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Friday, March 23, 2012

Dirty Fuel - Still Making Excuses.


Dirty fuel should be consigned to the coal bin of history


Photo Credit: Jon Martin


As long as coal remains so inexpensive to obtain and burn, with few or no dollars paid for the environmental damage it causes, it will continue to be used. And that endangers us all. We need leadership on this. Read this article online...

More than anything else, coal fuelled the Industrial Revolution. It was, and still is, plentiful and cheap. It’s also always been relatively easy to get at, especially if you don’t mind sending kids into mines, endangering the lives of miners, or blasting the tops off mountains.

Coal is an 18th-century fuel source, but we’re still relying on it for much of our energy needs in the 21st century. Because it’s so abundant and inexpensive, there’s been little incentive to switch to cleaner but often more expensive sources.

Burning coal pollutes the air, land, and water and is a major driver of climate change. Emissions from coal combustion contain sulphur dioxide, carbon dioxide, mercury, arsenic, nitrogen oxide, carbon monoxide, lead, small particles, and other toxic materials. These cause acid rain, smog, damage to forests and waterways, and a range of serious health problems in humans, from lung disease to cancer.

And, as University of Victoria climate scientist Andrew Weaver concluded after comparing the impacts of burning tar sands oil to burning coal, “We will live or die by our future consumption of coal.” That doesn’t mean the tar sands are okay; it’s just that there’s a lot more coal in the world, and the impacts of mining and burning it are more severe.

Weaver stressed that, “While coal is the greatest threat to the climate globally, the tar sands remain the largest source of greenhouse gas emission growth in Canada and are the single largest reason Canada is failing to meet its international climate commitments.”

I agree with Weaver that the “world needs to transition away from fossil fuels if it wants to avoid dangerous human interference with the climate system. That means coal, unconventional gas, and unconventional oil all need to be addressed.”

Canada uses more than half its coal to generate electricity and for industry. We export about 40 per cent, much of it to Japan and elsewhere in Asia. Canada also imports coal, mainly because it’s cheaper to ship it from the U.S. to eastern provinces than from Western Canada.

About 18 per cent of Canada’s electricity is from coal, less than the global 40 per cent average, and much less than countries like China, which uses coal to generate about 80 per cent of its electricity. But use varies across the country. According to Natural Resources Canada, “Coal is used to produce about 74 per cent of the electricity used in Alberta, 63 per cent in Saskatchewan, 60 per cent in Nova Scotia, and 18 per cent in Ontario. The coal not used to generate electricity is consumed by Canada’s steel, cement and other industries.”

Rather than looking for cleaner ways to generate energy, many industrial and government leaders have been touting “clean coal”. This means trying to reduce some of the pollutants and CO2 by “scrubbing” them from emissions or by burying them underground in a process called carbon capture and storage. It can also mean converting coal to gas.

These are inadequate solutions. They don’t get rid of all the pollutants. Carbon capture is expensive and mostly unproven and we don’t fully understand the consequences of burying carbon dioxide. The governments of Canada and Alberta have committed $3 billion in taxpayer money since 2008 for demonstration CCS projects, mostly for coal operations, but some for the tar sands. Even with CCS, coal plants would not be required to eliminate their CO2 emissions, just reduce them.

As long as coal remains so inexpensive to obtain and burn, with few or no dollars paid for the environmental damage it causes, it will continue to be used. And that endangers us all. We need leadership on this. As Andrew Weaver said, “The atmosphere has traditionally been viewed as an unregulated dumping ground. There is no cost associated with emitting greenhouse gases. Economists call this a market failure. To correct this failure, a price is needed on emissions.”

We are well beyond the 18th century. With energy, it’s time to look to the future and not the past. That means finding ways to encourage clean energy development and discourage fossil fuel consumption. Carbon taxes and cap and trade must be part of the equation.

By David Suzuki with contributions from David Suzuki Foundation Editorial and Communications Specialist Ian Hanington.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Bosch/Gaggenau/Neff/Siemens/Thermador/...runs continuously and displays "1"










**Please disconnect the power or turn off the breaker before attempting any service to the dishwasher.**


Let me start with a disclaimer. While I've been a journeyman ticketed technician since 1997 and repairing appliances professionally for nearly 20 years, (factory trained on many I service) I am not a professional writer nor am I a guru web designer, so what you see is what you get...I hope it will suffice.

