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Old 31st Jul 2023, 2:16 am   #1
Bazz4CQJ
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Default 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

Quite suddenly, the programmer has become difficult to use. It seems to rotate without problem, but the push in / pull out action for on and off seems very unhappy, especially when trying to make it switch on.

There is very limited access to the switching mechanism apart from two small rectangular holes in the side of the case. I've been spraying aerosol cleaner in there and then operating the unit to try spread cleaner around.

I've had no significant grief from it over the years, and was hoping it would see its 40th birthday. Any suggestions appreciated.

B
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Old 31st Jul 2023, 7:55 am   #2
stevehertz
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

I dismantled a similar one, gained access to the burnt contacts, dealt with them and put it back together. It worked fine.
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Old 31st Jul 2023, 8:56 am   #3
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

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Originally Posted by stevehertz View Post
I dismantled a similar one, gained access to the burnt contacts, dealt with them and put it back together. It worked fine.
I'm hesitant to dismantle this unit. The sides and the ends are held in place with something like a 3-fingered extension of the metal sheet, which after assembly, has had the two outer fingers splayed out to the sides (it probably shows up best on the RHS of the second picture). Was the one you worked on comparable?

I've not worked on anything similar, and it looks quite discouraging. Also, I don't think it's burnt contacts so much as mechanical "stiffness", but I could be wrong there. After spraying switch cleaner in to the block, and putting a very small amount of aerosol lithium grease in to the bearing of the main shaft, I think it feels better.

I'll put it back in and see how it goes, and meanwhile, try grow more relaxed with the idea of opening it up .

B
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Old 31st Jul 2023, 10:24 am   #4
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

As I recall mine had long 'rivets' holding it all together. I think I replaced them with long bolts. You're not going to cure burnt contacts with contact cleaner, they need working on. So if it's not working now, logically you've nothing to lose by dismantling the programmer.
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Old 31st Jul 2023, 12:15 pm   #5
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

This would be a great Rasp Pi project for a replacement programmer.
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Old 31st Jul 2023, 12:17 pm   #6
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

Does the programmer work actually apart from the push-pull on/off switch?
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Old 31st Jul 2023, 2:26 pm   #7
Leon Crampin
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

When you get it free, if it works, fit a relay to the heater to offload the contacts.

Leon.
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Old 31st Jul 2023, 3:42 pm   #8
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

I stripped one down many years ago and also found burnt contacts and burn damage to the plastic housing. I think I managed to swap over some unused contacts from another section and effected a good repair. I seem to remember having to drill out some rivets and used small machine screws, nuts and washers on reassembly.

I may be wrong here but I'm not sure that I'd use contact cleaner on the programmer especially on mains rated contacts. There's a chance of arcing and a possible fire risk. Although time consuming, it may be worth pulling it all apart for a thorough inspection.

Regards,
Symon
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Old 31st Jul 2023, 7:16 pm   #9
emeritus
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

Around a decade ago the timer of mum's Hotpoint of similar vintage, failed. A poorly-made high resistance crimp on the spade terminal for the heater had generated enough heat to char the insulation of the wire and had softened the plastic around the blade on the timer so that the contacts shifted and no longer worked. My local repairer found that Hotpoint could still supply a replacement timer for around £120 plus VAT, but let me have an exact replacement from his stock of pulls from scrap machines for £20.

Last edited by emeritus; 31st Jul 2023 at 7:21 pm. Reason: typo
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Old 31st Jul 2023, 7:32 pm   #10
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

Twenty years ago, that would have been a common enough occurrence, but finding a shop like that nowadays would be rare. Might be worth a glance on eBay though.
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Old 31st Jul 2023, 9:07 pm   #11
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

I am fortunate that the shop is still there today and still does repairs. I bought some carbon brushes there a fortnight ago.
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Old 31st Jul 2023, 11:38 pm   #12
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

Thanks for your comments. Just to show clearly why I don't want to try and open it, I've attached two more pics, showing the technique used to hold this thing together - the stamped and punched sheet metal 3-fingered lug with the GEX66 diode behind it for scale. There are 4 lugs at each end. Not impossible, but I think that after bending them to get things loose, restoring them to keep things together will be tricky.

