Thread Number: 29110
Spider Corrosion, And Foul Odors, In Front Load Washers
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Post# 443313   6/21/2010 at 09:55 (3,784 days old) by limey ()        

Many posts on many sites claim that the corrosion of the spiders is due to galvanic action. I do not agree, I believe it is primarily chemical corrosion.

Should the corrosion have been galvanic between the stainless steel drum and the aluminium spider the majority of the corrosion would have been at the junction of the two metals i.e. at the ends of the arms. I have seen no photographs of spiders corroded in such a manner, nor read of any similar descriptions.

Aluminium is corroded when immersed in an aqueous solution with a pH value above about 8.0. All detergents have to be above about 8.0 or they would not work. The Material Safety Data Sheets put out by Proctor and Gamble state that the pH for one of the liquid ‘Tides’ is 8.0 and for one of the ‘Tide’ powdered detergents as 11.0. Bleach, (sodium hypochlorite) is also very corrosive to aluminium. I should add that for corrosion of the spider to take place these levels are considerably above the levels found in a washing machine during the wash/rinse phases of the cycle.

Sodium carbonate and sodium percarbonate found in some laundry aids are also corrosive to aluminium, provided the required concentrations are reached.

I believe the mechanics of the corrosion are as follows.
Even after the fastest spin small quantities of water will remain on the shaft and towards the centre of the spider. Any recesses in the spider close to the centre will aggravate this situation. This water will contain very, very small quantities of laundry aids used, soil from the laundry and chemicals from the ‘tap’ water. Should this water be allowed to stand the water will evaporate until such time as sufficient has gone to allow the pH of the remaining mixture to rise above the threshold at which corrosion will occur.

Additionally the retained water will quickly become foul smelling leading to, I believe, many of the complaints about mold and mildew.
The picture is of the spider removed from my 7.5 year old Frigidaire built washer because of bearing failure.

Post# 445427 , Reply# 1   6/29/2010 at 05:18 (3,776 days old) by limey ()        
Corrosion by 'Bleach'

I forwarded the following email to 'The Clorox Company' a manufacturer of laundry bleach

'The pH of your 'bleaches' seems to be anywhere up to about 11.0.

It is a well-known and well-established fact that aluminium is corroded when immersed in an aqueous solution with a pH above about 8.0. As the MSDS's for Sodium Hypochlorite available 'on the web' almost all make reference to the corrosive capabilities against aluminium, some do just say 'metals'.
I would be interested in your comments on the performance, in this regard; of your product on the aluminium spiders found in front loading washing machines.
There are numerous reported incidents of spider corrosion and failure on the internet and/or although most of these seem to claim it is galvanic corrosion I do not agree. For it to be galvanic corrosion one would expect the majority of the corrosion to be at the junction of the dissimilar metals and on none of the photographs, or from the written descriptions, am I able to find one instance of this.
Thank you in anticipation.

I have now received the following response, I think it speaks volumes.

'Thank you for contacting us about Clorox Plus Liquid Bleach. We always appreciate hearing from our consumers.

Unfortunately, we are unable to provide the information that you requested. While we make every effort to answer consumers' questions and comments in a thoughtful manner, occasionally requests will be made for materials or information that aren't available. I'm sorry that we cannot be more helpful.

Again, thank you for contacting us.
Sherri Knight
Consumer Response Representative'

Post# 445437 , Reply# 2   6/29/2010 at 06:24 (3,776 days old) by davek ()        

They went to no expense to provide that answer.

Has anyone written a similar letter to the washer manufacturers? The use of Clorox is pretty common in North America, so it's more a manufacturing problem in that they know people will use it and should design the machine to permit its safe regular use.

Post# 445496 , Reply# 3   6/29/2010 at 10:29 (3,776 days old) by PassatDoc (Orange County, California)        

Don't some of the "machine cleaning" protocols for FL washers (from the manufacturer) recommend the use of chlorine bleach when the machine is cleaned? I've seen a "Clean Machine" cycle on Whirlpools on display at Costco and am pretty sure the company recommends using chlorine bleach on this cycle. I don't know how these companies in good conscience can steer their customers toward using chlorine bleach. Plus, it doesn't descale, does it? If mold prevention is the goal, then train the consumer to wipe the gasket at the end of laundry day and to leave the door ajar when not in use.

Europeans have used these two strategies for years and you don't hear them complaining of mold in their machines. I realize that in some cases, US machines may be housed in settings that are warmer than a typical European laundry room (though Italy no doubt could match any US setting other than Arizona/Nevada for HOT). My washer is in the garage, which faces south, and in hot summer weather, the temperature may approach 90 F (33 C) inside the garage if I am not home to open the garage door for ventilation (the garage has a door for the cars, and a door to the kitchen, but no side door or window....there are three small grate vents as required by state law but they don't move much air). I have always left the FL door ajar and wiped the gasket, and have never had a problem, even in this "extreme" condition.

I perhaps used chlorine two or three times on my Frig 2140 before reading about the dangers on this site. Because the machine washed whites so much whiter than my old TL, there really was no need to use bleach. For the first three years of ownership, my monthly or quarterly "clean machine" protocol was simply running a heavy duty cycle on Hot, with no clothes, and a half dose of detergent. During the past year, I have added 1/3 cup citric acid and half a dose of detergent. The wash basket really sparkles after this treatment, and I can only hope it's descaling the outer tub which I can't see. Other posters here have disassembled tubs for "before" and "after" views when using citric acid and the results have been amazing.

I bought a five pound jar of citric acid on the internet (from a company that caters to home canners; health food stores often sell it). Cost was I think $18 plus about $5 postage. I use it quarterly to descale the washer and the dishwasher, and monthly to descale the coffee maker. At the rate I use it, the container should last 3-4 years. Five pounds is a BIG jar. Currently, Amazon sells this size for $28 with free shipping.

For years, I had used a descaler from True Value called "Perfect Brew". I noted on the packet that it was citric acid. I opened a package prior to use and measured it: one tablespoon, and it was sold in three-packs costing $5!!! $1.65 for one tablespoon of citric acid, vs. five pounds for about $23. The owner of our local appliance repair company for years had recommended using a half bottle of Lime Away in Rinse/Hold cycle in washing machines on a quarterly basis. I told him about being able to buy citric acid in large quantities and he felt citric acid would be a great descaler and possibly safer than using Lime Away.

I descale both FL and DW on a quarterly basis, using change of seasons as a reminder, which means it's time to do the summer descaling this week!

Post# 445529 , Reply# 4   6/29/2010 at 12:39 (3,776 days old) by limey ()        
Spider Corrosion By Laundry Aids

I have written to Frigidaire/Electrolux, Sears/Kenmore, Speed Queen and Whirlpool concerning these corrosion issues. Frigidaire and Sears have responded in the vein ‘thank you we will pass it on, now go away’ I can post their exact responses if required but I do not think any useful purpose would be served.
Whirlpool have not, as yet, responded which has extra interest, in that they also manufacture and market ‘Affresh’, which is a ‘tablet/sachet’ containing sodium carbonate and sodium percarbonate which is supposed to clear mould, likely it will have some effect in this regard but there are many instances on the web where the posters state that it has not been totally successful. This could mean that they are selling a product that has the potential to damage their own machines.
Speed Queen were kind enough to tell me that their spiders were of an aluminium alloy with a forged steel shaft, and sent me photographs when I asked if there were any recesses close to the hub, there are not. They however have not responded to my corrosion concerns.
I have also sent an email, similar to the one I sent to Chlorox, to Church and Dwight, the manufacturer’s of OxiClean, which contains sodium carbonate and sodium percarbonate. As yet I have received no response.
Will post updates as and when I receive them.
The picture is of a 4.5 year old Frigidaire built Kenmore showing the foul smelling 'crud' that has built up in the recesses of the spider hub. This machine was dismantled because of bearing failure and the terrible smell.

This post was last edited 06/29/2010 at 13:01
Post# 445534 , Reply# 5   6/29/2010 at 12:45 (3,776 days old) by davek ()        

Your picture is very revealing in a lot of ways. They make the parts that the customer can see out of stainless, while a meaty part just out of sight is cost-cut into oblivion. A difference of just a couple of dollars on a multi-hundred dollar machine would make a huge difference in life. It appears that the stank growth is dependent on the rough surface of the corrosion to get established.

Post# 445535 , Reply# 6   6/29/2010 at 12:46 (3,776 days old) by passatdoc (Orange County, California)        

Is OxyClean supposed to be bad for aluminum spiders? Or only liquid chlorine bleach? I've also read that softened water is bad for aluminum spiders.

Post# 445554 , Reply# 7   6/29/2010 at 13:41 (3,776 days old) by limey ()        

Dave first.
Not entirely true, a rough surface and corrosion build up will, in my opinion, assist the initial water retention at the end of the last spin cycle. The spider in the second picture had very little corrosion, which actually surprised me. However the owner, one of my sisters’-in-law’, stated that she rarely used bleach. She initially asked me to look at the machine because of ‘the smell’; once I got beyond ‘the smell’ I discovered that the bearings were on the way out. ‘The smell’ and the bearings seem to be the two most common failures on this particular breed of machine. Prior to the bearing failure on our machine, see first picture, on the first post, my wife, who has a much more sensitive nose than I, had been complaining of a moldy mildewy’ smell coming from the machine. It was not until after the repair that I first put 2 and 2 together when she told me there was no more ‘smell’.
Please see my first post for a description of how I believe corrosion and ‘crud’ build-up starts. Should you desire more please let me know and I will bore you with details?

Anything, in liquid form and that includes pastes with a pH above about 8.0 is corrosive to aluminium, logically therefore, OxiClean would be corrosive to aluminium should it be present in sufficient concentration. As for the softened water, I have heard that too but am unable to say anything further as I do not know what the pH of the softened water is, and it will vary from locality to locality and type of softener used.
You can waste quite a few hours, should you be so inclined, just ‘Google’ “Corrosion of Aluminium”.

To find out what the pH of various chemicals is ‘Google’ “Chemical’s Name MSDS” (MSDS= Material Safety Data Sheet). Two things to remember, when you are dealing with solutions you need to know the concentration for the pH value quoted and two the pH scale is logarithmic (to the base 10), 0 is totally acidic, 7 is neutral and 14 is totally alkaline (or base). This means that a solution with a pH of 9.0 is ten times more alkaline than one with a pH of 8.0, and one with a pH of 10.0 is one hundred times more alkaline than one with a pH of 8.0. By the way a pH below about 4.0 is also corrosive to aluminium, except Nitric Acid. How’s that for complicating the issue.

Post# 445580 , Reply# 8   6/29/2010 at 15:03 (3,776 days old) by joe_in_philly (Philadelphia, PA, USA)        

joe_in_philly's profile picture
I have ordered STPP (Sodium Tripolyphosphate) from a few years ago - I do see they have citric acid for sale at $7.97/2lb Jar, $21.81/7lb Pail - not including shipping. Even with shipping costs, it would be cheaper than the $1.65 for one tablespoon of "Perfect Brew!"

CLICK HERE TO GO TO joe_in_philly's LINK

Post# 445630 , Reply# 9   6/29/2010 at 18:14 (3,776 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        

combo52's profile picture
This has been discussed many times on this site. Anytime you have a smelly washer either TL or FL you aren't using it correctly, you are not getting clean clothes out of it either. Use hot water always in low water use machines. Bleach has nothing to do with corrosion of the spider, in fact it helps clean the machine and reduce the gunk build up on the spider and other parts which will extend the life of the washer. It generally should not be necessary to clean the inside of washers and dishwashers if they are being used correctly even in hard water areas you do need to use the correct amount of cleaning products to do the job at hand.I have rebuilt thousands of washers and have noticed no problems with corrosion in washers where the customers that use a lot of LCB. Please note all TL washers have important aluminum parts that are exposed to water usually the tub mounting parts and we have seen association with LCB damage.

Post# 445637 , Reply# 10   6/29/2010 at 18:45 (3,776 days old) by limey ()        
Spider Corrosion By Bleach

To Combo52
We both live in free countries so you are entitled to your views the same as I am entitled to mine.
Attached is a photograph of the spider removed from my 7.5-year-old Frigidaire built Kenmore machine showing what one drop of bleach, straight from the bottle, did to it by just leaving it overnight. Now tell me bleach does not corrode aluminium.
I know that the concentration I used is greater than that normally found in washing machines during the cycle but please see my explanation of how I perceive the corrosion process takes place in the first post on this thread.
In actual fact if you check, I believe you will find that bleach, although it will kill mould spores, does not actually remove them, just makes it easier for other cleaners to do so.

Post# 445654 , Reply# 11   6/29/2010 at 20:15 (3,776 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        

combo52's profile picture
Put your washer together and run a load through the complete cycle using the recommended amount of LCB then dissemble and recheck the results. Putting a drop of full strength bleach will corrode aluminum but thats not a fair test. LCB will kill you if you drink it full strength yet its safe to drink @ the proper dose for disinfecting water. Your test is not valid unless done under actual use conditions. As stated in the last post I have far more experience with this matter plus I have all the major appliance manufactures on my side. You would have to do a trial with at least 100 washers over a 5 year period 1/2 with LCB and 1/2 with out and show the results before I would give your theory any credibility.

Post# 445670 , Reply# 12   6/29/2010 at 21:00 (3,776 days old) by surgilator_68 (Maryland)        

surgilator_68's profile picture
Bleach has minimal if any effect on the aluminum parts when diluted. I have seen far more broken and failed spiders, corroded and disintegrated hubs, drive blocks and pumps in machines that have NEVER seen so much as a drop of bleach. Preventing corrosion has more to do with proper dosage of detergent and proper water temp. That is why detergents contain corrosion inhibitors or machine protectants.

For over 23 years we have serviced and supplied the machines both top and front load home use equipment for a medical facility that uses more than 3 cups of bleach in each load. Each machine on average washes 8 loads a day, every day. That comes out to 547.5 gallons per year. The average life of the machine is 5 years which comes out to 2,737.5 gallons over the life of the machine( if my math is correct). Not one of these machines was replaced due to any aluminum failure and they all have aluminum parts.

Post# 445723 , Reply# 13   6/30/2010 at 02:40 (3,776 days old) by alr2903 (TN)        

I once jokingly asked are the spiders in the old westy's and bendix machines, made out ot kryptonite. I have seldom seen a post searching for a spider for a west or a bendix. That said, maybe there is a quality control issue with the aluminum quality used in the modern spiders? Another thought is when Sears started running TV ads for these machines, they were quick to state you can wash 22 towels. I have craigslist Maytags, But if i did have a $1000.00 FL machine i think i still might take an oversize king size comforter to the coin op, as i do now. Could it be metal fatigue? Just a thought. I still do not know what the westy and bendix system used, anyone? alr2903

Post# 445739 , Reply# 14   6/30/2010 at 04:43 (3,775 days old) by mark_wpduet (Lexington KY)        

mark_wpduet's profile picture
I know someone who has a 2001 He3t (or one of the early Kenmore He machines) not a frigemore.....At any rate, their washer has only had a pump replaced and so far, that's it. I use bleach in mine (just a small amt for whites) the dispenser doesn't allow for a lot anyway. A gallon of bleach lasts me for a LONG time...No smell at all in my washer. I hope it lasts 5 more years

Post# 445740 , Reply# 15   6/30/2010 at 04:44 (3,775 days old) by Limey ()        

To Surgilator
I quite agree with you. Your story about the machines at the medical facility only goes to add credence to my theory. They will rarely, if ever dry out, therefore the concentration of bleach and other impurities will rarely, if ever, reach a level where corrosion can occur. Additionally I’ll bet they never got any foul odours either, the systems would be regularly flushed with ‘fresh water and additives’ it is when the small quantities of water and additives left behind start to dry out that the problems start.

I have, in addition to the companies I have listed above, contacted Proctor and Gamble, the manufacturer’s of inter alia Tide about the pH of various types of ‘Tide’. Their initial responses, written and verbal, were in the vein of ‘Non of our products cause any corrosion to any washing machine parts’ but when further challenged the requested a telephone discussion that took place towards the end of last year. I asked them to summarise, in writing, our conversation, this is what they sent me.


Thanks for speaking with us the other week regarding your concerns about the pH of laundry products and potential corrosion issues with the aluminum alloys used in washing machines.

As we discussed, P&G believes that our laundry products are compatible for use with washing machines containing aluminum spiders and do not cause premature failure of the machines due to corrosion. This is based on the following:

o Laundry detergents around the world typically have a pH above 8.0 for effective cleaning. This is true for P&G detergents as well as detergents from other manufacturers.
o In our in-lab multicycle technical testing, P&G has not observed an incompatibility between our laundry products and the aluminum spider causing the washing machine to no longer function.
o Based on our discussions with appliance manufacturers, it is our understanding that the aluminum alloy spider is designed to be compatible with typical laundry products under normal usage conditions.
o While front loading washing machines with aluminum spiders have been in North America for a little over a decade, similarly designed washers have been in use in Europe for much longer. Even with a higher rate of powder detergent and bleach usage, we have not observed any widespread machine failure related to aluminum alloy corrosion caused by laundry products.

Please let me know if you have any questions. Thanks again for sharing pictures of your machine. We are still looking over the pictures and will share any thoughts separately.’

Notice they no longer say that their products do not cause corrosion but do say that they do not cause premature failure due to corrosion, a very subtle difference. Additionally, if I were a betting man, I would say that their multicycle technical testing, would be very similar to your example with the medical facility i.e. the machines rarely get a chance to dry out.

Second point, not made in the communication, but during the discussion they admitted that they rarely tested their products in conjunction with any other laundry aids.

Third point. I advised them of the test I conducted on my spider with the bleach, their initial reaction was, the same as mine had been, and to a certain extent combo52’s above, that the concentration was way above that normally found in washing machines. I fully agree, however when I explained how I believed the concentration could reach a level where corrosion could occur, I was greeted with a prolonged silence, and there were three of them talking to me. No contradictions, no arguments, no counter suggestions. From there we moved on. I can only assume that the three people I was talking to had some level of technical expertise. They certainly seemed to. Additionally they appeared to be speaking freely not from some pre-arranged script.

Post# 445741 , Reply# 16   6/30/2010 at 04:49 (3,775 days old) by sudsman ()        
Any product will damage a machine if used incorrectly

or to excess raw bleach will damage anything.. So just what did you expect?

Post# 445952 , Reply# 17   6/30/2010 at 22:13 (3,775 days old) by laundromat (Hilo, Hawaii)        
Westiinghouse and Bendix front loaders---

laundromat's profile picture
--- if I remember correctly,theirs were made of porcelain on steel.Not aluminum. I could be wrong.I never remember any of the front loaders I saw growing up and had,once I could grab them,having any aluminum parts.Even cast aluminum.I know that the maytags (Helical and Dependable Drive Trannies were made of a galvinised pig iron.Sort of similar to cast aluminum but a bit stronger.

Post# 446064 , Reply# 18   7/1/2010 at 11:55 (3,774 days old) by limey ()        
Spider Corrosion By Laundry Aids

To sudsman
By now I hope you realise just how ridiculous the first sentence of your post is. Should raw bleach as you put it, I used a 5% solution, as I said straight from the bottle, damage anything, it would damage any container it was put in, as this is clearly not the case your statement is without foundation.
As for your second sentence ‘What did you expect?’ To be quite frank I did not, at that time, know what to expect. When I first saw the build up of corrosion on the spider I removed from our machine I thought it was galvanic corrosion, being very familiar with galvanic corrosion in a marine environment, i.e. steel and seawater, I jumped to a conclusion, the wrong one!
There is an interesting paper at corrosion.ppt by D.H. Lister and W.G. Cook.
I had just ‘Googled’ “Corrosion of Aluminium” and discovered that it, aluminium, is corroded when immersed in an aqueous solution with a pH above about 8.0 or below about 4.0. My immediate reaction was ‘bleach and vinegar’, bleach because it is alkaline i.e. has a pH above 7.0 and vinegar because it is acidic i.e. has a pH below 7.0. At that time I was not aware of the pH value of the two liquids in question. Additionally my wife had been in the habit of using both, not at the same time, in our washing machine. The result for the bleach you can see above, the vinegar evaporated with, as far as I could see no damage to the spider.
I would add that the products of corrosion shown in the photograph above were very similar to the deposits I had found on the spider initially. They were also quite difficult to remove in both cases. The pressure washer failed to completely remove the deposits I initially found and wire brushing with a soft wire brush was required for the material immediately adjacent to the metal after my experiment.

Post# 446081 , Reply# 19   7/1/2010 at 12:48 (3,774 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        
Problem Is Not A New One

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Nor are those who make front loaders ignorant of them, just seems by and large they aren't interested in changing.

