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Archive for the ‘washing machine’ Category

Fixing an Unbalanced Washing Machine

September 14th, 2021

When your washing machine starts vibrating madly it can be alarming. But is it actually an indication of a problem? Yes, it is. The problem may be something easily dealt with or it may be an indication of something more serious. In any case, if your washing machine is shaking, thumping, and threatening to walk out of its place, you need to pay attention.

Distribution in the Drum

When your washing machine gets off balance only occasionally, the cause may well be the distribution of the items in the drum. Sometimes a particular item may be much heavier than others and its presence can make the machine start to shake, especially during the spin cycle. For instance, if you are washing your bath mat along with your bedding, the material of the bath mat absorbs much more water than the cotton sheets. The difference in weight between that single item and the others is enough to throw the washing machine off balance.

Overfilling

Another reason that your washing machine may get off balance sometimes is overfilling. When too many items are in the drum, the agitation and the spin cycles of the machine are compromised. You may think that you’re saving time, energy, and water by filling your washing machine beyond capacity, but you’re not. If the clothes can’t be vigorously agitated, they can’t be cleaned properly. If they can’t move around enough for the spin cycle to be effective, it will take much longer for the dryer to dry them. So now you’ll have several problems instead of the one issue of your washing machine being off balance.

What To Do

You may be tempted to just ignore your washing machine if it gets off balance once in a while. Don’t. Every time your washing machine goes off balance, it is straining and potentially damaging the internal workings. If you hear it thumping and shaking, you need to act. If the problem is unequal distribution, remove the heavier items and spin them separately. If the problem is overfilling, take some of the items out and restart the washing machine to be sure your clothes get clean. Doing this may cause some inconvenience, but it may save your washing machine.

Machine Not Level

Both of the examples above result from specific laundry loads causing the machine to go out of kilter. If your washing machine vibrates and shakes every time you use it, there’s something else going on. It may be that your machine is not actually level. All buildings settle and it’s entirely possible that your laundry room floor is not completely level. In order to determine if this is the issue, simply place a level on top of your washing machine. If it indicates that there’s a problem, then adjust the feet of the washing machine until the level shows true.

None of the Above

When you have eliminated all of the above causes and your washing machine is still threatening to walk out on you, it’s time to call in the experts at Dave’s Appliance. It’s probably an issue with the internal parts of the machine. Anything from loose or displaced screws or bolts to a broken belt could be the culprit. In any event, it’s important to get the problem resolved. Just as driving a car that has no oil can ruin the entire motor, ignoring an off balance washing machine can ruin the whole machine.

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Washing Machine Off Balance?

May 13th, 2021

When your washing machine starts vibrating madly it can be alarming. But is it actually an indication of a problem? Yes, it is. The problem may be something easily dealt with or it may be an indication of something more serious. In any case, if your washing machine is shaking, thumping, and threatening to walk out of its place, you need to pay attention.

Distribution in the Drum

When your washing machine gets off balance only occasionally, the cause may well be the distribution of the items in the drum. Sometimes a particular item may be much heavier than others and its presence can make the machine start to shake, especially during the spin cycle. For instance, if you are washing your bath mat along with your bedding, the material of the bath mat absorbs much more water than the cotton sheets. The difference in weight between that single item and the others is enough to throw the washing machine off balance.

Overfilling

Another reason that your washing machine may get off balance sometimes is overfilling. When too many items arein the drum, the agitation and the spin cycles of the machine are compromised. You may think that you’re saving time, energy, and water by filling your washing machine beyond capacity, but you’re not. If the clothes can’t be vigorously agitated, they can’t be cleaned properly. If they can’t move around enough for the spin cycle to be effective, it will take much longer for the dryer to dry them. So now you’ll have several problems instead of the one issue of your washing machine being off balance.