I also do not represent Bosch or any of it's subsidiary companies in any manner, this is simply a "do-it-yourself" repair blog as it pertains to Bosch built dishwashers. This blog will address specific issues associated with heating errors, commonly displayed as the number 1 in those dishwashers which have a digital display, those without a display will usually (but not always...depending on make and model of course) be displayed in the "Delicate/Econo" LED on the buttons being lit to indicate a fault.

The other important factor to mention here is the "1" being displayed can manifest due to several faults...never assume or allow anyone to imply one specific part being replaced will remedy this error...the actual fault must be determined first.

As I mentioned there are several possible faults that will manifest with the "1" being displayed, I will mention those possibilities, though I will only address the control issue here on this blog...focusing on what I've found most common, thus most likely. (If you've diagnosed and ruled this possibility out already, this is the time to abort and contact me for further more detailed and specific assistance).

**Be sure you are familiar with it's "normal" performance before declaring anything is indeed at fault or calling in an expert...read over the owners manual thoroughly** 

I've performed numerous repairs on these dishwashers, including control replacements or arriving after another technician had replaced the board and found the issue was simply lack of knowledge of how these are supposed to work. 

When a control is installed brand new, it is likely going to display a 2H or 99, THIS IS NORMAL(note the upper case H, not lower case h...the 2h is for delay) this is telling you the approximate time the last cycle took to complete (it is not an actual time but rather an estimate). In the case of the 2H, the cycle exceeded two hours. It is also the default display, after replacing a control and running a complete cycle, the control will adapt to your set-up, i.e. water inlet temperature, drain etc. Ideal inlet temperature is 120 degrees Fahrenheit.

I had a recent experience where I was called in to address the 2H being displayed in a new control which had been replaced by a large retail store serviceman and they could not explain to the customer why it still displayed 2H as it did prior to the new control, thus the technician ordered another control assuming it too was faulty. Needless to say, this left (understandably) the home owner/customer not satisfied the dishwasher was going to be repaired properly. In the end, I made sure it was.

I digress,

By far the most common failure with the Bosch built dishwashers have been the control board, or more specifically the cold solder joint for the heater relay on the control board. In fact, this is where you as a consumer should check your model number and serial number...the serial number is also referred to as a "batch" number which identifies when (the date) the unit was built.

BSH Home Appliance Corp. issued a recall on several of the models they build (primarily to Bosch & Siemens units manufactured and sold between 1999-2005) and if it applies to your machine, stop ! Call Bosch or check out the link to the websites provided to see if this is applicable to your model of dishwasher.

**In the event you have a Gaggenau, Neff or Thermador, I'd recommend checking with their customer service people to be sure**

The appliance details can be found either engraved on the top or on a sticker on the left hand or right hand side of the inner part of the door (see pictures below).
To identify if you are the owner of one of the affected dishwashers, please do the following:


1. Go to your dishwasher and get your model details and batch number.
2. Check whether your batch number range lies within FD 7901 to FD 8504 – if not, you are not affected by this safety notice.

http://bosch-home.com/us/recall.html
Now to address the most common heating faults with these machines (the solder failure issue) should your machine not be part of the recall.

My Opinion - if you or someone you know is proficient at soldering, a lot of times it can be remedied by simply repairing the solder…(provided the circuit board/pathways are not damaged too bad) but it has to be done well or it will not last, (Bosch recommends replacing the control and I don`t pretend to speak on their behalf nor do I profess to know better). This is just my experience (it work`s) and my opinion (why buy new if one can safely repair ?)

As I've alluded to the issue is likely within the electronic timer/control, specifically the heater relay solder joint. Now to mention the other culprits, a faulty flow switch, NTC (negative temperature coefficient type hi-limit thermostat) or heater/element can also cause this, but not very probable.

If you feel capable of checking this on your own, there`s a way to visually inspect the control yourself...with my instructions, it really isn't very complicated.

circuit board.  The images I've provided are typical of the "SHU" series dishwashers, but these guidelines and the principles of the inspection/repair, apply to all the BSH machines.


