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Samsung WF407ANW/XAA Constantly Rebalancing during Spin Cycle


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#1 MNBob

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Posted 10 August 2013 - 04:25 PM

I have a Samsung WF407ANW/XAA (Best Buy Special) built and sold in 2009.  About a week ago, after washing a large comforter, it began having the following problem:

During the spin cycles:

 

  1. It would spend its normal 3 to 4 minutes balancing the load (say from 13 to 9 minutes);
  2. It would then try to ramp up the speed, do its normal shake at 200 RPMs or so;
  3. Then, instead of speeding up further, it would slow back down, move the timer back up to 12 minutes, and begin rebalancing again.
  4. It would repeat #1 through #3 forever if we let it.  In fact, it did it overnight once.

Self - Troubleshooting #1:

  1. Looked on the Internet – found that Samsung minimizes the issue even though there are seemingly hundreds of screaming customers who never seem to have found a fix to the problem.
  2. I leveled the washer (It is on pedestals on a concreter floor).
  3. I cleaned the intake filters.

Result #1:


The washer still had the problem with clothes in it, but it would work two out of every three times when empty.

I then called a repair man who did the following:

 

  1. Made sure that there were no coins, etc. in the drum or anything keeping the water from draining.
  2. Pulled on the drum to test the connection with the “spider” – found it very tight.
  3. Spun the drum manually – thought it had a bit more resistance than other brands, but it did not seem as though any bearings were bad.
  4. Called Samsung – tested the spin up to 950 RPM in service mode – worked fine.
  5. Samsung also had him run three hot cycles with extra water in the tub – in case there was “gunk” stuck where the vacuum hose attaches.
  6. Samsung then says it could be the shocks, the drum, the motor or the control board.  (Editorial:  This is the 21st century – how about some diagnostics capabilities!!!!).

Repair man result:


Sorry, can’t help you – makes no sense to throw parts at it at an hourly labor charge.  No charge for the service – good luck.  He also suggested maybe trying to change the shocks.

Self - Troubleshooting #2:

 

  1. New day – new optimism…
  2. Spun the tub manually – hear a noise like a coin – tried to get it out (no luck).
  3. Removed the tub – noticed that the shock absorbers will come apart – strikes me as not normal.
  4. Check the drain and the vacuum connection – no gunk – all looks good.
  5. Try for an hour to find out what the noise is when the drum spins – cannot find it so I split the tub open.  Again all looks good inside – surprisingly clean (but needing a bit of rinsing off). No coins or anything else.
  6. Spin the tub again and notice that the noise is coming from the white ring (about 1.5 feet in diameter) that adds weight to the front of the drum.  Remove the ring and notice that it is sealed and there is some sort of gel inside that must be used as a counterweight of some sort when the drum spins.  When the ring is turned like a steering wheel, the gel slides to the bottom – and there is a sound like something metal is in the gel.  There is no way to see, however, since it is sealed.  I doubt if it is the problem, but it just doesn’t look or sound right.

Result #2:

  1. Washer is in pieces…
  2. Still worried about shocks that actually pull apart…
  3. Wondering if the problem could have something to do with the white ring…
  4. Afraid to tear the drum apart any further (don’t know how)…

Self - Troubleshooting #3:

  1. Back to the Internet - find site http://appliantology.../#ixzz2bbO3otGs which explains how the "balance rings" work.  I am a bit disappointed that I took the tub apart, but it could be cleaned anyway - and the problem still might be in there somewhere.
  2. Still cannnot find any information as to whether I should remove the tub bottom and how to do it if I should.  I don’t know how to keep the motor from turning while I try to loosen the big center bolt. Also, I don’t know if I need to remove all of the bolts around the motor. It seems to all be fine anyway, but I am at a loss as to what is wrong, so this may be necessary.

Result #3:

  1. Washer is still in pieces…
  2. Still worried about shocks that actually pull apart…
  3. Getting ready to put balance ring back on…
  4. Afraid to tear the drum apart any further (don’t know how)…
  5. Looking for suggestions...


