OT washing machine repair DIY saga.

I have just finished replacing the pump on my washing machine. As a die-hard do it your selfer, this is not the first time I have locked horns with the beast, it is the third. To bring you up on the story, I will first describe round one and round two as this gives context to the story of round three.
About three years ago the machine stopped agitating. I could hear the motor run, the pump was working but it would not spin, nor would the agitator slosh the clothes around.
How tough could this be I ask myself? Well I figured that the worst part of the job would be clearing the crap out from around the washing machine. My soon to be ex wife created piles of stuff everywhere, and the laundry area was no exception. (She suffered from Bipolar II.) When I finally got some working room I attempted to disassemble the machine. I was having no luck so I inverted the machine. There is a small amount of water that remains in the machine that does not get pumped out. I bet you can guess how I found this interesting fact out.
With the machine up side down, I saw the problem. There is a coupler that connects the motor and the transmission. It is a disk of rubber with six holes and the motor and the transmission have plastic disks with three prongs each that fit in the holes. This was shot. I worked and worked to get the pump and motor off the machine having to make several runs to buy tools to access recalcitrant bolts. This was on a Saturday, and I had to wait for Monday to get the part to fix the thing.
I also came to the conclusion that I had taken the wrong approach to disassembling the machine but I did not know exactly how I had failed but I figured that I should buy the repair manual for $15.95 or I would be forever to reassemble the thing. I got the part on Monday, but I had to wait for the book so I waited to read the book to complete the project.
While I was waiting for the book, laundry was piling up so a trip to the Laundromat was required. I was on call the next week-end (I am a locksmith) so I read the book and found out that it was very simple to disassemble the machine, two screws, two clips and unplug one plug and you have access to the works. Grumble grumble.
I returned to my task when I was off call, and when I righted the machine I discovered that all of transmission gear oil had leaked out of the machine. It was only about a pint of oil but it was a big mess, and I had to completely disassemble the drum and agitator assembly to access the transmission.
The repair manual said nothing about what kind of oil to use, not how to go about refilling the transmission. Its suggestion was that this was beyond the scope of the do it your selfer. Arrrrrgggghh.
Undaunted, I disassembled the transmission and decided to use good old 90 weight gear oil for a car.
I had to guess the proper level, and was lucky that the gasket had survived the disassembly in tact. Having cleaned up all of the oil and reassembled everything the washer work flawlessly.
A year later the machine was always going out of balance so I consulted the book and this time I knew how to take the thing apart. Several plastic thingies were worn and ordered them and waited about 4 days for the parts to arrive in the mail. Installing these buggers was a little more involved but I finally got them in and the machine back together. In the process of installing the little plastic thingies, I had neglected to reattach a hose clamp that I slid out of the way and did not reattach the clamp prior to reassembling the machine.
The hose stayed put while I ran a test load with the empty washer. I then (needing underwear for the next day) loaded a full load of whites with soap and bleach and started the cycle.
When the washer hit the spin cycle, and began to pump out all of the dirty soapy bleachy water the hose popped of the pump and I had a flood. Clean up mess, take the machine apart and reattach the hose.
About two months ago I noticed a leak, not a big leak, but a leak nonetheless. I had assumed incorrectly that the cause was the drain vacuum breaker. This has gotten clogged before and a cleaning has solved the problem. It was not the vacuum breaker this time it was the pump leaking Two months of mopping up after each load finally drove me to take apart the machine again, and this is where I discovered the leaky pump.
Hey at least this was an easy fix, two screws, two clips and the case comes off. Two clips and two hose clamps and the pump comes off. I had left the case off the machine and today the new pump came in the mail. I had several gallons of water in the tub, and for days it had been leaking into a drip pan that I had put under the leaky pump and I had emptied the thing twice a day and mopped up the water that I spilled when I emptied the tray but there was still water in the tub. Damn the pump is the low point and there is no provision to drain the water. I was faced with the choice of waiting a couple of weeks for all the water to drip out or do something else. I had to fight to remove the switch from the lid to so I could plug it in to pump out the water so I could remove the pump. In the process of removing the switch, a little clip flew off and I had to go hunting for it. I had picked up a two-gallon bottle of pine sol and set it on top of the case while I was hunting for the little clip.
I then attempted to remove the hoses from the pump and carefully catch the remaining water in my drip pan. Too much water or two small of a pan but I was again cleaning up water off the floor where I had to lay in order to change the pump. The floor now dry, and the hoses off, I pop the two clips off the pump and the pump is stuck. I finally get the pump off but the shaft is badly rusted from the leaking pump. About 45 minutes of scraping, chipping and grinding and the rust is gone. I apply some grease and the new pump slips in place like it belonged there. I reattach the hose clamps this time and decide it is time for a break.
Into the kitchen for a nice cold bottle of beer, and the case from the washing machine is a little too far into the kitchen to allow the fridge door to open. I scootch the case back into the laundry room and that bottle of Pine-Sol goes crashing to the floor. I hear a glug, glug, glug and I am back on damage control. I estimate about 2 quarts of the stinky slippery stuff is on the floor and oozing.
Pine-Sol as you may know is water-soluble and designed to be diluted before use. In other words it is a royal Canadian pain the ass to mop up. My whole house smells like a turpentine distillery, the bathtub and bathroom that I cleaned up is now filthy.
I hope this is the last round of washing machine repair for a while.
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Roger Shoaf wrote:

and found the pump clogged with a sock. This confirmed the widely held theory that washing machines eat socks.
David Starr
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David you don't need to invert the washer. Take out the two screws at the front edges of the control panel. The control panel then will lift out of the way and then there is a plug that gets disconnected. There two clips holding the back of the machine to the top, pop these off with a screwdriver.
Now tilt the case forward and it will lift off.
Did you used to live in San Mateo?
--
Roger Shoaf
If you are not part of the solution, you are not dissolved in the solvent.
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Snip of humorous (to the rest of us) tale of woe common to do-it- yourselfers around the world . . . .
There's a wonderful old poem about a fellow who got tired of the different parts on his buggy always breaking down. So he did his research and he built a "Wonderful One-Hoss Shay" using only the finest parts available anywhere. What's more, he carefully designed it so that each part was exactly as strong as every other part. It was Wonderful, because it never broke down. The buggy was passed down from generation to generation until 100 years later his grandson, a preacher, was riding the buggy on his way to church. All of the parts broke down at exactly the same moment, and the preacher was left sitting in a pile of dust.
Well it looks like the folks that design washers and dryers are almost there. When they get to the end of their design life, they get there all at once. I swear the next time either of mine break down, I'm going to cut my losses and toss 'em both out to the curb. It seems like they are designed to run great for quite a few years, then after that, it's patch, patch, patch.
DonkeyHody "In theory, theory and practice are the same, but in practice, they are not."
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wrote:

What amazes me is the quality control on Japanese light bulbs. After 35,000 miles or so of driving, all four headlights on my old Toyota burned out within three hours of each other, thus putting an end to m plan to get through the NYC/DC corridor between midnight and 6 AM (ever try to find a headlight for a Toyota in Joisey at 3 AM?)
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probably due to the wife overloading the machine, the second repair was probably due to improper leveling, and who can really complain about a $30 pump failing after 12 years?
The dryer I bought at the same time has never even made a funny noise yet.
Including the book I think my expenditures are something like $76. Most of the grief I had was due either to my ignorance or the fact that I have a very confined area to work in.
My post wasn't so much of a complaint, but rather I suspected folks would get a chuckle out of it while remembering back to the time they had been there done that and got the tee shirt.
--

Roger Shoaf

About the time I had mastered getting the toothpaste back in the tube, then
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dryers and refrigerators seem to be very well made for the price we pay. We've gotten 15 good years of daily use out of ours. It's just that I've made several frustrating repairs just as you describe over the last couple of years. I'm about ready for another 10 years or so of the honeymoon period.
DonkeyHody "In theory, theory and practice are the same, but in practice, they are not."
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Roger Shoaf wrote:

I used to do this kind of stuff. I know about having to dismantle the works on a washing machine to replace a belt. Same with the dryer. I have had my head in the freezer compartment of my fridge replacing the heater element (honest!) and that is nasty. These things are not designed for ease of repair.
    mahalo,     jo4hn
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On Tuesday, February 27, 2007 4:19:30 PM UTC-8, Roger Shoaf wrote:

Theres a company in Calfornia, which is very reliable and has repair tips and news. check them out http://atbayappliance.com/news-and-tips/
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On 7/15/2013 5:11 PM, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

The one I did of the toilet in the bathroom gained me my own parking space at Lowes as I had to make so many trips.
Then there was the other one. After replacing everything on the washer and dryer the dryer stopped one more time. This time since both were up stairs, and both were old, I decided to get new ones. My wife insisted that I check it out before we went to the store. I found the fusible link was shot, so $1.25 and about a half an hour the dryer worked for several more years before we got the new washer and dryer.
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On Tuesday, February 27, 2007 4:19:30 PM UTC-8, Roger Shoaf wrote:

check out http://atbayappliance.com/news-and-tips/ for tips and news on appliance repair from a company in California.
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For anyone looking to do some appliance repair, I highly recommend: http://fixitnow.com
I have taken care of two dryer, one washing machine, one dishwasher, and one refrigerator based on the information from there.
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