What To Do

You may be tempted to just ignore your washing machine if it gets off balance once in a while. Don’t. Every time your washing machine goes off balance, it is straining and potentially damaging the internal workings. If you hear it thumping and shaking, you need to act. If the problem is unequal distribution, remove the heavier items and spin them separately. If the problem is overfilling, take some of the items out and restart the washing machine to be sure your clothes get clean. Doing this may cause some inconvenience, but it may save your washing machine.

Machine Not Level

Both of the examples above result from specific laundry loads causing the machine to go out of kilter. If your washing machine vibrates and shakes every time you use it, there’s something else going on. It may be that your machine is not actually level. All buildings settle and it’s entirely possible that your laundry room floor is not completely level. In order to determine if this is the issue, simply place a level on top of your washing machine. If it indicates that there’s a problem, then adjust the feet of the washing machine until the level shows true.

None of the Above

When you have eliminated all of the above causes and your washing machine is still threatening to walk out on you, it’s time to call in the experts at Dave’s Appliance. It’s probably an issue with the internal parts of the machine. Anything from loose or displaced screws or bolts to a broken belt could be the culprit. In any event, it’s important to get the problem resolved. Just as driving a car that has no oil can ruin the entire motor, ignoring an off balance washing machine can ruin the whole machine.

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Is Your Appliance Worth Repairing?

May 13th, 2021

Appliances help us keep our lives on track. Where would we be without our refrigerator/freezer, washing machine, dryer, dishwasher, microwave, and garbage disposal? When any one of these stops functioning, it can quickly turn from an inconvenience into a disaster. Your immediate impulse might be to replace the appliance that is broken. But is that always the right option? Here is a quick guide to help you decide whether your appliance is worth repairing.

How Much Would It Cost?

Generally, the larger the appliance the costlier it is. So if your stove breaks, you’re looking at a major investment to buy a new one. But if your microwave goes, you can purchase one for under $75. Consumer Reports advises that if the cost to repair your appliance is greater than half the cost of a new one, it makes sense to replace it. Obviously you won’t know how much the repair would cost without consulting an appliance repair service. At Dave’s Appliance, our experts can diagnose your appliance’s problem and give you an estimate for the repair. With all of that information, you can make an informed decision.

Which Appliance Is it?

Other than cost, you have to consider how much you value your current appliance. Your refrigerator/freezer may have external ice and water dispensers, pull-out shelving, and other features you really appreciate. Your washer and dryer may fit just perfectly into the space in your utility room. Maybe you love to cook and bake and your stove suits you perfectly. It might even be that your appliances coordinate with your decor. These are definitely legitimate reasons to hesitate about replacing them when they break. Again, a visit from one of the friendly members of Dave’s Appliance team will help you understand the extent of your problem.

How Old Is It and Is It Still Under Warranty?

Major appliances like refrigerators or chest freezers often last from 10 to 20 years. Other appliances like trash compactors have an average life span of about 6 years. Most appliances also come with warranties, and often those can be extended if you choose to do so. When an appliance breaks down, it would be a good idea to find out if its warranty is still in force. If it’s not, check to see what the average life span is for your brand of that particular appliance.

What’s The Environmental Impact?

Often, the environmental impact of repairing or replacing isn’t considered at all. But perhaps you should think about it. If your appliance is old and inefficient, it may be using a lot of electricity. That’s bad for the environment and bad for your utility bills. If your appliance was made after 1992, it should have an Energy Star Rating to let you know how efficient it is. You can compare it to current appliances’ efficiency. On the other hand, your old appliance can’t just be thrown out. Major household appliances are banned from landfills in Wisconsin and the state urges that they be reused or recycled. In many places in Wisconsin, appliances are not picked up at the curb with other recyclables, nor are they accepted at many general recycling drop-off sites. It may be the more environmentally-responsible choice to repair rather than replace.

Whatever your appliance concern, the experts at Dave’s Appliance will be able to tell you what the problem is and help you decide whether or not it’s worth repairing. Give us a call.

