How Does A Top-Load Washer Work? — Appliance Repair Tips

While washing machines can differ from model to model they all operate on similar principles in this video we will address the five stages of top load washer operation as well as potential problems you may encounter the homes hot and cold water supply lines are attached to the water inlet valve on the washing machine the water temperature control allows the user to select hot cold or warm water to enter the tub during the fill cycle keep in mind that newer energy-efficient washers will automatically reduce the temperature of the water to conserve energy the water level switch allows the user to select a small medium or large load which determines the amount of water that will be used some models do this automatically most top load washing machines will use 8 to 18 gallons of water during the fill cycle once the temperature and load size is chosen the control or timer is set to a wash cycle the control sends voltage to the water inlet valve which opens allowing water to fill the tub the water level switch has a tube that connects to the side of the tub as the tub fills with water air pressure increases in the tube when a sufficient amount of water has filled the tub the pressure in the tube causes the water level switch to shut off the voltage to the inlet valve closing it and stopping the water flow the control or timer can then advance the cycle common problems that can occur during the fill cycle include the tub over filling taking too long to fill or not filling at all too little water entering the tub indicates that the water inlet valve is probably restricted commonly caused by the build-up of hard water deposits a restricted inlet valve will need to be replaced trying to clean out an old valve is not recommended due to the risk of part failure after repair a tub that is over filling may be an indication that the inlet valve has failed or that there is a problem with low water pressure to the appliance water inlet valves need water pressure between 20 and 120 pounds per square inch to function properly if the pressure is too low the water may not shut off properly or it may trickle into the tub when the washer is not in use the agitation cycle begins when the control sends voltage to the drive motor depending on the model the motor may directly drive a transmission or use a belt to operate the agitator drive shaft the tub may move a little during the agitation cycle but most models apply a brake to prevent the tub from rotating the drive shaft oscillates the agitator or wash plate which causes the laundry to circulate through the tub some models utilize a two-part agitator directional cogs or dog ears caused the upper part of the agitator to rotate in one direction only forcing the laundry to the bottom of the tub the lower part of the agitator then forces the laundry back up if the cogs wear out the upper part of the agitator will not function until the worn cogs are replaced some washers will continue to agitate even when the washer lid is open this design allows for additional items or detergent to be added during the cycle be aware that too much detergent can increase soap scum buildup which can cause an unpleasant odor.

You should follow manufacturer's recommendations you can occasionally use a washing machine cleaner like a fresh to help reduce the amount of buildup if the agitator is not working at all you should listen to determine if the motor itself is running if you hear the motor running it's likely that the drive belt or coupler is worn or broken and will need to be replaced once the agitation cycle is complete the water needs to be drained from the tub the control sends voltage to a drain pump which pumps the water out the drain hose to a washtub or drain pipe on some washers the main drive motor drives the pump by spinning in the opposite direction than it did during the agitation cycle in order to properly drain the water from the appliance the drain hose must be looped higher than the top of the tub and not pushed too far into the drain pipe if applicable if the hose is not installed properly water entering the tub may drain out simultaneously preventing the washer from completing the fill cycle the rinse cycle fills the tub with fresh water and may introduce fabric softener if added by the user the laundry agitates for a short time and then the water is drained some washers are equipped to introduce the fabric softener through a dispenser in the agitator the action of the spinning tub releases the softener other models use a dispenser valve which the control opens during the rinse cycle to dispense the softener into the tub during the drain cycle or immediately after the brake releases and the motor spins the tub using the drive coupler or belt be aware that washer drive systems vary some models use the belt a clutch or a variable speed control board that help the motor to gradually increase the spinning speed the faster the tub spins the more effectively the water is removed from the clothes the washer has a lid switch that prevents the tub from spinning when the lid is open if the tub does not spin the lid switch may have failed you can test the switch for continuity to determine if a continuous electrical path is present and the component is functioning if the switch tests positive for continuity you should inspect the drive belt coupler the motor or other drive components to determine if any of these parts have failed repair clinic has a solution for many of the problems you may be experiencing with your washing machine enter the appliances full model number in our website search engine for a complete list of compatible parts our site also has an extensive selection of instructional videos to assist you covering topics like part testing disassembly and part replacement at repair clinic we make fixing things easy you.

How Does A Top-Load Washer Work? — Appliance Repair Tips

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