Simple steps for DIY Whirlpool appliance repair

Appliance repair can be intimidating, especially when it's an expensive, frequently-used machine. Despite the fact that it can save you boatloads, many people don't know the difference between small simple fixes and big jobs. That scares them off. Here are a few spots that small fixes can save you big money.

When a top-loading washer is vibrating, there are a couple of things to check. The most obvious first step is to make sure the load is balanced. Stop the cycle. When the agitator has stopped, check to make sure all your jeans or other heavy clothes haven't ended up on one side. Start it back up and listen. If the load is balanced and it's still making a ruckus, check the feet of the washer. Are all four feet touching the laundry room floor? As a machine ages, the metal may have contracted and expanded in different place, causing it to lean. You'll want to adjust the feet so they are all solidly on the floor, but wait until the load is over. The machine will be lighter and the adjustment will be easier to do once the load is finished and the water is gone.

If your machine is leaking water, a quick fix might be on the way. If it's soapy water, you may have simply put too much detergent in the machine. Clean up the mess and follow the instructions on the detergent bottle when washing clothes in the future. If it's clear water, check the hoses that run to the wall. Are they tight? Loose hoses can cause leaks. If that's not the problem, the culprit may be your drain hose. Listen for a gurgling sound near the end of the cycle. Your drain hose may be clogged, causing your leak. Simply detach one end of the hose, clear any clog and replace tightly, to ensure your handiwork doesn't cause another leak.

Dryer problems

No heat in your electric Whirlpool dryer? Repair can be as simple as checking the circuit breaker. A blown fuse or tripped circuit could be the problem. With a gas dryer, you need to make sure the supply line valve is open. If it's shut or partially shut, there won't be heat.

If the dryer won't start, make sure the latch is working. A dirty latch won't shut properly. Since the dryer won't work unless the door is shut, a very small problem can appear to have broken your whole appliance. Damage or chipping can also sideline it. 

If it takes several cycles to get even a small load of wet laundry dry, check the lint filter. For safety sake, you should clean the lint filter after every use, as lint can catch fire easily. However, if several people in the house are doing laundry at different times, it's easy for lint to build up in the dryer without anyone noticing.

If the lint filter is clean, your problem may live in the exhaust system. Go outside while the dryer is running, and put your hands near the outside exhaust. If you don't feel heat, the outside exhaust needs cleaned. Wear gloves to prevent cutting your hand on any sharp edges, and remove any lint that you can safely reach. Back inside the house, turn off the dryer and unplug it. Grab a screwdriver, and remove the hose that goes from the dryer to the wall. It's best to have a rigid hose instead of a flexible, accordion-style one. But if you have a flexible hose, clean it out regularly and, if you can't get all the lint out, replace it.

Some appliance repairs you can do yourself, saving you lots of money. Just make sure you don't tackle a job you don't feel confident doing. In addition, some home repairs may void the warranty. In either case, it'll be best to call a Whirlpool appliance repair service. Then you can kick back, fire up the Keurig and wait for the problem dissolve.

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