Thread Number: 73991  /  Tag: Modern Automatic Washers
Woman Purchases Miele Washer - Claims It Shakes House
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Post# 977588   1/9/2018 at 06:51 by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        

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This you have to read to believe....

Woman purchases a Miele W1 washer with 1600 rpm spin. Installs it in a dodgy built house on suspended wood floor... So each time thing spins it "shakes her house...."

After several solutions (that do not work), she's onto Miele whinging that machine is defective. Miele (true to their German nature) reply "no it's not"; and further point out that both advertising/marketing material and owner's manual state clearly machine needs to be installed on firm flooring.

Finally after getting no where with MieleUK the woman gets the Guardian involved who in turn put the screws to Miele and get washer replaced with Her Indoors paying nothing out of pocket.

Post# 977594 , Reply# 1   1/9/2018 at 07:37 by henene4 (Germany)        

Miele (at least in Germany) is an incredibly helpfull company in terms of customer service, especially by todays standards.

However, they do stay true to one thing: If there is no fault relating to the machine, they say that verry directly.
That however dosen't mean they don't care about details: One german user had an early W1 machine that had vibration noises from the TwinDos door and the shipping rods as well as the W1-typical occasional spring noise. Then some software issues arose.
Miele first tried to fix the issues, couldn't, thus replaced the machine, and as that had some simmilar issues as well, they offered him a last-gen machine in exchange.

Same if an issue is user related: They will politley point the customer to what they are doing wrong.
Even though they don't have to (and don't always do), they often will cover the first service bill for a user caused issue while under warranty.
One of the typical cases of that were the hoses conecting the pump chamber to the dispenser drawer as pressure equalizing path that tended to clog when lots of low temps and liquid detergent were used.

For us, they once replaced a washer PCB at 2 1/2 years, covering the part and labor, us just covering the waytime.
Sadly didn't help long, but oh well.

On that lady:

Well, yeah, Miele washers are heavy, they vibrate, they aren't the quietst, smoothest operators.
However, they spin.

I see her going to the next store, buying some cheap machine, setting it up (incorrectly, again), and the getting upset cause the machine won't spin at all and if it does, it still shakes the entire house.

Then she will call that manufacturer, wait weeks for some contracted in repair guy to show up, only to look at the machine, run a test cycle, and then leaving the door with words along the lines of incorrect setup, user fault, of course invalid warranty, thus leaving a bill on her table.

Wondering which machine she had beforehand that did not shake her house...

Post# 977598 , Reply# 2   1/9/2018 at 08:55 by Rolls_rapide (Scotland, UK)        

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About a year ago, I had previously read of someone who had a Miele in a flat, through some online reviews. Its vibrations permeated through the fabric of the building, even affecting/upsetting the neighbours.

If the machines are designed for concrete floors, then Miele should state that they are unsuitable for suspended wooden flooring.

On the other hand, is it beyond Miele's technical expertise to offer a different type of tub suspension, one better tuned to wooden flooring?

Post# 977599 , Reply# 3   1/9/2018 at 09:08 by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        

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Following or something like it has appeared in every Miele washer installation directions one has seen. This goes back to the w700 and 1065/1070 series.

Installation site
A concrete floor is the most suitable
surface for the washer. Concrete floors
are less prone to vibration during the
spin cycle than wooden floors.
 The machine must be leveled and
securely positioned.
 To avoid vibration while spinning, the
machine should not be installed on
soft floor coverings.
If the installation must be performed on
a wooden floor:
 Install the unit on a 2 ft. x 2 ft. x
1 3/16" (61 x 61 x 3 cm) plywood base.
Ideally the base should be large
enough to span several joists and
should be anchored to the joists and
not just the floor boards.
Tip: It is best to install the washer in the
corner of a room, where the stability of
the floor is at its greatest.
 There is a risk of the washing

We've had this discussion before; Miele washing machines are closest one is going to get for the most part to commercial front loaders. Heavy weight is part of the suspension system and means these washers don't play around with spinning. They are designed to handle vibrations/unbalanced loads and not miss a beat. This while other washers will either take ages to "distribute" then spin, or maybe not at all.

Better still like commercial machines a Miele will tolerate these vibrations and still out last cheaper built washers on average.

You cannot fight physics. Forces generated by h-axis washers must go somewhere. That is to some degree down through base/feet of machine into flooring then distributed through building where they dissipate.

Would also love to know just what that woman was washing which caused the Miele to vibrate so badly that it was a regular occurrence. Either her terraced home is not built very well, or she is doing very badly mixed loads that cause washer to spin at various unbalanced degrees.

Post# 977603 , Reply# 4   1/9/2018 at 09:25 by Rolls_rapide (Scotland, UK)        

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Maybe Suspa should get involved in Miele's designs?


