Level of DifficultyEasy
Time to do repair30 - 60 mins
Age of Appliance5 - 10 years
The washer (bought 9 years ago) suddenly started squealing (metal on metal sound) during the spin cycle. After turning the washing machine off and unplugging it, the washer was tipped back and propped up on a milk crate to see the belt on the bottom. There was some rubber dust from the belt, so something had seized-up to some degree. The belt was removed and each pulley was tested to see if it made any noise. Upon spinning the pulley of the water pump a scraping sound was heard. Definitely not as loud as when the washer was on, but it probably would have been if it was spinning faster.
The washer was put upright again and the lid taped to the top to secure it before lifting the top. The top was opened by sliding a putty knife between the top and front panal near the left and right corners. There are two metal clasps that will release the top with gentle pressure, do not pry on the top. The top was lifted up and set back gently so as not to bend or break the hinges. There are two small screws on the upper inner right and left side of the front panel that were removed using a nut driver in order to remove the front panel.
With the front panel removed the water pump was visible in the front, lower left hand corner on the base. The two hoses were removed from the pump by moving the hose clamps up the hose, using pliers to loosen the clamps and then pulling off the hoses with a slight twisting back and forth. I put a few towels around the pump before removal to soak up the water that came out. The three bolts holding the pump in place were removed using a socket wrench and the pump removed.
The new pump was replaced, hoses were put back on, front panel replaced and the top relatch. The washer was tipped back again to get to the bottom to put on the new belt.
That was all. It worked great.
1) Several people had mentioned having similar problems with the water pump and had observed a metal ring that had been pushed up where the pulley is connected to the shaft. I also observed this on the sqealing pump. The metal ring seem to work its way out and scrape on the metal mounting plate on the bottom of the pump. So if you see this ring, it is probably the pump.
2)I cleaned the pulleys since there was some rubber dust on them. Also you can remove the belt easily by pulling it slightly off the large pulley and then turning it off. When putting the belt back on, put it around the small pulleys first and then start it on the large pulley and turn it onto the large pulley. More leverage with the large pulley.