new fisher paykel machine?

todathomeMarch 26, 2011

We are looking at a new washer and have found a local shop with 3 floor units for sale, all Fisher Paykel. The models are GWL15 priced at $464; WL37T26CW2 priced at $549 and WL26CWI priced at $599. Our original GWL08 has died and it's time for replacement. Anybody have opinions on these models and could possibly tell me the difference? Many Thanks!

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dadoes

GWL15 is an agitator machine roughly equivalent to your GWL08. GWL15 is actually a "last years" model, the current machine per F&P's web site is WA42T26GW1. There's no substantial difference between them, so don't be concerned about it.

There are some differences in GWL15 compared to your GWL08. F&P agitator models GWL10 and later have their EcoActive wash system, which was not on your GWL08. All cycles except Perm Press begin with a low-water fill, just enough water to saturate the clothes, dissolve the detergent and keep the pump primed for recirculation. This concentrated detergent solution is showered over the clothes through a recirculation port at right rear of the tub for a few minutes while the basket rotates at 25 RPM. ONLY this initial fill is at the selected temperature. After the recirculation period, the machine fills to the auto-sensed (or manual-selected) water level with cold water for an agitated wash. Also, the rinse is by default a shower-rinse (like the Save Water option on your GWL08), with an agitated rinse being the Softener Rinse option.

WL37T26C and WL26CW1 are AquaSmart models ... low-fill HE machines with a wash impeller instead of a traditional agitator. They're basically like the Kenmore Oasis, Whirlpool Cabrio, and Maytag Bravos HE toploaders. In fact, Whirlpool borrowed F&P's SmartDrive motor and floating basket design for the original O/C/B models. Some AquaSmart cycles are low-fill HE-only. Others fill with more water (Bulky, for example) or can optionally be set for either HE or deep-fill.

You can view User Guides by model number search at www.fisherpaykel.com under the Customer Care section for more details on the features and operation.

Also, there are videos on YouTube that show the EcoActive wash.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2011 at 10:52PM
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todathome

Any thoughts as to whether the agitator or impeller type is better at cleaning? Also, any issues with reliability?

    Bookmark   March 27, 2011 at 2:23AM
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dadoes

I can't personally say about F&P agitator vs. impeller as I've not used an impeller machine. As with anything else, I've read comments on various HE impeller-style brands/models ranging from extreme dislike to raving satisfaction.

Further clarification on the EcoActive wash process regarding water temp. There's ordinarily no way to get a full-fill hot wash on GWL15. This is the "Eco" part of the EcoSmart model reference and the machine's design. The Perm Press cycle skips EcoActive directly to the agitated wash, but is normally limited to no higher than warm water temp. However, a hidden programming option intended as a "machine cleaning" cycle allows configuring Perm Press with a hot wash ... and it can be used to wash clothes. If one doesn't mind a bit of "button-pushing," a hot fill can also be had by running the water valve via Diagnostic Mode to fill the tub manually (set a water level manually, start the cycle, and the machine will begin at the agitated wash since it's already filled).

Regards to reliability, AquaSmart has a different pump than the agitator machine but they're otherwise largely mechanically identical. Potential problems on all models are the usual suspects ... pumps, water valves, recirculation diverter valve on the agitator models (the different pump design on AquaSmart does away with the diverter), and the occasional tub bearing & seal.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2011 at 1:13AM
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kmickleson

Dadoes, plugging along in my research here, for me the Fisher Paykel WL42T26CW1 shows on their website as an AquaSmart, not an EcoActrive agitator model as you describe above.

Did I get that right? Link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: Fisher Paykel AquaSmart WL42T26CW1

    Bookmark   April 1, 2011 at 7:45PM
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dadoes

Yes, as the picture shows, AquaSmart models have a wash plate/impeller, not a traditional agitator. AquaSmart models are akin to Oasis/Cabrio/Bravos. As I mentioned previously, Whirlpool borrowed F&P's SmartDrive motor and floating-basket design for the initial O/C/B machines and are still using it for the upper-end models, other models are now using the new belt-drive design.

The three AquaSmart models currently on F&P's site differ thusly:

The LCD unit is the top-of-line model with a deluxe control panel, additional cycle options, and detergent/bleach/softener dispensers.

The LED models have fewer cycle options and a standard button panel. The D model has detergent/bleach/softener dispensers. The K model does not have dispensers, but should have the same cycle selections as the D model. I believe there's an error on the K model description regards to 19 Lifecycles (the description references the LCD model).

Instruction manuals are viewable on F&P's site to check the operational details.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2011 at 8:05PM
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kmickleson

Then I'm confused. You said,

"GWL15 is an agitator machine roughly equivalent to your GWL08. GWL15 is actually a "last years" model, the current machine per F&P's web site is WA42T26GW1". So I went there to find it being an agitator machine.

But WA42T26GW1 shows up for me as an impeller AquaSmart, *not* an agitator machine, as I read your sentence. *Nothing* shows up for WL37T26C, nor for WL26CW1. Hence I can't look at their manuals.

