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I have a Bosch WAQ283S0GB washing machine, around 5 years old. We have been getting a lot of marks on clothing recently, and also the wash cycle appears to complete but then gets stuck on 1 minute for ages.

A few days ago, I took the door and rubber seal off and gave it a good clean. Then, when I put everything back together, I put a 90 degree wash on with some descaler. I kept an eye on the cycle, and couldn't feel any heat at all (either through the glass or when pausing and feeling the washing).

I've just taken the heating element out, and it is totally covered in limescale/gunk! Tested it with a continuity tester and there was no reading at all (checked the tester and it works, looks like the temperature sensor is OK).

Also, inside the hole where the element goes, I can see a lot more gunk/limescale. I've tried to get some out but can't get it all.

My question is - if I get a new element and fit it, am I wasting my time? Am I wrong thinking that putting on a 90 degree wash when it is fixed with some more descaler will disperse the remaining scum? Looks like we might have been doing cold washes for a while!

Also, where is the best place to get a new element from?

Any help much appreciated, thanks!

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Sticking on 1 minute is a common symptom of the heater being open circuit. Also it won't have been washing properly all the time the element has been faulty. If the washing machine is caked in gunge and limescale you won't be able to remove it. You can try various methods but my experience is they just won't work. These cleaning procedures are effective at preventing a build up of gunge and limescale but not at removing it from badly affected washing machines. Having said that, many washing machines are caked in gunge and limescale but still manage to work reasonably well. It's mostly if the limescale covers the heating element that it can cause it to fail. If you fit a new element (or even if you get another washing machine) you need to ensure the new one doesn't also attract a build up of limescale.

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