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Monday, March 28, 2005
I had a call from a customer complaining of black smudges on her clothes, she thinks from her washer. She also reported that her dryer needed service because it made an awful noise.
Now, whenever I get a call about black smudges on clothes, I know it's usually one of two things:
1) A chemical reaction between some detergents and fabric softeners can create black spots on clothes in the washing machine. You can tell if this is the case by seeing if the black spots will come off using soap and water. (Uncommon: if the spots will only come off using petroleum distillates, then this is oil from the washing machine's transmission.)
2) Rubber and/or metal filings from a wallowed out drum roller in the dryer getting on the clothes. In this case, you'll see amorphous smudges instead of well-defined, circular spots.
Turns out that, on this service call, the source of the staining was definitely the dryer. When I started up the dryer, it emitted a loud rumbling. I shut it off immediately and disassembled the dryer. After removing the drum, I saw the source of the black smudges right away. You can see it below (click it for a larger view):
As you can see, the drum roller is nuked. Amazingly, the roller shaft was still serviceable. If you looked at the larger view, you may have noticed all the metal shavings on top of the motor and piled in the back corner. With the drum roller so wallowed out, the rear drum seal was sloppy and would let metal filings into the drum while the dryer was running. These metal filings get on the clothes and leave black smudges. I replaced both drum rollers, the belt, and the idler pulley. Since this was a Whirlpool-built dryer, these parts all come in a convenient rebuild kit.
I recently bought a used GE heavy duty dryer. We immediately noticed black marks on all our clothing. They look like they have been pulled into the wholes and burned. They will not go away no matter how many times you wash them and with what. The top of the dryer also gets rather hot during use. Any clues as to what the problem may be??
You have several clues right on this page!
You left one other reason for black smudges off your list. Teenage boys who leave black ink pens in the pockets of their cargo pants (have you ever known an overworked mom who can properly look through those pockets? And what about the wads of tissues the family leaves in there?) Please suggest a suitable punishment.
There's only one punishment: make THEM repsonsible for all the laundry. You still control meals, right?
I have the same problem with black smudges with my Maytag Model GDE412 dryer and the rumbling like tennis shoes in the dryer.
Sheeeeit, it's plug n' chug, mah bruthah! For me, it'd be two mugs on the patented Suds-o-Meter. Accounting for your inexperience in such matters, I'd reckon you might require an extra mug for the learning curve, an' all.
Hello Master Samurai,
I have not tried removing with a petroleum distillate yet. Should I assume this is from the washer transmission?
Our black marks are only appearing on the points of the collars of my husbands dress shirts. I have theorized that they fit through the holes in the drum, or are getting between the drum and the wall. Is disassembly still the best diagnostic, or does this sound like a specific dryer ailment?
Interesting hypothesis and one which can be tested very easily by washing a shirt in a mesh garment bag. If the staining does not appear, then your hypothesis warrants further investigation. Otherwise, change your detergent and fabric softener combination.
I have a similar sitaution as described by Shannon (May 17, 2005)
I have the same problem as David in Ottawa except with a GE Profile dryer (bought in 1999). I also went to Repair Clinic's website (I fixed my leaking washer because of their site) and found the same info. I am interested in your opinion on our problem before I purchase the front glides (repair clinic's diagnosis) and try to take apart my dryer. Thanks...
Hey Dan in Cleveland, David from Ottawa here. Replacing the usual wore suspects on a dryer is relatively easy (and cheap). I replaced the felt and drum support roller on a previous dryer in a couple hours. The samurai web site has all the destructions, see http://fixitnow.com/2005/03/field-notes-frigidaire-dryer-front.htm.
I started out with the idea that I was just replacing a broken drum belt and an idler pulley which had a melt down (literally). I followed the ever-so-helpful information on your website and impressed my hubby with my appliance repair prowess. Turns out, I'm not as prowy as I thought. Once I replaced the belt, the rear drum seal, and the idler pulley, and put it all together...I was getting a harsh metal-on-metal sound from the back of the drum. I read the note about the black marks on the clothing (which I don't have) and saw the part about the metal shavings. Lightbulb!! I did vacuum up a bunch of shavings when I did the initial repair. So, now I'm off to replace the drum rollers. My question is this: is there anything else I should be looking for?
Good work, Grasshopper Shari. Your perseverance will see you through to appliance satori. In addition to assessing the condition of the drum rollers, be sure the drum rear felt seal is not wrinkled or has gaps as this can create a dreaded metal on metal sound, too.
I have a Frigidaire Gallery dryer that I'm replacing the bearing on. There is a coil wrapped in a circle around the back wall of the dryer that has been damaged. What is that and how do I replace it?
My clothes were getting black spots on them in the washer. The spots matched the holes in the drum. I had to lift the whole top of the washer and clean around the rubber gasket and the under side of the top of the washer. That cured the problem!
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