The culprit will 99% of the times will be one of the pins from the heater relay,



**Flip this over and inspect the solder joints, it will be obvious when you see it.**


...hence the unit sit`s and takes longer & longer to finish because it can`t heat to advance. (unless interrupted via depressing the 2 buttons for "cancel"). This can also manifest in the scenario where the cycle takes a long time as I mentioned and eventually displays "1" on units with a display….as a by-product  it usually results in very poor cleaning as well.

You can also diagnose or dismiss a heating error if you have access to, or own an ammeter/multi-meter...though it must be the "clamp-on" type shown.

**I do not recommend this for novice do-it-yourselfers...This also requires the electrical supply to be on, it's advice-able to have some knowledge of electrical circuits or electrical theory, please use caution.**

I suggest you clamp onto the black wire, aka "line one" (L1) at the junction box, then turn the power on.


...then start the unit through a regular or eco-wash cycle (any cycle with the exception of rinse & hold or cancel) the black wire should draw approximately 11 amps on the meter during the wash cycle...after it fills and the flow switch indicates it has adequate water to engage the heater.

**these units incorporate what's known as an "instantaneous heater assembly", meaning the water heats as it circulates through the element housing, (flow through heater) hence, if the either the water inlet valve fails to allow water to flow into the unit or the circulation motor fails, the element will not be energized**

Since I am a technician the image below shows the method I prefer, thus allowing me to visually inspect wiring etc. with the door panel removed placing the ammeter on the gray w/black tracer wire to the control.


If you do not feel comfortable attempting this service, call a local pro, preferably one familiar with Bosch/Gaggenau/Neff/Siemens/Thermador, to service your machine. I have link to the top right of the page for my paid services where I can provide detailed and specific support to your needs, click on "Buy Now" to utilize this service. I too am a factory trained BSH Home Appliance Corp. technician.

NOTE: when replacing boards…


Thanks for visiting my fixedappliance blog today. I hope I was able to provide you with some useful information to keep your hard earned money in your pocket and the steps to do-it-yourself. Good luck.

Please feel free to leave feedback or ask further question if anything is not clear or the procedures above do not resolve your particular problem.

**I realize do-it-yourself is not for everyone, (I sometimes wish others realized this before attempting as well, but oh well) If you have any hesitation to perform anything suggested here, please contact a professional or click the button to the top right of the page for my paid services, click on "Buy Now" to utilize this service.**

I welcome your involvement, but please respect this blog solution/diagnoses is only the first and most common, not necessarily the resolve for all...but rather most heating error codes as they relate to these BSH dishwashers. Please contact me if you believe I may be able to assist you in this matter or any other manner.

Regards,

Mark M.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Bosch/Siemens WFMC & WFXD (aka Nexxt series) E:13 & E:04 error displayed












Let me start with a disclaimer. While I've been a journeyman ticketed technician since 1997 and repairing appliances professionally for nearly 20 years, I am not a professional writer nor am I a guru web designer, so what you see is what you get...I hope it will suffice.

The E:13/E:04 error codes on the WFMC series Bosch and WFXD Siemens washer`s refer to a drainage problem, as you may or may not already know. (or in Bosch terms "pump time exceeded")
This blog is designed to explain the *most likely* way to remedy a E:13 and some cases E:04 codes. (This error can also be caused by other factors and just as commonly, too much detergent/suds...this is just the cleaning/inspecting the pump procedure).
**This procedure differs from the latest models such as WFVC washers which do not have the pump access cover. Though not listed, it also applies to other WFMC models such as WFMC2200, WFMC4300 etc...simply, if your washer has the 4" access door at the bottom, this is applicable.**
Let's begin with a word from Bosch/Siemens. "We recommend the use of "He" detergent because they are particularily designed to deliver optimum performance from your front-load washer. Not using "He" detergent could cause problems such as oversudsing , extended cycle time, or a decrease in wash performance."

**Unplug the washer from the wall or turn off the breaker before attempting any repairs...this will also reset the error, though it will return if the problem has not been resolved**

Get some towels and if possible a wet/dry shopvac. If your machine is stuck full of water, that sucks...hopefully you won't get too wet. (maybe you`re fortunate to be close to a floor drain, if so laying the drain hose to the floor should drain most of the water out)


1.  Locate the round door on the front of the machine (about 6" in diameter, lower right corner)



2.  Find a drill bit or small screwdriver that fits in the hole in the round door.


3.  Insert the bit into the hole in the door. It will push in a tab, it doesn't take much force. Rotate the hole (clockwise) to 6'oclock and it should come free. (the edges of the front panel, not the cover are very sharp so be careful. I suggest wearing long sleeves and gloves...a trick I use is covering the edges with electrical or duct tape).




