How to fix a Washing machine

Let's say you have one of those fancy washing machines with sophisticated circuitry.

Well, then if your machine is like mine, it sucks to be you.

Last night, before a trip, the Kenmore Oasis HE machine that we've had for many years started doing something weird. You'd turn it on, and it would start cycling from Heavy, to medium, to light, etc on the soil setting. It wouldn't stop doing it. And if you somehow got it to pause for a moment, the cycle would do weird things: spin at the wrong times, drain at the wrong times. And if you left it on overnight, it would suddenly spring to live at 1am just as you were falling asleep.

So, new parts for this would never arrive in time for me to install them before the trip.

So, what to do. I tried all the obvious fixes: reseat all the connectors. Do it again just in case. Get some rubbing alcohol and clean off the accumulated gunk on the board. None of these fixed the problem. So looking at the board, I thought "geeze, why don't I just remove the switch from the circuit: maybe it's gone bad and shorted out." I mean, if you're falling to earth, you might as well try to fly, right? The switch was wired into the circuit through a diode. Since the diode was SMT and the switch was through hole, I decided to desolder the diode (D59 in the pic). I had no rational basis for thinking this would work. Other folks have reported exactly this same problems on different washing machine forums, but the solution was always "start replacing boards" which wouldn't fly for me today.

So far, it seems to be working. I hope this repair will hold until I get back from my trip...
This photo shows my test run, where I just removed one side....

Who said these new washing machines are irreparable... Oh wait, all the repair guys that have come out and all the online forums, and this isn't really a fix so much as a kludge until I can get back to fix it right...

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