However thelater might be, in defence can say that probably the cost of using "commercial" quality materials would drive costs out of limits.

Commcercial front loaders seem immune from the effect you seem to have discovered, and they are subject to much more intense concentrations of chemicals and over much longer daily duty cycles than domestic units. However by and large all commercial front loaders are designed to be rebuilt/repaired, including replacement of the spiders, so perhaps that is why one seldom hears of problems in that arena.


Post# 446136 , Reply# 20   7/1/2010 at 16:16 (3,774 days old) by limey ()        
Corrosion And Mold

To laundress.
My theory only holds when a washer is allowed to dry out so that the concentration of the damageing chemicals reach a pH value above about 8.0. Most comercial washers I do not think dry out often enough to cause these types of problems.

Post# 446143 , Reply# 21   7/1/2010 at 16:43 (3,774 days old) by ronhic (Canberra, Australia)        
Well the solution....

ronhic's profile picture
....seems to be...

Buy a good detergent...

Avoid liquid bleach etc...

Leave the door ajar...

.....which is exactly what the majority of Europeans and Australians do....

Post# 446153 , Reply# 22   7/1/2010 at 17:42 (3,774 days old) by limey ()        
Spider Corrosion By Laundry Aids

To combo52
I have no intention of tearing down either of my two washers whilst they are still working satisfactorily. I will wait for the first sign of bearing rumble; it is a pity the bearing housing is not accessible to a stethoscope, or I might catch it a little earlier, or my wife complaining of the smell. Unfortunately I see no practical way of viewing the hub of the spider without tearing the drums apart. An industrial endoscope might be able to get up the back through one of the larger vane holes but I doubt that anything useful would be seen, anyway I do not have one and I do not suppose they are part of the normal appliance repairman’s toolkit.
What is unfair about putting a drop of bleach, not full strength as you claim, the bottle gave it as a 5% solution, not that it matters, on the spider? You stated in your previous post ‘Bleach has nothing to do with corrosion of the spider,’ I believe I have demonstrated that it has that possibility, should its concentration rise sufficiently. How could that happen? By water evaporating from the very small amounts of water, soil, laundry aids and tap water left behind at the end of the last spin cycle. How do you believe the spiders are corroded? Assuming that we can agree that they are, being corroded that is, can we?
Please note that I cannot understand the last sentence of your first post, it appears to contradict itself.
I do not doubt your experience with regard to the rebuilding of washers, you say you have dealt with thousands, I take that to mean in excess of 2,000, at one every working day it would take about 8 years to complete the 2,000, and you like me, have been round long enough to do it. Our difference being I have only dismantled the two front loaders describe on this site and one old ‘Hoover’ with the impeller on the side of the tub and that was about 40 years ago. I did however spend, on and off, most of my working life investigating mechanical failures, I have also, in the dim past, worked as a development engineer for a company that designed and built high speed diesel engines so I do believe that I have some idea as to how an investigation should be pursued. One thing I have learnt during that time is NEVER disregard anything anyone says, out of hand, somewhere in it there maybe the clue that solves the problem. That is why I ask you what you think causes the corrosion.

When you have all the major manufacturers on your side what do you mean? Are they saying that bleach and other laundry aids with a pH in excess of 8.0 are not corroding the spiders? Should this be the case I would have thought they would have said as much to me when I raised the query with them, instead of the wall of silence that I am getting. Additionally have they given you any information as to why the spiders fail close to the hub, or why some brands seem more prone to this failure than others?

The attached photograph is of the spider removed from my machine and it clearly shows very little corrosion on the outer halves of the arms, why do you think this is?

Finally, have you read the penultimate paragraph of my first post? If affirmative, do you understand it?

Thank you for your time and I look forward to your response

Post# 446164 , Reply# 23   7/1/2010 at 18:28 (3,774 days old) by limey ()        
Corrosion And Mould

To ronic

That would be a start but it will not get rid of the corrosion completely neither will it get rid of any of the foul smells.

To get rid of the corrosion the spider needs to be made of, or coated with material(s), which will resist the possible corrosion effects of the laundry aids and tap water in the concentrations which might be expected when evaporation occurs, which will be speeded up when you leave the door open.

Should the manufacturers persist in using aluminium then the spider will need to be redesigned to eliminate recesses close to the hub where water can collect and not be completely removed, even after the fastest spin cycle. It needs to be redesigned anyway to remove the recesses so that as little water as possible is left to slow and possibly halt the growth of mould/mildew in these wet recesses. This will not, of course, remove all the possibilities for mould but it will go a long way, I feel, towards it

Post# 446173 , Reply# 24   7/1/2010 at 18:40 (3,774 days old) by hoover1100 (U.K.)        
as far as I'm aware

all the machines I've used have had aluminium spiders.

only one of them ever had a problem, but it was the cheapest machine on the market at the time and abuse of liquid detergents, low temps and keeping the door shut were more than likely to blame.

As Chris said, good detergent containing oxi bleach, washing above 40c, and often 60c and 95c when possible, not using chlorine bleach and keeping the door open to allow the machine to dry out should keep it fine.

Odour and mould issues, as well as drum spider failure are pretty much unheard of in machines used like this, at least over here.


Post# 446180 , Reply# 25   7/1/2010 at 18:53 (3,774 days old) by supremewhirlpol ()        
Think of it this way...

If this flaw with the spiders was indeed fixed, then the manufactures would have to find another part or area of the machine to weaken, or make more expensive to replace. Yes, bearings are a given, that just leaves the control stuff that can fail. People buy new machines because parts like the spider, controls, along with the cost of labor have been priced high enough in order for most people to buy a new machine. Has anyone checked CL lately? People are posting these newer FL machines left and right and dirt prices because of these failing parts.

Post# 446219 , Reply# 26   7/1/2010 at 21:22 (3,774 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        

combo52's profile picture
Limey the corrosion on your spiders is more of a hard water build up from using to little detergent. Neither of the spiders you showed us have experienced any type of failure. Your machines had water seal failures which allowed water to ruin the bearings. The seal failure was likely caused by the reasons I stated in the first sentence. I have worked on more than 60,000 major appliances and continue to work on more than 3000 per year. As stated before all washers have major parts made of aluminum that are exposed to water. Dry parts can not corrode water and oxygen are necessary heat helps, washers used a lot will have a much greater chance to corrode. Every US seller of machines recommends the use of bleach in thier machine. I have not generally noticed that manufactures recommend using thier products in a way that is harmful to thier life. Chuck all MT washers have aluminum gear cases they are not exposed to water but the tub mounting stem is.

Post# 446226 , Reply# 27   7/1/2010 at 22:22 (3,774 days old) by cfz2882 (Belle Fourche,SD)        

of the 50 or so washers i have repaired or taken apart over the
last 30yrs,only found significant corrosion of aluminum on just
one-a 1984 SQ top load,the aluminum hub for the tub was badly
corroded-in this case clearly due to galvanic action,there was
a gasket of paper like material between the aluminum hub and
the stainless steel tub with plastic washers under the bolt
heads,insulating the two from each other and forming kind of
a battery...A 2nd '84 SQ in my fleet did not have the same
hub corrosion.
filter flos up to around 1985 have an aluminum tranny case
exposed to the wash water and i have not seen any corroded
through.when did a bearing job on my '98 frigilux F/L there
was only slight surface corrosion of the spider.

Post# 446258 , Reply# 28   7/2/2010 at 02:51 (3,774 days old) by limey ()        
Relative, But Only Just

To hoover 1100
I was over to the UK earlier this year. My parent’s, just under 4 years old; Hotpoint Oasis had recently had its bearings renewed. There is no bleach dispenser drawer, or anything similar, on this machine and the instruction sheet does not mention bleach at all. My sister had just dumped her Bosch because of ‘the smell’. Perhaps my family is just unlucky

Post# 446262 , Reply# 29   7/2/2010 at 03:55 (3,773 days old) by chestermikeuk (Rainhill *Home of the RailwayTrials* Merseyside,UK)        

chestermikeuk's profile picture
Hello David, interesting thread, various views!!!

In your first paragraph you stated:"Even after the fastest spin small quantities of water will remain on the shaft and towards the centre of the spider. Any recesses in the spider close to the centre will aggravate this situation. This water will contain very, very small quantities of laundry aids used, soil from the laundry and chemicals from the ‘tap’ water."

I would offer another solution to the "Very Small Quantities theory".... One of the biggest issues is the overuse of Plant Based Fabric Softener, which from the last rinse, in heavy concentrations is then sprayed by the spin action all over the outer drum resulting in the spider being coated, and there lies the problem, that along with the use of Liquid Detergents containing no bleach and cold or low temp washes!!

Combine this with water energy efficiency guidelines, no hot water or maintenance washes and your ensuing build up of gunk continues!!! allowing all types of reactions to take place with said metals!!!

Through my job I`ve visited the P & G technical testing facility and have talked and observed testing methods, again giving my viewpoint from what I see and hear about from customers, family & friends and my own laundry practices.

The observation of machine testing that I have seen(IMHO) & I will ask the teccy guys to confirm, is that the machines being tested are used and rotated for use, ie. not used continuously and therefore (given the temps in the testing labs) would have been allowed to dry out etc, (although I would need to confirm levels of dryness given water in sump areas and humidity reaction!! )

Now these banks of machines are from the manufacturer promoting longevity in their machines!!!

Post# 446263 , Reply# 30   7/2/2010 at 03:57 (3,773 days old) by chestermikeuk (Rainhill *Home of the RailwayTrials* Merseyside,UK)        
UK Models

chestermikeuk's profile picture
being tested using liquids, powders & fab con additives etc...

Post# 446264 , Reply# 31   7/2/2010 at 03:59 (3,773 days old) by limey ()        
Insight To The Future?

To supremewhirpol,

I agree, where are the ‘GREENS’ when you need them? This is not environmentally friendly. Whole back ends just because the bearings have gone. Basket and spider together because they are not available separately when only the spider is gone. Add in the labour and it is cheaper to buy a new machine.

Can you imagine what could/will happen if one of the manufacturer’s breaks ranks and fixes the spider problems. We will all need lifejackets there will be that many salivating lawyers about.

Post# 446265 , Reply# 32   7/2/2010 at 04:24 (3,773 days old) by chestermikeuk (Rainhill *Home of the RailwayTrials* Merseyside,UK)        
And US Models

chestermikeuk's profile picture
Being put through their paces again using Liquids, Powders & Fabric conditioners!!!

Post# 446267 , Reply# 33   7/2/2010 at 04:58 (3,773 days old) by limey ()        
Corrosion and mould

Hi Mike,

I see from your profile that your Gran had a Creda Debonaire spin dryer; my parents had one of those. Wrestling that thing was good training for trying to bring down the opposition fly half on a wet Saturday afternoons. By golly they did get the clothes dry though, pulling them apart to go on the line was another matter. Memories.

With respect to your comments on plant based fabric softeners I would add the following comments: -
1. The vast majority of the last spin ‘water’ thrown from the inner drum will have drained to the bottom of the outer drum, and hopefully have been pumped out, by the time the inner drum stops rotating.
2. When the inner drum stops rotating the whole drums assembly is slightly inclined towards the door, at least in mine it is, leading to any, ‘water’ draining towards the front of the outer drum, where the pump suction, logically, is. This would mean, in my view, that only very small quantities of ‘water’ stand any chance of dripping onto the back of the inner drum and even less of dripping directly onto the spider.
3. When the laundry is removed from mine the inner drum returns to a ‘level’ position. I am assuming that the inner surfaces of the outer drum do at least the same, perhaps with a slight inclination towards the front at all times for drainage purposes, but I don’t know, perhaps your ‘teccy’ acquaintances can give some insight.
4. Any ‘water’ that that had dripped or splashed onto the spider, except for a very small quantity of any that had found its way to the area near the shaft, would have been thrown off during the last spin cycle.

Thanks for the photograph of the washers under test. Not an open door in sight, health and Safety, or all in use? Are they still made in P boro?

I would greatly appreciate your comments and any follow up you can give, please use my email if you want to keep it private.

Thank you

Post# 446269 , Reply# 34   7/2/2010 at 05:28 (3,773 days old) by chestermikeuk (Rainhill *Home of the RailwayTrials* Merseyside,UK)        

chestermikeuk's profile picture
Hi David, and welcome to the club from over here!!!Where you born in UK & emigrated to Canada?? unfortunatly no Hotpoint washers are made in the UK anymore, (washers where produced in Llandudno, North Wales) along with any other manufacturer!! yes those copper Creada spinners where the mainstay of UK laundry appliances...

Take your point about the water in your specific machine, what we are experiencing here is overuse of conditioner which produces a frothy foam all over the outer drum and boots etc and so will tend to stick on surfaces longer than water would, combine that with hair, skin & oils etc and improper rinsing, overloading and not using the machine properly , then all combine to give odours and slime!!!

You`ve intrigued me now about the "Doors Closed", will ask the tec guys as it could be H & S or perhaps they are trying to replicate mould growth issues etc!!! I wonder if other machines in eastern countries have similar issues??

Cheers, Mike

Post# 446305 , Reply# 35   7/2/2010 at 09:16 (3,773 days old) by hoover1100 (U.K.)        

Bearing failures are common on Hotpoint/Indesit machines (both the same machines these days). It is caused by poor seals on bearings allowing water to get inside, not really to do with corrosion. Have never heard of an oasis model though.

I can only suggest that your sister was either not doing regular hot washes, using only liquid or colourcare detergents and/or keeping the door shut between cycles. If you do take these precautions your machine will not smell, to replace a machine because of smells caused by misuse is very extreme, a good boil wash with lots of powdered detergent and a good cleaning out would have got it good as new, I've never heard of or seen a machine that was too smelly or mouldy to be cleaned.

All powdered detergents here that are not labelled as being colour safe contain activated oxygen bleach, basically no one here would ever use chlorine bleach in their washing machine and since detergents already contain oxi-bleach, there is no reason to add more or have a seperate dispenser for it.


Post# 446324 , Reply# 36   7/2/2010 at 11:05 (3,773 days old) by limey ()        
My Mistake

To Hoover 1100
Thanks for picking that one up it should be Hotpoint Aquarius, my apoligies.

I don't know what my sister was or was not doing only that she told me she had dumped it because of 'the smell'.

Post# 446499 , Reply# 37   7/2/2010 at 20:39 (3,773 days old) by ronhic (Canberra, Australia)        

ronhic's profile picture
...never had a washing machine smell of anything nasty, musty or mouldy (1994 Australian Hoover electra front loader/2001 Blomberg 1301 front loader/2005 zanussi electrolux front loader/2006 zanussi westinghouse front loader)

The hoover is still going strong at a mates, the Blomberg we sold with our flat in the UK and both the zanussi machines are going strong at the coast and one in daily use here.

None of them smell at can stick your head in the door and all you can smell is 'clean'

and neither have:

- my sister (Fisher and Paykel top loader/Simpson top loader); or
- my mother (1968 simpson solid tub fluid drive/1989 ASEA front loader/2008 Fisher and Paykel front loader)

Now given my father is a builder and brother in law a motor mechanic, their machines have seen some 'dirt' literally boils down to:

- Good detergent
- airing the machines out by leaving lids/door open
- warm washes
- no chlorine bleach (just not in the Australian mind set compared to nth America)
- MINIMAL use of fabric conditioner

I defy anyone to have a smelly machine if the above is followed from new....

Though, a thought.

The vast majority of Australian and European machines are located in areas with good natural light - kitchens, bathrooms and dedicated laundry rooms....especially when compared to garages and basements....

I wonder if this could have anything to do with it?

Post# 446654 , Reply# 38   7/3/2010 at 17:56 (3,772 days old) by limey ()        
Spider Corrosion

To combo52
I am sorry but I just cannot agree that the corrosion on ‘my’ spiders is due to hard water build up. For it to be the ‘scum’ it would be relatively easy to remove, the deposits on my spider were most definitely not and I have never seen a scum build up like that. Additionally one would expect a ‘scum’ line anywhere water had sat for any length of time, the area of the pump suction which will, under normally foreseeable circumstances, have water left in it, there was no scum line in that area.
You say neither of the spiders I have showed you have any type of failure. I would draw your attention to the first post on this thread; whilst I agree that there has been no catastrophic failure please concentrate your attention at the recesses close to the centre of the hub and note the thinning of the webs. In my book that is failure. Failure to stand up to the environment it is operating in. I agree the second spider shows very little sign of damage, the darker grey spots are corrosion pits; in my view insufficient to warrant changing the spider.
You say that my machines had water seal failures, I would be very interested in how you arrived at that conclusion. I do not believe I have mentioned seal failure(s) anywhere? Admittedly the bearings and seal on the first machine had failed but which failed first, the bearings or the seal, I have no idea, debating that is, to my mind, like determining which came first the chicken or the egg? I would lean towards the bearings failing first as, in my opinion, they are terribly overloaded and an argument could easily be made that they are designed to fail. The bottom line is however that I do not know and would seriously challenge the credibility of anyone who thought they did know for certain, have theories, yes, as I said I believe it more likely to be the bearings, someone else may well lean towards the seal failing first due to the build of ‘deposits’ on the shaft, that person is entitled to their opinion the same as I am entitled to mine. However to claim definitively that they know, in my book is not on. The bearings from the second machine were no where near as bad as those from the first and the seal showed no apparent signs of damage and there was no sign of water or products of corrosion in the bearing housing or on the bearings themselves so how you can say that one suffered a seal failure is beyond my comprehension.
To work on over 3,000 major appliances a year I suppose you must work in a shop as that is a very impressive number.
I agree, that in terms of what we are discussing, dry parts will not corrode, water is required but not free oxygen, as in the air we breathe. The water is required to hold the discussed corrosive chemicals in solution, as soon as all the water has evaporated the corrosion stops. Oxygen is present in the discussed chemicals.
At this point I would like to clarify/expand a point made in other posts. I have reason to believe, I am not yet sure, that it is only the powdered Oxi products that contain chemicals corrosive to aluminium, not the liquids; additionally Borax is corrosive to aluminium. With respect to the durability of aluminium in the presence of water.
In actual fact aluminium is quite durable in both fresh and seawater but it has to be kept electrically insulated, particularly when exposed to sea-water, from more noble substances (not all of them are metals).
I cannot help what every US seller of machines recommends or does not recommend. I can speculate as to why but that is all
All I can do is point out, what I see to be as, a situation needing change. Should you not agree that is your prerogative and right, and I will defend that right, even though I likely will not agree with you.
You have not yet answered the following questions from my post of 1st July 2010, I would appreciate it if you would oblige: -
‘When you have all the major manufacturers on your side what do you mean? Are they saying that bleach and other laundry aids with a pH in excess of 8.0 are not corroding the spiders? Should this be the case I would have thought they would have said as much to me when I raised the query with them, instead of the wall of silence that I am getting. Additionally have they given you any information as to why the spiders fail close to the hub, or why some brands seem more prone to this failure than others?’
Finally, have you read the penultimate paragraph of my first post? If affirmative, do you understand it?

Looking forward to hearing from you.

Post# 446824 , Reply# 39   7/4/2010 at 04:38 (3,771 days old) by limey ()        
Seal And Bearing Failure

To hoover1100
Whilst I am not familiar with machines in the UK, other than as detailed above, and I do not think that really counts for very much. I would query the statement that it is the seal failure causing the bearing failure, I believe it is the other way round, at least most of the time.
Please see the third paragraph of my post above to combo52 for my reasoning. I do not think it is necessary to repeat it all again.
With respect to the ‘Oxi’ products please see my sixth paragraph above.

Post# 446870 , Reply# 40   7/4/2010 at 09:42 (3,771 days old) by cfz2882 (Belle Fourche,SD)        
frigilux bearing situation

when i did the bearing job on my 1998 frigilux,i looked it over
very carefully to try to determine the bearing failure as the
bearings were decent size(6306 and 6307)and should easily last
the life of the washer(some small cars have smaller bearings
for the wheels)From what i could determine,there was a design
error in which the drum shaft bearing surfaces were made
slightly undersize allowing the bearing inner races to "work"
on the shaft,wearing the shaft,shaft gets off center in seal,
allowing a gap between shaft and seal lip,letting water in to
ruin the bearings...
There are several things electrolux could have done to prevent
this premature bearing failure with these machines...
BTW you do not need to change the rear tub to replace bearings
on these and the bearings and seal are just standard industrial
parts and readily avalible.

