Do’s and Don’ts of using washing machines.

Do – read the manual. Seriously. The majority of call outs we get for washer repairs are user error. If you want your machine to last, then follow the instructions and use as intended. Below is a list of hints and tips to help you get the most out of your washer, and to help reduce your need to have us repair it.

  1. Do Install your washing machine correctly, make sure the machine is level and that the waste hose is installed appropriately. If the machine isn’t level it will go out of balance and you will get problems with the spin cycle. If the waste hose is too high or too low it can cause errors in the machine. it needs to maintain pressure in that pipe, too low and flood prevention may turn off the machine, too high and the pump may not be strong enough to push the water out. And don’t forget to drill out the spigot hole!!! Check the user manual for the correct installation of your washing machine.
  2. Do empty your pockets and clean the filters. I know this sounds obvious but empty your pockets!!! The most common preventable fault we come across is debris from the pockets making their way through the pipework of the machine and damaging components. We have found wads of tissue, wrappers, drill bits, razor blades, screws, human teeth???? and enough money to fund our staff Christmas party. Make sure you empty your pockets before you put them in the wash. Most washing machines will have filters to help prevent this, but they are not failproof. This also means that you will have to clean the filters as they get clogged up. Check your manual to find out how to access the filters on your washing machine.
  3. Do pay attention to the capacity, and don’t just stuff as much as you can into the drum, this will put extra wear on the suspension, bearings and motor and will reduce the quality of the wash. In top loaders, the excess clothing can make its way under the drum and into the mechanisms of the washing machine…. washing machines really do eat socks….. and it gives them indigestion. Try not to overstuff your washing machine, and try to balance the load (top loaders), if all the weight is to one side then you can damage the machine as it spins. If you have to put in an unbalanced load, then consider reducing the spin speed to try and reduce the chance or breakages.
  4. Do use the appropriate detergent and the appropriate amount and don’t overfill the dispenser. Too much detergent will clog up the hoses and pumps – same goes for fabric softener. The wrong type of detergent will cause excess suds to form which can block the sensors and cause the washing machine to throw an error code. Check the label of your detergent to see if it is appropriate for your washing machine and how much. As for powder vs liquid detergents – from a technicians’ standpoint; we prefer liquid. Liquid detergent is more water soluble and less likely to accumulate in the machine.
  5. Do descale; It is recommended that you descale your washing machine (and dishwasher) every 6 months. We use Scalex (available at Bunnings) on every machine before we sell it. Just pour the powder into the drum and put the empty machine through a clean cycle, if it has one, or a heavy wash cycle at the highest temperature and spin speed. This will help remove any scale, grease or grime that is accumulating in the drum and the pipework. It is the easiest way to clean your washing machine.

If you no longer have the manual for your washing machine, just google the model number. Most manufacturers will provide the user manuals for even their oldest models on their websites.

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