4.  Once the door is out of the way you'll be greeted by a 3-4" plastic cap with wings so you can unscrew it by hand. (you should also see a green ring with a string attached as shown in the example here, if you pull this the door should unlatch...but wait ! Make sure the water is below the door if you pull this, it is usually a good plan or you'll really get wet)


NOTE: There is a small collector lip at the bottom of the cap, that is where you can hold the wet/dry vac (please don't use a household vacuum...it has to specifically be a "wet-dry" shop vacuum) to catch the water. Unscrew slowly so you don't get flooded, until it is unscrewed all the way out.

5.  Now pull out the trap and visually inspect the inside of the pump as well as the filter/trap. Hopefully you'll find the item/debris that initiated the error code...unless caused from oversudsing or failed/worn pump.


6. This is a good opportunity to inspect the drain pump impeller. An example is shown here of how it should appear. If any of the 4 vanes are missing or "shaved" off....you'll need a pump and this was certainly a factor or primary reason for the error.


7.  After removing any debris or obstruction`s re-install the button trap/lint filter and plug the washer in to power or reset the breaker and give it a test.

8.  Run a load without any items or detergent and watch for leaks. Leave the pump access door off until you are sure you screwed the cap in tight and there are no leaks.

NOTE - If the error returns without any debris in the pump, run the suggested clean cycle below to remove possible excess detergent build-up...if issue still persist's, other possibilities must be investigated, such as a “gummed up” or “dirty” check ball assy or ultimately a failed pump.


CLEANING TIP: It is recommended by Bosch/Siemens that a small amount of household bleach be run through the washer every 3 months...more often for heavily used machines. *This is to be done without items in the washer*
  1. Pour 1 cup of bleach into detergent compartment of the dispenser.
  2. Run a Cotton/Regular hot program.
There are other products on the market aside from bleach such as "Washerfresh" and "Affresh" that offer the same or superior results as well. If using these products follow the instructions on the package.


Finally, to summarize “why” these errors occur most often in the hope you can simply prevent this from happening in the future. When combining too much detergent and the use of cold washing, (which is awesome, cold water saves you money, I agree and I am also all for that) however, I find with this detergent folks tend to use enough to produce these unwanted suds, when used for warm or hot water washes it tends to suds even greater. Factor in the dirt from the soiled items in the wash, this manifest into a scenario of all this grunge build-up as it settle’s to the walls of the outer tub and hoses. 


Thanks for visiting my fixedappliance blog today. I hope I was able to provide you with some useful information to keep your hard earned money in your pocket and the steps to do-it-yourself. Good luck.


Please feel free to leave feedback or ask further question if anything is not clear or the procedures above do not resolve your particular problem.


**If you have any hesitation to perform anything suggested here, please contact a professional or post your concern here**


I have link to the top right of the page for my paid services, click on "Buy Now" to utilize this service.

I welcome your involvement, but please respect these solutions are only the first and most common remedies, not necessarily the resolve for all...but rather most Bosch "Nexxt" series E:13 & E:04 error codes as they relate to these B/S/H (Bosch, Siemens) washers.

Regards,

Mark M.










Saturday, November 5, 2011

LG frontload washer "LE" displayed

LG washer “LE” error


Let me start with a disclaimer. While I've been a journeyman ticketed technician since 1997 and repairing appliances professionally for nearly 20 years, I am not a professional writer nor am I a guru web designer, so what you see is what you get...I hope it will suffice.

So let's begin. If your washer has begun displaying this particular error, you likely are asking “what does LE mean and why is my machine displaying it" ?  Well, “LE” is an abbreviation for “Locked Motor Error”.
NOTE: Fault codes are not a foolproof system. Never assume or let one tell you that a part has failed based on a displayed fault code.   
As to why your machine has started to display this code, there are a couple of reasons, the most common being too much or the wrong type of detergent. I will tell you LG describes this error as being displayed for the following reasons....


