Thread Number: 72007  /  Tag: Vintage Automatic Washers
Kenmore 90's Washer leaking oil? Or just Dirty?
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Post# 952410   8/9/2017 at 22:36 by amyofescobar (oregon)        

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Got a set over a year ago. Model 91210100, is that 80 series?
Looks like this, but maybe our washing is bigger. Or I could be imagining: 

Seems to be leaving oil splotches on clothing? I'm not sure, it showed up on my last load of darks and I'm scared to keep washing.

I'd like to know if the transmission is leaking, or if I just need to clean this thing.

Here's some info:
- I just switched to Foca powder. Literally, I just did for that load.
- I had been using Tide Free & Gentle Liquid
- Before the Tide, I was using the notorious Borax/Soap/Washing Soda homemade
concoction... I think I used it for a year or so on that washer.
-Maybe a month ago, a stick of chapstick got in the wash. I never saw it effect anything, but it totally dissolved.

Here are some photos. First, the drive shaft.
- At the top, we've got a blackish liquid, mostly inside where the screw threading is (pic #2). There's also something blackish in a crevice around the shaft lower down.
- Lower down near that crevice on the round plate thing is a very yellow paste. It looks like some ants got to it. I'm pretty sure those are ants. The yellow is elsewhere too as you can see in photos. In the picture (pic #4) I think some rust is mingled with it.

It's like the unit in this link btw

CLICK HERE TO GO TO amyofescobar's LINK

  Photos...       <              >      Photo 1 of 4         View Full Size

This post was last edited 08/10/2017 at 01:08

Post# 952412 , Reply# 1   8/9/2017 at 22:45 by amyofescobar (oregon)        

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- Lower down, we have kind of a dusty paste around the bottom of the shaft. Also some rust in places.
- The same stuff is in the holes on the floor of the drum.

  Photos...       <              >      Photo 1 of 3         View Full Size
Post# 952413 , Reply# 2   8/9/2017 at 22:48 by amyofescobar (oregon)        

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- Last, here's the inside of the impeller. I think there's a little dark liquid in around the rim of that top hole. A few black specs inside and streaks.

  Photos...       <              >      Photo 1 of 2         View Full Size
Post# 952415 , Reply# 3   8/9/2017 at 22:56 by potatochips (Nova Scotia)        

It would be very hard for the transmission to leak UP in to the tub, especially with the way these machines are built. (I do realize the SG of oil is less than that if water, so oil will float) The transmissions agitator shaft seal is not in the water area like it is on a Maytag. Whirlpool washers are also supposed to create an air dome underneath the agitator, and the sole purpose of this is to prevent water from ever seeing the top of the spin tube and agitator drive shaft, even though the seals will hold back water.

There is a considerable amount of oil in the top half of the spin tube and agitator drive shaft and Centre post. Most likely, over the last thirty years, that oil found its way out. Normal wear and tear. The top of the agi drive shaft is greased a bit where the splined shaft meets with the splines on the agi to prevent excess wear. That's the grease you're seeing in the first pictures you've posted. Although normal for this to seep out after time,, you could wipe a bit of the excess away.

The dusty crud in the second photos is most likely lint left behind. Also normal.

It wouldn't hurt to pull the basket and give the washer a good scrub. But as for where the stains on your closed came from? Mystery. Try washing rags and see what happens.

Most of my belt drive experience has been with transmission oil that is gold/honey colour. The majority of machines I've messed with have never had dark coloured oil.

Post# 952421 , Reply# 4   8/9/2017 at 23:12 by amyofescobar (oregon)        

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I wonder what that yellow gunk is that the ants were eating... weird...
Thx chips, nice to know it's nothing crazy. I did hang the laundry outside and then finished with a dryer tumble. I wonder if it was the dryer. Hopefully I cant get rid of the spots :(

Is there a way to mitigate the lint thing? I do notice lint on washed clothes and I'd like to line dry but the lint stays on when I do that. In the link from first post, Yogi mentioned getting a Surgilator from a D200 with a built in filter. Is that something I can find on Ebay? I did a search and can't find. I'm assuming a Surgilator is a type of impeller? 

Post# 952444 , Reply# 5   8/10/2017 at 01:03 by potatochips (Nova Scotia)        

That white goo is used to lube the agitator and the drive shaft.

Does your machine have a filter or self cleaning filter?

