Question about Whirlpool LHW0050PQ Front Load Washer

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LHW0050PQ Blows GFI Circuit

I own a two-year old Whirlpool (LHW0050PQ) front load washer. It has a history of vibrating severely in high spin. It is mounted in a RV - placed on a 2X4 frame with holes drilled into the wood for the feet. A few days ago, it started popping the GFI during normal cycle. The problem got worse and is now at the point that it pops the GFI every 30 seconds. I have to wait a couple of minutes for the internal circuit breaker(s) to reset before I can kick the GFI back in and start the machine. But, it just pops the circuit again and I can't get the machine to keep running. Any suggestions? Thanks - Joe

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  • joejjj Dec 20, 2007

    It is not the GFI that's the problem. I have tried two other GFI circuits. I had to use an extention cord to get to the other GFIs; but it was a heavy 12/3 cord. Something inside the machine is kicking out. Key Point - Once the GFI trips, I have to wait a bit before I can reset it. If I try to immediately reset the GFI, it kicks back out. It takes a minute or so for something (automatically resetting circuit breaker?) inside the machine to reset before I can activate the external GFI circuit. There's a weak component inside the machine - just don't know what it could be. Haven't taken the machine apart yet. Waiting for one of your guru's to give me the "eureka" solution. Thanks - Joe

  • joejjj Dec 20, 2007

    Whoops! Hit the wrong button. While I appreciate your recommendation, it will not solve my problem. Please forward my problem to another tech. Thanks. Joe

  • joejjj Dec 21, 2007

    Understand. How do I change the rating? I have never used this site before and am not familiar with how it works. Thanks - Joe

  • joejjj Dec 24, 2007

    Thanks, bigg t. I'll give that a try. Wouldn't have thought it was the motor since the machine functions in the wash cycle - just won't keep the power on long enough to go to another cycle, or finish the load. I'm away from the machine right now for obligatory Christmas with the grandkids; but will try your suggestion when I get back to it. Will let you know what I find out once I pop the top on the beast. Joe

  • joejjj Dec 25, 2007

    watugot - I agree - don't think it is the GFI that is the real culprit. The machine is not bolted down. The feet are "sunk" into 1/2" holes that I drilled into the 2X4 frame to keep the machine from dancing around. The machine will however shake violently in the spin cycle. I'm hoping that this shaking has caused either a bare spot in a wire or a connection to come loose somewhere. Once I get the thing opened up, I'll check for those things first. Will let you know and bigg t know what I find. Thanks for the suggestions. Joe

  • joejjj Jan 12, 2008

    Sorry for the delayed response. Just got back to the RV and finally pulled the top and back off of the machine. What I found:
    (1) As you may know, the basket and tub rest on four shock absorbers. The right front shock absorber rod is not in the absorber body. There is no grease or wear on the rod. It's clean as a whistle. It appears that it was not installed properly at the factory. I believe that this is what has been causing the severe vibrations.
    (2) Three of the wires in the harness connector that is mounted on the side of the motor are absolutely green from corrosion - both male and female ends and there is rust on the metal piece that holds the connector in place on the motor frame. I believe that this corrosion may be the reason that the GFI circuit was kicking out. I can see where water has been flowing from the back of the tub down onto the motor and connector. I assume that this water originated at the drain tube on the door seal.
    (3) Water has been leaking\spraying out of the outlet hose on the drain pump. I can see corrosion on the outlet hose clamp and on the shock absorber mounting, and there is corrosion\rust on the metal floor of the machine.
    (4) The (concrete?) counterweight is cracked. I'm not sure if this is normal or if the vibration has caused this.
    Bottom Line - I believe that the improperly installed shock absorber lead to the vibrations which caused the other problems. I called Whirlpool and they said that if it was a manufacturing defect, they would fix the machine at no cost to me. What do you guys think? Thanks - Joe