LE:  LOCKED MOTOR ERROR

• The connector (3-pin, male, white) in the MOTOR HARNESS is not connected to the connector (3-pin, female, white) of STATOR ASSEMBLY.




• The electric contact between the connectors (3-pin, male, white) in the MOTOR HARNESS and 4-pin, female, white connector in the MAIN PWB ASSEMBLY is bad or unstable.

• The MOTOR HARNESS between the STATOR ASSEMBLY and MAIN PWB ASSEMBLY is cut (open circuited).

• The hall sensor is out of order/defective.

If one where to take this definition/explanations literal, you'd be fixing/tracing wires, changing RPS/hall sensor assemblies forever. What they fail to mention is the issue of suds, That is what this blog is intended to address, so let's begin.
These washers only uses 3.8 litres (1 U.S. gallon) of water. If one add’s too much soap, bad things are going to happen: The following is all based on my nearly 20 years professional experience, thus my professional opinion.


You MUST use "He" (High Efficiency-Low Suds) type detergent AND use the correct amount. Nearly all washers today should use "He" (high efficiency - if you don't know if your detergent is or not, look for the symbol shown below..if it's not on the package it is not "He") and in my opinion even using less of non-high efficient detergent is unacceptable.

Nearly all brands of "He" detergent have incorrect instructions.


The correct amount is as follows: of course the amount of soil on the items is always the main factor…but most “urban” dwellers don’t typically get very dirty (in generalizing) so…as a rule
He: (2) Tablespoons per load


He 2X: (double concentrated) : (1) Tablespoon


He 3X: (triple concentrated): (1) Teaspoon


By following these suggestions you will reduce or prevent several undesirable side effects such as:


1) Musty odour – Foul smell inside washer


2) "LE" Error/Interrupted Cycle


3) LONG Cycle Times (longer than time displayed…sometimes very long, which by the way is “estimated” NOT actual)


4) Insufficient cleaning/poor rinse & spin results


5) Small water leaks from the air vent behind the washer or at the front door gasket


6) Damaged hall effect sensor, aka RPS-rotor position sensor (usually only 2007 or older LG washers)


7) Reduced spin speeds (laundry not spin-dried effectively or not at all)


8) Premature wear of the tub bearing and spider gear assembly...worse case scenario, but precedents have been documented (due to excessive vibration caused by suds).


 Most consumers do what is commonly considered normal or the right thing to do, (subjective I know, but for the sake of argument I’ll generalize) which is to follow directions on the detergent label. In my opinion those directions should be entirely disregarded…they do sell detergent after all…the more you use the better for their sales, right ?
Additionally, in many LG washers the liquid dispenser cup (blue cup) has a "MAX" line on the white siphon cap. (The image provided is an example only, it may differ depending on your model)

This is a mistake on LGs part (in my opinion) since this "MAX" line has nothing to do with measuring detergent and should not be used as a guide for determining correct detergent amount. The "MAX" line indicates how much liquid must be in the blue dispenser cup before it dispenses from the bottom of the cup.


This is a very frustrating mistake that gives owners (as well as myself trying to explain) much grief.


After three months (again depending on usage) of incorrect type of detergent or incorrect amount of the correct detergent used--musty odour begins to occur. (worse if one primarily washes with cold water)


After more than two years a significant amount of soap/dirt scum has accumulated in the washer. Odour causing bacteria flourishes on this build-up. (This is more evident when primarily using cold water washing and leaving the washer door closed after use in a dimly lit environment)


It is crucial to remove this slimy residue (as is usually mentioned in the owners guide under “maintaining your washer", or “cleaning”).


Most manufacturer's suggest operating your washer periodically as a cleaning tip (every 3 months on average) on a "regular/cotton" hot water setting without any items in the machine. If your particular model has a "Washer Clean" option, use it. Pour 1 cup of bleach in the "detergent" compartment of the dispenser...one can substitue with "White Vinegar" though it will not be as effective in my experience. Check your guide for the manufacturers' suggestion.
There are also several product’s one can use called “Washer Fresh” or “Affresh” which are very effective.
Once a washer inner & outer tub has become heavily contaminated normal methods of performing a "WASHER CLEAN" cycle won't be effective. You will likely need to purchase one of the products I mentioned above, or an alternative similar one, and follow these steps...

