Newer model Whirlpool-built (includes Maytag brand and some Kenmores) top loading washers are using a newfangled technology called “auto load detection.” Whirlpool washers with model numbers like WTW57ESVW0 and Maytag washers with model numbers like MVWC6ESWW0 use this new system.
Auto load detection senses the load of clothes in the tub and automagically provides the correct amount of water to get ’em washed. It works with a flow meter and an automatic temperature control (ATC) switch, both also new, to accomplish this miracle of modern engineering.
This is all done as a band-aid attempt to reduce the obscene amounts of water used by these dinosaur top-loading washers. Of course, if you, as the green-minded and environmentally conscientious consumer, were truly concerned about conserving water, you wouldn’t be using one of these machines in the first place; you’d use a front loader or one of the high-efficiency top-loaders. But I digress…
As far as band-aid hacks go, this one has been pretty reliable. When something does go horribly wrong, one of the most common problems you’ll see is that the washer will start agitating as soon as it starts filling with water when you start the machine. It may also start filling during the spin cycle with the end result of your clothes coming out sopping wet. How’s that for water conservation?
If you see this problem, the cause is almost always a bad water level (load sensor) switch. It lives in the control console and looks like this:
You should be aware that Whirlpool uses at least two variations of the auto load detection switch so be sure to look up the correct switch for your washer using your model number. Just get your model number and plop it into this nifty search box and you’ll be sure to get the right switch (or any other part you need):
In case you want to know more about the new auto load detection system, here’s the tech bulletin from Whirlpool:
To learn more about your washing machine, or to order parts, click here.