Post# 446877 , Reply# 41   7/4/2010 at 10:33 (3,771 days old) by PassatDoc (Orange County, California)        

I'd certainly pay to replace bearings, as long as the spider was ok. Given that I am forced into using a stacked configuration (space where washer should sit is blocked by a concrete-filled steel pipe called a bollard, required by city building code to protect appliances from a runaway car), buying a new washer also may mean buying a new dryer, unless I buy the same washer or if the stacking kit fits later model Frigidaires. If nothing currently made accepts the existing stack kit, then I'd have to buy a pair, even though the gas dryer works well (undersized at 5.7 cu ft, that's its only fault).

Post# 446901 , Reply# 42   7/4/2010 at 11:44 (3,771 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        

combo52's profile picture
98% of the time the seal is the cause of the bearing failure. This is true of all washers top loading included. The old saying that water is the root of evil in machine things couldn't be more true with washers, dishwashers and ice machines and water heaters for that matter. As the guy in SD said the bearings are strong enough for a front wheel of a car, its not overloading or even the amount of use that leads to most failures. The condition you saw where the shaft had become undersized I think was also caused by moisture in that area. I have also noticed this but when all new parts are used they fit well and thier is little likelihood that the shaft would turn inside the bearing unless the bearing was rusting and starting to turn hard.

Post# 446917 , Reply# 43   7/4/2010 at 12:16 (3,771 days old) by limey ()        

To cfz2882
Thanks for the input re the bearings.
I once saw a post where the writer claimed that Frigidaire/Electrolux actually put out a bearing/seal kit. Now should this be correct it means Sears are not being quite ‘upfront’ when they say the bearings and seal are not available separately. However I cannot verify this. What I do know is that when the bearings on my Frigidaire built Kenmore failed I source the replacement bearings and seals locally, and I live in rural Newfoundland, for C$33.66 including all taxes a far cry from what Sears wanted for a new back end.
Now as to the size of the bearings, the drum from my Frigidaire is 12 inches deep, front to back. The load put on the inner bearing, the fulcrum, by the out of balance, cantilever load, rotating at about 1,000 rev/min, such as is generated in this type of washer, is enormous. Two, possibly three balls, at any given instance, take the primary resistance to this. The balls only make point contact with the inner and outer races. To my mind it is no wonder they fail early and regularly. I know there are accepted formulae for estimating the anticipated life of bearings but practical experience also has to be taken into account, and at the moment, this appears to be sadly lacking. We can discuss the deformation of the balls and races under overload conditions if you so wish.
Your point about the ‘sloppy’ fit of the shaft in the inner races of the bearings is well taken. In the two machines I have dismantled I noticed the same thing; I would have expected a minor ‘interference’ fit. I have also seen a few posts where similar 'play' has been observed.

Post# 446934 , Reply# 44   7/4/2010 at 13:19 (3,771 days old) by surgilator_68 (Maryland)        

surgilator_68's profile picture
While this topic does provide many different points of views I certainly can not agree with bleach causing damage. I do agree that bleach CAN cause damage when used improperly for soaking, not rinsed from the machine or in too strong of a concentration.

However the examination of one or two machines is not a true scientific method for making a determination of cause and effect. That would be like saying everyone with a runny nose has a cold because you were talking to one or two people with a runny nose who told you they had a cold. You then go home and look online to find out that cold symptoms include a runny nose, so now everyone with a runny nose has a cold. That is totally ludicrous.

While you may have seen one or two machines exhibit corrosion on a part does not completely negate the hundreds and even thousands of machines that have been rebuilt, restored and repaired by various collectors and professional appliance repair technicians. Nor does it negate the decades of testing by the various manufacturers.

The problem with picking a machine from a scrap pile, from the for sale list or off the side of the road that has bad bearings or a broken spider or a bad mounting hub, etc is that you do not personally know the history of that machine. You do not know how much of what detergent was used, what water temps were used, etc. You can surmise what has caused the symptom or failure only after you have had experience dealing with those issues first hand and knowing where the machine came from and the habits of the previous owner. No, I will not take your word for how your machine was used. You obviously have an agenda and therefore I believe, like most who have an agenda, will omit important facts. That is human nature.

As I said in an earlier post, I have seen far more machines present with aluminum failures that have never seen one drop of bleach. However those machines were also used with the incorrect amount of detergent along with improper water temp. I can only make this statement KNOWING 100% how these machines were used by having a continued relationship with my customer and knowing their habits. After seeing the same thing over and over again, a pattern develops and then one can make the assumption that a particular failure is the result of X. Does that mean that ALL failures of this sort can be attributed to X, no it does not. But when one observes a high rate of failure or a machine exhibits a common problem, history and knowledge will tell you that it is most likely due to X. Is it scientific, no. But I have the experience and knowledge of seeing this problem on various machines of differing age on a regular basis. Therefor I can say beyond a reasonable doubt that is is not caused by B, rather it is caused by X.

Bearings do not simply fail on their own accord. There must be a contributing factor. Not enough lubrication, contamination from water or dirt. I have NEVER seen a bearing fail on it’s own accord. Every single time I have seen a ball bearing fail in a front loader it is due to water entry caused by seal failure. Every single one was used on cold water, was crusted in mineral and mold build up. Not once have I seen one fail for no apparent reason. The same holds true from any top loading machine. Water entry or lack of lubrication.

I do not believe that any manufacturer would put an undersized bearing in their machine. This is not the invention of the wheel. Bearings have been around for a long time in various forms and manufacturers have been testing various methods and products for decades.

You seem to enjoy stirring the pot for your own agenda and have no real, first hand long term experience in the matter. Until you get that, I suggest you stop spewing forth your regurgitated, half baked thoughts and ideas on the matter. It is people like you who really have no knowledge on the subject that give the rest of us and the products a bad name.

Post# 446975 , Reply# 45   7/4/2010 at 16:23 (3,771 days old) by limey ()        
Good News

To rohic
Glad you have all positive stories.
If it works for you, I say keep it going that way; never mind what I or anyone else says.
Good Luck

Post# 446979 , Reply# 46   7/4/2010 at 16:40 (3,771 days old) by limey ()        
New Washer Not Fitting Old Dryer

To Passatdoc,
I do not know if what you are describing is deliberate ploy by the manufacturers to sell more machines or not, but it certainly seems to be a possibility.
A possible way round it is if:-
1 There is sufficient room in the ‘laundry closet’ or whatever you call the ‘laundry space’.
2 It is not in a space where cosmetics are not important.
3 The Chief Laundress is in agreement.

You could build a shelf/bench to support the dryer; it would of course raise the dryer two or three inches. The dryer does not need such a rigid support as the washer and the increase in width or depth would not be significant provided that there was room.

Fortunately when we built our retirement home we left enough room in the ‘laundry closets’ to be able us to ‘get round’ the appliances for ease of access to faucets, etc. We did not leave sufficient room for a ’side by side’ arrangement.

Post# 446985 , Reply# 47   7/4/2010 at 17:10 (3,771 days old) by ronhic (Canberra, Australia)        

ronhic's profile picture
The whole purpose of this forum is to share....and to LEARN..

The reason I posted my comment above was as an example of something that is proven to work - here and in Europe.

Nobody is saying you have to do any or all of the suggestions, but it would be a foolish person who comes on here with an issue and then proceeds to be dismissive, argumentative and more than a little trite without at least accepting that there is a great deal of knowledge and general good will being put forward trying to solve, what is afterall, your problem.

Post# 446990 , Reply# 48   7/4/2010 at 17:37 (3,771 days old) by limey ()        
Bearing And Seal Failure

To combo 52
‘98% of the time the seal is the cause of the bearing failure’. Interesting, where does this come from? Who or what organised and/or verified this figure? How was the actual cause of failure determined (this I would really like to know when both are damaged)? In my opinion for this statement to have any credence whatever these details need to be addressed and satisfactory answers provided.
On to the bearings, those fitted to cars may be the same ‘size’ but in my experience they are, at least nowadays, roller bearings, either taper or straight depending on location. The major difference in this arrangement is that the roller can accommodate a much higher load as the area of race in contact with the roller is a ‘line’ but with a ball it is a ‘point’. The second point is that for taper roller bearings they are, up to a certain point ‘adjustable’ in that the clearance between the rollers and the races can be adjusted, this leads to less ‘play’ in the bearing and reduces the ‘spalling effect’ leading to longer bearing life. The fulcrum ball race removed from my machine has eight balls I believe that you will find that the similarly sized roller bearing for cars have a few more rollers.
With respect to the size of the shaft fitted into the bearings I would draw your attention to my first post on this thread and the photograph of the spider. There are a few ‘rust’ marks on it in way of the bearing race’s landing areas but not, in my opinion sufficient to warrant replacing it for that reason. Would you agree? On the second machine, as I have previously indicated, there was no sign of corrosion of the shaft or the bearings but they were still not ‘tight’ to remove. Perhaps this is done for ease of manufacture but I do not know.
Should it not be use or overloading what do you suggest was the reason for the bearing failure on the second machine I took apart as there was no evidence of water ingress into the bearing housing area?

Post# 447011 , Reply# 49   7/4/2010 at 18:53 (3,771 days old) by cfz2882 (Belle Fourche,SD)        
ball bearings on car wheels

actually a lot of cars have gone back to ball bearings,while
some always have used ball bearings-one small car (2300 LB,
rear wheel drive)that i fixed just had a standard 6306 bearing
on each side and they last good.i say a 6306 and 6307 are more
than up to the job on a frigilux size front load(anyone know
what size bearings are used on other front loads-westinghouse,
miele,etc.)"max"type ball bearings with a higer ball count are
avalible for use in winches,vibrators and other high-load apps.
i suppose it's possible electrolux just used crap bearings in
their washers?

Post# 447026 , Reply# 50   7/4/2010 at 19:32 (3,771 days old) by limey ()        

To surgilator.
As I said to combo52 we both live in free countries and are fortunate enough to be able to express our views even though they, quite obviously, differ.
I am pleased that at least you agree that bleach could cause a problem if it was present in sufficient concentration. Is this correct? If affirmative we then have to look at how that could occur without improper use, is this correct? If affirmative please refer to the penultimate paragraph in my first post, can you understand it? Should you comprehend my theory, what is wrong with it? Should you not be able to understand it please tell me and I will endeavour to explain further.

This may surprise you but I totally agree with your second paragraph. All I have at the moment is very limited personal experience of washing machines, other of course, than using them, quite a bit of research on ‘the web’ and a theory. What I am asking you for is an objective criticism, positive or negative. I do however ask that the criticism be based on undisputable, verifiable facts.

I have to confess that I do not fully understand your third paragraph. How can what I have experienced, and read about, possibly influence what you list? I do not know. I do have to say though that there are hundreds, perhaps even thousands of posting on the web relating to corroded/failed spiders and bearing/seal failures. Are they all true, perhaps not, but I believe, and it is only my opinion, that the vast majority are true. Should you allow that something is causing those spiders to corrode and something is causing the bearings to fail early then we have to ask ourselves what? Here is a point to ponder. All manufacturers’ claim that their machines get the laundry cleaner, than whom, does not really matter to this thought, but would not one way to improve the performance of their machine be to remove more water and hence soil at the end of every phase of the cycle? This would mean that there would be less to contaminate, the next phase. This could easily be accomplished by ‘spinning’ to the maximum speed, now set for the final spin, at the end of each phase. Why do they not do it? Could it be that they do not want to shorten the life of the bearings even more? I do not know, just another theory.

The first part of your fourth paragraph again I cannot see what the point is. Yes I agree that on being presented with a corroded spider of unknown service(s) it would difficult to say very much other than it is corroded. However a diligent researcher would soon discover what could cause the corrosion whereupon said researcher may be able to formulate a possible plausible scenario.

For the second part of your fourth paragraph I do not believe I have said, on this thread, how our machine was used. So there is nothing to believe or disbelieve other than the machine was about 6 years old when it started to give off ‘the smell’ and was approximately 7.5 years old when the bearings failed. Quite bluntly I do not care if you believe that or not, it makes no difference to my theory.

From your fifth paragraph I can see how excess detergent particularly of the powdered form could contribute to corrosion. Proctor and Gamble even state on their own MSDS for one of the powder ‘Tides’ that the pH is 11.0, that is one thousand times more alkaline than the safe level of 8.0 for aluminium. Add to that incomplete dissolving in cool/cold water and, in my opinion, you have a recipe for disaster.

As for bearings failing of their own accord, what about a bearing with a manufacturing defect, as with anything the odd one gets through, or what about one noted to have brinelling damage prior to attempted installation? That damage would not have been there on completion of manufacturing. I have to disagree with you, ball and roller bearings do wear out even when properly installed, not overloaded, properly lubricated, no foreign bodies or liquids allowed to enter and otherwise correctly maintained, they do just wear out. Even automobile manufacturers normally give a service period after which renewal is recommended. What do you think happened to the bearings in the second machine I dismantled?

With respect to your sixth paragraph, you will have your opinion and I will have mine. As to whether it was done deliberately not is another matter. Even the best designers and engineers make mistakes, the really good ones acknowledge them, correct them, and then move on.

Post# 447030 , Reply# 51   7/4/2010 at 19:48 (3,771 days old) by limey ()        

To rohic
Thank you for your comment. Believe me I am learning.
Please accept my apologies for any insult you may perceive I have given you, I can only say it was not my intention.
Should I have been living in Australia I would, no doubt, have been happy to receive and heed your advice. Heck I did not want these problems.

When I first pulled my machine apart I was not mad to find failed bearings, 7.5 years is not bad, the score on the brass liner from the failed seal, was my fault for not getting off my rear end quick enough. What ‘got me going’ was the policy on spares and then the more I found out about it the more irate I became.

Post# 447032 , Reply# 52   7/4/2010 at 19:54 (3,771 days old) by ronhic (Canberra, Australia)        

ronhic's profile picture
....just remember, the comments are equally as valid about 'smells' regardless of where you live or what brand of machine you have...

Post# 447035 , Reply# 53   7/4/2010 at 20:02 (3,771 days old) by limey ()        

To cfz2882
Thank you for the update I had not realised that.
Something is causing these bearings to fail and it is definitely not all seal failures, reference the second machine I dismantled.
The bearings removed from both the subject machines had ‘China’ in raised letters on the shields, just maybe that says enough.
Perhaps a ‘max’ bearing might have been a better choice to accept the out of balance vibrations.
One thing it will be interesting to see how long the new bearings in my machine last.
Thank you again.

Post# 447404 , Reply# 54   7/6/2010 at 13:31 (3,769 days old) by Jetcone (Schenectady-Home of Calrods,Monitor Tops,Toroid Transformers)        
Most of the corrosion

jetcone's profile picture
I see on that spider in the first instance, most of the corrsion is around the hub area. That would be the highest area of stress. Aluminum like that has small microsized cracks or folds to it. As the spider turns under stress the "corrosive factor" whatever it is can enter the aluminum under the flexations it goes through. Once in there , in the cracks, it will not dry out between loads but being between two aluminum surfaces now could set up a galvanic action locally like a small capacitor.

That I think is why you see the corrision around the hub and not the arms, the stress on the arms maybe low enough that the flex isn't great enough to let the "corrosive factor" in.
That only explains locale not reason for corrosion.

If it was just drops of bleach reaching the spider and drying then the corrosion pattern would be random ALL OVER the aluminum on the spider. Its not.

As to your shaft and its rusting that is water entry pure and simple , water being the only factor needed there. I have not seen the physical layout of this machine nor how the seals actually fit or work but with my experience I would wager one of two things happend 1) the seals were not fit carefully at the factory, or 2) the seals failed due to undue flexing of the shaft or gunk build up against the rubber components. Either way the seals admitted water to shaft and bearings.
Bearings if fit properly and sealed properly have a long life, ie: my 1957 Duomatics are original.

Post# 447448 , Reply# 55   7/6/2010 at 16:52 (3,769 days old) by limey ()        
Bearing And Seal Failures

To Jetcone
Thank you very much for your input.
I had wondered when/if anyone would raise the two points you brought forward in you first paragraph.

‘Stress corrosion’ is. Or was until I retired, I little understood phenomenon. I was very much more involved with steel in that regard, than aluminium. However I understand/understood that the basic principles were the same. An imperfection in the surface, be it mechanically or chemically produced, concentrated the stresses at the notch, (the same as in an Izod impact test). In this area the stresses appear to be further increased in the presence of a corrosive environment. I fully agree with you, the corrosive environment likely will have accelerated the final catastrophic failure of the spiders. I doubt that any more than a very small percentage of spider failures are the result of the spider ‘just falling apart.

On the subject of an internal galvanic cell contributing to the corrosion I would again fully agree with you. The only thing is I do not believe that this corrosion is anywhere near a major contributor to the overall rate of wastage.
I fully expect that you and I will be in for some counter views in this respect, should the previous postings be a fair sample.

I have to agree/disagree with your reasoning in the third paragraph. Should the spattering of drying bleach be random then the corrosion will be random. I agree with you. However the distribution is not random. When the spider is rotating at 1,000 rev/min (I do not know the exact final spin speed of my unit) the linear speed at the periphery of my 22-inch diameter drum is almost 65.5 miles/hour, at the outer edges of the recesses close to the centre of the hub (3.563 inches diameter) is approximately 10.6 miles/hour and at the outer edges of the brass sleeve (1.56 inches diameter and the smallest diameter exposed to the ‘water’ inside the drum) approximately 6.01 miles per hour. I believe these later two are insufficient, given that the outer edges of the recesses undoubted ability to increase the centripetal force exerted by the surface tension of the ‘water’ to stop the ‘water’ in these areas from being thrown out by the centrifugal force thus leaving them towards the centre to evaporate and hence, should the pH rise sufficiently, to cause corrosion.

I partially also agree with your last paragraph. The corrosion on my spider is ‘rust’ no argument, I also agree it was caused by water; and that the ‘water’ entered via the seal is I believe undisputable. The point on which would appear to disagree is why it ‘got by’ the seal. Incorrect initial fitting of the seal, possible but I feel unlikely; it had been there 7.5 years. Should it have been fitted incorrectly I would have expected it to fail sooner. I also have to acknowledge that your second point, shaft flexing of ‘gunk build up’ are possible. I would also add one point you have omitted, that is that the bearings failed allowing the shaft to rotate out of line with the centre of the bearing thus destroying them. One further point with regard to excessive shaft flexing, what caused the excessive shaft flexing? Perhaps an out of balance load?

I agree with you these bearings should last a lot longer if they are correctly sized, of suitable load bearing capacity for all conditions likely to be experienced in service, kept in a ‘clean’ environment and correctly lubricated.

Is your Duomatic a FL or TL I am not familiar with it.

Again thank you for your input and I would appreciate your comments on the above.

Post# 449983 , Reply# 56   7/17/2010 at 11:31 (3,758 days old) by limey ()        
Spider Corrosion

The following message has been sent to ‘combo52’ on thread number 29564 ‘Uh-Oh The Dreaded Bearing Roar Has Commenced’. I reproduce it on this thread as I believe it is also relevant here.

"Thank you for your input.
I found an owners manual for a Bosch Axxis on the web. At the beginning of that manual it stated that the use of chlorine bleach could result in the production of poisonous gas, I presume they mean chlorine. A nephew of mine with a Masters degree in chemistry tells me that is what is given off when sodium hypochlorite (bleach) reacts with aluminium. Further into the manual is what 'sudsman' has quoted verbatim. Makes sense to me.
Now should what you say about the latest Bosch machines having a bleach dispenser be true, and I have no reason to disbelieve you, it begs the questions, what have Bosch done to remove the potential for poisonous gas production, and what components have they altered so that they are no longer corroded by chlorine bleach?
I have sent an email to Bosch asking what components are corroded by chlorine bleach as per their manual, and have asked them what material is used for the spider in their machines? Should I receive a response I will post it.

Post# 450473 , Reply# 57   7/19/2010 at 10:54 (3,756 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        

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Bosch is talking about using bleach and heating the water to 200F. The LCB is not used in sufficient concentration to cause corrosion of the aluminum spider let alone causing it to put off poison gases. Talk about reading something wrong way.

Post# 450535 , Reply# 58   7/19/2010 at 16:36 (3,756 days old) by Limey ()        
Bosch Washer Manuals

To combo52
I have downloaded manuals for Bosch washers WLF 2090 and WLF 2050 I would suggest that you do the same, or at least peruse them ‘on the web’.
For the WLF 2090 machine the manual contains the following:-
On page 5 under the Heading ‘IMPORTANT SAFETY INSTRUCTIONS’ (which is on page 4), “14. Do not use bleach. Hazardous fumes can form.” There is nothing else under item 14.
On page 13 under the Heading ‘Laundry Detergent and Additives’, as a stand alone statement ‘[i] DO NOT use chlorine bleach in this washing machine.’
On page 17 under the heading ‘Bleaching’ the single statement ‘WARNING DO NOT use chlorine bleach in this washing machine.’
Also on page 17 under the heading ‘Decolorizing’ the single statement ‘CAUTION Decolorants may contain sulphur or chlorine. These substances can cause parts of the washing machine to corrode. Do not decolorize items in the washing machine.’