Posted in appliance repair, clothes dryer, dishwasher, disposal, freezer, general, microwave, refrigerator, seasonal, stove, washing machine, wine cooler | Comments Off on Is Your Appliance Worth Repairing?

Washing Clothes During Coronavirus: What’s the Safest Way?

April 28th, 2020

The COVID19 pandemic is especially lethal for several reasons: it attacks the lower respiratory system immediately, and it is extremely contagious. While there is still a lot that the scientists do not know about COVID19, the general agreement is that it is spread through droplets that settle on surfaces and can remain contagious for up to 72 hours. Different surfaces have different time frames, however, and experts are not yet certain how long COVID19 can remain on fabric. What we do know is that ordinary soap and water can destroy the virus on the skin. And the same science applies to laundry.

The Science of Soap

Almost all viruses consist of three key elements: ribonucleic acid (RNA), proteins and lipids. There are no strong covalent bonds holding these units together, which means you do not need harsh chemicals to split them apart. The weakest part of the virus is the lipid or fatty layer. Soap dissolves the fat membrane and the RNA and proteins go their separate ways, no longer a threat. Laundry detergent works on the same principles. The surfactants (surface active agents) in laundry detergent have molecules that have two ends: one to attach to lipids (grease and dirt), and one to attract water. So during the wash cycle, the laundry detergent would work on the lipids in the COVID19 virus, breaking them down, and then rinse it all away in the rinse cycle.

Laundry Strategies to Combat COVID19

Knowing that simply doing your laundry can help prevent this disease gives you substantial power over it. While it is not necessary to do your laundry any differently from normal, you may choose to wash clothes at a higher temperature or use a detergent that specifies that it’s good on grease. Other key considerations to minimize the spread of COVID19 are these:

· Do not shake out dirty laundry. You may be in the habit of shaking out your dirty laundry before putting it in the machine. Now is the time to break that habit. Shaking your dirty laundry creates the potential for the COVID19 virus to travel from the fabric to your skin, or some other surface where it can remain infectious.

· Separate towels for household members. Each person should have their own hand towel and bath towel, and they should be washed more frequently than usual. The hand towel especially will be used more frequently because everyone should be washing hands multiple times a day.

· Cloth Face Masks and Gloves. The CDC is now recommending that everyone wear cloth face masks when out in public. They are also clear that you should not diminish the supply needed for medical professionals. It is easy to make or create your own cloth face mask. Similarly, cloth gloves don’t take away from the disposable gloves needed by medical professionals and protect you against COVID19 as well. It is important that you put these cloth face masks and gloves into the washing machine as soon as you enter the house after a public excursion. They need to be washed after every use.

· Wash some items on the hottest setting. Fabrics that have been in contact with bodily fluids should be washed at the hottest setting possible for the cloth. For instance, anything that has had vomit or feces on it (including diapers) should be washed on hot. Sports wear, too, should be washed in water as hot as the fabric can withstand. And of course, towels should be washed on hot.

Your washer is your ally in the fight against COVID19. It’s designed to deal with grease and grime, and COVID19’s fatty layer can be destroyed in your washer as well. Use it frequently to keep yourself and your family safe during this pandemic.

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Front-Load vs. Top-Load Washer: Which is Better?

April 17th, 2020

A washing machine is a major purchase, and before you buy, you should be fully informed. Not only are there a lot of different brands, there are different types of machine, so the first decision is whether to get a front-load or top-load machine. Which is better? That depends on what you’re looking for. In this blogpost, we will look at a number of different factors that you should consider. Then you can decide what is best for your family.

Cost

The majority of washing machines in the U.S. are the top-loading type, including the newer GE models that don’t have the center-post agitator. Unsurprisingly, top-loaders are usually less expensive than front-loaders. However, because of other factors, front-loaders may well save you money in the long run. So if your major concern is the initial outlay, a top-loader would be your choice, while if you want long-term savings, a front-loader is best.

