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Thread Number: 68454  /  Tag: Modern Automatic Washers
Samsung Washer Explosion Repairs
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Post# 911971   12/20/2016 at 20:53 by washerdude (Canada )        

Came across the repairs they were making on the Samsung washers. All I can say, is how cheap and lazy it is (Not surprised considering it's Samsung)Please bare with me as I go off on with a little rant.

Basically all that's being done to "fix" this issue is a new cycle overlay sticker, and a new bracket for the top to avoid it flying off. All the overlay seems to do is just re-brand cycles, not even bother to give a software update to the machine, with obnoxious warning labels all over the washer now. So how in the *&#$ does this fix the issue? Even LG did a better job creating a solution (because it actually IS a solution) to this problem by adding chunkier suspension...not silly labels. That being said, I at least expected thicker more capable suspension rods, sure the top may not fly off now, but it looks as if this problem is still present in the machine which it clearly and obviously is and still can happen.

But hey, whatever works and is cheap right? And yeah I guess this solution will work...but not even updating the software? Not even adding better shock absorbers and suspension at least...?

Post# 911974 , Reply# 1   12/20/2016 at 21:14 by kb0nes (Burnsville, MN)        
They went the Ford route

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Granted Ford had a LOT more units to recall. But they also had a couple dozen more deaths...

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Post# 911978 , Reply# 2   12/20/2016 at 22:11 by logixx (Germany)        

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LG initially did the same: add warning stickers and reprogram the spin cycle to be super sensitive. There are actually a bunch of threads and YT videos of people who complain that their LG WaveForve no longer spins or takes twice as long due to continuous rebalancing.

Gotta love the new "Normal - NO BEDDING" cycle and the corresponding stickers. Maybe Samsung should have just used pictures on the cycle dial for all those illiterate people out there...

Post# 911981 , Reply# 3   12/20/2016 at 22:31 by Lorainfurniture (Cleveland )        

The only thing wrong with the machine is user error. You should not wash one waterproof item on a heavy duty cycle.

As long as you wash the appropriate items on the appropriate cycle the machine will not fail in any way. Quite frankly I don't even know why there is a recall on them.

I am, However, super happy about it. These machines have been pouring in my shop, literally like 50 or more so far. They all work perfectly, I install the stupid $10 kit and resell.

Post# 911984 , Reply# 4   12/21/2016 at 00:19 by Laundromat (Hilo, Hawaii)        

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I had an LG CW1101 and it NEVERhad any off balance issues. I would cram it full of things including two nine foot runners at a time. The buyer who uses it to sanitize the cheese cloth he uses to make goat cheese,still has it and loves it. He also has the red FL TROM pair loving them too.

Post# 911991 , Reply# 5   12/21/2016 at 04:40 by brucelucenta (tulsa, oklahoma)        

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As far as I personally am concerned, top load HE washers of this type are garbage and not worth the powder it would take to blow them up. So why bother?

Post# 912007 , Reply# 6   12/21/2016 at 09:47 by mayken4now (Panama City, Florida)        

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The dog in the barking during video #3 is disturbing!  The washer is a pile of junk in my opinion, just like Bruce said.

Post# 912016 , Reply# 7   12/21/2016 at 10:42 by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        

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How long have we had automatic washers? How long has it been known that one item in a vertical axis tub, spinning at high speed, will cause an out-of-balance condition?

Right, we just found out about all of this in 2016.


Post# 912033 , Reply# 8   12/21/2016 at 12:23 by mtn1584 (USA)        
Next up.......................






Post# 912040 , Reply# 9   12/21/2016 at 13:32 by kb0nes (Burnsville, MN)        

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Bear in mind when comparing the recall of the phone vs the washer.

There are MANY MANY more phones out in the wild.

The failure of the phone and it's potential for damage is FAR worse then the worst case scenario with the washer. It isn't a likely scenario that the exploding washer would cause a mid-air disaster for a jumbo jet for instance.

You can't compare the recall of the Note 7 vs the non-recall of the washers in any reasonable way.

