Leaks water in the front of the machine while washing. It is a whirlpool heavy duty super capasity plus. It is about 17 years old
Inspect externally visible components - Somewhere adjacent to your machine will be two faucets, one for cold and one for hot water. Flexible hoses with standard garden hose type fittings on each end connect these faucets to the water inlet valves for your machine. Check to see if either the hot or the cold water hose is leaking either along its length or where it attaches to the faucet or to the water inlet valve. In the simplest case, you may simply need to tighten the hose slightly at one end or the other. A pair of pliers can be used to tighten the hose fitting, but be very careful not to over tighten at the water inlet valve end because here the hoses screw onto plastic or nylon threads that can be stripped by over tightening. The hose fittings contain rubber washers or washer filter screen combinations that can be replaced if they have deteriorated. These can be obtained from local home improvement stores or appliance parts suppliers. If the hose itself is leaking then buy replacements for both the hot and cold water hose since they have probably experienced similar deterioration. Another possible source of water on the floor is an overflowing drainpipe. The drain hose from the washer normally has a curved end that hangs loosely on a vertical drainpipe (sometimes on a laundry sink) that connects into your sewer system. If the drainpipe or its connection to the sewer system is partially stopped up you will get an overflow when the washer empties. On a front loading-machine check for leakage around the door or any obvious deterioration in the gasket material. Get a helper and use a heavy piece of cardboard or masonite to protect finished floors if you have to slide the machine out for access. If the leak is not external you will have to look inside the machine.
Common washing machine components/operation - Understanding what you are looking at inside the machine requires some background about how washing machines operate. The washing machine has a water inlet valve assembly to turn on and off the hot and cold water that must flow into the machine. There are also flexible hoses to connect to your homes hot and cold water supply plus a rubber drain hose for emptying water from the machine. The machine has a tub for holding the water during washing and rinsing and the tub contains a "basket" (the part with holes in it that you see on looking into the machine) for holding the clothes. It has an agitator to accomplish the washing operation. It has a pump to move water from the tub to the drain and some kind of spin mechanism to remove additional water from the clothes after the tub is emptied. There is also an electric motor to power the agitator, the spin mechanism, and the pump as well as a transmission to couple the motor to the agitator and spin mechanisms. There may be a filter to remove lint during the wash cycle. Finally there is a control panel to select specific cycles, temperatures, agitation speed, amount of water in tub (load size), washing time etc. Inside the machine there are also hoses to connect the water inlet to the tub, to connect tub to pump to drain hose, and to interconnect the tub and pump and filter (if present), etc. The most likely points of water leakage are the internal and external hoses and their attachment points, the water input valve assembly, the pump, and the water filter. A less likely leak would be from the tub itself rusting out on an old machine or from some kind of mechanical failure or chronic imbalance that caused the basket to rub the tub during spin. The link "Online Appliance Repair Manuals" under resources below provides more detail, diagrams, and description for some specific brands as well as good general information. If you have not worked on washing machines before, it would be very helpful to read the first two short chapters in this reference or to read some equivalent tutorial material covering basic repair techniques and principles of operation and containing lots of explanatory figures.
Looking inside the machine - Here you will probably need a manual or at least the online resource cited just to get access to the inside. The assembly/attachment techniques are not always obvious just looking at the outside of the machine. Older machines sometimes had access panels on the back that provided a place to look in, but newer machines may require removing the cabinet and this is much easier if you know the recommended approach. Be very conscious of safety while working inside the cabinet. There are electrical shock hazards from exposed connections and mechanical hazards from moving parts plus possible wet wiring from water leaks. Keep machine unplugged and water turned off except as needed for tests. Also turn off water while moving machine for access and have a bucket to put the drain hose in. Inspect the inlet control valve and the tube connecting the valve to the washing machine tub. Check all internal hoses and their connections for leaks. Inspect bottom and sides of tub for any problems. Inspect the body of the water inlet valve assembly, the pump and the filter for signs of leaking through cracks or bad gaskets. Check all of the areas for wetness or signs of mineral deposits where leaking has been occurring. Remove failed parts referring to manuals or online sources as needed. Most hose clamps can be removed with ordinary slip jaw pliers. Some hose clamps may be of the screw type. If a hose is stuck and difficult to get off after the clamp is moved back out of the way, grasp the area where the hose overlaps the pipe with channel lock pliers and try to rotate it slightly back and forth to break the bond. Some sheet metal or machine screws may need to be removed to dismount parts.
Obtain new parts - You will need to know the make, model and serial number for your machine. If you have an owner's ,manual it will tell you where to find the "nameplate" which has this information. Lacking a manual try looking on the back of the machine or possibly just inside the door or sometimes down by the base. If you have an owner's manual it may also have a parts diagram and parts numbers. Your options for obtaining parts include getting from your dealer (e.g., Sears parts), finding a local appliance parts supplier (check your yellow pages and call first about availability), or ordering from an online appliance parts supplier. Ordering online is probably the cheapest, but if you are inexperienced it is nice to walk up to a counter with the old part in hand (along with your machine information) and get personal assistance in obtaining the right replacement.
Install parts - After installation check carefully to be sure the leak is repaired. Reassemble the machine.
Feb 15, 2011 |