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OT ... preventive maintenance


Dave Horne

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My washing machine was repaired three weeks ago by the 'factory'. I could have called someone local but I felt better calling the authorized repair center (AEG \ Electrolux). The man came out and replaced two 'brushes' for the motor. These are not brushes in the conventional sense, they look more like graphite sticks in a spring loaded Pez dispenser. The machine in question is between 11 and 12 years old and I suggested, wouldn't it be a good idea to replace the water pump and anything else since they are also 11+ years old?.

 

Well, I go to use the washer today and the drum doesn't turn. I simply took off the back of the washer and saw at once that the 11+ year old belt needed to be replaced.

 

I immediately called AEG to complain and to order a new belt. I was told the belt would be 22 Euros (without the 19% VAT added). I ordered the belt but in the mean time went by bike to a local store. I bought the same exact belt for 6.50 Euros. I had to loosen up the motor just like you would in your car to give a belt a little play but the job was a piece of cake. (I called AEG to cancel the order.)

 

This would seem to be standard practice - if it's not broken, don't fix it.

 

This problem was compounded by the fact that we will have guests tomorrow from Germany visiting with us. I was busy with washing all the dirty bath towels, etc., and I did not want problems with a recently fixed washing machine. (Coincidentally, my new CP300 will be hand delivered by those same friends tomorrow. :) )

 

Just had to rant. I'll ask my wife to write a letter in Dutch to complain about all of this. I really went out of my way a few weeks ago to ask about replacing other parts in this 11+ year old washer just to avoid the situation I encountered today.

 

Rant over ... as you were.

No guitarists were harmed during the making of this message.

 

In general, harmonic complexity is inversely proportional to the ratio between chording and non-chording instruments.

 

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I feel your pain, Dave. :(

 

My washing machine broke recently (a front loader). The guy from Sears said it would cost $650 to fix. So, I bought another machine - a top loader for half that price. The front loading machine was only four years old.

 

The moral of the story is that, although a washing machine used to last for twenty years, they don't anymore. The labor (for two men to fix it) and overly-expensive parts makes it a better decision to purchase a new one. If you decide to repair it, there's no guarantee that other parts in the machine won't fail at a later time; as you know.

 

We really thought the (expensive) front-loading machine was the way to go. It uses less water and is gentler on the clothes. But the spin cycle is really fast (violent) and sounds like a jet plane taking off. Our unit developed a bad bearing and during the spin cycle I worried that the unit would destroy itself.

 

So, I learned a lesson: it's better to spend your money on musical equipment that has less moving parts than a clothes washer that must be replaced after four short years. ;)

 

Tom

"Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent." - Victor Hugo
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Between high maintenance/repair costs and planned obsolescence, as Joe Pesci said, "they F*** you...." ;)

 

Good thing you were able to research and replace the belt. :cool:

PD

 

"The greatest thing you'll ever learn, is just to love and be loved in return."--E. Ahbez "Nature Boy"

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Tom, $650 to replace the entire motor, I assume that would be the repair (?), seems like an excessive amount of money for a motor and labor.

 

Whenever my water pump decides to quite I'll replace it myself. I've looked inside the washer and most work seems easy enough.

 

I've replaced water pumps in my 1992 Jeep Wagoneer when I lived in the US. Now that was a pain in the ass - that car used both metric and US sized bolts.

No guitarists were harmed during the making of this message.

 

In general, harmonic complexity is inversely proportional to the ratio between chording and non-chording instruments.

 

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What I know is that in the washing machines that use a "conventional dial" mechanism (of course many today use a different technology), the parts of this mechanism were made of metal (gears, etc.). Around 1990, the manufacturers changed them for plastic gears/parts, since they will wear and break much faster.

 

Mine is an old Inglis of that strange yellow color, more then thirty years old. At some point, I had to fix the dial mechanism myself, but since then it works perfectly (knock on wood), except of course for the very loud spin. :)

 

In other words, if you can fix it yourself, DIY.

 

BTW, why do you think they stopped building those 283 car engines back then? Because they didn't need any repairs/maintenance. And all companies today need your cash to survive. So they now build stuff that breaks every once in a while. ;)

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I am always leary about sinking money into high dollar washers and dryers. I bought a washer and dryer when I got married 26 yrs ago. I have since replaced the Washing machine twice and still have the same dryer(Sears) . Dryers are easy to fix usually if they aren't high tech. I replaced three heat sensors ,1 belt, 1 balancer wheel, and about 3 or 4 door switchs. I am planning on moving in the spring and I may actually get a new set for the new house. I'll probably regret it ....cha ching :rolleyes::freak:
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