Jump to content
John Lewis give 2 year guarantee on white goods appliances

 

Washing Machine Failed After 5 And Half Years. Manufacturer Says


Recommended Posts

Wonder if you can help.

My washer failed recently (6 months the wrong side of a 5 yr warranty!). It is manufactured by a company that purports to sell 'high quality' machines that are built to last.

The manufacturer implies that the machine failed because of the failure to 'maintain' the machine. This resulted in sludge build up and corrosion, leading to failure of the drum support spider. The machine is wrecked as the drum tried to scour its way out of the plastic outer drum housing.

I have maintained the machine strictly in accordance with the manufacturers provided users manual but the manufacturer now claims that I should also have carried out maintenance boil washes. There is absolutely no mention of the need to do this in their owners manual. I am really miffed because had I known that I had to do this then I would certainly have done so and would probably still have a serviceable washing machine. :angry:

Any advice would be appreciated.

Thanks

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The effects of grease and gunge inside washing machines is something I have important advice about here - Causes of grease and slime inside washing machine

This situation doesn't look clear cut at all, so it's difficult to argue that any one party is entirely to blame. Ultimately you may have a problem proving the manufacturer is responsible and that they should therefore carry out repairs at their expense. However, there are some grey areas, particularly with regard to how effectively washing machine manufacturers are warning customers about this sort of problem and what - if any - moral responsibility they have to do so.

If you want to pursue this, I recommend you get advice from a consumer group. I suspect that they may advise that your complaint is with the seller and not the manufacturer due to the way UK consumer law is designed. There are several useful links on this section of Washerhelp - Free advice on washing machine consumer issues (UK). It may be possible to take the seller to court arguing that the washing machine has not lasted a reasonable amount of time because the part that has failed has been manufactured in such a way that even normal use can result in a build up of damaging slime which corrodes it. And also that the instruction book gave no reasonable warning of this, or any advice that the potential fatal problem could be averted by doing regular "boil maintenance washes". However, only the consumer groups can advise how likely this claim would be to succeed.

Here are my more detailed thoughts which explain the above conclusions -

It's rarely necessary to argue consumer issues with a manufacturer, and because they aren't geared up for it it's also very hard to do. In most cases where a customer believes they have a legitimate complaint about the reliability or even longevity of their washing machine, contrary to the common assumption that the argument is with the manufacturer, in UK consumer law it is the seller who is responsible.

As the washing machine has apparently failed because of external influence, on the face of it, these influences are nothing to do with the manufacture or build quality of the washing machine. However, washing machine manufacturers have been aware of how limescale, grease and gunge can corrode and attack the aluminium-based drum spiders for decades but they continue to make them out of the same material and they do not appear to adequately warn their customers about this sort of thing.

The manufacturer has said that the washing machine failed because of your, "failure to maintain the machine", and that you should have carried out "maintenance boil washes". Your argument is that you have maintained the washing machine "strictly in accordance with the manufacturers provided users manual". If as you say, "there is absolutely no mention of the need to do boil maintenance washes in their owners manual" then how do they expect that you should have known? Even if it is advised, if there isn't a fair warning that failure to follow such advice could result in serious damage that could considerably shorten the life of your washing machine they can't reasonably expect a customer to make an informed judgement as to the necessity of even following such advice.

I personally wouldn't have thought that it is a fair assumption to say that it is common knowledge that if you don't do regular boil maintenance washes your washing machine could suffer a fatal breakdown. Although more people are becoming aware of it due to washing machine manufacturers starting to print this advice in the instruction books, it sounds harsh to say that it's your own fault - that you should have known. If this is the case, you may be able to argue that they new about potential serious consequences to not doing a boil maintenance wash but didn't adequately warn you so they should accept some responsibility.

I looked at several downloadable instruction books online for this manufacturer. The advice contained in them varies as they were printed at different times but I couldn't see any relevant warnings in the long list of "warnings" at the front of the books. Most of the instruction books just mentioned things such as -

"Maintenance: Cleaning your washer (inside) Run washer through a complete cycle using hot water".

Two points about these warnings

  • The reasons they give for carrying them out are only to keep the insides "clean" and prevent smells - not to prevent potential serious breakdown
  • There isn't even a hint of importance about them, or recommendation of how often to carry it out.

To be fair though, I don't know of any washing machine manufacturer that adequately warns their customers that they need to do maintenance washes to help prevent the premature demise of their washing machine. If I were in your position I would be arguing that

  • You bought their washing machine and used it in accordance with their instructions
  • You had no way of knowing that you needed to carry out their boil maintenance washes and more importantly, the potential consequences of not doing do
  • This problem is not common knowledge, and as they know about it they should advise their customers properly
  • I would also ask if the instruction books for their current washing machines do include such advice, and if so (as they ought to) doesn't this prove that you were not advised properly?

You can certainly try pressing the manufacturer further. There's always a possibility they may capitulate on the grounds of good customer relations or at least offer to meet you half way, but it's also possible they may be afraid of accepting any liability. As I say in my opening paragraphs, legally, the liability in consumer law lies with the seller.

Out of interest:

This is a picture of a washing machine drum with the spider bolted to it. The spider is used to attach a drum shaft to it using three arms. This drum spider has been subject to some relatively mild corrosion and a crack can be seen on the front left arm close to the shaft. This can cause one of the arms to break away and the drum will then hit the inner tub.

http://www.washerhelp.co.uk/graphics/misc/drumspider.jpg

Note: Although the manufacturer isn't named (as per the rules), I was aware of the manufacturer through private correspondence, which is how I was able to research their online instruction books.

Need a repair or spare parts? 

Book a Repair | Buy Spares (Cheapest prices guaranteed)

Warning:  Read this before attempting any diy repairsNo representations or warranties are made (express or implied) as to the reliability, accuracy or completeness of advice. I can't be held liable for any loss arising directly or indirectly from the use of, or any action taken in reliance on, any information on this website, which is given free of charge and in good faith.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Need a repair or spare parts? 

Book a Repair | Buy Spares (Cheapest prices guaranteed)

Warning:  Read this before attempting any diy repairsNo representations or warranties are made (express or implied) as to the reliability, accuracy or completeness of advice. I can't be held liable for any loss arising directly or indirectly from the use of, or any action taken in reliance on, any information on this website, which is given free of charge and in good faith.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you so much for the information that you have provided and the time that you have taken to help address my problem. It is my intention to take further action and I will be applying pressure on both the seller and the manufacturer on this issue. This certainly seems to be an area that neither the machine manufacturers nor detergent companies has adequately addressed. I will let you know how things go.

Kind regards,

Blue72

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please keep us informed. No matter how it goes, it is valuable shared expeirence.

Need a repair or spare parts? 

Book a Repair | Buy Spares (Cheapest prices guaranteed)

Warning:  Read this before attempting any diy repairsNo representations or warranties are made (express or implied) as to the reliability, accuracy or completeness of advice. I can't be held liable for any loss arising directly or indirectly from the use of, or any action taken in reliance on, any information on this website, which is given free of charge and in good faith.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

Book your Repair

Book washing machine & appliance repairs

Book Repair Now

Buy Your Spare Parts

Buy your appliance spare part

Ransom Spares is a family company with over 1 million white goods appliance spare parts for sale. Next day delivery available, friendly company with over 5000 reviews on Trust Pilot

Price match promise: "If you find the exact same part or accessory elsewhere for cheaper, we’ll not only match it, we’ll beat it!" -



×
×
  • Create New...