Now you can read whatever wish into those statements. To me they are perfectly clear except for the fact that they do not specify what components could be corroded. As I have stated in post 449983 I have posed this question to Bosch. Should I receive a response I will post it no matter what it says!

I do have one apology to make. In post 449983 I used the term ‘poisonous gas’ the manuals actually use the term ‘hazardous fumes’. I therefore apologise for any confusion, misunderstanding or inconvenience this may of caused.

The manual for the WLF 2050 contains the same statements except in slightly different locations.

Post# 450554 , Reply# 59   7/19/2010 at 19:00 (3,756 days old) by Limey ()        
Temperature In Bosch Washers

To combo52
I omitted this in the post above.
In the manuals for the two named machines the maximum temperature setting available is 'Power Temp. Boost' at 160F.
Neither manual makes any mention of a sanitizing cycle or anything similar.

Post# 450808 , Reply# 60   7/20/2010 at 23:04 (3,755 days old) by amyswasher ()        
Stinky washer!!

The only thing that has caused my FL to stink was FOCA detergent. Don't know why, but I had to do a tub clean cycle after I rewashed the clothes with Tide. I still cannot figure out that smell. I run at least 13 loads a week in my LG, but I always leave the door wide open and take out the dispenser drawer when I'm not using it for a few days. I am counting on this washer lasting for five years, after that it will be a bonus.

Post# 450851 , Reply# 61   7/21/2010 at 03:57 (3,754 days old) by Limey ()        
FOCA Laundry Aid

To Amyswasher
Thank you for your input. I am not familiar with the FOCA detergent but reading other posts it seems as though it is ‘high sudsing’ and likely to contain phosphates. When did this incident take place?
Similarly I am not familiar with the design of the LG’s spider so I do not know if it has recesses up near the hub, should it have, then it is possible that considerable quantities of ‘suds’ collected in that area and then went foul. How long after using the FOCA did you notice the smell?
I could not find a MSDS for FOCA on the web so have no idea what its ingredients are or what its pH is.
Thank you once again and I look forward to your response.

Post# 450868 , Reply# 62   7/21/2010 at 07:59 (3,754 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        

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I went by my local Lowes store yesterday and checked out the new Bosch washers. Both the full sized 4500 and 3300 models have dispensers for LCB only. The 24" compact model was still the old style and did not have the dispenser. Bosch seems to be coming around to what every else already knows that LCB will actually extend the life of FL washers. Machines that have a high temp wash [ over 150F] should not have LCB in the heated wash water that will give off unpleasant fumes and may damage electrical control parts of the machine. It has nothing to do with the spider corroding. Unless some new relevant information is found on this issue I am signing off on this topic.

Post# 450882 , Reply# 63   7/21/2010 at 09:23 (3,754 days old) by limey ()        
Bosch Washers and LCB

It is interesting to note that combo52 has dropped the temperature for the production of hazardous fumes from 200F to over 150F. A pity he did not enlighten us as to why!
I have been unable to find any manuals, or indeed any relevant details for the two machines combo52 has named, even on the Bosch home page, so I am unable to comment on the apparent ‘permission’ of Bosch to use LCB in their ‘latest’ machines. Can anyone else help out there?
I did note that from the Bosch homepage, that what appear to be some of the latest models, have an ‘extra sanitary wash cycle’ which is claimed to take the water to 170F. However the limited technical specifications for the same models state that there is no tub sanitizer.

Post# 450900 , Reply# 64   7/21/2010 at 11:39 (3,754 days old) by foraloysius (Leeuwarden, Friesland, the Netherlands)        
Hard to overlook

foraloysius's profile picture
The Full size washers have a tab on their page that says "Additional documents". You will find the manual there. I downloaded the manual of the WFVC844PUC, the bleach compartment is discussed on page 21.

Post# 450908 , Reply# 65   7/21/2010 at 12:42 (3,754 days old) by amyswasher ()        

It was right after I took the clothes out of the washer. Where I live lots of people use FOCA (with my accent it sound like I'm saying something else), because of hard water. It didn't make very many suds in the FL. It couldn't be very good for the washer, but I did a tub clean with 2 Finish tabs and all was good. It works well in TL, but will never go in my FL again. There are other Mexican Detergents at the store, but you have to lay them out in the sun to dry, no tumble dryer whatsoever.

Post# 450911 , Reply# 66   7/21/2010 at 12:56 (3,754 days old) by amyswasher ()        
I forgot!

If your water is not very hard, it's a pain to use FOCA. It takes several rinses in a TL. Had a family member who went to the store one day and thought FOCA is cheap. She was ticked when she couldn't get suds out of the clothes after two rinses. It wasn't such a deal after that.

Post# 450938 , Reply# 67   7/21/2010 at 14:52 (3,754 days old) by limey ()        
Bosch Washers And LCB

To foraloysius
Thank you I missed that one. I have now downloaded the manual for the Vison 800 Series.
This manual contains the following: -
On page 2
Under the heading ‘3-Part Detergent Jet Dispenser’ the statement ‘A 3-part dispenser automatically distributes detergent, bleach and softener at exactly the right times.’
Under the heading ‘XxtraSanitary Cycle’ the statement ‘With this innovative cycle, a thermostat-controlled intelligent system heats up the water to 170F. The clothes are thoroughly cleaned and sanitized while killing 99.99% of the most common household bacteria.’
Under the heading ‘Internal Water Heater’ the statement ‘An internal heating element heats the water to up to 180F while a digital temperature sensor continually monitors the water temperature. Bosch Vision washers deliver the most efficient and accurate water heating method for each selected fabric type.’
On page 21
Under the heading ‘[3] Bleach Compartment’ there are the instructions for filling the compartment. A caution against overfilling. An instruction not to pour the bleach directly onto the laundry. A note that the bleach will be automatically dispensed at the correct time. A note that concentrated or thick bleach and powder bleach must be dilute prior to being poured into the dispenser. A note that spilled bleach may discolor the washer surfaces.
Under the heading ‘Decolorizing’ a ‘Notice’ stating ‘Dyes may contain sulphur or chlorine. These substances may cause part of the washing machine to corrode. Do not dye items of laundry in the washing machine.’
On page 28
Under the heading ‘Cleaning tips’ is the recommendation that 0.5 cup of household bleach be run through the machine once every three months, with no laundry in place on the ‘Regular/Cotton Hot cycle’
There is nothing about a drum sanitizing cycle or anything similar.

From this it could reasonably be deduced that Bosch either no longer have components in this washer that give off ‘hazardous fumes’ when chlorine bleach comes in contact with them or that the fumes were not hazardous to humans in the first place only to components in the machine which are no longer fitted. The argument about high temperature causing the fumes to be given off would appear to be irrelevant. The possible temperatures in this machine are, if anything, capable of reaching even higher levels than those in the previously discussed two machines.

The only thing left is to try and get Bosch to tell us what is different now, and hopefully what the spider is now made of! Anyone any ideas?

Post# 451099 , Reply# 68   7/22/2010 at 09:52 (3,753 days old) by Iheartmaytag (Wichita, Kansas)        
Don't know about Bosch

iheartmaytag's profile picture
But my May-Pool FL'r doesn't dispense bleach in the wash where the HOT water is, it dispenses in the first rinse which is tap cold. Thus it doesn't interfear with enzyme detergents and is not exposed to the HOT water and heater where fumes would be more prevelant.

I am being careful with bleach in my new machine, because I gave more for it than I did my first car and I want it to last. I also bought an extended warranty.

Post# 451148 , Reply# 69   7/22/2010 at 15:38 (3,753 days old) by Limey ()        
Corrosion & Bleach

Thank you for the input it is duly noted.
Bleach is corrosive at lower (cold tap) temperatures so once introduced into the machine the potential for corrosion of aluminium components exists, until such time as all traces of it, or any other additive which has the capability to corrode aluminium for that matter, have been removed. I believe owners of these machines should be so advised.
Good luck with your machine and hopefully you will not be one of the unfortunate minority who suffer problems.
Thank you again

Post# 451154 , Reply# 70   7/22/2010 at 16:18 (3,753 days old) by sudsman ()        

the real chances of bleach doing damage is very low. Whe used as directed. If misused then that is a totally different story. As said before in the plant I use bleach that is 10% 15 % and 20@ and have NEVER EVER had a machine fail due to that. I have had one home machine that lasted more than 5 years under the extreme conditions we put it thu and is still going strong in a employees home. Also have 1 150 that is almost 20 years old now and it to has not a single problem due to bleach.. We also bleach @ 150 and fumes have NEVER been a problem either. Most of the time on the home machines the dry bleach 20% (almost 4x as strong as home bleach) is added right with the detergent. and NEVER a problem ever! So dont be too concerned about it, The chances of a electric shock and turning you in to Lady Godiva are greater.

Post# 451249 , Reply# 71   7/23/2010 at 07:50 (3,752 days old) by Iheartmaytag (Wichita, Kansas)        

iheartmaytag's profile picture
I am curious, What brand is the home machine you are using?

Post# 451254 , Reply# 72   7/23/2010 at 08:52 (3,752 days old) by limey ()        
Decomposition of Sodium Hypochlorite (Bleach)

To sudsman and Iheartmaytag.
On thinking about your posts I started to wonder, ‘Over what temperature range is bleach effective?’
The information I have so far been able to glean is that it starts to slowly decompose when heated above 104F (40C) and the rate of this decomposition rises with increasing temperature and increasing concentration. Its boiling point is stated in several MSDS’s as 110C (we are not going to get that in normal ‘washing machines’).
According to the MSDS’s that I perused the pH value on one was stated to be ‘neutral’ (I take this to be 7.0, the neutral point on the pH scale) with a 1% solution, other MSDS’s gave varying values up to 14.0 (totally alkaline) with varying concentrations up to a 15% solution (pH 14.0).
Anyone know where there is more information on the decomposition of sodium chloride at temperatures above 104F?

Post# 451255 , Reply# 73   7/23/2010 at 09:09 (3,752 days old) by sudsman ()        
Home machines

We have had just about every brand there is at one time or another. At this time we have a Frigidaire Gallery. The last one was a Gallery also, And it pulled more than 5 very hard years. And is still working in a employees home. We had at the same time 2 LG also. over the years just about every brand made however. Keep in mind I do not expect them to last over a year but all have made that and more. they pull on avg 10 loads a day 7 days a week for a avg of 300 loads per mo. over 3600 loads a year. Now that is pushing a washer. Oh yes there are minor things. Drain pumps clog up due to mop strings its expected and water valves sometimes fail also expected but I have a VERY good maintaince man that takes care of them and I have had very little down time with any of the home machines except the damn LGs they were awful but did make 2 full years also.

This post was last edited 07/23/2010 at 10:16
Post# 451274 , Reply# 74   7/23/2010 at 10:40 (3,752 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        

combo52's profile picture
More evidence that LCB actually extends the life of the washers, I don't know where these stupid rummers about properly using LCB in washers is going to cause great harm to the machine. P S try to get your money back on that extended warranty unless you have money to burn they aren't worth it. The average machine that starts out with an extended warranty is thrown away years earlier than machines that don't have these rip off plans.

Post# 451277 , Reply# 75   7/23/2010 at 11:22 (3,752 days old) by Iheartmaytag (Wichita, Kansas)        
I bought the extended warranty

iheartmaytag's profile picture
More for the electronics than the mechanics.

I have a Maytag Dishwasher that the control board was replaced twice (2x) in 18 months.
I was a scared about having to replace a $400 control board on the washer so I opted for the EW.

Post# 451287 , Reply# 76   7/23/2010 at 12:10 (3,752 days old) by sudsman ()        
100% agree

the extended warranty are not worth the money most of the time. if you can get it back do so. If your going to have problems it will happen during the regular warranty. More attenention should be paid to thoses who really know like the service people than ones with questionable reasons, Most all agree LCB when used as directed WILL NOT HARM A WASHER!

Post# 451316 , Reply# 77   7/23/2010 at 14:03 (3,752 days old) by limey ()        
Spider Corrosion

To sudsman
Should it not be LCB then what is causing the corrosion of the aluminium spiders? Please do not forget that I believe that any laundry aid with the potential to reach a pH above about 8.0 could cause corrosion of the spiders. Please let me have your thoughts and ideas, and of course any reference to a reliable source which substantiates those ideas.
Thank you.

Post# 451324 , Reply# 78   7/23/2010 at 14:44 (3,752 days old) by sudsman ()        
I believe that any laundry aid with the potential to reach a

Just beacuse you believe it does not make it true. I find it quite strange that there are over 1300 memebers on this site and not a single one has had the same problem.If anyone would have the problem I would have it first. And I have not had any such problems ever. Perhaps the real cause is yourself, How is anyone to know you did not use excess amounts of bleach or other products to cause it to happen.. NO mfg is going to make a laundry product that when used as directed will harm a washer. I have seen NO real proof that the spider was in that bad of shape anyway. More like normal use. Things do show wear as they are used. So you can keep sounding the siren and I will keep giving the all clear!

This post was last edited 07/23/2010 at 16:14
Post# 451489 , Reply# 79   7/24/2010 at 07:49 (3,751 days old) by limey ()        
Spider Corrosion

To sudsman
It seems obvious to me that you have not read my posts on this thread, or if you have you have, you comprehend little of what I am saying.

From my first post I have stated that for the corrosion to occur the pH of the ‘water’ remaining after the last spin will have to rise to above the level where corrosion will take place. I believe that this will occur as the water evaporates and the concentration of contaminants increases. Is there a flaw in this theory? If so, what?

In my opinion the situation you are working in is one where the machines will likely rarely, if ever, ‘dry out’ to such an extent that corrosion will occur. Should corrosion ever occur it would be that infrequent that it would not be a factor in the longevity of the machine. I have stated much the same as this in the above posts 445740 and 446136 on 30th June and 1st July respectively.

With respect to the comments in your last post above.
I agree with you just because I believe something does not mean it is true, similarly your beliefs are not necessarily true either. We have our opinions and yes they differ.
I may be the only member of this site whose has had this happen to them, and remember my spider did not suffer catastrophic failure. As I have stated above I do not believe that with the way you say ‘your’ machines are used that you would be anywhere near the first to suffer spider corrosion.
We may well have unintentionally ‘misused ‘ our machine. When we first purchased it we used powdered detergent, this was permitted as per the owners manual, which mentioned nothing about HE detergents, just recommended ‘low sudsing’ which were not generally available at that time. Yes we did use bleach, again ‘allowed’ as per the owners manual. Finally yes we did us Oxi products no mention of them in the owners manual.
I should add that six plus years later when we purchased a second similar machine the owners manual still contains the same information although in a slightly different format.
You are correct my spider was not corroded sufficiently to warrant, in my opinion, renewal for that reason. It was renewed because the brass sleeve on which the seal lips rub was abraded, I believe by the spring seal rubbing on it.
I may be the only one on this site who has experienced spider corrosion. I have no positive way of determining that although I will admit there are very few references to it. I am far from alone in this respect however. Just ‘Google’ “Spider Corrosion In Front Load Washers’, or something similar, and see what results you get. Should you wish to see what corrosion could do to the spiders please visit ‘’.
With respect to your statement that no manufacturer will make a laundry product that when used as directed will harm washer. This remains, as far as I am concerned, to be proven.

I note that you have started another thread to put your point of view. At the moment I see no point in responding directly to it particularly as your continue to rant on without reference to any readily available, reliable point of reference or to counter any of y points with a rationally thought out, and comprehensible rebuttal.
Good Day

Post# 451496 , Reply# 80   7/24/2010 at 09:23 (3,751 days old) by sudsman ()        
We may well have unintentionally ‘misused ‘ our machine

And NOW the REAL truth is KNOWN to ALL ! And you are the one that strated the rant and that is just and all it so plainly is.
And as far as the thread I created about the use of bleach, the truth of bleach use has been colored so greatly on this thread it is time it is bleached pure white again.. Pass the Clorox please! Put that on your spider and give it a spin!

This post was last edited 07/24/2010 at 10:23
Post# 451707 , Reply# 81   7/25/2010 at 00:03 (3,751 days old) by surgilator_68 (Maryland)        

surgilator_68's profile picture
And if you were to actually ask the people who had suffered the spider failure how the machine was used I can almost 100% guarantee you that it was with cold water, not enough detergent and/or the wrong detergent and little to no bleach. But I highly doubt you would get an honest answer.

As I said earlier there are machine protectants in the detergent. If you don't use the proper detergent in the proper amount for soil level and water hardness then the machine will not be protected. This IS a fact, IS documented and has been the RULE for decades. It really is not difficult to understand. People are just too stubborn and too cheap to follow directions. The manufacturer is not going to tell you to do something that is going to cause damage to their product.

I really don't think drying out has anything to do with the situation. If there is mineral build up around any part of the machine that touches the seal it will abrade the seal. Mineral build up also acts as a wick.

Post# 451714 , Reply# 82   7/25/2010 at 01:02 (3,751 days old) by mark_wpduet (Lexington KY)        

mark_wpduet's profile picture
I have always used LCB in my Duet. The dispenser holds a very small amount, once diluted in the 1st rinse it's not very strong. Then adding two more rinses it's almost all/if not all gone. I think it's too little concentration to do any type of damage. If you were to put a cup of bleach in each time, the yeah.

Post# 451850 , Reply# 83   7/25/2010 at 17:08 (3,750 days old) by limey ()        

To Jetcone, surgilator and mark_wpduet
First Jetcone
Since my response to you on 6 July, post number 447448, I have found, and read, a paper by one Gaute Svenningsen on the corrosion of aluminium. I found it very interesting in that it is the first time I have found any reference to the ‘mechanics’ of what is commonly called ‘pitting corrosion’ in aluminium. Whilst the author calls it ‘micro galvanic corrosion’ and, having read his paper I have to agree with him; it should not be confused with the more normally accepted ‘galvanic corrosion’ where two dissimilar materials, such as steel and aluminium are immersed in an electrolyte, such as seawater and one, in this case the aluminium, corrodes. Therefore Jetcone it would appear that you are correct in calling it galvanic corrosion, but I would not call it ‘like a capacitor’. It is however the major contributor in the item we have under discussion and therefore I was incorrect in my assessment. My apologies. Should you, or anyone else for that matter, be interested in reading the paper, I downloaded it from the internet, just ‘Google’ “Gaute Svenningsen Corrosion in Aluminium”, I will forward you a copy, if so requested.

Next surgilator
Thank you for your input. I agree with you, you are unlikely to receive a fully truthful answer should the owner/operator suspect that they perhaps have done ‘something’ ‘wrong’. That is just human nature. I can only say I know how ours was used and I now realise, since after I performed the bearing renewal and started investigating, that we had likely been misusing it although we had followed the instructions in the owners manual. I understand that there is a court case was brought against Sears in Madison County, Illinois, earlier this year because of much the same thing, but in this case TL machines. Owners were not happy with failures, Sears say you did not maintain machines correctly, owner says, where were those instructions? I do not know if the case is still ongoing or has been settled.
Just for the record so that no one can claim I am holding back information our oldest machine was purchased in May 2001 in California and used there for eight months. At that time we live in an apartment and had no control over the ‘hot’ water temperature. The machine was regularly used with a ‘hot’ wash; using powdered detergent (not HE it was not readily available), bleach, (which in our machines is dispensed at the same time as the detergent). I was often called upon to wear white boilersuits (coveralls) as part of my employment. Hence the frequent use. Sometimes we also used the ‘powdered ‘Oxi’ products but not at the same time as the bleach. In February of 2002 we moved to the greater Montreal area where the water heater was oil fired and we regularly ‘turned up’ the thermostat when we wanted a ‘very hot’ wash, other wise the usage pattern was much the same. It was during this time that my wife first noticed ‘the smell’ only ‘very slight’ we did nothing about it at that time. In May 2005 we sold the house in ‘Montreal’ and the washer was placed in storage, with our other household goods, until we moved into our retirement home in rural Newfoundland, October 2005. Here the water heaters are electric and are not set very high (about 130F). I can see I am going to have to make access to the thermostats easier and ‘turn them up’ when a ‘hot wash’ is required. The rest is recorded elsewhere on this thread.
I do not know of any protectants in the detergents, I cannot recollect seeing anything mentioned in any of the MSDS’s that I have perused. Perhaps they do not have to be listed I do not know, do you?
I agree that the correct dosage of all laundry aids is important, to little and the job won’t get done, to much and you are wasting the ‘aid’, polluting the environment and quite literally throwing money down the drain. With respect to the hardness of the water I grew up in an area with very hard water, was good to drink and made a lovely cup of tea, but played the proverbial merry hell with water heaters, kettles, water central heating systems etc. I remember my parents always added a handful of ‘washing soda’ to the washing machine or the ‘copper’ (clothes boiler), in our case coal gas heated but for many a small coal fire underneath the tub. Enough of the memories back to reality. I believe you will however agree that it is extremely difficult to judge exactly how much detergent is required to ‘just get the clothes clean’. Any excess is not only wasteful but in the case of FL machines with aluminium spiders potentially hazardous to the spiders.
I agree that people can be infuriatingly stubborn an even when presented with irrefutable evidence, still refuse to believe it or check it, and here I am not talking about an opinion, view, understanding or the like, which is largely what we are dealing with here. As an example the EPA stating, on their web page, that they do not approve ozone generators as air cleaners, they only register the design so that in the event of the need for a recall or similar they know which models to call in, but you then get some peddlers of these machines insisting that they are EPA approved, but said peddlers will not check the EPA’s home page.
As for a manufacturer not telling you what can/will damage their product in my case why 6 years after we purchased our first machine and then purchased another was there no appreciable difference in the use and care instructions/information. As I said in an earlier post I spent a fair amount of time investigating machinery failures, not in the laundry industry, I hasten to add, and my experience is that manufacturers are extremely reluctant to admit any sort of oversight, lack of forethought, incomplete design review or whatever appears to be causing the problem. In some, isolated instances, I have known manufacturers be extremely casual with the truth. In view of this I admit I am extremely cynical when someone tells me a manufacturer would not do such and such. Again it is just human nature and, in some cases, an attempt to protect the bottom line.