Well other then they are both Samsung ;)

Post# 912062 , Reply# 10   12/21/2016 at 17:59 by earthling177 (Boston, MA)        

I'll be the stick in the mud and disagree with a bunch of people here.

But I have to point out how entirely ludicrous this situation is when you look from the point of view of engineering/engineers.

How stupid can a company *be* to release appliances like that? Even washers from the earliest automatic washer era were able to detect serious imbalances and stop. If they did *nothing* else, they should be able to just stop and wait for the user to fix the situation and restart the machine.

I call bullshit on the company because it's not like their washers have no sensors inside, they probably have more than enough sensors to at the very least say "Hey, I think we should halt all activity right now and wait for user input" *built-in*, just use it. It seems from the situations that the sensors have not been activated or mis-programmed.

Also, in case they don't have a crucial part to work as a sensor, the parts are available for very close to a dime a dozen, it's a shame that probably some engineer designed the machine with it and some stupid bean counter removed it later in the project.

And trust me, with the current prices one could put a laser, some mirrors and some laser readers there and have a very sophisticated "is this machine just a bit unbalanced or is it dangerous?" system for less than the cheapest CD-players they sell at CVS go for. If CVS or Target can get you an entire portable CD-player, with profit, for less than 20 bucks, the washers' manufacturers should be able to put something way less complicated inside the washer for less than $5, which means they are trying to save five bucks and then spending way more than that with litigation, fixes etc.

As for people who ask "why are they washing waterproof clothing in the heavy cycle?", well, how about because it may be heavily soiled? Isn't it stupid that we are over 50 years into the automatic washer era and now you have to put something that *is* heavy-duty construction, not delicate at all, in the "delicate" cycle, sometimes multiple times if it's very dirty, because some bozo who can't understand economics, business, computers *and* the market they are trying to sell for, to use the very same computers they already have inside the washer, or, if they want a much better machine, add $5 in parts and make the machine sense and behave sensibly in such a situation? It's *trivial* to get sensors and interrupts to tell the computer "stop spinning, give it 30 seconds to drain the water from the garment, try spinning again; if you can't after 3 tries, stop, wait for input" or even more complicated stuff, like perhaps fill a bit, agitate a few seconds, try again.

Just going "wheeee! 1,200 rpm for *everything* *all* the time!" and self-destructing is a sign that either you don't want clients or you don't want to be manufacturing *this* particular appliance. The technology is there to be used. Use it.

And, really, they advertise the appliances as if they were *completely* automatic, dispensers and all. Why not *make* it completely automatic? Why do we need people to stay around to pay attention to the spins and/or repeat cycles until the clothes get clean *unless* the *users* *want* to watch the washer for fun?

It's absurd to sell a washer for over a grand when they are worse than the BOL $250 Sears job we used to get.

-- Paulo.

Post# 912073 , Reply# 11   12/21/2016 at 19:04 by mtn1584 (USA)        

my post was a joke kbOnes!

Post# 912240 , Reply# 12   12/23/2016 at 03:14 by qualin (Canada)        

I always thought that this problem could be avoided by placing G sensors on the tub so that if it does violently bang against the cabinet, a tub brake can bring the tub quickly and safely to a halt. Hopefully it can rebalance the load safely instead of spinsploding.

The labels are a step in the right direction to fix an existing problem, but it doesn't resolve the overall problem. These machines have a poorly designed suspension system, which can't compensate properly for items shifting in the tub at high spin speeds.

Heck, is it me, or shouldn't I be able to slam the tub against the cabinet with my hand when the machine is at rest with not a lot of force? I can't do that with other conventional top loaders. Can anyone with a Speed Queen Top loader do the same?

So, it all comes back to one question I posed on another post, If Frigidaire, when it was GM-Owned, could build washers that spun up to 1150 RPM and didn't spinsplode, why can't LG and Samsung? There wasn't any "waterproof" or "bedding" cycles on those old machines. Oh wait, yeah, different suspension systems.

I guess more to the point, I think this is a lame fix to the problem, but at least Samsung is doing something about the problem.

Post# 912247 , Reply# 13   12/23/2016 at 03:54 by brucelucenta (tulsa, oklahoma)        

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Have enough intelligence not to buy a top load HE washer and you will NEVER have this problem to begin with.