Post# 977607 , Reply# 5   1/9/2018 at 09:49 by Yogitunes (New Jersey)        

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this, like any other case when purchasing something, read the fine print!...

nothing different than buying a car, a salesman can tell you anything, unless its in writing, you don't have a foot to stand on....

she is going on about that no one told her at purchase, yet she also claims to have done research before purchasing a new machine....sounds like she read around everything else, except that!

even if the salesman did mention of the flooring issue, that's a 'verbal' statement, what is written in black and white is what will stand up against any case....

this whole thing sounds sketchy at best....

Post# 977613 , Reply# 6   1/9/2018 at 10:11 by henene4 (Germany)        

They certanly could design a suspension that could handle softer flooring, but they decidetly don't.

There are basicly 3 typse of washer I encountered on that subject: Those that transfer forces to the floor, those the dicipate forces within their structure, and those that dicipate forces mostly through dampers.

All following conclusions were made under the pretens that the machine is perfectly level.

If the machine isn't level, the whole story gets another level of issues:
In a FL, during spin, the only direct forces that can occur are forces in a 90° angle to the axial rotation center.
The only sidewards motion (coaxial movement) that could be created would be through a momentum due to the location of the loads across the tubs width, but these issues are extremly rare and I only ever encountered them on a theoretical basis. I guess that most drums are rigid enough so that a momentum can't really be introduced.
If the machine and thus the tub and its achsel is 100% horizontal, all forces created during the spin can only be in a 90° angle to that, so, vertical.
If they aren't level, the forces go slightly angled instead of perfectly up and down. This would mean that if we would divide this force into all its partial forces in the 3 dimensions of space, there would be forces going in all 3 dimensions, not just 2.
Thus, the machine could slowly nudge itself across the floor, not only up and down, which makes these force equations somewhat pointless as the system couldn't be seen as static anymore then.

Anyway, besides the point:

A) Machine designed to rely on its dampers:

In this machine, the dampers are designed to absorb and diccipate any force brought onto them during any part of the spin cycle, be that high speed with the high frequency of vibration with extremly high forces or the low frequency and less powerfull vibrations during a more low speed spin.

These machines stand almost solid as a rock during spin. The cabinet is designed to completly counteract the forces of the dampers without shifting within themselfes the tiniest bit.

Further, these machines work pretty decent on most floors as they have dampers specificaly calculated so that the force that might get transfered to the floor is minimal.

These machines rely heavily on close to perfect balance as they have to use rather soft dampers to absorb as much of the vibration spectrum as possible.
This means long balancing times and sensitivity to dampers that age, but therefor they can theoreticly spin on most any floor without vibrations.

B) Machines with shifting cabinets:

Sounds weired at first, but works pretty decent.

Here, the duty to absorb vibrations is taken by 2 different parts: Both the dampers and the cabinet.
One example from which I know that of is our AEG back home.

These machines have dampers designed for high speed spin vibrations (high frequency, high force, but low way of travel). This means that during high speed phases, the dampers absorb almost all the forces.

This however means that most lower frequency forces go right through them as they don't have enough force, but far more travel and a verry low frequency.
To absorb these, they designed the cabinet to have some tendency to be abled to sway. As the cabinet is rather large, it is perfect at absorbing these low frequency forces.

For the consumer, the machine spinning will at first look incredibly cheap.
As it ramps up, it literally visibly sways and seems as if it would be not tightly enough bolted together.
Then there is a certain point where the cabinet will seem to shake violently, almost loosing control, but the machine just keeps on ramping up. You might think its insane.
Then, suddenly, the cabinet stops moving entirely, and the noise changes.
Now the forces are great enough to be properly absorbed by the shocks, keeping them out of the cabinet and the floor.
During ramp down, the machine will just as well sound silent with only the drum swaying and as it slows to low rpm, the cabinet starts to move again.

These usually can spin pretty heavily undistributed loads, however, that cabinet swaying makes them all but silent machines and they seem rather "weak", swaying around all that much.

C) Machines relying on subflooring:

Now, if these machines could take a third way of getting rid of force into working, they could cover high, medium and low frequency vibrations.
And machines such like Mieles do.

As first "force dump", they use a solid flooring to absorb low frequency lower force vibrations.
Their dampers are designed to only give to the highest forces, and their cabinet is either designed to only react to medium speed vibrations or none at all, leaving even more vibrations to the floor to absorb (which most likely is the case with the Miele).
Once we get to the short hard vibrations of top speed spins, the dampers finaly take part and less vibration is transfered to the floor.

These machines make their out of balance load tolerances dependent on which subflooring they can suspect, and the more force that can absorb, the less carefull the machine has to spin.
On a solid floor, a Miele will be rock solid through all spin speeds no matter which load. The cabinet won't sway a bit (to keep that quality appearance) and it will spin basicly all the time.
But until the verry top speeds, most force goes directly to the floor. Only as we go full speed, some vibration is split to the hard dampers.

This, sadly, means that if there is no solid floor, the machine will transfer all the force to building. And that can get violent.
Even at max speed, there will still be a lot of vibration in the feet, resulting in your unsolid floor shaking violently.
But as max speed only makes up a tiny part of total spin time, the machine will seem like its the noisiest thing ever, though it will look somewhat solid standing.

