I manually run it through a couple of cycles. It seems sluggish, it doesn't drain, and when it starts to spin, it almost immediately stops. It also smells hot.
Okay. I take all of the stuff out of the washer and put it in a plastic bin. It's almost all towels, so they're wet and pretty disgusting (which I won't go into). I siphon what water I can out of the washer with a length of flexible conduit that I happened to have, and I sucked the rest out with a shop vac. Then at least I could move the beast away from the wall.
Bear in mind that I've fixed this washer many times over the past ten years, and I'm thinking this is probably the last time.
I checked the wigwag (no, I'm not kidding, it's the control solenoid and cam assembly), which is the part that breaks on this particular type of machine the most often. It seems to be fine, and I run it through a number of cycles just in case. The hot smell returns, but when I touch the motor, it's relatively cool. This is disturbing.
I add some water, and watch to make sure that the solenoids on the wigwag are actually forcing the transmission cams into place. I cycle it through the four states, and sure enough, the cams are running just fine. But it doesn't drain.
That's when I notice that the pump pulley isn't turning. I think it should be turning. It's not turning. I shut off the machine and grab the belt to try and turn the pulleys manually, and that's when I discover what the hot smell was coming from.
Yes indeed, the pump had seized. The belt was wearing against the pulley and getting quite hot as my fingers will attest to.
So I work the belt back and forth a bit; it moves backwards for about half a rotation then stops, so I continue moving it back and forth. It gives way a little bit each time but still locks in the forward direction. I'm about to completely turn the thing turtle and take the pump apart when it gives way and the pump begins to turn freely. I turn it on, and it spews like a college freshman at a fraternity beer bash. I turn it off again and back on just to make sure, and it works.
Satisfied, I put the machine back into place and return the sopping wet towels to the basket, add some detergent and turn it on. It's back in business. I'll hop down and check it later, but it seems fine now.
This washing machine has been in the basement for ten years now. Bought used from Warner's Stellian, this is now the third time I've had to fix it, and I think I've spent a total of $24.00 in parts (I bought a new wigwag for it a few years ago). I think I've had my money's worth out of it.
Now there is another issue having to do with the amount of laundry that awaits washing. The laundry room is about 2/3 full of things awaiting washing. And probably some things that cannot be washed, I haven't dared look yet.
Somebody remind me of this should I become complacent.