Thread Number: 73979  /  Tag: Modern Automatic Washers
LG front loader suddenly losing balance
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Post# 977404   1/7/2018 at 22:41 (284 days old) by allan (Vancouver)        

I have an LG WM1355HW which I got in mid-2014. It has performed flawlessly until last weekend. During the spin cycle, it made loud noises and started walking. I was washing bath towels. It never did that before. I had to reposition the washer because it got rotated a few inches clockwise. The next few loads were fine, but they were mainly smaller, lighter items.

Yesterday it happened again. Both times when it happened, I was washing bath towels in Cotton/Normal mode with High spin. But I've done this countless number of times before with no issue.

When I did another load of towels today, I chose the Bulky/Large with Medium spin setting instead. I chose Bulky/Large because the Cotton/Normal mode does not allow me to choose a Medium spin. My thinking was that if I choose a slower spin cycle, perhaps the washer won't freak out as much and become unbalanced. Indeed, the washer did not walk this time. I'll need to do some more testing before I can conclude that the washer only walks when High spin is chosen and bath towels are being washed.

Is this an easy fix? Or should I just stop using High spin from now on? I think it's still under warranty. Is it worth fixing or would a Speed Queen/Miele be a better choice in terms of reliability and load balance?

Post# 977546 , Reply# 1   1/8/2018 at 22:47 (283 days old) by gansky1 (Omaha, The Home of the TV Dinner!)        

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Sounds like you might have a bad shock absorber under the drum.  Not a difficult fix, nor an expensive one.  

Post# 977556 , Reply# 2   1/8/2018 at 23:22 (283 days old) by henene4 (Germany)        
Suddenly loosing balance

Usually nothing that happens that easily.

What can be the case is that the machine is reaching one of the rpms where it's more sensitive to vibration.
Every machine has that. Everything has a resonance frequency, that is the frequency at which if it is moved in that frequency, it will react by not dampening the movement but by enhancing it.

Some machines are designed to have that frequency at the verry bottom of the rpm range so that they cross that during the verry first stage of the spin, some others are more reliant on proper shock absorbers and such.

Best thing to check first is the leveling and that all feets (with their locnuts if used) are properly located and secure, especially after the machine moved as you said.
Then I'd further monitor if the machine does that more often.

Then, things one can cheaply replace are dampers and possibly some rubber feet covers to prevent slipping on the floor.
More complicated to diagnose and expensive to fix would be an issue in the balance sensing system itself, but faults there are somewhat unlikely and more a wild guess thing then actual knowledge.

Post# 977722 , Reply# 3   1/10/2018 at 07:28 (282 days old) by gizmo (Great Ocean Road, Victoria, Au)        
shocker replacement

I have an older LG front loader, I recently replaced the dampers (shock absorbers) as it was sometimes banging on the door glass during the start of spin. It caused the whole machine to jump forward during spin.
I got a replacement pair of shockers and fitted them. Very similar to the above video. LG are unusual in that the shockers are mounted with hollow plastic pins, other brands use normal bolts and nuts.

The pins are VERY tight to install. I thought I had been given the wrong shockers as I couldn't get the pins to pass through the holes at top and bottom of the shockers. I phoned the spare parts dealer who said to hammer the pins in to place, they are VERY tight when new. he was right, when persuaded with a hammer the pins went in.

It worked better than it had in years, I hadn't realized the frequent banging during spin was a symptom of worn shockers, I had thought it just wasn't a very well engineered washing machine. The new shocks were great. UNTIL...

After about a month, it started getting hysterical in the start of spin. A bit different this time, not banging the door glass, but thumping hard against the side of the cabinet and jumping again. I peeked underneath and guess what? One of the plastic mounting pins had worked its way out and was laying on the floor. Only one shocker was connected.

I refitted the plastic pin, this time being more careful to check that the barb on the pin was protruding, so it couldn't work its way back again.

So far, so good. Spinning beautifully again.

I hope yours is as easy.

Post# 978529 , Reply# 4   1/16/2018 at 02:55 (276 days old) by allan (Vancouver)        

Thanks everyone! I think I'll look into the shock absorber thing. Right now, the washer is behaving with Medium spin. I will keep an eye on things to be sure.

Post# 978556 , Reply# 5   1/16/2018 at 10:13 (276 days old) by Stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

stricklybojack's profile picture
I would say the shock dampers on these modern machines are a weak design.
I had a TL Samsung that was going out of balance and after poking around on the internet I find there are tens of thousands with this problem, and numerous hacks to fix it rather than replace the over priced doomed to fail cheapo dampers. You can add straps, wrap the spring in rubber tubbing, or the most cleaver: use rolls of foam cushion material in each corner of the machine. It was so bad Samsung had to beef up their way under spec'd original design. If the wash basket moves too much the sensors tell the computer to shut down the machine and you will see a flashing code of some kind.

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