Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Washing Machine Voo Doo

It wasn't so long ago that I took apart my dryer to fix a squeak.  Apparently the washer was jealous!

Nothing brings me greater pleasure than turning a broken appliance into a fixed appliance especially if I can save little cash in the process.

Having just hosted our annual Fall Weenie Roast while fighting a wicked cold, I was none to pleased when our 5 year old GE washer broke - AGAIN!

Back in January I replaced the lid switch on this beast.  Now it appeared to be broken AGAIN!  The good people at AppliancePartsPros.com sold me a lid switch for only $20 and the job was completed quickly.  This time around I had a new problem.

The Symptoms:
The washer would come on and fill with water then stop.  It just sat there.  It acted as though it was going through the regular cycle, only it wouldn't agitate or spin.  At the end of the wash cycle the water would drain, the spin light would come on, but no spinning. Everything about the washer looked and sounded normal except that it wouldn't agitate or spin.

I removed the front panel and checked the belts and lid switch connection.  Everything looked fine.  I unplugged the washer, let it sit for a few minutes then plugged it back in.  The problem remained. 

On the Internet my regular go-to sites RepairClinic.com and AppliancePartsPros.com didn't describe this problem at all. 

Finally, I just googled "GE washer won't spin or agitate" and found this video.

What Worked:
Apparently the washer motor needed to be reset.  This nifty video helped me reset the washer and NO TOOLS WHERE REQUIRED!  Woo Hoo!

I understand why this reset worked.  At the same time it just seems to strange.  I'm a toolsy kind of person so the idea that no tools where required seem so weird to me.  This is some washing machine voodoo!  I half expect to have to do the hokey pokey and turn myself around!

Additional Tips:
In the spirit of full disclosure, it took me 3 trys to get this reset to work.  Here are a few tips:

  • Make sure the washer is at the end of the wash cycle before you reset the motor
  • Empty the washer of all clothes and let the water drain
  • Once you're reset the motor, run the machine for 1 full wash cycle before doing a regular load of laundry
  • During my test wash it took a minute for the washer to start agitating like normal.  Once it started everything ran normally.
The REALLY great news is that once again, the appliance is repaired and all it cost me was a little time!

I hope these tips work for you too!