1)      Add the entire packet of cleaner directly into the empty basket/tub (no laundry) and close the door
2)      Press and hold: “SPIN SPEED” & “SOIL LEVEL” buttons simultaneously while still holding these buttons-- press “POWER” button.  Wait for door to lock


3)      Press the “START” button (6) times, this will fill the tub with hot water to the maximum setting when it stops filling


4)      Press the “START” button two more times, this will initiate the basket/tub to tumble.  After 2-3 hours turn "off


5)       Turn the washer back "on". Select the shortest wash cycle (usually "quick wash") and press "START". This will introduce clean water and rinse out the inner & outer tub


This method of "WASHER CLEANING"  is not from a service manual but has been the best method I’ve found for cleaning out LG washers after more than a year of incorrect or improper detergent usage.

After this, use the correct amount of "He" detergent outlined above and try to perform a "WASHER CLEAN" cycle every 2 - 4 months using the “clean” option on the control panel to maintain a fresh and what should be an odour free washer. (there are other factors such as drainage, door being closed, dimly lit room etc. that contribute to odours as well)
Most digital controlled/electronic front load washers have a software feature that consumers are unaware of...commonly referred to as an on board watchdog, or monitor. (central control units, which I will simply refer to as "timer" or “board” going forward) LG likes to use fancy terminology such as...





"NEURO FUZZY WASHING TIME OPTIMIZATION"



Ha Ha ! What it means basically, If excessive suds are detected by the board (which monitors everything including the load on the motor or "how hard it's working" simply put, during rinse & final spin) the "suds stop" will be enabled.


This causes the washer timer/board countdown to stall. The washer makes an attempt to reduce/remove suds (usually a futile attempt) and ends the cycle much longer than was originally shown on the initial estimate displayed.


As I alluded to initially, the “LE” error can also manifest due to a failed “RPS” (hall sensor). In the event the above suggestion does not resolve the “LE” error you likely will need to investigate this possible failure or possible severed/poor wire connections from the board to the hall sensor.


**If you have any hesitation to perform anything suggested here, please contact a professional or post your concern here**


Speaking of professionals, I have a link to the top right of the page for my paid services, click on "Buy Now" to utilize this service.


To summarize “why” these errors occur most often, in the hope you can prevent this from happening in the future. When combining too much detergent and the use of cold washing, (common for folks to add too much because they must see suds) add in the dirt from the items in the wash, as a result this manifest into a scenario of all this grunge build-up as it settle’s to the walls of the outer tub and hoses and the residual build-up of undissolved detergent means every wash the problem grows greater. This is my opinion, based on my experience...but think about it, it makes sense.


Thanks for visiting my fixedappliance blog today. I hope I was able to provide you with some useful information to keep your hard earned money in your pocket and the steps to do-it-yourself. Good luck.


Please feel free to leave feedback or ask further question if anything is not clear or the procedures above do not resolve your particular problem.


I welcome your involvement, but please respect these solutions are only the first and most common remedies, not necessarily the resolve for all...but rather most "LE" error codes as they relate to LG washers.

Regards,

Mark M.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Whirlpool/Kenmore/Maytag & more-F02/F21 & Sd error codes common fix


Let me start with a disclaimer. While I've been a journeyman ticketed technician since 1997 and repairing appliances professionally for nearly 20 years, I am not a professional writer nor am I a guru web designer, so what you see is what you get...I hope it will suffice.

As the title suggests, this is a general remedy for most Whirlpool made front-load machines, such as Whirlpool, Kenmore, Maytag, Amana, etc. when it comes to dealing with error codes displayed as Sd (suds) F02 or F21.


So before I begin I will elaborate on these common error codes in regard to their meaning...or intended meaning. Before getting started the simplest component to check is the drain hose...make sure it is not "kinked" or plugged.


First the Sd error (or SUDS as it can appear on certain models).


This code, is not so much an error really, I think of it as just a "heads-up" if you like from the MCU (motor control unit) to let you know you still have time to correct this before serious damage potentially occurs. The "Sd" is intended to be associated when too much detergent (thus creating suds) has been detected, but can manifest for several reason's. If left unchecked on certain models the F02 or F21 will be initiated by the CCU (central control unit) after several attempts to proceed.