Should drying out not have anything to do with the situation I do not have a case, unless I am misunderstanding you. To save me repeating it all again please just refer to the penultimate paragraph in my first post in this thread. I am referring to the corrosion of the spider, not the failure of the bearings.

I agree that anything rubbing on the seal, particularly without lubrication, will abrade the seal. I also agree that the build-ups we see on the spiders, be they mineral or something else, do have the potential to act as wicks, and therefore the ability to absorb water contaminated with laundry aids, soil, and impurities from the original tap water and, as such, also have the potential, as they ‘dry out’ to reach a pH value where corrosion could occur.

In the case we have under consideration. i.e. the central area of the spider between the inner and outer drums. This area will receive little of the ‘water’ from the washing and rinsing processes. What it does receive will not be ‘spun out’ even during the fastest spin cycle and therefore will remain after the cycle has finished. I ask you does this seem possible? The closest I can come up with is a cars wheel. Even after a relatively fast run some water remains towards the centre and when the vehicle stops some of this water drains down, but some remains. Does this make any sort of sense to you?

To mark
Thank you for your input.
Unless we are able to guarantee that all the water, except what is actually retained in the laundry, is capable of being removed we have the possibility that that the remaining water will have the potential to cause corrosion.
I fully agree that anything left after 3 rinses is not going to be very concentrated but please see my last paragraph to surgilator above which I believe explains how I think it may occur.

Thank you all once again and I look forward to your comments.

Post# 451888 , Reply# 84   7/25/2010 at 19:42 (3,750 days old) by mrb627 (Buford, GA)        
Metal Fatigue?

mrb627's profile picture
Perhaps metal fatigue plays a bigger part in this what with heating water to 160 then dropping to tap cold in the winter time. That is quite a swing!


Post# 451996 , Reply# 85   7/26/2010 at 04:00 (3,749 days old) by limey ()        
Metal Fatigue & Low Temperature Performance Of Aluminium

To Malcolm – mrb627
Thank you for your input.
I believe what is commonly called ‘metal fatigue’ is very likely the ultimate cause of the vast majority of catastrophic spider failures. I believe it is generally described as the failure of a metal due to cyclic stresses. Which would cover the situation just prior to a spider ‘breaking’ whilst the machine was actually running. I do not believe very many spiders actually drop apart with the machine stationary.

With regard to the low temperature performance, and thermal shock.
As I do not know what the actual composition(s) of the aluminium alloy(s) of the spiders are; it is, I feel, rather pointless, to try and determine what the charpy results for the spiders would be. I do not believe that it is not a possibility and should be taken into account for the failure of spiders where no corrosion is evident. I do know that, as a generalization, the charpy results for steel tend to start to drop quite dramatically at about 0C and our water up here in Canada, in winter, is not much above that. However, even as a generalization, I do not know, how aluminium behaves under similar circumstances. Has anyone out there any knowledge of this? As a very generalization ‘metals’ do tend to become more brittle with falling temperatures.

Charpy tests are ‘notch tests’ carried out on an ‘Izod’ tester to determine the ‘notch resistance’ of the material under consideration and are carried out at specified ‘lower’ temperatures.

I can only recollect one post, on another site, where the poster, a washer repairman, stated that he had seen several fractured spiders with no evidence of corrosion. He did state that all the fractures were where the arm joined the hub of the spider. So far he has not responded to my query regarding the manufacturer(s) of these spiders.

Once again thank you for your input and I look forward any further comments you may have.

Post# 453066 , Reply# 86   7/30/2010 at 13:12 (3,745 days old) by limey ()        
Whirlpool's Response-Or Lack Thereof

At my second attempt I have received a response from Whirlpool reproduced below, together with a copy of my communication to them

Dear Mr. XXXXX,

Thank you for visiting the Whirlpool web site. We appreciate hearing from you.

Please accept our apologies for the difficulties and inconvenience you have experienced with your washer. We are in correspondence and are not licensed technicians or engineers. Any technical aspect of an appliance we are not trained in beyond the basic troubleshooting.

A response pertaining to how the Affresh product restricts mold growth and foul odor while at the same time combating corroding we are not able to supply. You may be certain that a copy of your comments has been forwarded to the appropriate department for review and investigation though. One of our engineers will not contact you to discuss this matter but you may be certain that such aspects are thoroughly examined and will be implemented if so needed.

Thank you for contact Whirlpool.


Dianna D.
e-Solutions Specialist
Whirlpool Customer eXperience Center

*If replying, please use Forward verses Reply or New as that will leave this message intact and will help us to respond faster.

-----Original Message-----

From: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Sent: 7/29/2010 05:39:55 PM
Subject: Questions and Comments

Your Details are.

The following information has been received

Regarding : Other
Subject : Spider Corrosion And Foul Odours In Front Loading Washers
Comments : The spiders in your front-loading washing machines are manufactured from aluminium alloys, as is the norm for the industry. It is a well known, and well documented fact that aluminium is corroded when immersed in an aqueous solution with a pH value below about 4.0 (nitric acid is a well documented exception) and above about 8.0. A very informative one page paper on this subject is available 'on the web', just "Google" 'Gaute Svenningsen Aluminium Corrosion' and read the result.
Are you aware that a great many laundry aids, including HE detergents have a pH above 8.0. Your own Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for your 'Affresh' gives its pH as 10.5-10.7 with a 1% solution meaning, that should the required concentration be reached, it could corrode the spiders in front loading washing machines.
A great many front-loading washing machines have suffered failed spiders due to corrosion. For examples, including one of yours, just visit ''
I believe that at the end of the last spin of a washing cycle, no matter what the spin speed, a very small quantity of water will remain on the spider near the shaft, this situation I further believe will be aggravated by recesses in the spider in this area, as in your spider on the above website. This 'water' will contain very small quantities of the laundry aids used, soil, products of the reactions between the laundry aids and soil from the laundry, and chemicals from the 'tap water'. As the water evaporates from this mixture the concentration of the impurities will increase until such time as the pH level reaches a value at which corrosion will commence. Should the pH level not rise sufficiently to cause corrosion the 'impurities' in the 'water' will leave a deposit, which will cause mould and foul odours which is also a common complaint with this type of washer.I would appreciate your comments on the above.Thank you and regards
Product : Washers
Modelno : Front Loaders
Serialno :

Future emails from Whirlpool : No

Post# 453599 , Reply# 87   8/1/2010 at 18:16 (3,743 days old) by limey ()        

It has come to, my attention that there is an error in the final line of my post on 23 July 2010. The last line should read: -

Anyone know where there is more information on the decomposition of sodium hypochlorite at temperatures above 104F?

My apologies for any inconveniences or misunderstandings this may have caused. Please be assured it was unintentional.
Once again my apologies.

Post# 456033 , Reply# 88   8/10/2010 at 18:48 (3,734 days old) by limey ()        
Bosch's Replies - Well Sort Of

After two e-mail attempts elicited no response from Bosch, I tried the telephone and reached a lady in the greater Montreal area. The exchange of e-mails that resulted is copied below.

As I consider these unsatisfactory answers I tried ¡®snail mail¡¯, again copied below. So far I have not received a response. Should a response be received I will post it.

Bosch Home Appliances XXXXXXXXXX
5551 McFadden Avenue XXXXXXXXXXX
Huntingdon Beach XXXXXXXXXXX CA 92649 Canada
USA 24th July 2010

Dear Sir,

Front Load Washers and Bleach (Sodium Hypochlorite)

I have been trying to obtain answers to three questions: -

1. In the Instruction manuals for models WFL 2060 and WFL 2090 one is instructed not to use chlorine bleach on three occasions, not including the mention of voiding the warranty in the warranty section. In one of these sections it is stated that ¡®hazardous fumes¡¯ could be given off.
In the section under decolorizing one is instructed not to decolorize items in the machine as decolorants may contain sulphur or chlorine that may cause corrosion of some washer components. A similar instruction is carried in the manual for the Vision 800 series. My question is what components may be damaged?
2. I note that in the manual for the Vision 800 series that the use of bleach is permitted and that its use is recommended in a cleaning cycle once every three months. My question is what has changed from the WFL 2060 and WFL 2050 that enables the use of bleach to now take place?
3. What is the material of the spider?

I have tried sending an e-mail on this subject but have received no response. I have tried calling the 1-800 number. I enclose a copy of the subsequent exchange of e-mails. I consider these hardly completely satisfactory answers. The model WFL 2090 is still shown as available on your web home site. I now try this.

My mailing address is as shown above, my email address is XXXXXXXX, my telephone number is XXX XXX XXXX.

I hope to hear from you.

Yours sincerely

From: Lavoie, Andre (FS)
Sent: Thursday, July 22, 2010 6:43 PM
To: Pepin, Isabelle (CS)
Subject: RE: Vision washer

The WFL European machine cannot be compare with the Vision machine design for North America,The amount of water in both unit are not the same,Consumer still need to be careful with the usage of chlorine in the vision unit.If too much chlorine is use in the unit,it can damage the seal of the bearing in a long terms.It's only a question of dilution.

From: Pepin, Isabelle (CS)
Sent: Thursday, July 22, 2010 5:54 PM
To: Lavoie, Andre (FS)
Subject: FW: Vision washer

Hello Andr¨¦,i made a mistake in my question,can you read the customer question please?

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Hi Thank you for the response unfortunately it does not answer my question:- What is the difference between the Vision 800 series that allows the use of bleach whereas in earlier models it was not per
Sent: July 22, 2010 7:01:50 PM
Thank you for the response unfortunately it does not answer my question:-
What is the difference between the Vision 800 series that allows the use of bleach whereas in earlier models it was not permitted. The manuals for the WFL 2050 and the WFL 2090 instruct not to use chlorine bleach in three separate statements, one of these also states that 'Hazardous Fumes' could be given off. In both of the above mentioned manuals and the manual for the Vision 800 is the statement under 'Decolorizing' that dyes could contain sulphur or chlorine and that these could cause corrosion of some of the washing machine components. These seems odd as chlorine bleach contains chlorine and is corrosive to many materials, including aluminium. So what components are there that could still be damaged by chlorine in the Vision that are safe for bleach but not chlorine?
Thank you for your time.
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Pepin, Isabelle (CS) Add to contacts
Hello,i forward you the response of our technician. Thank you and have a nice day Isabelle P¨¦pin ______________________________________________ From: Lavoie, Andre (FS) Sent: Thursday, July 22, 2010 1
From: Pepin, Isabelle (CS) (Isabelle.Pepin@BSHG.COM)
Sent: July 22, 2010 3:19:43 PM

Hello,i forward you the response of our technician.
Thank you and have a nice day
Isabelle P¨¦pin
From: Lavoie, Andre (FS)
Sent: Thursday, July 22, 2010 1:21 PM
To: Pepin, Isabelle (CS)
Subject: RE: Vision washer
You could also put some bleach in the Nexxt series but a really small quantity .this is the same with the vision. And the spider is cast aluminum with S/S insert.
From: Pepin, Isabelle (CS)
Sent: Thursday, July 22, 2010 1:11 PM
To: Lavoie, Andre (FS)
Subject: Vision washer

Hi Andr¨¦,
A customer is asking me what have been changed on the new Vision washer,that now he can put some bleach in and with the Nexxt model he could not,and he also whant to know of what material the spider ismade.
Isabelle P¨¦pin
BSH Home Appliances-Canada
Repr¨¦sentante au Service ¨¤ la Client¨¨le
Customer Service Representative
9220 Boulevard du Golf
Anjou, Qu¨¦bec
H1J 3A1
Bosch; 1 (800) 944-2904
Thermador; 1 (800) 735-4328
Gaggenau; 1 (877) 442-4436
Fax: 1 (714) 845-2676

Post# 457567 , Reply# 89   8/17/2010 at 17:19 (3,727 days old) by limey ()        
Bosch's Answer

I have now received a letter response from Bosch.
I will précis the main points of the letter. Should anyone want a copy drop me an email and I will scan it and forward a copy.
The letter makes no reference to the emails from the technician so we must assume that they are accurate.

The AXXIS units WFL2060 and 2090 are small European units that do not have a bleach cycle and chlorine bleach will damage the hoses. It is in order to use non-chlorine bleach in these washers.

The VISION series are full size washers; they and the NEXXT series, will accept chlorine bleach. They both have bleach cycles and the hoses are made of chlorine resistant material.

Decolorizing is a term for dyeing. Dyes contain substances that can cause damageto the washers.

Post# 457586 , Reply# 90   8/17/2010 at 18:54 (3,727 days old) by favorit ()        

Hi David/Limey,

I actually can't get one thing ..... rinses dilute the chemicals, don' t they ?? So the concentration of the chemicals in the last rinse is trascurable

You say more or less "when water evaporates chemical concentration increases, so PH fastly increases over 8 ..."

If this statement were so true ... everytime we use a fork, a knife, a spoon, a glass in whatever restaurant our mouth would get burned by caustic soda residues

Dishwashing detergent in commercial dishwashers is plain caustic soda.

According to your theory, when the racks/belts exit the dishwashers and loads suddenly flashdry because of the hi temp rinse the surface of the clean items would be covered with those particles of caustic soda that weren't neutralized by the rinse aid.
But as we know, millions of people all over the world eat and drink with utensiles washed with caustic soda, yet they survive .........

Maybe is that theory "of the dried spider" a bit weak ??

No offence, but you have to be aware that here you are also dealing with some posters who have to do with washers because of their jobs, so they have a 360° point of view/experience with washers. This is totally different and more complete of the point of view we, simple collectors or "washoolics", have.

Post# 457849 , Reply# 91   8/18/2010 at 20:11 (3,726 days old) by Limey ()        
Spider Corrosion

To favorit.

Thank you for your thoughts and comments.

Let us take this one step at a time.

Yes rinses do dilute chemicals the more times you ‘rinse’ the weaker the concentration of remaining chemicals become: except of course for the chemicals and suspended solids in the ‘tap’ water used for ‘rinsing’, until it approaches that of the ‘tap’ water itself, should sufficient ‘rinses’ take place.

What do you understand ‘trascurable’ to mean? Should it be ‘very small’ or ‘minor’ I would agree. Should it be ‘negligible’ or ‘unimportant’ I would not agree.

One very significant difference between a dishwasher and a laundry washer is the quantity of ‘water’ left in the machine at the end of each phase of the cycle. Unless only a very small load of laundry is dealt with, the laundry washer will have considerably more water owing to the quantity absorbed by the clothes, hence more contaminants.

So far I have been unable to verify your statement that commercial dishwashing detergent is plain caustic soda. In fact, so far, I have not found it listed as an ingredient in any of those I have checked. Just so that we fully understand each other, to me caustic soda is sodium hydroxide (NaOH). Sodium hydroxide, is extremely corrosive to, inter alia, aluminium and, as you observe, human flesh.

The above not withstanding, let us continue.
The main purpose, as far as I am aware, of the rinse agent, is to reduce/eliminate the ‘spotting’, ‘water marks’ on items from a dishwasher and to do this it alters the surface tension of the ‘water’ so that it ‘slides’ off the dishes/cutlery and does not form drops. This means that very small amounts of the contaminants remain on the dishes/cutlery; will some of these be ingested? I believe so, and so do some ‘green’ sites. The quantities will be that small that damage will not be immediate but cumulative, in other words we are poisoning ourselves!

Having said the above almost any commercial ‘eatery’ would examine eating equipment prior to ‘putting it out’ as would any ‘host/hostess’ or ‘househusband/housewife’, and any with ‘spots’ or ‘watermarks’ would be wiped ‘clean’ but would still have very, very, small quantities of chemicals and soil left on them.

As far as I am concerned none of the above alters my view, in any way, regarding possible causes of front loader spider corrosion.

One point that does need to be remembered is that these spiders are continuing to fail catastrophically and something is causing that corrosion and hence failure. Nothing appears to have been done to stop these failures.

Post# 457909 , Reply# 92   8/19/2010 at 04:00 (3,725 days old) by sudsman ()        
I am concerned none of the above alters my view

And that is ALL it is your view!

Post# 457913 , Reply# 93   8/19/2010 at 06:13 (3,725 days old) by bobofhollywood ()        
not all washers die

I currently have 5 front loading washers installed in my laundry studio. Not one has an odor issue and I use bleach in them all on occasion. I have been using front loaders now for over 20 years and never once had a bearing go bad. Here is what I do - never close the door unless the washer is being used. As a collector restorer I have seen machines that have run many decades and never failed. Here's a bigger problem. No matter what you do nobody lives forever. Everybody eventually dies. .guaranteed. I have been asking the manufacturer about it for years and nothing is being done. Still the fact remains - nobody lives forever. I THINK this thread has really out lived its usefulness. Some washers may have failed in the time it took for this thread to develop but the vast majority of them did not. For me this is a complete non issue. Just leave your door open limey. Your issue is not as important as you think.

Post# 457929 , Reply# 94   8/19/2010 at 09:18 (3,725 days old) by mrx ()        

I've never had a bad smell problem with any of my machines over the years. However, my grandmother's machines have always had odour issues and mildew.

It comes down to one simple difference : temperature!

We always was at 40C or 60C for towels/sheets etc.

My grandmother *always* washes on Cold (or as close to cold as the machine will allow).

The end result is that her machine's invariably a mess, and ours is perfect.

She saves on energy but goes through about twice as many washing machines as we do in the same number of years!

I have also found that use of non-enzyme detergents will cause similar problems. Good biological (enzyme-rich) detergents will dissolve fungus, mould etc during the wash. I'm not sure that non-bio (no enzyme) detergents will be as effective as they are not set up to breakdown proteins etc.

Using very short washes doesn't help either!

Post# 457937 , Reply# 95   8/19/2010 at 09:42 (3,725 days old) by mrx ()        
One more tip!

If you really do want to get rid of the smell out of a gunked-up front loader (this may also work for gunked up top loaders) do the following:

1) Descale the machine using a commercial washing machine descaler. These are available from supermarkets or appliance specialists (and online).

2) Using raw disinfectant liquid (as described below) and wearing rubber gloves - wipe down the door seal and and fully clean out the dispensor drawer. You might consider spraying the inside of the dispenser drawer with a solution of disinfectant.

3) Run a deep wash at at least 60C, but preferably 90C using a large dose of liquid disinfect that is suitable for use on laundry. E.g. in the UK and Ireland - Dettol Liquid disinfectant (not the old-fashoned version, but the clear / scented versions). Typically, you will need a really large dose e.g. half a bottle of the stuff to have any impact.

4) Before the wash part of the cycle completes, stop/pause the machine and allow the disinfectant to work for a while.

Switch machine back on and allow cycle to complete as normal.

6) Once this is finished, run a hot wash with a large dose of a good quality powder laundry detergent (not the colour-kind variety) i.e. Persil Bio, Ariel Bio, Tide with Bleach etc.