Basicly, you can't have all: A machine that spins verry unbalanced loads time efficently and verry silently on every floor is not constructable.
You have to take out one of these factors, one thing that supports the others.
Miele went for the one, others for the other.

Post# 977621 , Reply# 7   1/9/2018 at 10:47 by Rolls_rapide (Scotland, UK)        

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Thank you for the concise explanation.

It also explains why my Zanussi IZ 1600 outperformed the previous AEG Oko Lavamat in exactly the same position in the kitchen. Softer, more floaty suspension.

My mum's Bosch had a dislike of wooden floors. The current kitchen has a concrete floor, and generally the machine spins as it should.

The only machine we had which seemed of a flimsier build regarding the moving shell/shifting case (to absorb the forces), would be the Hoover 'New Wave'. Hoover 'Logic' robustness it was not.

Post# 977646 , Reply# 8   1/9/2018 at 14:25 by wft2800 (Leatherhead, Surrey)        

My 2005-vintage Miele is dead quiet even in the spin, totally stable... but it is on a concrete floor!

Post# 977947 , Reply# 9   1/12/2018 at 00:38 by askolover (South of Nash Vegas, TN)        

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My Miele is situated on a wood floor, but it's at the center load-bearing wall of the house under which stand the concrete piers on which the floor joists are supported.  It does have that one sweet spot while ramping up that will vibrate a bit, but once it speeds up a little beyond that, it smooths out significantly.  Yes, I feel the vibrations through the floor, but mom's TL Maytag does that too (also along the bearing wall). 

Post# 978077 , Reply# 10   1/13/2018 at 04:58 by arbilab (Ft Worth TX (Ridglea))        

The 50# UniMac in the hotel laundry shook the concrete slab.

Post# 978284 , Reply# 11   1/14/2018 at 13:02 by kenmore_elite (Cal)        

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It is absolutely unbelievable what some people expect Companies to cover.  We all pay for this.  A few days ago some woman returned a Christmas tree to Costco AFTER CHRISTMAS because she said it was dead.  I call it greed, arrogance and stupidity.

Post# 978410 , Reply# 12   1/15/2018 at 06:17 by iej (Ireland)        

I'd be interested to know of she ever had a washing machine mounted on that floor before.

I've had Miele medicines on wooden floors and they certainly can produce vibrations but you have to follow the installation institutions and put a think sheet of plywood bolted into the joists underneath. Even with that they will produce plenty or intense vibration.

I don't think it's unique to Miele though and she just needs to get her house structure sorted out.

We had three different machines in that location.

And older Miele which vibrated a lot but didn't move much on the floor. It eventually managed to shake the electronics and relays from the front panel so badly the machine failed but it did make it to 10 years old.

It was replaced by a very nice Bosch machine that used to walk and shook itself to death eventually, lasting only 4 years! Again multiple completed were damaged by the excessive shaking.

That was replaced by a Samsung Eco bubble which must bounced all over the place to try point I has to give it away. We couldn't even do a wash without the machine ending up our or poaition.

All three machine caused so much vibration they also damaged the fridge that was located about 1.5 metres away!!

Eventually I just built a new utility room, with a concrete floor and bought a new Miele machine and have had absolutely no issues since.

Unfortunately, you can't really use most washing machines on certain floors, at least not without serious vibrations or damage to the machine and whatever is next to it.

There's only so much dampening you can do and I guess maybe they should put a warning on the website, but it applies to every washing machine.

Shakey washing machines have always been a problem in Ireland and I assume it's also the same in the UK. Most older houses here have no solid floors. They're entirely suspended. In fact, it's one of the reasons that a lot of mid 20th century homes here started adding utility room that did have solid floors. Spin drying washing machines became a significant issue in house design.

In old terrace houses, you're often better to construct a small utility in the back yard to solve this issie as balancing watching machines on 19th century floorboards just never really gives you anything but noise issues.

Solid floors weren't used because of the very damp climate. It's common nowadays using modern materials, but using older building materials, it was very difficult to ensure a dry, warm building without using suspended floors. Effectively, you're isolating the internal structure from the cold ground.

They also used cross ventilation under the floor to avoid issues wirh radon etc etc.

I know a few people from the continent who are always complaining about the "bad" floors in Irish houses. They're often not the most tile friendly - you have to lay plywood and other underlays etc etc

This post was last edited 01/15/2018 at 06:33
Post# 978437 , Reply# 13   1/15/2018 at 11:16 by Rolls_rapide (Scotland, UK)        
Machine stability

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Quite so.

I know of someone who had a 1990's Whirlpool frontloader. They could not get that bloody machine be stable on their suspended floor. They tried reinforcing the flooring. Eventually the machine wore itself out. Replaced by a 2000's model of Whirlpool which was perfectly stable.

And the underfloor cross-ventilation also assisted with ventilating the ubiquitous cavity wall space, keeping the various 'Rots' at bay (dry rot, wet rot, etc).

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