Saturday, November 03, 2012

Fixing the Washing Machine

Our GE washing machine started to produce a puddle on the floor after every time we washed clothes. That was not a good sign.

The manual gave a few possible hints (overloading, high sudsing detergent), but none of those seemed to be the real problem.

Next step was to unscrew the bottom control panel and find the "secret" technician's manual. It was somewhat of a pain to remove. (Perhaps the way that it "settled" made the screws tougher.) Alas, nothing very useful here.

So, off to google-land. It appears leaking is pretty common, and usually caused by a torn or broken gasket. This in turn, is usually caused by foreign objects forcing there way through. Gulp. We seem to have a lot of those. A new gasket is about $100. And replacing it is a fairly time-consuming process.

I found some instructions on how to go about replacing it. I liked the instructions on However, there were some hints on other sites that helped also (such as using a bungie to attach the control panel.) I went through the first part of the steps, up until taking the door off and removing the wire band from the gasket. I didn't need to completely remove the gasket or the weight.

After taking things apart, there didn't seem to be anything obviously wrong with the gasket. So I put things back together (save the bottom access panel). I tried pooring water in the drum to make sure it wasn't leaking. Still looked good. Then I put some laundry in and ran a cycle. Using a camping light, I tried to look up and see where the leak was coming from The water ended up coming from the center, but that was because it was coming down the stone. Tracing it further up, it appeared to be coming from somewhere above the gasket. Maybe the top of the gasket? Further inspection seemed to indicate something above the gasket.

I then took it apart again, and found the detergent valve was cracked. Ugh! Cheap flimsy plastic thing. Tried a quick glue job. But that came apart as I put it back on. Amazon had the piece for about $15. We ordered it Saturday night. With Amazon Prime, it showed up Monday morning. That was fast. The new one slipped on well. Then I tried pouring some water through. All was good. Finished putting it back together. Now the loads ran flawlessly without a leak.

It was amazing how convoluted the setup was. It seems like a great way to provide for repairman labor. A couple of hours work and complete dismantling of the machine to replace a simple plastic piece. Great engineering, eh?

No comments:

Post a Comment