Time

Traditional top-loading washers have run times between 35 and 65 minutes, and the newer HE top-loaders have cycles from 60 to 80 minutes. Front-loader cycles are substantially longer, between 75 and 120 minutes. That’s because the laundry needs to rest in the shallow pool of water and detergent periodically rather than being immersed in water constantly.

Cleaning Effectiveness

Front-loaders are better at cleaning fabrics in general, and in getting stains out of clothes without pre-treating. That’s true even when compared to the newest models of top-loading machines. The reason is simple: front-loaders work with gravity. The clothes in a front-loading machine are pulled up by the rotation of the drum, then fall against each other as they come down. This tumbling action is much more effective than the twisting motion of top-loading machines. But you should think, too, whether you require intensive cleaning action. Are your clothes regularly very dirty? Do you hate pre-treating stains? If cleaning effectiveness is your main objective, the answer is easy; if not, read on.

Water Conservation

Top-loaders work by filling the drum with water (and detergent) and then agitating the clothes in a twisting motion. There needs to be enough water in the drum to fully immerse all the material. In a front-loading machine, there is a shallow pool of water at the bottom of the drum and the clothes are dragged through it repeatedly by the action of the drum. Compared with a typical HE top-loader, front-loaders use about 5 fewer gallons of water per cycle, or around 2,000 gallons per year based on estimates for average use. That’s a lot of water you can save by having a front-loading machine.

Energy Use

Front-loaders are more energy efficient. Obviously using less water translates into less energy since that means less water needs to be pumped in (and out) and heated. Also, front-loaders extract a lot more water out of the laundry, so if you use a dryer rather than hanging your clothes out, that translates into an energy savings since you’ll need a shorter cycle on your dryer. Overall, front-loaders use less than half the electricity of a standard top-loading machine.

Maintenance

The maintenance of a top-loader is easier than that of a front-loader. Front-loaders have been known to smell, and unless maintained properly you can have a problem with mold in your machine. Front-loaders

have a tub-clean feature that should be run on a regular basis and some basic cleaning habits can mitigate this issue.

Design

Finally, you should consider what design works better in your house. Front-loading machines are usually stackable, so your washer and dryer take up less floor space.

Think about all of your family needs when choosing whether to go with a front-loader or top-loader. Once that decision is made, you can begin comparing brands.

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Washer Won’t Drain?
How to Fix a Washer that Won’t Drain

December 3rd, 2019

If you reach into your washer expecting to take out damp clothes and instead find sopping wet clothes, you have a problem. When your washer won’t drain properly, something needs to be done quickly. We all know how fast dirty laundry can pile up! Let’s look at some of the most common reasons why a washer won’t drain and how to deal with them.

Before doing anything to your washing machine, it is vital that you turn off the electricity to the machine, either by unplugging it or flipping the appropriate circuit breaker. Obviously, if there is standing water in the tub of the washer, you will need to bail that out as well.

Clogged Hose

The hose that carries the water from the back of the washer to the drain may be clogged. It could be as simple as a kink in the hose; sometimes when the washer is pushed too close to the wall, the exterior hose becomes jammed or kinked and the water cannot flow out freely. In that case, the solution is simple: move the washer away from the wall and make sure the water can move through the hose. If there are no apparent kinks in the hose, there may be a clog somewhere. In that case, you will need to disconnect the hose, find the obstruction, and remove it. Have a bucket handy when you disconnect the hose for excess water. Then shine a flashlight into the hose to determine where the clog is. If it is beyond easy reach, use tongs, and if it is too deep for that to work, take the hose outside and try using a garden hose. The force of the water may dislodge the obstruction. Then reconnect the hose to the machine, and run a quick cycle to determine if the problem is completely eliminated.

Clogged Drain

If the hose is not the problem, then the reason a washer won’t drain may be the drain. This would also be a relatively simple repair. The drain is the likely culprit is there is water on the floor, or remaining in the tub. Use a plumber’s snake to clean out the drain. Hopefully, that will clear any obstruction. Again, run a short cycle to see if the problem is fixed.

