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washing machine drum not moving - ideas?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Angilion, Nov 19, 2012.

  1. Angilion

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Dec 5, 2003

    Posts: 12,012

    Location: Just to the left of my PC

    I've got an old washing machine that's seen a hell of a lot of use. I've had it about 12 years and it was used when I bought it.

    It was fine up until today, no sign of any impending problems at all.

    I put some washing on tonight and went down to get it out a while later, only to find that it was much wetter than usual, especially the clothes that had been at the bottom.

    Hmm...so I put them back in on the same cycle and watched the machine for a bit. The problem is that the drum isn't moving at all, neither during the wash cycles nor the spin cycles.

    Everything else is as normal. The machine is filling and draining correctly and is going through the cycles correctly without any unusual noises or catching fire :)

    The drum can be freely rotated by hand.

    I'm inclined to say "well, I got my money's worth from that" and get a new one (probably a used reconditioned one from Home Aids Services in Hanley, where I got this one), but I'm concerned that maybe it's something obvious and cheap to fix and I'd be wasting money replacing it. On the other hand, it is at least 12 years old. It's a bit rusty on the outside. It really is very used. But if someone here can say it's the <thing> with the <thing> and costs a tenner to fix, it'd be silly to get a new one instead.

    It's an Indesit WG1234T. The manual online is of no use at all in this situation.
     
  2. doofer

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Oct 18, 2002

    Posts: 7,994

    Location: Hear, their, everyware ;)

  3. [FnG]magnolia

    Capodecina

    Joined: Aug 29, 2007

    Posts: 23,690

    Location: Auckland

    An Indesit? Dimple is going to go ballistic.
     
  4. OldCoals

    Capodecina

    Joined: Jun 5, 2010

    Posts: 14,611

    Carbon brushes in the motor assuming the belt is on.
     
  5. bitslice

    PermaBanned

    Joined: May 18, 2006

    Posts: 9,042

    Drum freely rotating?

    Belt snapped.
     
  6. Jimmay

    Associate

    Joined: Sep 8, 2008

    Posts: 33

    Location: Cardiff

    the most common fault is the brushes. These power the motor and allow the drum to spin. You can check them by removing them and seeing if they have worn down or not
    They are really easy to change yourself provided you buy the correct ones for your machine.
     
  7. Gammawolf

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Nov 15, 2007

    Posts: 1,889

    Location: Sheffield, UK

    ^
    This. Usually it's fairly stiff but possible to move still due to the "gearing" ratios and resistance of the motor when not powered. Belt snapped = no more resistance against the motor.
     
  8. Roadkillv1

    Hitman

    Joined: Dec 25, 2009

    Posts: 529

    Location: UK

    serve it an eviction notice
     
  9. Angilion

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Dec 5, 2003

    Posts: 12,012

    Location: Just to the left of my PC

    Good point.

    My original post was a bit misleading in that respect, though. When I wrote "The drum can be freely rotated by hand", what I meant was "the drum can be rotated by hand without significant resistance", i.e. the drum isn't jammed or catching on anything. I've always been able to rotate the drum without any significant resistance - I think it's neither easier nor harder to do so now.

    My own searching online highlighted the belt and brushes as the most likely causes (belt more so than brushes) but it also implied that the belt probably wouldn't break unless there was an underlying problem (so replacing the belt would only be a temporary fix at best).

    Hmm...what to do? Not much point getting someone out to try to repair it - that'll cost me nearly as much as a reconditioned washing machine that'll be much newer and have a guarantee. So...have a go at fixing it myself based on best guess as to the cause or just buy a replacement (which I may well have to do, if the best guess is wrong or there's an underlying problem).

    There's always something going wrong when you own your home and the stuff in it. Worth it, though.
     
  10. OldCoals

    Capodecina

    Joined: Jun 5, 2010

    Posts: 14,611

    Take the top off, if the belt is on, change the brushes, they will be about £10 a pair.

    If the belt is off, as you say it could indicate other problems.

    We change brushes more than we put belts on or replace them them.
     
  11. Hostile-17

    Hitman

    Joined: Mar 13, 2012

    Posts: 558

    Location: Poole

    1) Check the belt is attached & not damaged or slipping
    2) Check the Carbon brushes on the motor
     
  12. Hostile-17

    Hitman

    Joined: Mar 13, 2012

    Posts: 558

    Location: Poole

    double post - mod pls remove :)
     
  13. a1ex2001

    Sgarrista

    Joined: Mar 14, 2005

    Posts: 9,177

    Location: Here and There...

    This!

    While the belt shouldn't just snap for no reason after 12 years of decent use it's probably just perished and fallen apart.
     
  14. malfunkshun

    Soldato

    Joined: Aug 20, 2003

    Posts: 6,634

    Location: Pembrokeshire

    ooo, rtfop mal :)
     
  15. Angilion

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Dec 5, 2003

    Posts: 12,012

    Location: Just to the left of my PC

    Access was a problem, but I managed to remove the brushes. They're worn down to maybe 2mm on side and maybe 4mm on the other, so there's the problem.

    The belt looks like new, surprisingly.

    Thanks for the advice. There may be some other problem, but I may well get away with fixing it myself with a new pair of brushes for ~£10.
     
  16. Hostile-17

    Hitman

    Joined: Mar 13, 2012

    Posts: 558

    Location: Poole

    Glad you got it sorted ;)
     
  17. Angilion

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Dec 5, 2003

    Posts: 12,012

    Location: Just to the left of my PC

    Hmm...success...I think...mostly.

    I've fitted new brushes and the washing machine now works, but it's noisier. I can clearly hear a whining noise up here during the spin cycle, which I couldn't before. It's not a definitely wrong noise. I had something jam before and the motor was busily setting itself on fire. That sounded different in a definitely wrong way. This just sounds louder, like the motor is working harder.

    Also, the door seal is flapping about a bit while the drum is spinning and I think that the drum is moving up and down slightly as it rotates. It seems as though the drum is maybe slightly off-centre or slightly loose, so it can wobble slightly as it rotates.

    I had to move the washer a lot to get at the brushes, including having it face down and upside down. I took care to move it slowly in a controlled way, but I'm concerned that something has bent or loosened and the balance of the drum has been reduced. Is that possible? It's obviously not badly out because it's working and the washer isn't moving. None of the "the kitchen is my dance floor" stuff :)

    EDIT: £18.95 for the brushes. More than I was expecting, but they were original manufacturer parts bought from a small high street shop.
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2012
  18. malfunkshun

    Soldato

    Joined: Aug 20, 2003

    Posts: 6,634

    Location: Pembrokeshire

    The whine is normal when new brushes are fitted, it will reduce as they 'wear in'.
    As for the apparent loss of balance its probably the case that it needs re-leveling via the adjustable feet.
     
  19. Fuzz

    Capodecina

    Joined: Aug 3, 2003

    Posts: 15,269

    Location: Cheltenham ;-)

    More likely one of the drum springs are broken.
    Lid back off and inspect the springs!
     
  20. OldCoals

    Capodecina

    Joined: Jun 5, 2010

    Posts: 14,611

    If the spring is broken it would shake itself to bits. It is quick to check, pop the lid off. Also check the shock absorbers, quite why you had it upside down is beyond me, the weight of the tub could have pulled one of them out.

    To be honest, it is 12 years old and the OP is running into problems, it might be the right time to cut your losses and think of getting a new one.
     


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