Post# 912264 , Reply# 14   12/23/2016 at 06:47 by Sbond22 (Grove City, Fl. USA)        
shouldn't I be able to slam the tub against the cabinet

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FWIW I can push the tub of my SQ against the cabinet with one finger. It's also so smooth when running that I have to open the lid to tell whether it's agitating or spinning.

Post# 912265 , Reply# 15   12/23/2016 at 06:53 by Imperial70 (******)        

What Sbond22 said. The SQ tub spins so smooth even with throw rug in it.It's the suspension. Why did manufacturers stop using the pedestal suspension. I hope when SQ introduces it's next gen machines they do not change that suspension. Every machine that had the pedestal suspension (Westinghouse, Whirlpool(DD), Maytag, ....) never had these spin problems.

Post# 912270 , Reply# 16   12/23/2016 at 07:43 by Lorainfurniture (Cleveland )        

Not really an apples to apples comparison. The speed queen tl spins at 710 rpm and the Samsung is like 1200. Generically speaking it spins almost twice as fast.

Let me preface by saying the Samsung is not a reliable washer even before This recall. They are right on par with the rest of manufacturers by being a 3-7 year throw away unit.

It is a GREAT performer however, it does an excellent job cleaning. I think it's a good looking unit, with a huge capacity.

Post# 912277 , Reply# 17   12/23/2016 at 08:31 by Sbond22 (Grove City, Fl. USA)        
The speed queen tl spins at 710 rpm

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I thought the clothes seemed rather damp after running a load while my wife was out of town. Nothing the Florida sun couldn't handle after a few hours though.

Post# 912281 , Reply# 18   12/23/2016 at 08:56 by washman (Butler, PA)        

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how some 50's era Frig units spun at 1140 RPM and they never flew apart or did damage to a home.

It all comes down to design, metallurgy, and quality material.

Use the cheapest of the cheap, well we all know how that works out.

Perhaps instead of focusing on 34 cycles, sanitize cycles and other useless do-dads, they should go back to basic engineering 101 and build a better machine.

More the reason I like my crude, old fashioned SQ. Works as designed and is fixable and never needs "rebooted". :)

Post# 912331 , Reply# 19   12/23/2016 at 15:44 by Johnb300m (Chicago)        

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earthling, you're completely right! I've wondered that for a long time. Lots of newer top loaders have totally foregone the out of balance trip switches. GE, WP, Samsung, Frige, Elux etc.
Only in the last few years of high tech washers have the out of balance trip systems come back, and only on a few brands.
It really is a critical failsafe, especially with these high spin speeds we're at again, and with mostly plastic washers. (Even though there are some amazing plastics out there, honestly).

Whirlpool's FL and TL machines ARE using sophisticated G sensors on their tubs to control out of balance situations. My Maxima must've had some items shift in high spin one day, causing it to loudly vibrate. The machine caught it and immediately killed the cycle. It was far along in the cycle so it just ended. But if not, it likely would've rebalanced and tried again.
WP's TL machines can sense vibrations even if your feet aren't level or if your floor isn't stable, and it will throttle the high spin to those conditions.
Shameful Samsung, and many others, are cheapening out and totally relying on the limited ability of their balance rings.
Being in engineering, there are only two options I foresee.
The engineers did have a system, and it got overruled.
OR, they contract outsourced some of the design, and the less experienced engineering contractors did not consider an emergency system, likely because the client [Samsung] said don't bother.

As for why companies abandoned the pedestal suspension, because it's actually less forgiving with vibrations, and higher spin speeds would not meet the smooth, quiet operation that customers demand. More stable? Maybe, but if there's anything that the balance rings can't handle, all those vibrations would immediately get sent to the floor.
If you get into a harmonic frequency situation, especially at these new high speeds, you can start to do REAL damage to peoples' wooden 2nd floors. Where laundry is increasingly put.
Old days had the washers in the basement or garage, on concrete slabs. There's no concrete on 90% of peoples' 2nd floors.
Hanging suspensions totally isolate vibrations and frequencies from the cabinets and floors.