Far and away the most common factor in my experience, is the use of the wrong type of detergent or too much of the correct detergent combined with water temperature. (that is specifically what this is based on, my experience...but mine is professional experience, this isn't a copy & paste from wikipedia to be clear)


You may ask, What's the difference and why does it matter ? Glad you asked, I'll attempt to explain.


Modern washing machines are very different from washers of the past, even ones built as recent as 10 years ago...in fact most appliances are very different. Sometimes these modern differences are obvious through the use of electronic controls, low water levels and minimum decibel levels (some can only be heard when standing next to them...subject to location, floor plan, and the items within of course :)


These machines are built with the same basic principle, to wash your clothes...though the extent of washing they are designed to perform has changed drastically in the past 20-30 years to say the least. Consider the primary demographic for manufacturers, urban folks whom of which rarely have 6-10 children to wash for anymore and if so it is the exception not the rule.


This actually factors into the use of too much detergent in my opinion, most urban folks don't get their clothing very soiled at all, they wear them to work or to school and throw them in the laundry, right ? However, does one adjust the amount or type of detergent added to the wash ? In my hands on experience, the answer is, no. More is not better either by the way...contrary in fact, very detrimental in most cases.


Nearly all washers today should use "He" (high efficiency - if you don't know if your detergent is high efficiency or not, look for the symbol shown below..if it's not on the package it is not "He") and in my opinion even using less of non-high efficient detergent is unacceptable.


In fact, not using "He" can lead to many avoidable failures, worst case scenario, worn out bearings and basket spider gears from excessive vibrations...even in the topload high-efficient machines, but that's getting too technical for my intended blog here.






I know many folks balk at the idea of "He" being more expensive, but in fact it's not when you consider it requires less to accomplish the same (if not superior) cleaning. The biggest difference between regular laundry detergent and "He" detergent is simply the additives...or specifically the amount of additives. Regular detergents as they've been marketed in North America are full of additives. (European, South Pacific, Asian countries have used "He" detergent for many years, in fact they are only known as detergents...one for colors, one for whites, no bleach either...but the use of bleach is another kettle of fish) these companies actually add "soap" to the detergents they sell....and no soap and detergent are not the same, they are very, very different.


As most people will acknowledge marketing is a game of illusion and seeing is believing, right ? What do most people associate with cleaning ? You guessed it, suds ! So in their marketing research through the years, they've found products with more suds, better smelling additives etc. sell better...though they certainly don't necessarily clean better. Detergents, before adding "soap" do not create suds...or very little suds...dependant on water temperature, soil in the items, aggressiveness of the tumble action etc.


Enough of that, that is one factor for sure. The other factors ? Well, most modern machines also only use perhaps 1/3 (or even less on some I've seen recently...2-3 years) the water as previous generations of washers as I'm sure you are well aware...it is usually the first comment folks make to me about their new "high-efficient" washer.


The other factor, though not as great a factor, cold water washing. (this also is a primary contributing factor in those "stinky" "foul smelling" "moldy"  front load washers everyone hears about...that's for another blog...stay tuned)


I know I know, you purchased detergent designed for cold water washing, great ! The only problem I find with this detergent is folks tend to use enough to produce these unwanted suds, when used for warm or hot water washes it tends to suds even greater.





Having said all this, my intention is not to scare anyone into thinking "Oh gosh, I've ruined my washer"...no, I am hoping the information I provide here will help you prevent potential catastrophic failure and keep the money in your pocket, instead of mine...though I'll accept it if you need me, ha ha !


Second, F02 and F21 are essentially the same error displayed differently depending on the model. On certain models (refer to your owners manual if possible to confirm or dismiss) one can attempt to clear the display first by pressing pause/cancel twice.


This error code is displayed when the CCU (the washers brain or central control unit) has detected the washer cannot drain in the allowed time programmed into the CCU, usually 8 minutes.


Don't panic, it doesn't mean the pump is toast (though it can be) it is more commonly a by-product of foreign objects  (such as coins, buttons, nails, thongs, infant socks are common too...and dare I say what I see too often, support wires from bra's thus catching all the lint meant to be extracted) in the filter of the pump preventing proper water flow through the pump, thus the time needed to drain the typical volume of water is exceeded.


So, there you have the common reasons for these errors. Below is a guide I put together on what and how to resolve these errors once they occur, based on my professional experience.