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#2 sh2sh2

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Posted 10 August 2013 - 06:34 PM

i had one with the same symptoms that had some wires broken in the wires running to the hall sensor on the motor, when the tub would shake the wires would loose connection and the computer would interpret it as a off balance load.



#3 MNBob

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Posted 11 August 2013 - 08:34 AM

I looked at the wires - they all seem to be pristine where the wiring harness lets me see them.  They are wrapped with green tape across most of their length, however, so complete inspection is not possible.  They were definitely plugged into the motor tightlly - I had trouble unplugging them.

 

The fact that the washer would work when empty make me think that the problem might be either:

  • the shocks (should they pull apart? - all four of them pull apart making me think that it may be normal);
  • the balance ring (should the gel in there be so "goopy" - it seems like the consistency of thick, lumpy gravy - not the same consistency throughout);
  • the main board (new software needed to allow time for the balance ring bearings to normalize (found on other sites).

 

New Information:  While inspecting the wires, I noticed a couple of areas in the center of the side panels that seem to be "rub marks" where the tub wore through the inside paint - about the size of a quarter or 50 cent piece - but elongated up and down.  Would this point to shocks or balance ring as well?

 

Also, is there any reason for me to disassemble the back to the tub - could the problem still be the spider?  If so, how do I loosen the big center bolt?



#4 sh2sh2

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Posted 11 August 2013 - 01:00 PM

does the wiring going to the motor have any spots that are covered in foam and ziptied to the base of the machine, that is where i found the broken wires, also the wires were not completely broken, the insulation was still intact but the internal wiring broken, tug the wires to fine broken spots, they way i found it was when the machine was in spin i grabbed the harnesses and wiggled it around and the motor would change speeds and it shocked me.



#5 MNBob

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Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:50 PM

Thanks - you described the harness perfectly.  The tub is currently out and broken apart and needs to be put back together before I test it out.

 

The plan is to clean the tub tomorrow, put it back together and into the machine on Tuesday, connect the tub with new shock absorbers that should be here on Wednesday and test it from there.

 

Rather than digging into the wiring harness, I will test it the same way you did once I get everything back together.  I will let you know what comes of the plan.. Thanks again  - I appreciate the help.



#6 MNBob

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Posted 17 August 2013 - 05:59 PM

OK... I cleaned everything up, installed the new shock absorbers and put everything back together. 

 

I then tried running a "Rinse-n-Spin" cycle:

  • The washer filled with water.  The motor tried to move the drum in one direction - and it seems to lock after an inch or two.
  • Then it tried the other direction - same result. 
  • It tried this a couple more times and gave up - just sitting there for 10 minutes before I turned it off (the timer did not move).

 

I then tried a "Spin-Only" cycle. 

  • The washer drained normally (from the previous cycle) and tried to start spinning. 
  • Again, the motor tried to move the drum in one direction - and it seems to lock after an inch or two. 
  • Then it tried the other direction - same result. 
  • It tried this a couple more times and gave up - just sitting there for 10 minutes before I turned it off (the timer did not move).

 

I don't think it would be the door switch because I have gotten an error in the past when the door was not fully closed.

 

I am about ready to just go buy a new one and chalk this one up to stupidity (for buying Samsung in the first place).  I am in the market to replace every kitchen appliance I own - I guess I won't buy Samsung.

 

Is this something somewhat easy?  If not, it is time to give up...and join the class action against Samsung...



#7 nickfixit

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Posted 18 August 2013 - 06:47 AM

If you have the spin basket out, roll it on a flat surface and observe the shaft closely to see if  is bent slightly. That ring you describe has steel balls and fluid to help cancel vibration, the hot washes were intended to free up the balls on the chance they were jammed up inside the ring.

 

To take off the nut, I use a big flat tip screwdriver inserted between the fins on the rotor and using one of the bolts holding the stator to hold the rotor while using a wrench to turn the nut.


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