Post# 912336 , Reply# 20   12/23/2016 at 15:57 by vacerator (Macomb, Michigan)        
Yesterday vs. todays

GM Frigidaire washer's, or any for that matter were heavy well engineered machines.
That's why they didn't fly apart.
Now it's lighter weight, less metal, lighter metal, more plastic, less raw material use, less energy use to use and recycle.
Top load washer suspension rods are thin, granted there are four, as opposed to three heavy thick ones on old Whirl pool belt drives. The tub is sprung from them, not anchored in heavy rubber snubber mounts from the cabinet.
Just the steel base that the heavy gear case, motor and pump were supported by weighed more than those combined.
It's sort of like comparing a hoola hoop spinning around your waste, to a brick on a length of twine being spun at arms length. Gravity is gravity, and mass is mass. If there isn't substantial mass to contain inertia, look out, you may end up with a rogue planet, or washer basket.

Post# 912337 , Reply# 21   12/23/2016 at 15:57 by DADoES (TX, U.S. of A.)        

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... how some 50's era Frig units spun at 1140 RPM and they never flew apart or did damage to a home.
Combo52 related a story in a thread somewhere around here of someone's Frigidaire that destructed during 1140 RPM spin.

Post# 912344 , Reply# 22   12/23/2016 at 17:53 by jeff_adelphi (Adelphi, Maryland, USA)        
Suspension system is not the problem,

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The tub is tearing apart at the seams due to shifting weight at high speed. No sensor could prevent this problem, because it only takes a split second to happen, and the tub can't be slowed fast enough to help.  The problem is a very weak tub with crimped seams, any good washer tub has welded seams.

Post# 912347 , Reply# 23   12/23/2016 at 18:11 by henene4 (Germany)        

That's wrong. It's not the Candy\Hoover situation; this is just sudden weight shift. I haven't seen a split inner tub on any of the videos of these.

To the americans: That is what Candy\Hoover managed to get to happen at speeds of up to 1600rpm.

Just skip a bit around and look at the machines. They had a faulty spot welding system on pretty much all of their machines back then, which caused the drum it self to rip open along one side during high speeds spins. The drums sometimes managed to pierce the top and/or sides of the machines. Pretty brutal.

Post# 912364 , Reply# 24   12/23/2016 at 23:30 by neptunebob (Pittsburgh, PA)        
Another reason

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Might be all the Columbia wear and The North Face outerwear that people are wearing now. Years ago, men wore trenchcoats and overcoats to the office, now it's all North Face parkas. While coats used to be sent to a dry cleaner, people wash Columbia wear, which is more waterproof. I think it would help if places like ski areas had laundromats with those big Milnor washers that can handle bulky and waterproof ski and snowboard wear so that people would not have to put those clothes in their Samsung.

Post# 912365 , Reply# 25   12/23/2016 at 23:51 by earthling177 (Boston, MA)        

I think it depends on which accident you are talking about. Yes, there were drums that split open (mostly frontloaders, I think). And there were some HE TL machines where the failure mode seems to have been one of the suspension rods broke.

And then there are the machines where the weight shifted during high-speed spin -- some of those machines self-destructed and some of them banged until one or more of the suspension rods broke and then they self destructed.

For people who don't know here, yes, it is true that as a general rule one can do more damage by suddenly braking a tub at high speed than by controlling the speed, particularly as it passes thru the resonance speed(s).

On the other hand, computers now are way past millions of calculations per second, and catching emergency situations is not hard to do if you have the right sensors and software, which some of those machines seem lacking.

Just to give you an idea, this is not exactly what ABS, Traction Control or Electronic Stability Control systems do, but it is similar: you are monitoring the speed of several parts and if they are not within what's expected, you can use the motor and computer (if the systems are working and the defect is say, a broken suspension part or a faulty bearing) to slow down the speed safely, avoiding the resonance speeds as much as possible (that is, spending the minimum delta time in there). I've seen very large machine tools with way more inertia and speed brought down to zero movement in less than a quarter second using the motor as an electric brake.

The problem here is not engineering. It's cost and what market it's aimed at.