When done, your machine should no longer smell and the mildew problem should be resolved.

In future, ensure that you do a hot 60C cycle about once a week or at least every two weeks. Its a good way of maintaining your machine and it's also an excellent way of keeping your towels clean :)

Post# 457945 , Reply# 96   8/19/2010 at 10:09 (3,725 days old) by bobofhollywood ()        
leave the door open

It comes down to leave the door open. Either you will or you won't.

Post# 458063 , Reply# 97   8/20/2010 at 01:16 (3,725 days old) by alr2903 (TN)        

Bobofhollywood, nice to see you posting. I was a brand new member and you posted the multi color speed queen coin ops for me. I never forget a kindness. Good to see ya mister. arthur

Post# 458075 , Reply# 98   8/20/2010 at 03:59 (3,724 days old) by sudsman ()        
This thread has outlived its usefulness


Post# 458138 , Reply# 99   8/20/2010 at 12:46 (3,724 days old) by Iheartmaytag (Wichita, Kansas)        
One last observation

iheartmaytag's profile picture
I wonder if it's all about moderation? Bleach in itself is not bad, just don't pour too much of a good thing in at a time. Same with detergents.

What was suggested to me by a very knowledgeable woman at LOWE'S. Alternate your cleaning aids. Each can cause a slight build up on their own that is counteracted by another. Too much powder detergent in cooler water can cause a cement like build in the outer tub. Too much liquid detergent can cause a build up of greasy film. Too much softner can cause Gunk.

If you alternate they counteract and complement each other's traits. I usually wash bedding, towels, jeans with Powder Tide HE and a Hot wash. Perm Press is usually Tide Total Care (Liquid) in Warm or cold. Delicates are done with Woolite HE (Liquid) cold water. I rarely, but do use softner. Most of my bleaching is with Oxi-clean now, but I do have a bleach dispenser in my machine and have usd LCB. It holds about 1/4 cup of bleach, my main complaint and the reason I avoid bleach in my FL machine is I don't like the way it dumps the bleach in a plume right in the middle of the clothes.

This post was last edited 08/20/2010 at 14:51
Post# 458156 , Reply# 100   8/20/2010 at 14:38 (3,724 days old) by bobofhollywood ()        
using various formulas

I agree with and practice that myself. Using differing products is a good practice. Also I never use bleach straight out of the bottle - dilute it first in a measuring cup . But no matter what ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS leave the door and dispenser drawers open when you are not using your washers . It's really that simple.

Post# 458157 , Reply# 101   8/20/2010 at 14:45 (3,724 days old) by bobofhollywood ()        
doors and drawers open

and my other three shown at parade rest with doors and drawers open. . .

Post# 458166 , Reply# 102   8/20/2010 at 16:31 (3,724 days old) by sudsman ()        
In 40 years of hospital laundry

EVERY manual on every washer I have ever had ALL tells to leave the doors open anytime the machine is NOT in use.Not only for the dry out phase but to keep gaskets from deforming,and will make them last 2 or 3x as long.

Post# 458189 , Reply# 103   8/20/2010 at 20:43 (3,724 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        

combo52's profile picture
Thats a good suggestion Wichita person [ you should fill out your profile ] to use different products for different loads. One thing I have noticed in my vast experience of working with washing machines is that many consumers have terrible build ups of various kinds in thier machines. This is because they get stuck in various bad habits with the use of laundry aids temperatures and settings on the machine. And of all the coin operaterated machines I have worked on I have never seen any type of build up in them. I think this gives creditability to the idea that using different laundry products etc is a good idea for everyone. I would also say that far more harm is caused by using too little of most laundry aids than using too much.

Post# 458231 , Reply# 104   8/21/2010 at 04:57 (3,723 days old) by mark_wpduet (Lexington KY)        

mark_wpduet's profile picture
I honestly don't think I could stand not using LCB and hot water......Even a very little of it goes a LONG way.......Like a tablespoon in a spray bottle with the rest distilled water. I think it really disinfects the inside of the washer, even in its very diluted state (those dispensers hold very little bleach).....So that and leaving the door cracked has kept my machine like new. The first year I had it I had the control board replaced and the technician said that most of the front load washers he works on STINKS......He said mine didn't at all. He was kind of surprised he said. He asked me what I did....I said I just leave the door cracked.

Post# 797700 , Reply# 105   12/6/2014 at 12:31 (2,155 days old) by bensch ()        
spider corrosion

I am not a pro, just a homeowner; pretty handy, too. Fortunately, last year when my 8 year old Frigidaire front load washer started making bad noises, I had just spoken to a friend who had previously done the repair. He said that if it was corroded, I would have to buy a new drum/spider combo, because they don't sell just the spider. And when I did, I should go to Home Depot and get some Rustoleum Cold Galvanizing Paint. It is basically pure zinc in a vehicle; I sprayed multiple coats on the top of the spider, and as much as I could get between the spider and the stainless drum, and hoped that all will be well for another 8 years. Last month the bearings broke. I am in the process of changing them with bearings sold by, that cost $79 per set, or about 5x what the OEM bearings Frigidaire (and probably everyone else) specifies. Remember, with appliances, labor is the greatest cost, not the stuff inside. So, use the best stuff you can, and do it once. Wish someone would have told me about the bearings in the first place...

Post# 797707 , Reply# 106   12/6/2014 at 13:16 (2,155 days old) by kb0nes (Burnsville, MN)        

kb0nes's profile picture
I'd really take some convincing to believe that the aftermarket bearings sold by are in any way better then the OEM's are. The cost of the bearings means nothing since by the time they get to you 75% of the cost is all markup anyhow. I would love to see the markings on the shields of both the OEM bearings as well as the aftermarket ones, that would be far more telling of product quality.

Still the bearings didn't fail due to their quality (or lack thereof) or because they weren't big enough etc. In almost all cases the bearings fail when they start to take in water past the seal. If there was anything different that could be done to make the bearings run longer it would be from improving the life of that seal. When you had the machine apart to replace the spider, did you replace the seal at that time too?

In any case, welcome to the group Ben. I hope the 2nd attempt at the repair gives you at least 8 years more life out of your machine!

Post# 797873 , Reply# 107   12/7/2014 at 13:10 (2,154 days old) by whirlcool (Just North Of Houston, Texas)        
But then again you have

people like my nutty sister who has a Kenmore HE2t Plus that she has had for 11 years. She uses liquid Tide by the cupful, not cap-full. She never leaves the door open between washes (the cats will use it as a litter box), and also uses Downy by the cupful too. She also stuffs it so full you couldn't fit in even another handkerchief inside of it. Most of her washing is cold/cold.

Earlier this year she sent me a T-shirt from a concert she attended. She sent it with a note that she washed it for me before sending it. It reeked so bad of Downy the whole house smelled like it. I had to rewash it immediately to get rid of the smell. BTW, I wear a M to L. The size she sent was a XXX Large. I told her she sent the wrong size. She said "Well isn't that your size?" Crazy bitch.

She has never had a problem with odors, mold and even no mechanical problems. Go figure.

This leads me to believe that a lot of the problems with mold may be due to the environment where the machine is located. Maybe something environmental. Because we also have people that do everything exactly right and yet they still get mold. It's just an idea.

Post# 797891 , Reply# 108   12/7/2014 at 14:36 (2,154 days old) by PassatDoc (Orange County, California)        
close to nine years on a Frig 2140, properly maintained

My 2006 Frigidaire 2140 FL washer is now in the custody of my neighbor. He inherited the 2006 pair when I bought a new pair of Electrolux 60 series. In March, the 2140 will be nine years old. Spins normally, no bearing-trouble whine or noise. Of course, I babied it over the years. No fabric softener, no bleach, door always open when not in use, dispenser always emptied (of water) and allowed to dry, quarterly descaling with citric acid powder.

It'll be interesting to see how long it lasts, since the neighbor is following my care tips. Since he is between jobs, and because his Kenmore TL all but died (20+ years old), any amount of use he gets from my 2140 is a bonus, since he avoided having to buy a washer during a low-income period.

Board member golittlesport  gave an older Frig FL (the small door model, not a square door model 2140/2940) to his son when he bought a 2940 for himself. He posted recently that the Frig passed to his son finally died after about fifteen-sixteen years of service between his household and his son's. I believe his 2940, purchased about the same time I bought my 2140, is still in use without mechanical issues. 

Post# 797896 , Reply# 109   12/7/2014 at 15:15 (2,154 days old) by logixx (Germany)        
No-Mold HE2T

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The inside of that Kenmore is probably too toxic for mold to grow in. wink

Post# 797908 , Reply# 110   12/7/2014 at 16:29 (2,154 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        
No Mold In A FL Washer

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Hi Allen, your sister backs my experience very well, I have often stated that it is almost impossible to use too much detergent, it is too little detergent that causes 90% of detergent related washer problems and failures.

I also have a customer that uses only cold water and liquid detergents in her KA [ Duet Style FL Washer ]and the washer smells great and has no sign of any mold or build-ups what so ever, but she told me she always fills the detergent bottle cap completely at a minimum.

Post# 797926 , Reply# 111   12/7/2014 at 17:34 (2,154 days old) by mrb627 (Buford, GA)        

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I agree with combo. Liquid detergent doesn't grow mold in the bottle. It is too little detergent, aka micro-dosing, that causes the problem.


Post# 797963 , Reply# 112   12/7/2014 at 20:03 (2,154 days old) by mark_wpduet (Lexington KY)        

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Your last post cracked me up.....

This thread is so old......but I think it is a number of factors.....My FL washer is in a climate controlled area.......but I also am the ONLY one that uses it. I'm careful about doing the right things based on what I've learned online over the years.....Using bleach/hot water with whites.....warm/hot water with colors, not over-dosing, not under-dosing, leaving the door cracked and detergent drawer cracked when not in use, and not using too much fabric softener. I dilute a small amount of fab sftner with distilled vinegar. This April my Duet will be 10 yrs old. It would be interesting the see what the spider looks like on it...But there is ZERO smell in my washer, just that clean smell with a faint hint of detergent that you expect a washer to smell like inside.

Personally, I think it's over use or under use of detergent, cold water, too much fab sfner and over loading the machine, along with the area it's located that causes it.

Post# 797977 , Reply# 113   12/7/2014 at 21:50 (2,154 days old) by whirlcool (Just North Of Houston, Texas)        

My sister's Kenmore is located in a dedicated laundry room right next to her kitchen on the main level of the house and not in the basement. If that helps anyone.

When front loaders first came out there was all this hype about using only a teaspoon or so of HE detergent in them. A lot of people read that. I now imagine that is not really true. A lot of people thought that the reason detergent mfrs said use one capful was to sell more detergent.

But how do you get the resulting suds out of the clothing? I have seen my sister take clothes out of the washer with suds flying through the air as she removes them from the washer. The whole time her washer is running you never see the clothes through the glass door, only suds, even during the rinse cycle.

Post# 798074 , Reply# 114   12/8/2014 at 07:05 (2,153 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        
Suds In Front Load Washers

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Hi Allen, the suds vanish in the last rinse when the FS goes in, But don't get me wrong I am not endorsing your sisters way of washing clothing as it is far cheaper to use hot water and less detergent [ detergent is the most expensive cost of running a washer ] but her system has kept the washer mold free, I just wouldn't want to wear socks etc washed by her, LOL.

Post# 798112 , Reply# 115   12/8/2014 at 10:00 (2,153 days old) by PassatDoc (Orange County, California)        
should have mentioned

My FL washer (the previous 2140 and the new Electrolux 60) are NOT in a climate controlled area. It's a nonheated/non-A/C garage (well, there's no A/C anywhere in the house, this is SoCal). This means in winter the garage temp can drop to 48-50 F (warmer than outside but colder than house interior, since garage is not insulated). In summer on a very hot day the garage temp can approach 90 F. However, humidity is usually not an issue as it might be for wpduet or whirlcool.

I use HE powder and do not overdose. I use a coffee measure and use 1/2 scoop (1 tbsp) of Persil or Ariel, maybe 2/3 scoop of Tide HE or Gain HE for an average load. For heavy soil or very large load, 3/4 scoop if Euro detergent, 1 scoop for Tide or Gain. I look for suds on the door or in gasket at end of cycle as a sign I am using too much. So far, after three weeks of owning the new Electrolux machines, I have not seen any suds at all, so either I am underdosing a bit or else the Electrolux rinses out better than the Frig 2140 did.

The Electrolux has no "extra rinse" button per se, as opposed to the 2140 with its "extra rinse" option, but there is a "allergen" cycle which I believe uses either larger rinse water volume or else it applies an additional rinse. Not sure, but so far have only used the default rinses that come with each given cycle---and leaving it at that unless I see suds. I don't have skin allergies to detergent (but avoid fragrance and unnecessary additives) so extra rinse isn't an issue to me, under normal circumstances.

Post# 909910 , Reply# 116   12/6/2016 at 13:55 (1,424 days old) by mdicino (Boise)        
My Samsung FL is a Ship Screw With Installed Annode!

Hi, my 5 year old Samsung VRT with Steam just became an Anchor! I am ex-Navy and was in total disbelief anyone would design such a flaw. The corrosion issue on these spiders is completely GALVANIC corrosion. Don't tell me about blah blah blah just slight basic pH 8.0 way, that pH argument is WEAK SAUCE! Small pH issue may accelerate some minor pitting corrosion on STEEL parts, but not Aluminum alloy. Kicking our dumb FL set to the curb as soon as we can install good ol tried and true top loader....our old top loader set was 12 yrs old and had only 1 failure of a drive clutch....and that was easy replace compared to what takes to replace a spider with a part guaranteed to fail again. Ouch!

Post# 909957 , Reply# 117   12/6/2016 at 19:15 (1,424 days old) by Combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        
corroded and broken spiders

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This has nothing to do with galvanic corrosion, it is almost 100% user error.


If you read over the previous threads carefully you'll see that it has everything to do with using two little detergent using cooler to cold water and basically just not getting clothing clean.


When the washer does not clean clothing it leaves the grime dirt oil's on the inside surfaces of the washer and it coats the aluminum spider keeping it moist with dirt and causing it to corrode. Having worked on thousands of front-loading washers I have never seen one yet with a broken spider that was not a stinky mess it's entirely user caused.


If the manufacturer was doing something wrong with the construction and the materials used everyone of these washers would break when in reality the majority can last more than 20 years with virtually no corrosion on the spider.


John L.


Post# 909979 , Reply# 118   12/7/2016 at 04:25 (1,423 days old) by mark_wpduet (Lexington KY)        
Yep I know for a fact my duet

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has an aluminum spider because I've seen pics posted here of someone doing a refurb on one exactly like mine, and mine is approaching 12 years old. So it must be a combination of user error and the area it's located in. But someone also mentioned that it could be the actual quality of the metals - which could be different from one machine to another - that could also explain why one lasts as long as mine while another lasts only 5 years. I dunno. But I have loved my machine and my next one is going to be a FL Maypool or Whirlpool....But it would be GREAT if my washer lasts another 5 years - I guess it's possible but I think very unlikely. Something in it has to go eventually. I'm just glad I can use the same pedestals (at least that's what they told me)

Post# 909981 , Reply# 119   12/7/2016 at 05:04 (1,423 days old) by brucelucenta ()        

That is good to know. If anything, I use too much detergent and wash nearly everything in hot water with the heat boost on. I also use bleach every so often also. I hope that means my machine stays clean and the spider doesn't corrode. I also always use the maximum of rinses it allows too and run the self clean cycle on occasion.

Post# 909985 , Reply# 120   12/7/2016 at 05:34 (1,423 days old) by askolover (South of Nash Vegas, TN)        

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I'd love to see the spider in my 20 year old Asko, but I'm not going to disassemble it to see it until it is necessary. I've used bleach since it was bought new.

Post# 910022 , Reply# 121   12/7/2016 at 12:33 (1,423 days old) by kb0nes (Burnsville, MN)        

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Well certainly there is some galvanic issue here at play, but it ISN'T the cause of a premature spider failure.

We do have two dissimilar metals in contact so there is a possibility of an anodic potential difference that could result in corrosion. We can only guess at what alloy the typical spider is cast from but it is likely some form of aluminum. The spin basket is some alloy of stainless. Assuming this there is a moderate difference of ~.50 V on the Anodic Index. Ideally in a wet corrosive application this potential difference should be held tighter then this to control any galvanic reaction.

But at this point we are now second guessing the engineers that designed these things. They considered this and they made it this way anyhow. Since a washer isn't like a ship that is constantly wet, this is likely acceptable within the design lifetime of the washer. The design lifetime is surely a minimum of 10 years with a margin for error.

Allowing biofilm and crud to accumulate on the spider holds the moisture in place constantly and accelerates the corrosion. John's empirical evidence of only seeing gunky spiders failing corroborates this. The fact that other front load washers live on much longer without seeing corrosion shows that there is something at play here more then just saying it is poor design.

Bear in mind that any new topload machine will likely be designed for the same design lifetime within a given manufacturers line. Using past performance to predict future trends may not be very accurate. Surely a modern Speed Queen top load machine will easily last 10 years, but a Speed Queen front load machine will outlast the top load machine and be easier to repair. But heaven forfend, the user may have to adapt a bit to use the appliance properly in order to reap the higher performance advantages of the front load machine.

Post# 910135 , Reply# 122   12/8/2016 at 09:46 (1,422 days old) by Laundromat (Hilo, Hawaii)        

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I think one of the causes of this stems from abuse. My cousin ruined her washers from just dumping liquid bleach freely into her washers. That caused corrosion and the entire front from the dispenser to the lower door area rusted out in two years. Way too much detergent and additives. The manufacturers have reasons to have markings on how much is enough. Dealing with Smiths Appliance , a local used appliance and furniture company, I see so many rusted out washers and dryers. Sad but true.

Post# 931647 , Reply# 123   4/10/2017 at 15:25 (1,299 days old) by bjconner (Oregon, USA)        
Stray Voltage and Bearings.

I just helped someone who had badly corroded bearings as in several post above. They also look like bearings I have seen in some industrial installations.
Variable speed and sold state motor drives are known to generate stray electrical currents. Poorly designed control circuits can do the same thing. The current can be very small but still do damage.
Just where the currents are generated and where they flow is why they are "Stray".
In industrial use of 3 phase motor driven by VFDs currents can be generated in the rotor and pass through the bearings. The results looks like some of the pictures above. The fix in this case is buy motors with insulated bearings and install shaft ground systems. Shaft grounding is some kind of brush system that connects the shaft to ground.
I don't have a solution. I think part of the stray current may be through the water.

Post# 931656 , Reply# 124   4/10/2017 at 16:38 (1,299 days old) by henene4 (Germany)        

I highly doubt that. Electricly sped-up corrosion needs significant currents as well as any kind of agent acting as either oxidation or reduction agent. In a perfectly fine bearing, no electrolytic effects should ever occur.

The inducted currents are not big enough to cause anything in that matter. Further, on most modern machines, drums and thus shafts are grounded through the water to the heater, where build in.
And I don't even think most bearings are purely made out of magnetic compounds, me thinks that they used some cheaper aluminium alloy by now.

Is it that hard to believe that its just bad maintanace and bad material choices? Aluminium does corrode in chemicly highly reactive enviroments, and bearings with any kind of moisture in them break.
No need of stray currents, or what ever.

It's almost like the whole "microwaves kill food" story. No they don't, and any sane person with highschool-grade science knowledge should agree.

Post# 931753 , Reply# 125   4/11/2017 at 00:59 (1,299 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

There has been problems in motor bearings being heated by stray currents-but this is in VERY LARGE motors of hundred Hp or more.And this was BEFORE VFD's!GE addressed this issue by just that-insulating the front and rear motor bearings.I have a report about this problem from an engineer that worked at the DuPont polyester fibers plant that is in Kinston.Bought several tubs of books on this from a large yard sale.The engineer died and the family disposed of his books at the yard sale.Makes for interesting reading that I am still reading today.He worked there from like the late 1940's when the site opened to the later fifties.

Post# 932119 , Reply# 126   4/13/2017 at 00:37 (1,297 days old) by Laundromat (Hilo, Hawaii)        

laundromat's profile picture

I have yet to have any issues ,other than used machines found that way,with mildew. When they have it, I use Spray 9 and hot water to remove it completely or replace the boot.

Post# 932478 , Reply# 127   4/14/2017 at 23:44 (1,295 days old) by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        
Spider thoughts, redux

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I've never seen a clean spider stress crack and I worked in a used machine shop in Germany while my teaching credentials were being cleared. Saw several dozen.

Chlorine bleach WILL attack many aluminium alloys and I don't doubt it can contribute to failure in those machines not designed for it.