The only way to get rid of those linty bits is to just scrub it out. Remove the basket and go to town, it goes everywhere. They build up over time, but it could be worse! Could be sludge!

Post# 952446 , Reply# 6   8/10/2017 at 01:13 by amyofescobar (oregon)        

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I dont think it has a filter, but like I said, Yogi mentioned the Surgilator with a filter.

CLICK HERE TO GO TO amyofescobar's LINK

Post# 952448 , Reply# 7   8/10/2017 at 01:38 by amyofescobar (oregon)        

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Btw, I think I just found a Surgilator... :P

CLICK HERE TO GO TO amyofescobar's LINK on eBay

Post# 952455 , Reply# 8   8/10/2017 at 02:55 by potatochips (Nova Scotia)        

The the agitator you found on eBay does not have a built in lint filter. And that one is for belt drive washers, if yours is exactly like the one in the link, it's direct drive.

Post# 952552 , Reply# 9   8/11/2017 at 00:13 by amyofescobar (oregon)        

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Any suggestions on a impeller that would work in my machine that has a lint filter?

Post# 952590 , Reply# 10   8/11/2017 at 11:17 by DADoES (TX, U.S. of A.)        

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Per the parts diagram of the cited model number (110.91210100), it surely isn't an 80 series. That refers to the feature set of the machine.  An 80-series is near top-of-line.  Yours is bottom-of-line.  Has just a timer with temp control incorporated into the cycle(s) ... no separate temp switch and no water level switch, just a high fill.

It may already have a lint filter.  Many/most direct-drive machines have a passive "comb" filter mounted under the inner drum which functioned by way of agitation water currents.  That's part of what you're poking at with the cotton swab in the 3rd picture of your 2nd post above, assuming the filter is in place.  It was changed at some point to little strainer plugs placed into the larger holes in the drum base under the agitator, and then some later models in production history didn't have filters.

The yellow-ish grease is to lubricate and protect the drive shaft splines from rusting and help keep the agitator from getting stuck against removal.

A full tub fill does bring the water level up to the drive shaft and seals ... other than the aforementioned "air dome" trapped inside the agitator keeping it away.  The area may not air-tight if the seal on the agitator bolt isn't in good condition.

Part Number 387838 may be an agitator with integral/removable lint filter that would fit your machine.

Post# 952597 , Reply# 11   8/11/2017 at 12:49 by amyofescobar (oregon)        

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(btw, I keep saying impeller when I mean agitator)

So... I'm not sure what kind of filter this machine has then. All I know is that under the metal drum there's a ton of grime, which I can only guess could have been avoided with an impeller filter. Though I'm sure periodic STPP or something would help. I also will be hang drying a lot, and we have a messy life so I'm thinking I'd want to aid in whatever filtration this machine already has.

All I see are 4 quarter size holes in the bottom of the machine. How would I know if the filter was in place? Also, wouldn't I have to remove the whole drum in order to clean the filter? Or is it supposed to self clean?

It doesn't seem like the best design. Idk. I guess if the lint is supposed to sink?

@Dadoes, that is the one I was thinking of getting. Would it be better at cleaning than a straight vane in this tall little tub? Also wondering if it would be more gentle, not that I've necessarily had any problems. I'm always scared of stuff getting stuck in the paddles too.

Post# 952599 , Reply# 12   8/11/2017 at 13:31 by DADoES (TX, U.S. of A.)        

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The under-basket filter is self-cleaning.  Any collected lint is supposed to flush off during drain/spin.  The filter eventually gets clogged with residual lint and accumulated mineral deposits, detergent sludge, and other residue.  The only way to access it is by removing the inner basket.

The agitator-mounted filter (which predates the under-basket style) won't really be much more effective.

The grime to which you refer has nothing to do with lint filtering.  It's accumulated mineral residue from hard water, laundry soils, and such, mostly from inadequate detergent dosing and/or too much cold water washing.

The best agitator to promote rollover is a dual-action type (with rotating auger, which does not have any filtering function) but all of them get the job done in their own way.

Post# 952611 , Reply# 13   8/11/2017 at 15:19 by amyofescobar (oregon)        

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Ok, thanks for the info. I was not using a good detergent prior to this, so I can see that being the problem.

I do experience lint on clothing after washing, but maybe the auger agitator would move the clothes better as you say?

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