  • joejjj Jan 13, 2008

    BADBOYJAY - It's not the heating element. I have the Whirlpool Service Tech Manual on this machine (from www.servicematters.com). The manual calls for between 8 and 18 ohms of resistance between the element terminals. Mine is showing 12.2 ohms resistance. Thanks - Joe

  • joejjj Jan 13, 2008

    bigg t - I think your right. Once I get a service rep out here, I'll show him everything I've found and we'll go from there. I'm not sure how long it will take to get the service call though. One store I called here in Tucson said it would be March. We'll see. Thanks - Joe

  • joejjj Jan 13, 2008

    watugot - I agree. I'm not going any further with disassembly\repair until a service tech looks at the machine. As such, I can't really see where the water is coming from. But, I can tell you that there is black (from the belt) all over the place, so it must be getting water on it as well. Thanks - Joe

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Have you checked your heater element it is a well know that a bra bone of money or the vibrating could of made a hole in the heater element you will need a meter that have a continuity test. take off the wires on the heat element and the earth wire then put one meter prong on the left heat flat where you took the weir off then put the other meter prong on the other side of the flat don't put it in the middle yet the meter should read all the way a cross if not then its had it if it do read now keep the prong on the left and now put the right prong on the middle and if you get a little reading its had it. if it is gone then right down the model number and have a look on ebay it should be cheap. hope it helps you

Posted on Jan 12, 2008

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The quick answer is the GFI, they are notorious for not working properly with large appliances. It sounds as if you have this covered though.
My next guess would be a small water leak somewhere in the machine that is getting into one of the motors. The water pump would be the obvious place to look first.
It being in an RV and bolted down causes it's own problems with working on it. Myself, and all the other repairmen I know, draw up in the fetal position when we know we have to work on an appliance in an RV or on a boat because of the limited space available. I hesitated to even try to post a solution on line. LOL
Thanks/Mike

Posted on Dec 24, 2007

  • Michael  Lindley
    Michael Lindley Jan 01, 2008

    joe,

    Just wanted to follow up on your washer and see if you found out anything yet.

    Thanks/Mike

  • Michael  Lindley
    Michael Lindley Jan 12, 2008

    Joe,

    I think you are correct about the shock causing the vibration. It would have to be that way from the factory unless the machine has been turned over at some point after the shipping bolts were removed.

    The water spraying/leaking is your GFI problem. Water is getting into the main motor or the pump motor and shorting out. I would check the rear seal and the rear plate of the tub very closely. If the seal leaks, the water will run onto the belt and spray everywhere, especially during HI spin.

    The crack in the counterweight is a toss up. I have seen them cracked on washers that were not giving any problems, but it needs replacing anyway. If a chunk breaks off in the future it will cause more vibration problems.

    Hopefully Whirlpool will come through for you and fix it. This is a pretty major repair. It would probably be best not to take anything else apart until their authorized servicer can look at it.

    You should also be aware that even in perfect condition these washers viberate alot.

    Let me know what happens.

    Thanks/Mike

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You either have a bad relay going to the motor or the start switch in the motor is bad or sticking.if you can access the motor try smacking it lightly with a hammer and see if this solves your problem.

Posted on Dec 24, 2007

  • anthony james
    anthony james Jan 07, 2008

    joe,did you figure out your issue?

  • anthony james
    anthony james Jan 12, 2008

    joe,i think you hit the nail on the head!!just the corrosion itself would cause the gfi to kick out.take them up on their offer.if you get a decent tech to come out beat around the bush with him and tell him about the other issues you found.with some luck you might be able to get all the problems repaired for free,after all the factory didnt do its job in the first place and led to these residule problems.good luck

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Have you replaced the GIF breaker?
I would think that is more of the problem then the machine and under $20 to purchase

Posted on Dec 19, 2007

  • Paul
    Paul Dec 20, 2007

    Joe,

    sorry I couln't help if you could select a rating on my solution so it can go to the other techs to see if they have a solution.

  • Paul
    Paul Dec 21, 2007

    Joe,



    You will need to change the rating to something like thanks for trying. the rating of problems solved says I solved the problem, which is incorrect from your posting.

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