A #20 type torx screwdriver, (possibly pliers/vice grips) and a shop vacuum are the suggested tools for this remedy, you may also choose to wear rubber gloves, they are actually great for gripping when working around water, almost like that was the intention, go figure, lol :)


Before attempting to repair your appliance via the do-it-yourself method please use safe practises. **Turn off the breaker at the service panel or unplug the washer from the wall socket...safety first**



1) locate the screws in front at the very bottom of the panel below the door and pull the panel down and forward until it is off. They will be either 1/4" hex head or #20 torx head screws as this example illustrates.
FL AW service panel
(The more involved back flow I discuss below will require removing the rear panel if necessary to check the back flow ball. These are also #20 torx screws, but you will also need to remove the plastic caps from the shipping bolt openings).


2) You will immediately see the drain pump in front of you (these units just have the one pump) with a large removable filter. ( **see image below...this is were a wet-dry shop vac and towels come in handy, also the use of the removed panel as a catch pan is beneficial...but you may still get wet )




3) Turn it counter-clockwise should allow you to remove it and inspect it and clean it out. (this filter can be very tight and may require the pliers/vice grips to loosen it initially) Once you loosen it, drain the water slowly…don’t remove it all at once or you’ll certainly get wet and (hopefully not) flooded. Make a good thorough inspection inside the pump as well…not just the removable filter.

This is where you can manually open the locked door (after sufficient water has been drained) if it was unable to open automatically, this is often the case when these errors appear. With the panel removed, reach your hand up along the latch side of the door and feel for the latch assembly, it will have a teardrop/loop shape on the bottom, (as pictured in the image below) pull this and the door will open.



4) Re-insert the filter and before placing the panel back run a test rinse/drain cycle to inspect for leaks and to verify the unit drains and spins now.

If the problem still exist`s the Sd or "F2" or "F21" will re-appear. If so you`ll need to check the hose/rubber bellows from pump to tub (this is where the back-flow ball is located) for other obstructions.

5) If all appears OK after your efforts, well your efforts paid off...pat yourself on the back. You just saved yourself potentially a couple hundred bucks !


Now You should be good to go. If you’re confident it is repaired and there are no signs of leaks, re-attach the lower panel and you`re back in business.

**NOTE: if this still fails to remedy the Sd, F2, F21 or if it returns immediately during the next drain you may require a pump unfortunately...part # 280187 available at "searspartsdirect.com" "repairclinic.com" etc.

**These errors however, can also be caused by the back-flow ball inside the bellows which connects the tub to the pump. There is a large clamp which secures it to the tub, but if you remove it to clean out all the dirt built up inside, make sure you get it good and secure when putting it back.**
As shown from the rear of the washer
back flow clamp

 


Often I have found dryer static/softener sheets (like I say to my customers, "don't ask me how it got in there, it's your laundry"...same goes for coins, screws, etc. in the pump ha ha !) and the like covering the check ball (back flow) thus preventing it's proper function or blocking proper water flow, hence it will initiate an F21/F02 error.


Among the many potential causes of these errors, the most common by far is too much detergent even if you are using "He" – high efficiency, detergent…which you should be on any frontload washer. This may require a thorough “washer bath” just to get back to normal function. As I mentioned above, coming soon you can see my other tip on front load washer maintenance for more info on this subject...stay tuned.


In closing let me explain “why” these errors occur most often in the hope you can prevent this from happening in the future. When combining too much detergent and the use of cold washing, add the dirt from the items in the wash, this manifest into a scenario of all this grunge build-up as it settle’s to the walls of the outer tub and hoses.
 
Thanks for visiting my fixedappliance blog today. I hope I was able to provide you with some useful information to keep your hard earned money in your pocket and the steps to do-it-yourself. Good luck.

Please feel free to leave feedback or ask further question if anything is not clear or the procedures above do not resolve your particular problem.

**If you have any hesitation to perform anything suggested here, please contact a professional or post your concern here**

Speaking of professionals, I have link to the top right of the page for my paid services, click on "Buy Now" to utilize this service.

I welcome your involvement, but please respect these solutions are only the first and most common remedies, not necessarily the resolve for all...but rather "most" Sd, F02, and F21 error codes.

Regards,

Mark M.