Repairing my unbalanced washing machine....advice please ?
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  1. #1
    1000+ Posts Beano's Avatar
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    Default Repairing my unbalanced washing machine....advice please ?

    I was just given a Fisher and Paykel washing machine which is only 5 years old, however it apparently goes out of balance on the spin cycle. The guy who gave it to me said that he phoned a repairer who said "oh yes...that will be the suspension arms.....they are notorious for that".

    I've looked at it briefly, but I can't see anything wrong with them...not that I know what they are SUPPOSED to look like if they're good.
    The whole bowl is suspended from 4 thin arms and at the bottom end they are spring-loaded. Stabilizing the top, there are 4 thick rubber bands ( ! ! ) pulling in a V-shape at each corner of the bowl. Could they be getting a bit slack too ?

    The wild card is this : I brought it home on it's side and a small amount of water leaked out when I turned it on it's side... as you'd expect, but when I turn the bowl, I can hear water swishing around at the TOP. There is a kind of circular ring-thing all around the top of the bowl.....but the water which I seem to hear in in it had not leaked out when I had the machine on it's side ! Could this water be the culprit, unbalancing the bowl ?? And what IS this arrangement, anyway ? It is about 3 inches (10 cm) in diameter, and seems to mostly be open at the top. I can squeeze my hand in a bit but can't feel water in there....
    Weird !

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  2. #2
    1000+ Posts PeterT's Avatar
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    Just buy new springs/arms. Easy to fit. Great machine.

    '92 205 Mi16
    '90 Mi16x4

  3. #3
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    Default my F&P experience.....

    .....is that the water you hear is the water they put in a donut ring at the top of the bowl for balance (it has some internal baffles, when it starts to spin the water "sorta" finds a balance amongst the baffles and so balances the bowl...) it's a bit primitive, but they are designed by Kiwis! The one I had lasted a lot longer than 5 years, what finally wore out were the plastic top mounts that the suspension wires hung from. If yours has rubber band mounts they must have "improved" the fail point I had. Perhaps... they got the improvement a bit wrong, i'd have the back panel off to see whether the bowl hangs vertical or plumb (and check that the lost sock isn't hiding way out one side)

  4. #4
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    Same spin balance that our old Westinghouse had a liquid distributed in a ring arrangement to help buffer the light spring balance system.

    I guess a crude fix would be to fit a rubber inner tube around the outer cage (the one that doesn't spin) and inflate it enough to stop it thumping on the sides, and yes you need to be sure that you set the machine up so it is level - use the machines adjustable feet and a spirit level.

    Overloading might also be an issue.

    Hope this helps

    Ken

  5. #5
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    Hi. Try it sans clothes (in the bowl, not you naked!). If it spins without vibration etc, them it could be the unbalanced washing load. sometimes machines start to spins slowly while a small amount of water is in the bowl to assist in even distribution of the clothes, then all water pumped out.

  6. #6
    1000+ Posts Beano's Avatar
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    Thanks for your advice, gentlemen !

    I tightened the rubber bands at each corner (they appear to be silicone, actually) and it spins ok ! At least so far, with a small amount of clothing......

    I can't see why the suspension arms should need replacing, unless as Frank said, the plastic top mounts are worn out. Will update later, after more spinning (and boy, does it spin fast.....the clothes are almost dry when they come out)

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