket or agitator in order to remove the laundry easily.
Posted by Nate... on
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