The amount of current needed for galvanic action between disparate metals is much smaller than most of us think, especially given the conditions of the water in which they are immersed. I'd not exclude the possibility that it plays some role - just how much I don't know. I'm linking to a familiar chart, though - and the conditions are met in a washing machine for the active metal (AL) to be eaten away. The question is, at what rate?


Post# 932489 , Reply# 128   4/15/2017 at 01:19 (1,295 days old) by norgeway (mocksville n c )        
Face It

The new machines are JUNK...The old Bendix and Westinghouse machines never had these problems...But then, they actually WASHED and RINSED properly....enough water and one direction tumbling!

Post# 932494 , Reply# 129   4/15/2017 at 03:20 (1,294 days old) by henene4 (Germany)        
One direction tumbling

Yeah, sure, let's go straight back to beating our clothing on stones and rinse them in a river. That sure has enough water for you and you controll everything about the cleaning process *rolls eyes*

Panthera, the current is indeed low, that is true. But you have to keep in mind you have to induce a voltage in the 0.1-1V range with currents of probably a few miliamps into sonething that is entirely not suited to be part of an inductive system.
Aluminium isn't magnetic in the first place, and neither is stainless steal if I remeber correctly, so no inductive currents their.
The bearings I don't know about, but they are far out of the dense parts of the magnetic field.
And these magnetic fields are highly trimmed and focused anyway, so the bit of stray magnetism that might get to the bearings will most likely not result in any significant current.

And yeah, as I said: The enviroments in washers are highly corrosive. Aluminium can corrode verry well under these circumstances. That's why plastic outer tubs are not inherently bad, they can't corrode at all.

Post# 932514 , Reply# 130   4/15/2017 at 09:42 (1,294 days old) by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        

panthera's profile picture

I made no reference to the induced currents as I don't think there are any.

One needs no outside source of electricity - you have an anode (aluminium alloy), a cathode (stainless steel alloy) and a highly-conductive solution of water.

Americans use an enormous amount of chlorine bleach. I used oxygen bleaches in Germany.

Enormous difference.


Post# 974787 , Reply# 131   12/20/2017 at 17:46 (1,045 days old) by awr (Racine, WI)        
Galvanic corrosion on front loading washer spider CONFIRMED

I'm surprised that after 20 years of every manufacturer of front loading washing machines making the same design flaw by engineering a large battery in the form of washer tub that nobody has taken the three minutes it took to confirm the galvanic action.

See in my photos the before, during, after of my spider repair post galvanic destruction.

I used steel brush then sand blasting. I used JB Weld to hold the post in place then poured about 20oz of clear epoxy to make a solid puck that is also non conductive.

Notice in my photos I include the fact that some detergent paste as the battery electrolyte is generating 0.444v that's a lot of random voltage to be generating current 24/7.

The ions that generate that current come from the break down of the aluminum.

Notice that contrary to the original poster who is incorrect in his assessment, not only is voltage generated and measured, there is absolutely galvanic corrosion at the end of all the arms.

I suspect that there are multiple paths including the center bearing post as the cathode perhaps why the main corrosion is near the hub (but could be other reasons)

I'm just here to confirm with absolute certainty that galvanic corrosion does in-fact take place in all of these machines at any time there is an ionic liquid or paste touching both the drum and spider.

  Photos...       <              >      Photo 1 of 7         View Full Size
Post# 974793 , Reply# 132   12/20/2017 at 19:11 (1,045 days old) by johnrk (BP TX)        

Thanks for your great photos and explanation--I've learned something here.

Post# 974837 , Reply# 133   12/21/2017 at 06:00 (1,044 days old) by toploader55 (Massachusetts Sand Bar, Cape Cod)        

toploader55's profile picture
very Interesting Research.

Thank You

Post# 974843 , Reply# 134   12/21/2017 at 07:23 (1,044 days old) by sPeEDqUeEN (Harrison Twp, Michigan)        

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This also fits with what John LeFever and others have been saying. With the washer being clean inside (no "Paste") the conductivity can only happen during the wash cycle. If there is build-up, the circuit would be constantly closed and the corrosion would always be happening.

Post# 974869 , Reply# 135   12/21/2017 at 10:53 (1,044 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        
Very Interesting BUT

combo52's profile picture
The ONLY reason these spiders corrode is a mineral and scum build-up caused by improper usage habits of the machine by its users.

We have analyzed hundreds of FL washer spider failures right in the homes where the machines were used and I have never seen a spider failure where it was any surprise when we saw how the machine was used.

On the other hand even FL washers like the small door Frigidaire's that had a very thin spider never fail even when used commercially with lots of different users and lots of bleach to keep the spider clean.

Yes Andrew you have identified how these spiders fail, but you have missed the real reason why they are getting a mineral and scum build-up in the first place. When manufactures design and test their machines none would subject them to this type of neglect and poor usage habits that cause this crap to build-up.

Washing machines of all types have had failures from corrosion since the first wooden wringer machines and many of the reasons for corrosion damage were completely beyond the control of the manufacturer, just as a car manufacturer cannot control how cars are cared for and driven.

John L.

Post# 974938 , Reply# 136   12/21/2017 at 21:23 (1,044 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        

chetlaham's profile picture
Perhaps- but how is the user getting DC voltage then if there is no galvanic action?

Post# 974941 , Reply# 137   12/21/2017 at 22:15 (1,044 days old) by sPeEDqUeEN (Harrison Twp, Michigan)        

speedqueen's profile picture
What Mr. LeFever said was that while Andrew(awr) found the direct cause for the failure, the cause of electrolyte remaining was poor washing habits, of which he has explained at length.

"Yes Andrew you have identified how these spiders fail, but you have missed the real reason why they are getting a mineral and scum build-up in the first place. When manufactures design and test their machines none would subject them to this type of neglect and poor usage habits that cause this crap to build-up."

A cause/effect chart.

{poor washing habits}--->{build-up}--->{electrolyte}--->{galvanic corrosion}--->{spider failure}

Post# 974943 , Reply# 138   12/21/2017 at 22:33 (1,044 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        

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Reply #117 claims it has nothing to do with Galvanic corrosion. Otherwise you would be correct.

Post# 974947 , Reply# 139   12/21/2017 at 23:45 (1,044 days old) by sPeEDqUeEN (Harrison Twp, Michigan)        

speedqueen's profile picture
John is our expert on repair around here and I'm sure he will explain.

My personal opinion is that it is galvanic action doing the final blow. I just cannot believe the detergent chemical corrosion alone can do so much damage so quickly in some cases to the aluminum. The volt meter doesn't lie either. It also is the glue that ties all other theories on the cause of spider failure.

Anyone who has seen plumbing where some cheapskate skipped the dielectric union knows how quickly a pipe will rot out. (My father was a plumber for 27 years)

Post# 974957 , Reply# 140   12/22/2017 at 01:17 (1,044 days old) by chetlaham (United States)        

chetlaham's profile picture
I believe you- and I know first hand what you are talking about in regards to plumbing.

Post# 974977 , Reply# 141   12/22/2017 at 07:33 (1,043 days old) by mark_wpduet (Lexington KY)        
A long time ago

mark_wpduet's profile picture
I would have believed this. But now that I'm on my 13th year with my Duet FL washer, I think it has everything to do with washing habits and nothing to do with the dissimilar metals. I think using a little bleach with whites and hot water must do something to prevent this from happening. What? I don't know. But my spider should have corroded a LONG time ago if this was the case. When my duet dies, I'd love for someone to take it apart to examine it. I'm the only one who has used it. Hot water, bleach in whites, ammonia and HE powder in colors, a tiny bit of fab softener. I notice this spider corrosion also coincides with foul odors, so that should tell you something too. It's got to the be washing habits causing it.

Post# 974990 , Reply# 142   12/22/2017 at 09:50 (1,043 days old) by DADoES (TX, U.S. of A.)        

dadoes's profile picture
A friend has a Kenmore HE3 (not t) that's 14 years old (2003, 38th week).  Only repair to my knowledge is replacement of the pump several years ago, which was done by me.  She does tons of pet laundry and uses bleach.  She fosters rescue dogs and has a pack of 23+ at all times including fosters & residents (they're all allowed into the house) ... plus cats and a cockatoo that's more than 35 yo.

Another friend has an HE3t that's 15 years old (2002, 42nd week).  Water valve was replaced last year.  I don't know how often he uses bleach.  It was given to him 4 to 5 years ago.  I don't think he was aware of the heating capability until I explained the Sanitary cycle.  I have no info on the previous owners' usage habits or their repair history.

Post# 974995 , Reply# 143   12/22/2017 at 10:19 (1,043 days old) by johnrk (BP TX)        
I Had

the same same Kenmore front loader for 11 years until the bearing gave out. I really loved that machine, got rid of it when the 'bearing' (I was told) went out and apparently it was going to cost more than that excellent machine was worth.

I'd sure have been happy to use bleach, which I almost never use, if I'd known it would give longer life.

If bleach works for making a longer-lived washer, why wouldn't the manufacturers recommend using it on occasion? Heaven knows, they sure push Affresh and all those things...

BTW at least 75% of my wash was hot water and 25% warm. No cold.

Post# 975016 , Reply# 144   12/22/2017 at 14:22 (1,043 days old) by kenwashesmonday (Haledon, NJ)        

If an automaker made cars that only held up for people that drove correctly, they'd be run out of business in short order.

The best appliances are designed to protect themselves against the ignorance of the general public.

Post# 975018 , Reply# 145   12/22/2017 at 14:24 (1,043 days old) by johnrk (BP TX)        
Actually, Ken,

you're just too young to remember when car makers did exactly that.

The funny thing to look at is an original Model T owner's manual from 1910-1926. It was almost scolding the new owners about how they needed to treat their cars properly, and not blame the company if the car didn't perform as expected if they didn't.

Post# 975020 , Reply# 146   12/22/2017 at 14:35 (1,043 days old) by kb0nes (Burnsville, MN)        

kb0nes's profile picture
There is no doubt that there will be a galvanic potential between the dissimilar metal parts. And it is likely measurable as Andrew's photo shows. It should be noted that the input impedance of that meter is 10 Million ohms, I'd be curious as to the magnitude of the potential if there was slightly more loading.

As I said before (#121) the galvanic corrosion isn't the primary cause of the failure. If it were then ALL the machines would fail in a similar time frame. But we see many machines serving a longer then design lifetime with no corrosion issues, then some machines see significant corrosion in a short time frame. What is the reason for the difference? As postulated in this thread several times it is from a bio-film buildup on the spider do to poor usage habits. In machines with a clean spider casting the corrosion is minimal.

So now lets consider the engineers that made these machines. Were they clueless to the possibility of a galvanic reaction when they designed the machine? The pragmatist in me says they considered this issue and deemed it to not be a problem in normal use. A machine isn't designed to last forever, if it were cost would be prohibitive. Within a 10-20 year design life with proper usage the spider isn't going to fail.

Post# 975021 , Reply# 147   12/22/2017 at 15:00 (1,043 days old) by Lorainfurniture (Cleveland )        

Maybe a dumb question: would attaching the spider to a good ground help?

Post# 975061 , Reply# 148   12/22/2017 at 21:05 (1,043 days old) by sPeEDqUeEN (Harrison Twp, Michigan)        

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A proposed solution to me would seem to isolate the tub with rubber insulators from the spider so that while there would be potential, the circuit would be open and thus it couldn't short to itself when there is an electrolyte present. In other words, extrapolate the dielectric union concept from plumbing to the joints between the spider and the tub.

I believe the spider is already grounded by virtue of the frame.

To all those saying galvanic action cannot explain why some corrode and others don't based on usage, I reiterate that the buildup by improper usage is what can act as the electrolyte when they cycle is over. Clean machines don't have this electrolyte remaining and thus don't have galvanic action and don't have spider failure.

Just my opinion.

Post# 975072 , Reply# 149   12/22/2017 at 23:23 (1,043 days old) by henene4 (Germany)        
sPeEDqUeEN is 100% correct

The bio film is the reason, as that bio film acts as electrolyte. Without electrolyte no complete galvanic element and barely any corrosion.
It's like a car battery that is dry. No voltage. Fill it with water, voltage.
During the actual wash cycle, the concentration of electrolyte is probably to low to cause corrosion.
And some washers are then grounded via the heater grounding.

I was beforehand of the opinion that it couldn't be of galvanic nature, but the voltage measurements proof otherwise.
It also makes sense in another way: Stainless steel used for the basket can't rust usually due to its structure as a mixture of elements, and aluminium usually dosen't deteriorate as it is covered with a layer of aluminium oxide by nature which acts as a natural, self-repairing rust protection layer.
The galvanic corrosion however "pulls atoms from within the spider to the surface" so to speak, just going past the natural rust protection of the aluminium and just bypassing the protection of the SS material.

Grounding would help if I didn't mix up my knowledge there (grounding the less precious material, in that case aluminium).
But it is not given in todays machines! The tub is plastic, thus no direct grounding through the cabinet. You'd have to put a ground wire to the bearing.

Or you seperate drum and spider. There are enormous forces acting on that connection however, and any isolator I know of would be far weaker then the aluminium, so that is not really an option.

Post# 975089 , Reply# 150   12/23/2017 at 05:04 (1,042 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        
Grounding Of SS Tubs And Spiders Etc

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All these parts are deliberately grounded on most FL or TL washers, so grounding does not seem help, on machines with plastic outer tubs there is a ground wire running to the bearing hub, this id done for safety in case the heater or other electrical part fails and comes into contact with the basket which could present a hazzard to the appliances user.


John L.

Post# 975134 , Reply# 151   12/23/2017 at 09:40 (1,042 days old) by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        
Is it not possible that there are many factors

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Involved in corrosion? And most of those factors are mitigated through cleaning? Some corroding factors are no doubt enhanced by the manner in which a machine is used.

I've mentioned here before that I spent a long time cleaning and repairing machines in Germany. Spider corrosion was minimal, even on the lowest-end Italian machines.

And they do, indeed, use chlorine bleach in Italy.

They also let the machines dry out (open doors) let the machines heat the water to temperatures which minimize microbial slime build up (and guess what that slime does) and use detergents which actually, you know, clean.

American makers (and those programming otherwise European machines) for quite a while refused to learn from the 50+ years experience of the rest of the world. At the same time as they were not putting drain holes in the boots, lowering water levels to non-functional levels and using poor programming and poor quality materials there were two other factors at hand:

1) No heating elements - the absurdly weak 110V/15Amp (110, 115, 117, 120, 121, 125, 127VAC, for the a-retentive) power available makes more than lukewarm washing impossible.

2) Until very recently, the phosphate free detergents on offer in the US were beyond useless.


So, yeah, galvanic corrosion is a thing. So is corrosion from the microbial slime. Heck, I wouldn't be surprised to find evidence that cavitation plays a role.

It's not the chlorine bleach, primarily, it's the build up of microbes and filth coupled with arrogant manufacturers who couldn't be bothered to research because, after all, what could the rest of the world know?

Post# 975160 , Reply# 152   12/23/2017 at 13:14 (1,042 days old) by rp2813 (Sannazay)        

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I highly doubt that the suggested cleaning procedure for our 2008 Affinity FL has much, if any impact on the spider.  It's just a standard wash cycle with bleach, which I run perhaps twice a year on average.


Our Duet OTOH, employed a medium speed spin during its "Clean Washer" cycle that threw the bleach solution into every possible nook and cranny.  Since the Affinity doesn't even possess a dedicated cycle for cleaning,  I'm amazed that we've gotten over nine years of service from it without a catastrophe.


Post# 975276 , Reply# 153   12/24/2017 at 03:49 (1,041 days old) by mark_wpduet (Lexington KY)        

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My duet is from 2005 before clean washer cycles were on the washers. However, I learned after 5 or 6 years of owning it that I can press a sequence of buttons to activate a clean washer cycle where it fills with a lot of water and spins rapidly with throwing water EVERYWHERE! I think I have to press select drain/spin. select warm/cold, cycle signal to low, and extra rinse 3 times or something like that. I haven't used it in a while. I got my manual out and it's indeed in the very back what the sequence is. I never even noticed it in the manual when I first read it.

I do wish our washers connected to 220V like the dryers or ranges. But even still, if I choose heavy duty/more soil or whitest whites more soil, and especially sanitary, my duet gets plenty hot, like dishwasher hot.

Post# 983596 , Reply# 154   2/20/2018 at 14:57 (983 days old) by awr (Racine, WI)        

@ combo52;

Galvanic corrosion *IS* with absolutely no doubt the mechanism of destruction the fact that the two dissimilar metals have an electrolyte between them, current WILL FLOW, the current is generated as the weaker metal dissolved (zinc in the copper-zinc equation).

You are saying it's 'operator error' which is nonsense because it only can happen do to the systemic DESIGN FLAW.

Inventing a machine that IS A BATTERY at least (at all times while being used), does not let the designers of said machine off-the-hook just because people that happen to remove all the electrolyte out of the battery between uses manage to get longer life out of their battery. It's absolute fact.

A couple very simple solutions would have prevented this world-wide sham; paint the spider for $1 per machine would have done the trick.

You can't insulated the spider from the tub because they are bolted together, you'd have to use non-conductive bolts, that will not be possible. An insulating washer would possibly help because it will increase the thickness of the electrolytic film required to bridge the gap, but it just takes 'not the perfect soap' to build up just a 0.001" thickness per use and it can build up a centimeter in half a year.

The spider is grounded through the bearing, the tub is grounded through the bolts holding the spider to the tub. 'grounding' is related to the problem; the tub and spider are electrically connected.

I just realized a caveat; you COULD insulate the tub from the spider by using a non-conductive WASHER between the bolts/screw heads and the tub, while ALSO using an insulator between the tub and the spider.

The problem with that; is you just made a capacitor; a crappy one so hopefully wouldn't be able to build voltage. You also didn't eliminate the battery action if enough paste builds up.

I'm working on re-building a spider on one of these machines. The epoxy was not strong enough and the drum started to wobble. I will share my solution with photos as I resolve this issue.

If i retain any of the original aluminum spider I will paint it to eliminate conduction through the electrolyte. If I don't, I will be using steel for the new spider spokes and that should not have a different enough chemical make-up from stainless to generate a voltage.

My purpose in my initial post was to counteract any of the posting out there 'in the wild' of the internet trying to claim that the spider damage was other than galvanic corrosion; by measuring the voltage created across the spider to tub interface is absolute proof that the inner tub of *ANY AND ALL* known front loading washing machines *are a galvanic cell*. I'm not aware of any that paint the spider or use steel for the spider. Anybody aware of any examples that have an actual method to prevent galvanic corrosion, please do share.

The damage is absolutely and almost exclusively caused by galvanic corrosion. Chemical corrosion an every other example are negligible in comparison. If you were to etch aluminum with an acid or a base, it will build up a protective layer of the reactant, that will stop the reaction. Aluminum oxide is so tough, you can't weld through it, puh lease, bleach disolve? yeah right!

I showed the multimeter that demonstrates with ZERO doubt that galvanic corrosion absolutely happens, If I am wrong show me a chemical corrosion experiment demonstrating a real-world mixture dissolved into the ratio you will find in a FL machine and I will admit that *some small amount* of chemical corrosion may also cause some small amount of damage (maybe 10% of the damage).

The vast majority of damage of all these spiders is absolutely galvanic. If you use detergent that dissolves easily enough to drain and not leave residue it will only cause damage while the machine is running, but it will STILL always dissolve while the machine has soapy water; the electrolyte can be liquid not a paste.


Post# 983660 , Reply# 155   2/20/2018 at 23:56 (983 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        

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Hi AWR, how come the spiders only corrode and break on machines that are used with cold water, too little detergent, and no chlorine bleach ?, explain that. If it was a design flaw all FL washers would corrode and fail and yet when FD redesigned their FL washers a decade ago and used a much heaver spider we have never seen one fail since, we have also never seen a SQ spider fail in commercial use.


We have far more real life experience with FL washers in real homes than you do, we have literately thousands of customers with FL washers and have seen nearly 1000 spiders fail and when you see the gunky machine it is never a surprise that it corroded and broke.


The other interesting thing is when these same home machines are used in commercial settings often washing up to 20 loads a day the spiders never corrode and break.


John L.

