Wednesday, July 14, 2010

I have mended something!

As famously spoken by Jeremy Clarkson of Top Gear.

Several weeks ago, my washing machine decided to take a hissy fit. It took a sweater arm and decided to twist itself into the bellow which is this rubbery hoop bit of the washer in the front, wrecking havoc and dang near flooding the place.

I ordered this retaining wire thingy that became a pretzel, but replacing that alone didn't fix a thing. The machine still did a good imitation of Niagara Falls. (Little did I know at the time that I installed it totally wrong.)

So I had to order a new bellow, reasoning that the old bellow got so stretched that it wasn't going to prevent the water from within to stay in.

I had a time line of about two and a half weeks. That's when laundry completely runs out.

That was last night.

I had all the parts. I had the DIY PDF manual loaded onto a laptop. I had my tool set ready. I began carefully removing all the necessary bolts, from the stacking kit screws, to the back of the machine which held the top lid in place, needing to be slid back so I could pull the top control panel off, exposing the 2 of the 4 screws needed to remove the front of the washer. The bottom came off as well, so that I could get at the other 2 screws. All this was done with the dryer stay stacked on top, threatening to topple onto me if I sneezed wrong.

I first stripped the old bellow off and put in the new one. I then reversed my steps until the clothes washer was completely re-assembled.

Not bad so far, only a couple of hours to do (I was being careful, and I'm slow and dumb - so that's 2 strikes against my DIY-selfness).

I turned on the washer to do a test load. Water spewed out the front like a BP oil spill. I pressed feverishly at the cancel button. Hard stop.

I checked everything and realized that I couldn't put the retaining wire back on properly. That was 3am last night.

Defeated, I crawled to bed. Realizing I'm not mechanically inclined, mentally steeling myself for when I make that call to the Whirlpool repairman and having him laugh in my face - all because I couldn't put a thin wiry loop back on.

Tonight I drove to the nearest washing machine store and checked out how the retaining wire works. I rushed home with my new found knowledge.

But I couldn't put it on by myself. There was no human way I could pull the retaining wire far enough for it to fit right. I needed the woman.

So down she came, and well, after a couple of baleful glares by her, the wire behaved and went in right.

Correction, we mended something.

Fresh clothes, here we come.


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