Backstory: Kim and I have been using these washer/dryer set that was pretty much given to us years ago… they were a set of Kenmore Series 80 HD (Heavy Duty.) Now, I’m not sure what they were called in the laundry world, but in automotive terms, they were lemons. We pretty much replaced every part on the washer a couple of times. The final straw that broke the camel’s back was Kim trying to wash a bunch of bathroom mats, (you know, the ones with the rubberized backing,) and it burnt up the clutch. This was the second time replacing it… the first time it died of natural causes.
So I call a buddy of mine, we’ll call him Peter, (mainly because it’s his name,) and Peter has two laundromats, and collects antique washing machines. He even goes to what are called “wash-ins” every once in awhile… If I have to explain, you wouldn’t understand. God knows I don’t…
Anywho, I call Peter, and ask him if he wants to help me fix the washer, (again.) He suggests that we actually invest in a new set. Now, given that I was unemployed at the time, I told him he was on crack and nearly couldn’t stop laughing at the idea. He said, no, “not “new-new” but new to you. I’m sure that we could find something on craigslist that would be an improvement, mainly because the ones you currently own need to go to the scrap metal yard.” (Side note: that’s actually where they ended up.)
So, he sent me about 20-30 different Craigslist postings that were of used Maytag washers. (Not just any Maytags either, but Newton-made Maytags. I would get into the differences, but let’s just say that they’re bulletproof.)
I called all of the ads, and one of them said that they would be willing to give me a deal, since they weren’t theirs, they were just selling them for someone else. I think I got the pair for 125 bucks.
Fast forward about a month, and about a hundred or so loads of laundry… (Remember we had a baby, and we didn’t have a working washer/dryer set for awhile before getting the *new* set.) The dryer starts making a god-awful racket when we turn it on. I have a recording of it here somewhere… once I find it, I’ll post the before/after sounds.
I call Peter because, well, he’s the man with the repair knowledge. He’s like, “no problem, we’ll go to the appliance parts warehouse in Marietta and booyah, we’ll have it fixed before the weekend. The repair-ability of the units was one of the reasons I picked them out for you.”
So, we pick up a bunch of parts from APW and tear apart the dryer. I have to admit, before I opened it up, I thought for sure it was going to be crazy complex, but it turned out to be really a pretty simple apparatus. I think that I probably could have even fixed it myself, though it would have taken me a lot longer than if Peter hadn’t been there telling me exactly what to do.
It ended up being the blower fan being worn out and not fitting on the blower axle properly. But we ended up replacing the blower fan, the drum rollers, the belt and the belt tension wheel, since well, we had it open, we might as well. Then we decided to reverse the door on the front, since it would make things easier for me and Kim… and Peter gave it a thorough, and I mean THOROUGH cleaning… there were dust tigers in there.
When we started it back up, I swear it was a different machine entirely. This thing runs so quietly that I wondered if the belt was put on wrong, but no… everything was working, and I swear, I’ve never felt the heat come out of there like that… It was truly beautiful.
Well, it might not be crafting, but rebuilding a dryer and getting it working better than ever sure ranks up there pretty high in my book! Thanks Peter, we owe you big-time!