An engineer at Maytag many years ago was talking to a technician I know and the tech guy was giving the engineer grief. The engineer said, basically "we design the fridge so it won't break for over 50 years, but then the bean counters come and say, 'no I do not think you can sell a 10,000 bucks fridge, make it fit into 500' until lots of parts are cheapened and essential systems are designed to last less than 10 years."

Like I said, a very cheap system can simply monitor the motor speed/electric current. A little more expensive (not exactly extravagant, current cell phones and video game players have several of these) would have one or more gyroscopes and other cheaper sensors. And if you do want something that ignores unleveled machines or bouncy wood floors and just measures *directly* how close the tub is to hitting the machine walls, lasers, mirrors and laser sensors are basically a dime a dozen.

And in any case, there are plenty of wash baskets still being made with one, two and sometimes three balance rings, and some of the systems have very sophisticated balance rings at that.

A combination of those systems can make quite a smooth running machine.

Then again, so can a good cycle chart -- a lot of the vertical-axis washers from our past that ran at high speed with very little or no problem seemed to start spinning and pumping the water out, instead of pumping out and then spinning, thus giving time at progressively higher speeds to make the water weight shift out of waterproof items (who has never washed a plastic shower liner curtain before?) until it can spin at high speed. Front loading washers that tumbled both ways for a couple of minutes and then slowly sped up also seem to have very little if any problems, and they can always stop and try again in case it's not balanced enough.

I don't think the problem is technical. The problem is people who have never done laundry before with undue influence in the design that then gets either *no* testing or minimal testing.

And honestly, I'm tired of the "blame the user" attitude. If you were visiting someone who has been sick and unable to keep house, and you see their clothing or shower curtains etc, yeah, you too will be tempted to put them in the heavy soil cycle and move on with your life helping the person or cleaning their home. We are not talking about silk negligees here, most current washable stuff is plenty strong for a normal hot wash and high spin. The thing that makes the biggest difference is some stuff benefits from a cool-down phase so they won't get excessively wrinkled.

Anyway, if anyone wants to know why current customers are dissatisfied with some of their washers, just remember that no matter how cool a washer looks, it can't just sit there looking cool to justify the over 1,000 bucks price. It has to wash, rinse and spin at least as well as the 250 bucks washers of 20 years ago.

-- Paulo.

Post# 912635 , Reply# 26   12/26/2016 at 06:24 by qualin (Canada)        

I'll say it before and I'll say it again...

User error should not cause the machine to self destruct. Or any other machine for that matter.

Worse case scenario should be that the machine should just fail to get the clothes clean or spin-dried.

I agree that this is certainly a engineering issue that could have been avoided. At least now I know why they're using hanging suspension instead of pedestal suspension.

Post# 912636 , Reply# 27   12/26/2016 at 06:27 by henene4 (Germany)        

You can't prevent these faults by construction.

Throw a brick into any washer at its full spin speed, and it will destruct in the exact same way.

Post# 912643 , Reply# 28   12/26/2016 at 08:43 by washman (Butler, PA)        

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Combo52 related a story in a thread somewhere around here of someone's Frigidaire that destructed during 1140 RPM spin




Someone indicates singular.  As in 1 machine.  Darn good track record when compared to the Samjunks.

Post# 912644 , Reply# 29   12/26/2016 at 09:19 by brucelucenta (tulsa, oklahoma)        

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If someone wants to make ANY machine fail they can, if they try hard enough. Under normal use, the old Frigidiare washers NEVER had any kind of a problem like that. The old Frigdaire washers were built like tanks and many were used like that too.

Post# 912649 , Reply# 30   12/26/2016 at 11:02 by henene4 (Germany)        

Have you ever washed a water proof item in a Unimatic\companions?

Post# 912661 , Reply# 31   12/26/2016 at 13:54 by joeypete (Concord, NH)        

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These things spin ridiculously fast. Even my new Maytag spins slower...900 rpm max and slowing it down a bit seems to help. But yeah, people don't know how to do laundry. You have to be more careful these days in modern machines with how you load items. My coworker had a new Samsung TL and he absolutely loved it...he traded it for a FL when they did the recall. He likes the new one, but does miss the old one. LOL

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