What am I getting wrong? Where on the FP website is their current agitator model?

    Bookmark   April 1, 2011 at 9:26PM
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dadoes

You linked WL42T26CW1 above, not WA42T26GW1.

Are we somehow we're not seeing the same info on F&P's site, or looking at it from different approaches?

The machines I see across the page at Fisher & Paykel Clothes Washers are labeled:
1) Model WL42T26CW1 AquaSmart LCD
2) Model WL42T26DW1 AquaSmart LED
3) Model WL42T26KW1 AquaSmart LED
4) Model WA42T26GW1 EcoSmart (the current non-HE agitator machine)

WL37T26C and WL26CW1 are not current models, but user manuals for them can be found under Customer Care - Find a User Guide.

I believe on the current model number syntax, WL refers to AquaSmart (washer, low-water). WA indicates an agitator machine.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2011 at 12:47AM
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kmickleson

Pardon my brain rot of yesterday, and thank you for your patience. Thus far I'm leaning somewhat enthusiastically towards the GW1 EcoSmart agitator model. (Saw your You Tube videos on it.) Reviews I've found are almost consistently good, tho few in number; and, it has customizable features, choice to manually choose water level, and a pause button so you can open it up after start without gooofing up the program (if I'm reading the manual correctly).

Who on earth needs 17 different wash cycles to choose from? Maybe someone with several kids.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2011 at 4:20PM
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restorer-john

Old post I know, but I am trying to find out how to access possible diagnostics on an aquasmart lcd for the motor and drive side of the machine (assuming there is a diagnostics for that). The normal service mode seems to only operate valves, dispensers, etc and shows no errors. I am attempting to determine what is causing an out of balance issue with an otherwise perfect machine. It's my mums machine. The suspension rods all seem straight, there is water in the balance rings but obviously there are several interrelating mechanical and electronic systems in place here.
Can anyone (dadoes?) help?

    Bookmark   October 23, 2012 at 7:23PM
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dadoes

There are no diagnostics to run the SmartDrive motor in either agitate or spin. Spin can be checked in normal operating mode. Only difference between agitate and spin is how the current is fed to make the motor oscillate instead of rotate continuously. If it is works in spin then the motor itself is theoretically OK.

AquaSmart models have software OOB detection via rotational inertia characteristics read from the motor. There is no physical off-balance sensor or switch. Usual fault for off-balance troubles is bad suspension rods (even if they look OK). There are also the elastic straps.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2012 at 10:04PM
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restorer-john

Thank you Dadoes. I am very grateful for your insightful reply- I cannot get any sense out of anyone in Australia.

It would seem there are three possibilities, the ballast rings, the suspension rods and the elastic straps. Based on your experience, which would be the most likely? The machine has had very little use, extremely light loads and only recently started to exhibit the wild out of balance issues. I figured suspension rods would be a gradual deterioration whereas loss of water ballast would result in a sudden issue.
Do the elastic straps deteriorate rapidly?
It would be a shame to replace all the suspension gear to find out the bowl had lost water ballast...I can hear water in the upper ring, but without data on how much it should weigh when removed, I cannot determine whether it has lost any or not.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2012 at 7:43PM
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dadoes

Service info I have says AquaSmart basket is to weigh 24lb 3oz +/- 10 oz (10.965kg +/- 275g).

Trouble with continual OOB, check:
1) Clothes load characteristics, even distribution and mix of light/heavy items.
2) Machine is level and stable on floor.
3) The four Dynaflex straps are not broken or detached.
4) Basket weight is within range (balance rings not leaked).
5) Check the RPS

Regarding #5 ... a flaky Rotor Position Sensor can cause erroneous OOB due to erratic readings. Unfortunately, the only way to test the RPS is with a specific RPS Tester tool. A replacement RPS is not overly expensive (the tester costs more), so replacing it for lack of any other choice is not unreasonable if all other suspect items check OK. If looking into the motor at the RPS, note if there's any obvious corrosion on the connection terminals or if maybe it just isn't securely seated.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2012 at 8:20PM
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restorer-john

I found a useful instructional you had posted in another thread and removed the inner drum (yes, those punched edges are sharp..) and took it to my local post office where I confirmed the weight was 10.990kg. It is therefore within the spec range you had specified.
The RPS was removed, inspected and reseated. The cabling and loom appears undamaged.
Incidentally at the time, I transposed three of the four rods to opposing and adjacent corners and the machine ran through a full rinse/spin at maximum speed. The load however was only very small (4 small towels) so we logic suggests the suspension rods are likely poorly functioning.
I have ordered a set of 4 new suspension rods and will install them and possibly order the elastic straps too as they appear to be fine. (the elastic straps are 10 days away on order, so I can try the rods alone first)
The suspension rod set is about AUD$116 delivered, so it is worth it.
Thank you again and I will report back after the install and test.
john

    Bookmark   November 19, 2012 at 10:29PM
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