When it comes to maintaining your Whirlpool washer, knowing the signs of a failing transmission can save you time, money, and frustration. This comprehensive guide will help you understand the signs of a bad Whirlpool washer transmission, how to diagnose the problem, and what steps you can take to fix it.
You can tell if your Whirlpool washer transmission is bad if you notice unusual sounds or burning smells, the agitator is not moving, the washer is not spinning or draining, or it rocks excessively during the wash or rinse cycle. To confirm, you can diagnose by checking if the washer is spinning or agitating, inspecting the disc and the motor coupling, and if these are fine, the transmission might need to be replaced. If you’re not comfortable doing this yourself, it’s best to consult a professional appliance repair service.
Signs of a Failing Whirlpool Washer Transmission
There are several key signs that your Whirlpool washer’s transmission is starting to wear out:
- Unusual Sounds and Burning Smells: If you notice strange noises such as grinding, humming, or a burning smell coming from the bottom or backside of the machine, it could be a sign of a bad transmission.
- Agitator Not Moving: If the washer’s motor is running, but the agitator is not moving during the agitate cycle, it could indicate a bad transmission.
- No Spinning or Draining: If the washer is not spinning or draining water from the clothes, it could be due to a faulty transmission.
- Excessive Rocking: If the washer rocks excessively during the wash or rinse cycle, it could be a sign of a bad transmission.
Diagnosing a Transmission Problem
To diagnose a transmission problem in a Whirlpool washer, follow these steps:
- Check if the Washer is Spinning or Agitating: If the washer is not spinning or agitating but the motor is running, it could indicate a transmission issue.
- Inspect the Disc: Start the machine and run it in spin mode. Check if the disc is spinning. If it is not spinning, the problem could be in the transmission.
- Check the Motor Coupling: Remove the motor and inspect the motor coupling and its retainers. If there is a problem with the motor coupling or one of its retainers, replace the faulty part.
- Replace the Transmission: If the motor coupling and retainers are in good condition, you may need to replace the transmission.
Fixing a Whirlpool Washer Transmission
If you’ve determined that the transmission is the issue, follow these steps to fix it:
- Unplug the Washer: Always start by unplugging the washer to ensure your safety while working on it.
- Remove the Cabinet: Locate and remove the cabinet’s fastening screws, then remove the cabinet itself to access the internal components.
- Locate and Test the Transmission: The transmission is found at the bottom of the washer, underneath the drum. Plug your washing machine back in and run a wash cycle to determine if the transmission is the source of the problem.
- Remove and Replace the Transmission: Once the old transmission is removed, install the new transmission.
- Reassemble the Washer: After replacing the transmission, reassemble the washer by putting the cabinet back in place and securing it with the fastening screws.
- Test the Washer: Plug the washer back in and run a wash cycle to ensure that the issue has been resolved.
When to Replace the Washer
It is more cost-effective to replace the washer entirely rather than repairing the transmission when the repair cost exceeds 50% of the cost of a new washing machine. If the repair cost for the transmission is more than half of the cost of a new washer, it would be more cost-effective to replace the washer entirely.
In conclusion, knowing how to tell if your Whirlpool washer transmission is bad can help you take timely action to fix the problem or decide when it’s time to invest in a new washer. If you are not comfortable performing these steps or if the problem persists, it’s always best to consult a professional appliance repair service.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does a Whirlpool washer transmission typically last?
A Whirlpool washer transmission typically lasts between 10 to 15 years. However, this can vary based on how often the washer is used and how well it’s maintained.
Can I replace the transmission myself or should I hire a professional?
While it’s possible to replace the transmission yourself if you’re comfortable with appliance repair, it’s generally recommended to hire a professional. The repair process can be complex and requires specific tools. If not done correctly, it could lead to further damage.
What is the approximate cost of a new Whirlpool washer transmission?
The cost of a new Whirlpool washer transmission can vary depending on the model and the supplier, but it typically ranges from $150 to $300.
How can I prolong the lifespan of my Whirlpool washer transmission?
Regular maintenance is key to prolonging the lifespan of your Whirlpool washer transmission. This includes not overloading the washer, using the correct amount of detergent, and running a cleaning cycle every month. Also, if you notice any of the signs of a failing transmission, it’s important to address the issue promptly to prevent further damage.
What is the motor coupling in a Whirlpool washer?
The motor coupling in a Whirlpool washer is a part that connects the motor to the transmission. It’s designed to protect the transmission by breaking if the washer is overloaded. If the motor coupling is broken, the washer may not spin or agitate, even though the motor is running.