I'll put it back and see how it goes; it didn't completely fail, just became difficult to start when the knob was pulled out, suddenly needing a number of pulls instead of just starting first time. I think the Li grease on the main shaft has improved the feel of the movement.

B
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Old 1st Aug 2023, 12:07 pm   #13
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

Working again .

I am so glad I took the prudent approach rather than the brave approach, though time will tell how well this works out.

The one problem I have had is that all the plastic trim on the front on the machine is just so brittle; not sure if this is normal for this age, or whether the fact that it gets the full sun through the kitchen window (or at least it would on a sunny day), and that may well have made things worse.

B
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Old 1st Aug 2023, 7:02 pm   #14
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

Old plastic does degrade, it doesn't necessarily need UV exposure, it just gets old and crumbles.

I have a couple of 1960s radios here where the plastic has gone brittle. Can't really complain though, they were probably only designed and specified for a service life of a decade.
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Old 1st Aug 2023, 9:06 pm   #15
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

Hi

You can get them apart, squeeze the spread out tags with pliers, pull apart, fix, put back together then give the tags a twist to hold it together.

"Quite suddenly, the programmer has become difficult to use. It seems to rotate without problem, but the push in / pull out action for on and off seems very unhappy, especially when trying to make it switch on."

Then get it to turn on, and switch it off on the wall from now on

Richard
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Old 2nd Aug 2023, 3:38 pm   #16
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

Well done! I'm sure Hotpoint didn't intend it to still be useable after 38 years. I thought our Miele was doing well at 30 years having never been repaired... that was the kiss of death for it
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Old 2nd Aug 2023, 5:50 pm   #17
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

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Well done! I'm sure Hotpoint didn't intend it to still be useable after 38 years. I thought our Miele was doing well at 30 years having never been repaired... that was the kiss of death for it
Yes, I'm fairly sure that whatever might replace it won't last 38 years. I also suspect I won't be here in 38 years, so looking at the cheaper end of the market for potential replacements, I was really surprised that most of them only had 1 year guarantees . I find that scandalous.

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Old 2nd Aug 2023, 6:12 pm   #18
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robsradio View Post
Well done! I'm sure Hotpoint didn't intend it to still be useable after 38 years. I thought our Miele was doing well at 30 years having never been repaired... that was the kiss of death for it
Yes, I'm fairly sure that whatever might replace it won't last 38 years. I also suspect I wont be here in 38 years, so looking at the cheaper end of the market for potential replacements, I was really surprised that most of them only had 1 year guarantees . I find that scandalous.

B
That reminds of how salespeople go on about a brand or model being very reliable in order to get you to buy it, and then at the till they try their damnedest to get you to buy an extended guarantee!
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Old 2nd Aug 2023, 6:13 pm   #19
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

Look at Samsung, I have one of their washers and it has a seven years warranty.

(it also sends me a message on my phone to tell me it has finished a wash, or plays a few lines of Schubert if I am at home to hear it).
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Old 2nd Aug 2023, 7:07 pm   #20
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Default Re: 38-year old Hotpoint Washer is Poorly

Our previous washing machine lasted at least 15 years, we think maybe 17. It did have an early life failure of the LCD, but still worked. It cost me £70 for a replacement and it didn't fail again. It finally died a few weeks ago from what appeared to be a suspension failure. I could probably have fixed it but how quickly would the next failure have come?

It's replacement, same brand, has a 2 year warranty, with a free upgrade to 5 years if you register it, plus a stack of free detergent.

Back on the plastic. I've seen lots of different effects on plastics. Bearing in mind UV is somewhat reduced inside by the glass in the windows, mostly I've seen it darken white plastic. BUT I have also seen a couple of cases where as well as darkening, the plastics crumble away. I've also recently experienced a UPS where the plastic housing had gone extremely brittle, including bits that can't possibly have been exposed to UV I have a concern that something from the NiMh batteries may have caused this though the batteries received looked fine.

One thing that I've seen many times, and people may not be aware of. Bleach can be really bad for some plastics. There's even a warning on the bottles. Lost a fair number of toilet flush levers after putting 'bleach blocks' in the cistern and suspect many other embrittlement failures we have seen. I know cisterns aren't on topic for the forum BUT the effect of bleach on plastics is, especially as I've seen it reccomended here more than once for brightening plastics.
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