Post# 983710 , Reply# 156   2/21/2018 at 13:21 (982 days old) by awr (Racine, WI)        

Easy enough to explain; I've worked on a few of these machines that almost exclusively use WARM water wash, occasional bleach use. 100% of the FL i've opened up have galvanic corrosion. (laws of physics dictate this should be expected)

It does TAKE YEARS (on the order of ten) to reach a point of evident failure from the operator's standpoint. It also makes sense that cold-water wash speeds up the destruction as the detergent will not dissolve as well into cold water no matter what the mfg brags. By adding thickness to the spider just makes it last longer; if it takes 10 years to fail with 0.15 thickness making it 0.20 thick might last 20-25 years and effectively eliminate the failure mode since something else will break first it's still a BAND-AID. a FIX eliminates the problem (e.g. paint the spider so no conduction can take place).

It makes perfect sense that the commercial machines don't have the failure mode; the continuous use prevents the dry off cycle that allows for the film to build up, they also may have a programmed in clean cycle or extra rinse, or the typical use pattern (hot water, more bleach etc) that remove the source of the electrolytic film/paste build-up. If they are regularly cleaned the galvanic corrosion can be the secondary corrosion and just normal chemical corrosion can be the primary wear, the thickness of the metal would allow it to last 40 years with just chemical corrosion (base etching the aluminum).

It's the pause between uses (home machines likely used 2-4x per week, perhaps less), that allows the film to dry between uses and turn into the paste that stays between washes and will build up and stay there 24-7 and not only be a galvanic cell while washing. If that film is greatly reduced by hot water, or extra rinse or continuous use, there won't be enough surface area in contact with both metals to create an effective battery cell. The paste builds up, sort of dries out but gets wetted each use, the wet paste sticks to new material each wash and it builds up a little more each time.

Facts are still facts; the corrosion we see on these spiders is demonstrably from galvanic corrosion. The MFG brags that we can use them to wash with cold water, but designed them so that if we do, they self-destruct that is the very definition of a design failure. They designed it to fail.

(they didn't do on purpose it was an oversight).

They don't design them differently for use in commercial machines afaik, so again, design FLAW; they know from 100 years of people using machines, that normal people want to use cold water both to keep clothes looking better and to spend less $ on heating water, they brag about it, specifically the brag is that FL machines can clean better with cold water, they also have a very specific guide of how much detergent to use each use so your too little soap comment doesn't hold water. The machine doesn't clear out the soap each use when used occasionally that is a design flaw (for a residential machine). The MFG will say to use only certain kinds of soap (as a band-aid to the design flaw, it's ludicrous). If TIDE could be proven to be the primary cause of the spider destruction that would be a very big lawsuit.

To be clear MY discussion pertains exclusively to the residential use of a FL washing machine. As far as i can tell every single one has the same design flaw; an uncoated aluminum spider electrically attached to a steel drum and collects a growing film of soap residue that is an electrolyte. That is is *possible* to treat the machine 'just right' and only have a self-destructive machine every time it's operating vs 24-7 doesn't negate the fact that every MFG overlooked the galvanic problem and to this day is pretending it doesn't exist so they won't have legal liability that goes back 40-50 years when they first made the decision to not coat the spiders when some smart engineer noticed that it's a galvanic cell and sent a memo that is locked deep deep in a safe buried in a mountain that said they should coat the spiders or they could be having a problem as the spider consumes itself.

It is implausible that 'they didn't know' mechanical engineers KNOW. They knew, they know now, they will know in a decade that it was a bad decision to put dissimilar metals into an electrolyte and to save money they chose to not paint the spiders. It took 15-20 years to really find out the gravity of their mistake and since 100s of MILLION$ are on the line they must lie and cover-up the truth. If people died from it and not just forced to replace a $1000 machine twice as often, the recall and lawsuits would be monumental. One could argue planned obsolesce and they did it on-purpose so that people would have to replace the machine more often, they could even argue it's a conspiracy among all the brands since they all have the problem, and people will very likely NOT by the SAME brand (ironically switching from kenmore to whirlpool etc), and not realizing that ALL BRANDS have the same systemic failure problem.

it's also a FACT that maintained in 'just the right way' it will be possible to avoid the galvanic destruction when used in a residential setting. This will require non-normal use of a machine, it will require maintenance outside the normal use 'plug and play' that 99% will follow, only the 1% will go through the effort required to prevent the problem.

So summary: your statement "only machines which use cold water and too little detergent" is not accurate at all. You personally are in a situation of "can't see the forest for the trees" because you see too many machines and the apparently percentage is too many commercial machines.

100% of the residential machines that i've worked on have this problem. I'm working out a preventative maintenance solution to add years to these machines' lives by taking out the drum, sand-blast the gunk off the spider and paint them. The galvanic corrosion will stop in its tracks and some other part can be the 'end of life' failure mode.

Google galvanic corrosion hall of shame, or similar, you will find 1000s of pictures of this problem. I'm not saying it's not possible to avoid the problem, i'm saying that laws of physics dictate that ANY two dissimilar metals that are in an electrolyte and have an electrical connection will generate electricity and the anode of the two will dissolve that's simply how it works, 100% of the time. You can slow the rate the anode dissolves by reducing any of the factors; how much surface area is touching both the electrolyte and the two metals, use different metals, etc, but as long as they are different, touching, and bathed in electrolyte it's the very definition of a galvanic cell and will dissolve.


Post# 983716 , Reply# 157   2/21/2018 at 14:16 (982 days old) by johnb300m (Chicago)        

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Before this is all considered "fact," there needs to be more chemical and mechanical/material study. And typing it all in caps doesn't make it more so.
These are claims from your observation, and even John's observation.
The tests and observations are of course interesting and appreciated.
Some of those observations coincide, and some seem not to.
It seems like this issue can have a lot of facets. From part design, metal composition, assembly procedure, customer use, additives used, home conditions, WATER conditions etc etc.

(example: I have very alkaline water, softened, 8 - 8.5ph, whereas my parents have hard, Chicago water at 7.0ph. Our appliances wash very differently with different detergents.)

I'd like to hear from some appliance engineers hiding in the weeds on this issue.
If it is in fact some kind of rampant galvanic issue, I'm sure the appliance engineers work on this and with it.

**Please engineers, come forth. Help us understand.
You do not have to reveal what house you work for. **

Also, for this to be truly scientific, we need lots of peer reviewed and repeated experimentation and observation.

This crisis also reminds me of my pharmacist dad, who insists that all of society is sick and on drugs. Well, yeah from his perspective. All he sees is the sick people....cuz they need his drugs! He's not seeing the vast swaths of healthy people.
This here, if it was that much of a corrosion pandemic, it would be all over the news and we'd be covered in stories of exploding front loaders.
Which we're not.
Not to say it NOT a problem. But it seems like a minor one in the market.
As always, "more study" is needed.

A fact is a statement that is true or can be proven with evidence. The usual test for a statement of fact is verifiability — that is, whether it can be demonstrated to correspond to experience. Standard reference works are often used to check facts. Scientific facts are verified by repeatable careful observation or measurement (by experiments or other means).

Thank you AWR for your "thesis" and I would happily like to see these claims re-tested to see how the observations and electrical measurements match up.

Also, I'll offer this thread for further reading. The comments were interesting:

^ there's a link in there about a WP Canadian court case where WP had to change the aluminum specs and design to reduce corrosion, which it seems they did around 2008.

Post# 983717 , Reply# 158   2/21/2018 at 14:19 (982 days old) by Lorainfurniture (Cleveland )        
The simple fix

A tiny square of plastic between the spider and the tub would do it. (Shim). That with a plastic washer on the screw and it would be isolated.

Post# 984224 , Reply# 159   2/25/2018 at 07:43 (978 days old) by askolover (South of Nash Vegas, TN)        

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But what about the bolts that go through the stainless steel and into the aluminum spider? 

When my Asko finally dies beyond repair I will open it up to see what's hiding in there.  21 years now, and I use Clorox frequently.

Post# 984230 , Reply# 160   2/25/2018 at 08:03 (978 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        

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But what about the bolts that go through the SS drum into the aluminum spider ?


You are correct Greg, just putting a plastic washer between the two different metals does little good, there are ways to use special fasteners to do this but it affects the strength of the assembly.


Painting or coating of the aluminum would likley do very good as well, when washers had pot-metal aluminum water pumps manufactures tried different epoxy coatings etc and they did as much harm as good, because moisture would get under the coating and corrode even more quickly.


Greg I would be willing to bet when you do an autopsy on your 20+ YO Asko some day that the spider will look close to new.


John L.

Post# 984234 , Reply# 161   2/25/2018 at 08:08 (978 days old) by askolover (South of Nash Vegas, TN)        

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I think so too John.  If I could obtain enough parts to keep it running forever I'd do it.  Just found a used timer on eBay to switch out since the old one sticks and just ticks...but it still works great otherwise! 

Post# 987552 , Reply# 162   3/21/2018 at 14:22 (954 days old) by Combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        
Pictures of a corroded and cracked spider out of a five-year

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Old LG 24 inch washer, you can see that it was definitely electrolytic corrosion by the way that the corrosion happens in the center of the spider and not where aluminum and stainless steel are clamped together, LOL

  Photos...       <              >      Photo 1 of 3         View Full Size
Post# 987643 , Reply# 163   3/22/2018 at 08:29 (953 days old) by Rolls_rapide (.)        

Could the cracks be stress fractures, caused by using too thin a grade of aluminium alloy?

Post# 987653 , Reply# 164   3/22/2018 at 09:35 (953 days old) by kenwashesmonday (Haledon, NJ)        

My vote would be dissimilar metals within the casting, like what often happens to pot metal as it ages.  I've seen this quite a bit when working on antique radios and phonographs.

Post# 987658 , Reply# 165   3/22/2018 at 11:08 (953 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        
Hi Guys

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It is corrosion pure and simple, they corrode in this area because this is where the bio-film [ crud from poor washing habits ] accumulates and keeps the area moist.

The notion of impurities in the aluminum is ridiculous, all three arms are corroded in the same area, if it were impurities it would have to be random.

John L.

Post# 987701 , Reply# 166   3/22/2018 at 16:27 (953 days old) by neptunebob (Pittsburgh, PA)        

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Are these spiders anodized? It seems that might help, as anodizing is a form of corrosion and it might not do any more in use. Again, I wonder if Alcoa (Arconic?) research has done anything to solve this issue.

Post# 987861 , Reply# 167   3/24/2018 at 08:47 (951 days old) by kenwashesmonday (Haledon, NJ)        

I'm thinking that if it were actually pure aluminum, it wouldn't corrode like that.

Post# 987871 , Reply# 168   3/24/2018 at 09:40 (951 days old) by Rolls_rapide (.)        
"impurities in the aluminium is ridiculous"

If it is made of a mixture of various metals, then there could be different stress tolerances and flaws in the mixture (eg. air bubbles).

I was thinking that since all three arms are cracked at the same point, it must be stresses caused by the twisting force of the drum shaft.

Post# 987872 , Reply# 169   3/24/2018 at 09:42 (951 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        
Corroded Spiders

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You have to remember that due to poor washing and usage habits this area of the spider that corrodes and breaks is coated in over a 1/2" of toxic gunk that stays wet all the time, even anodizing or epoxy coatings over aluminum will fail under these conditions.

When manufactures design and build these washers they never imagined that people could misuse them is badly and in extensive factory and commercial testing these same machines NEVER fail.

John L.

Post# 987874 , Reply# 170   3/24/2018 at 09:49 (951 days old) by Rolls_rapide (.)        

Maybe some enterprising soul should send a sample of the drum spider for metallurgical analysis. Then we could find out exactly what it is made of. But it might vary batch to batch, manufacturer to manufacturer.

Post# 987876 , Reply# 171   3/24/2018 at 10:00 (951 days old) by combo52 (Beltsville,Md)        
Vary Batch To Batch ?

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With today's very good manufacturing and quality control it is most unlikely that something like this would vary batch to batch, these machines are not hand built out behind the barn, LOL

John L.

Post# 987885 , Reply# 172   3/24/2018 at 10:23 (951 days old) by Rolls_rapide (.)        
Vary batch to batch

Oh, I don't know - with parts coming from deepest darkest China, anything is possible.

You only need to look at all the carry on with dodgy lithium batteries, faulty chargers and so on to realise not everything is manufactured 'just so'.

Post# 987926 , Reply# 173   3/24/2018 at 15:13 (951 days old) by thomasortega (El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora de Los Angeles de Porciúncula)        

Not everything from China is bad.

Production in China is actually extremely accurate (good factories, not the xing ling ones) and they make everything according to specs.

But when they're given poor specs to save money (and 1 cent per unit makes a huge difference on the final price) plus the consumers desperate for the cheapest bargain at Amazon or Walmart, the result is the poor crap we see nowadays.

So everything can be reduced to only two words: PRODUCTION COST.

There are two ways to deal with it nowadays:

1) Make good products and have people saying "OMG, this washer is much more expensive than the one i saw on the previous link, this manufacturer is trying to steal my money, I'll buy the cheapest one because I'm smart, even knowing that the cheapest one is a crap with 90 day warranty and the expensive one comes with a 3-year warranty and costs 10% more.

2) Follow the beaten path and make crap so the price will be similar to the competitor. Give the "Chinese" factory specific orders to cut every cent on production, go as cheap as possible, to become competitive.

Post# 987928 , Reply# 174   3/24/2018 at 15:23 (951 days old) by thomasortega (El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora de Los Angeles de Porciúncula)        

The spiders problem doesn't have one cause. It's a series of things that together creates a time bomb.

1) Ridiculously low water levels (D.O.E.)
2) Poor quality materials (not exactly poor, but there is a ways to make it better, but it costs more)
3) Impossibility to make it cost more because consumers want as cheap as possible.
4) Millenials that think that just tossine 1 tide pod is enough. Because it has everything, right? it should perform amazingly well and we don't need to spend money on other additives.
5) Americans want everything fast, extremely fast, the washer must wash, dry, fold and put the clothes back in the closet in 3 minutes.
6) The bigger the better, so let's toss all the laundry, the cat, the dog, the husband, the kids, the mattress and the sofa all together in one load and select the quick cycle. If it doesn't come out clean or if it destroys the washer, let's blame the manufacturer because we're paying, so we can do whatever we want and the manufacturer will always be wrong.
7) Use only cold water. Hot water is so 1970's. we need to save the world and hug trees. Should be add some ice cubes and make a "wash on the rocks"? It doesn't matter if the final rinse drains like snot or if the clothes are dingy What matter is the washer using as little water as possible. and to mask the stench, we can add more fabric softener, more scent booster, spend more money buying odor or stain rescue pods, odor neutralizers, etc.
8) Let's keep the door closed after every use. Who cares if it will create the perfect environment for mold? We can sue the manufacturer if we had mold issues. This is 2018, the manufacturers should have created a way to prevent mold without changing our bad habits.

Post# 987935 , Reply# 175   3/24/2018 at 15:32 (951 days old) by thomasortega (El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora de Los Angeles de Porciúncula)        

Someday I'll create a thread with the stupid questions I receive almost every day.

the top rank is:

1) Can I wash a king size duvet in a WonderWash washer?
2) Do I need to use detergent with your washers? How can you say you're a green company if we need to use detergent to wash clothes?
3) Is it really necessary to rinse the clothes after washing? But I use Tide Pods, doesn't it do everything at once?
4) I believe there is a mistake on the user manual, it says you can use hot water. Don't you know that using hot water will destroy our planet?{
5) I let the clothes running for one hour in your spin dryer but they're not completelly dry. they don't even get hot, i think the product is defective. And also, the clothes leave the machine horribly wrinkled.

Post# 988009 , Reply# 176   3/25/2018 at 05:50 (950 days old) by potatochips (Nova Scotia)        
Dissimilar metals

Ok, Ok, Ive followed this thread for enough time.

Dissimilar metals can be a serious issue without proper protection, and that includes mixing stainless and aluminum. I worked at an oil refinery for many years as a control room operator/plant operator and currently work at a hospital doing the same thing so I have lots of experience with piping, metals, codes, requirements etc... Two metals that should never be fastened together without proper protection is stainless steel and carbon steel. Stainless has most of its excess minerals removed making it mostly impervious to corrosion. However, because of this, it will pull these minerals from carbon steel, or other metals with a higher mineral content, like aluminum. This is measured as the current potential between metals, noble and anodic metals.

Demineralized water codes and engineering requirements completely prohibit the use of carbon steel on demineralized water piping as the demineralized water will pull the impurities and minerals right out of the carbon steel, thus causing galvanic corrosion.

"just putting a plastic washer between the two different metals does little good"

The truth is this actually does great good. Some of our instrumentation such as flow meters have stainless bodies and are on carbon steel lines. Between the flanges are a gasket that is not made of metal, plastic. This works very well and retards the corrosion to a very predictable slow rate.

Water will act as an electrolyte for this corrosion to occur. And because residential water from the utility or well is very high in conductivity, this will only speed up the galvanic corrosion and cause the water to be a much better electrolyte.


How much of the aluminum spider actually touches the stainless drum, surface area, is different from manufacturer to manufacturer. The surface area for sure has an effect on how fast and where this type of corrosion occurs. Im not surprised the spiders fail where they do as I feel the cracking right next to the drive shaft is happening at a high stress area, and there is no question these aluminum spiders look corroded when they come out of a broken machine.


I personally believe this spider issue isnt one golden nugget problem but rather a calamity of issues. I believe the dissimilar metals and galvanic corrosion has a serious effect on the spiders life time, the stainless pulling whatever it can out of the aluminum and weakening it at a high stress point (which you can tell its the highest stress point since the metal is beefier there). Couple that with customers not leaving their doors open to allow the machine to air dry, using too little bleach to prevent the buildup of organic material which can very well contribute to the demise since those bacterial processes can create acidic environments.


Theres a multitude of errors here, theres not one smoking gun.

Post# 988015 , Reply# 177   3/25/2018 at 06:41 (950 days old) by Rolls_rapide (.)        

So, corrosion up to the point where stresses take over.

I just wish they'd use materials a tad more robust. It'd save everyone a lot of grief.

Post# 988016 , Reply# 178   3/25/2018 at 07:12 (950 days old) by gizmo (Great Ocean Road, Victoria, Au)        
non-aluminium spider

I have the drum and backplate assembly from an old Asko in my shed. It is from a model 12004, whenever that was - pre-2000 for sure. (I still have 2 complete machines of the same model too, needing minor repairs, but still with their original bearings and spider in good condition.)

It has a stainless steel spider - flat pressed stainless steel, welded to the centre shaft. It still has the backplate attached so it is a bit difficult to see, but it is clear enough. No al.

I wonder what newer Askos do?

Post# 988036 , Reply# 179   3/25/2018 at 10:07 (950 days old) by potatochips (Nova Scotia)        

It has to be a multitude of issues that brings machines to this point. I dont believe its one solid thing that causes the chain of events.


I had a front load GE in my old townhouse that was brand new. I had it five years and always took care of it as the instructions said so. Never grew mold or anything. It may be a symptom of North Americans not understanding that FL machines arent care free like TL.


Speaking of that, does this issue occur in Europe? Or is it a North American issue? What brands are more prone to failure?

Post# 988106 , Reply# 180   3/25/2018 at 17:28 (950 days old) by speedqueen (Harrison Twp, Michigan)        

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Another issue is people's fascination with SS tubs, porcelain coated steel tubs had no direct metal to metal contact for many years before the porcelain enamel began to fail. If the tub were all porcelain coated, there would be no metal to metal contact, just metal to porcelain. Were W&WW Spacemates known to have  spider failures? Did they have aluminum spiders?

Post# 988125 , Reply# 181   3/25/2018 at 18:37 (950 days old) by gizmo (Great Ocean Road, Victoria, Au)        

It certainly happens here in Australia, but we are a nation of cold water washers. Not me I hasten to add.
Hoover Australia took a UK designed front loader and put it into production here. It was simplified by deleting the dispenser drawer (just put detergent in the drum) and the heater became optional - if the model number ended in 0 it had no heater, if it ended in 5 it had a heater. The heater models were rare. Despite this, they had a good solid spider and problems with them were uncommon. bearing and seal changes were common, though.

Bendixes made in Italy were sold here and they seemed to escape spider troubles, but I don't think you could do a cold wash in them. Pacific washers were a rebadged Gorenje and they had unreliable timers but I never saw one with a failed spider, and they had an "E" button to turn off the heater.

GE sold an Italian made front loader, I don't know who the manufacturer was, but they had a thin, frail looking spider and I saw several of them dead from spider failure. You had to replace the drum and it was too expensive.

My LG washer from before 2000 was only a few years old but had a broken spider when I got it, I replaced the spider and bearings and it had been great for many years since.

I had always considered spider failure to be a mixture of poor design, cold water washing and poor detergents. One detergent sold here, EUCA, makes a big deal about not being harmful to cast aluminium components. I have never considered galvanic action to be a part of the problem, it is an interesting theory.

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