GE WHDVH626FWW (Adora) Bearing Failure Imminent
This message is, in part, for those seeking reliability information on the GE (Adora) front loader. I am also hoping for some informed feedback on a repair that is about to be made on my machine.
I purchased my GE Adora (WHDVH626FWW)front load washer in January of 2006 and have been very happy with it. I did notice, sometime around year 1 of ownership, that it had developed a "tick" sound when I rotated the drum by hand. This tick accelerated when the machine was in operation and the drum was spinning. But there was no problem with operation as far as I could see, so I did nothing.
But two weeks ago I washed 3 loads of towels and each time the machine failed to balance the load and therefore was not able to reach high spin speeds and extract all of the water. I had to remove some of the sopping towels to a nearby sink, run a rinse/spin cycle on the rest to get the water extracted, put those in the dryer and repeat the process on the remaining towels. Normally I would encounter this problem once every 3 or 4 months. Three times in one week was unusual. I had purchased the extended warranty from Home Depot, so I decided to call for service.
The repairman came last week. I had since washed two more loads of towels, both without any spin issues. I wondered if he'd be able to diagnose a problem. But when he heard the ticking noise my drum makes as it spins, he told me the washing machine bearings were failing.
According to the repairman, bearing replacement requires $1,400 worth of parts!!! Yes, you read that right: $1,400 for parts to repair a machine that didn't even cost $700 brand new. And it is a 3 hour job that will require 2 repairmen. To replace the bearings they will replace the drum(s) and several other pieces.
Now I don't pay a dime for this because I purchased the extended warranty. I just find this all very interesting. I suspect if I didn't have the warranty there would be a dramatic shift in costs, but they'd still be quite expensive. Presumably the parts are available for less from other sources for those inclined to DIY, etc. And I have to trust the repairman's diagnosis I suppose. I know that the machine didn't make that noise when it was new.
What I find myself with the following questions:
** The Adora was a new, un-tried model when I bought it. It has been a few years. What reliablity issues are people having with them? (FWIW the repairman said it is a "good" machine.)
** The amount of vibration doesn't seem excessive to me, but the machine does sit above a crawl space and my husband wonders if bearings can fail prematurely because the floor is less solid than a concrete pad would be.
** What is the quality of spare parts? Can I hope they are improved over the originals?
** While the repairmen have the guts out of my washer, is there anything I should take the opportunity to check out to give me some idea of how the washer if faring and if there are any other reliablility issues that might also be lurking?
I am normally not an extended warranty kind of gal, but since the machine was a GE and new to market, I bought it. I'm glad I did, and am considering buying an extension when it expires in 2011. I am the type of person who expects her appliances to last a good long time (several decades) -- not a philosophy manufacturers seem to share these days.