Damaged Pump

When a washer won’t drain, there may well be an issue with the pump. If so, that is a more difficult repair to do on your own. You may want to call one of the experts at Dave’s Appliance. Different washing machine manufacturers have different kinds of pumps located in different places in the machine. Perhaps the screen on the pump is just too full of debris. In that case, the screen can be removed, cleaned, and replaced, and that will solve the problem. It may be a problem with the fan blades, or with the casing of the pump; if so, you may need a new pump.

One of the best ways to avoid a washer that won’t drain is to be vigilant about emptying pockets before washing. Coins and other small objects can get caught in the pump or other washer components, causing draining difficulties. If you hear unusual noises during a wash cycle, it may be a forgotten item banging around in the tub. If you have a top-loading machine, interrupt the cycle and take out the object before it can create any draining problems.

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How to Fix a Washer that Won’t Drain

Ignore These 6 Washing Machine Repair Warning Signs and You’ll Be at the Laundromat

May 23rd, 2019

washing machine repairThe washing machine is one of modern society’s greatest conveniences. It’s an appliance that you probably take for granted until it fails to work one day. Getting a long life from your washing machine is easy. Your washing machine has several components that must work together seamlessly, and those parts will eventually wear out or stop working properly if regular maintenance isn’t done on the machine. Here are six warning signs that your washing machine needs repairs:

#1 Drum Doesn’t Fill with Water

No, your washing machine didn’t turn into a high-efficiency (HE) appliance since your last load of laundry. Although HE washers are designed to use less water than regular washing machines, your conventional washing machine’s drum must have an adequate amount of water to thoroughly clean your clothes. A washer that has a blockage will have no water or a low amount of water in its drum. A reputable washer repair technician has the tools and skills to inspect, clean, and fix washer hoses, pipes, and filters. (more…)

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Add Your Home Appliances to Your Spring Cleaning Checklist

April 23rd, 2019

Spring cleaning woman on porch

Not just the porch! Appliances need spring cleaning too.

Springtime is an excellent time to clean your whole home. With fresh air blowing through your windows, you have an excellent opportunity to get rid of odors, dust and dirt that may have built up on your rugs, upholstery, hardwood floors and furniture. In addition, be sure to take your cleaning to the next level by including your home appliances on your spring cleaning checklist.

Cleaning Your Dishwasher

Your dishwasher is probably filled with bits of food as well as hard water deposits from frequent use. Thoroughly clean the screens and filters on the bottom of the dishwasher and also wipe down the sprayer arms. You may even want to use a shop vac to get rid of food debris. For very difficult-to-remove lime or calcium deposits, consider cleaning with a commercial cleanser, such as CLR or Lime-Away. (more…)

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Is Your Detergent Ruining Your Washing Machine?

April 8th, 2019

washing detergent soap bubblesEveryone wants clean clothes. Some individuals believe that using extra soap will ensure that the job is accomplished. Unfortunately, this is quite the opposite. If you are using too much detergent or the wrong type of detergent, you may be ruining your clothes and causing damage to your machine. To avoid the need for washing machine repair, here are some useful tips for picking a detergent and using the correct amount. (more…)

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The Right Detergent for Your Washing Machine

December 13th, 2018

laundry detergent on grocery shelfIf you would like to get the most from your washing machine and keep it in great shape for years to come, you need to follow the right steps and have some tips in mind. Not using the right washing machine detergent can cost you money on your energy bill or even result in costly washing machine repair fees. This guide reviews the types of detergents from which you can choose and points you toward the correct path.

High-Efficiency Detergents

High-efficiency washing machines use less water than standard washing machines and require high-efficiency detergents. Standard laundry detergents produce a lot of bubbles and foam that require plenty of water to wash away. If you have a high-efficiency washing machine and use standard detergents, you won’t get enough water to clear the foam. The foam can even overflow and damage your washer if you are not careful, and you will then need to hire a washing machine repair team. (more…)

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