How to Test and Replace the Resistance of a Washing Machine

Jul 10, 2023, 11:37am

The resistance of a washing machine heats the water during a wash. It contains a sensor that regulates the temperature.

The resistance of your washing machine should be tested and/or replaced if:

  • The washing machine no longer heats up during its wash cycles
  • The washing machine is breaking the power to your house
  • The washing quality of your clothes is poor

The resistance of a washing machine is often located in the rear internal structure of the device, it is connected to the tank.

On some washing machine models, the heating element is accessed from the front.

On “top” washing machines, with top loading, the heating element will be on one of the sides, against the tub.

The resistance, also known as the heating element, plays a crucial role in a washing machine’s ability to heat water during a wash cycle. Over time, the resistance can wear out or develop faults, leading to issues such as inadequate heating or complete failure. Testing and replacing the resistance of a washing machine is a task that can be done with some basic tools and careful attention. In this guide, we will walk you through the steps to test and replace the resistance of a washing machine.

How to Test and Replace the Resistance of a Washing Machine

Safety Precautions

Before starting any repair work on your washing machine, it is important to prioritize safety. Always unplug the machine from the power source before attempting any repairs. Additionally, ensure you are working in a well-ventilated area and wear protective gloves to prevent injury.

Tools Required

To test and replace the resistance of a washing machine, you will need the following tools:

  • Replacement resistance/heating element (compatible with your washing machine model)
  • Multimeter (to test resistance)
  • Screwdriver set (Phillips or Torx, depending on your machine)
  • Adjustable wrench or pliers
  • Towels or rags (to absorb any water spills)

Steps to Test and Replace the Resistance

Follow these steps to test and replace the resistance of a washing machine:

Step 1: Unplug the Washing Machine

Ensure the washing machine is disconnected from the power source by unplugging it from the wall socket.

Step 2: Access the Resistance

Locate the resistance in your washing machine. It is typically located at the bottom of the machine’s tub or behind a service panel. Consult your washing machine’s user manual or search online for specific information about the resistance’s location in your particular model.

Step 3: Test the Resistance

Using a multimeter set to the resistance or ohms setting, touch the probes to the terminals of the resistance. If the multimeter shows a reading close to the resistance’s specified value (as mentioned in the user manual or on the part itself), it indicates that the resistance is functioning properly. If there is no reading or the reading is significantly different from the specified value, it indicates a faulty resistance that needs to be replaced.

Step 4: Drain Any Remaining Water

If your washing machine has water in the tub, carefully drain it before proceeding with the replacement. Consult your washing machine’s user manual for instructions on how to drain the water properly. Place towels or rags around the machine to absorb any spills.

Step 5: Disconnect and Remove the Faulty Resistance

Using an adjustable wrench or pliers, carefully disconnect the wires or connectors attached to the resistance. Take note of their positions or take a picture to ensure proper reconnection later. Once the wires are disconnected, remove any screws or brackets securing the resistance in place. Gently pull out the faulty resistance from its housing.

Step 6: Install the Replacement Resistance

Take the new resistance and insert it into the housing, aligning it properly. Secure it in place using the screws or brackets you previously removed. Ensure it is firmly in place, but be cautious not to overtighten the screws, as this may damage the part.

Step 7: Reconnect the Wires

Refer to the notes or picture you took earlier to guide you in reconnecting the wires to the new resistance. Ensure that each wire is securely inserted into the appropriate connector. Double-check the connections to ensure they are correct and properly seated.

How to Test and Replace the Resistance of a Washing Machine

Step 8: Test the Machine

Plug your washing machine back into the power source. Turn it on and run a test cycle. Monitor the machine to ensure the new resistance is functioning properly, providing adequate heat during the wash cycle.

If the machine operates correctly without any issues, congratulations! You have successfully tested and replaced the resistance of your washing machine. However, if problems persist, it may be necessary to consult a professional appliance repair technician or contact the manufacturer for further assistance.

In conclusion, testing and replacing the resistance of a washing machine is a task that requires caution, attention to detail, and some basic technical skills. Always refer to your washing machine’s user manual for specific instructions and guidelines, as different models may have slight variations in the replacement process. If you’re uncertain or uncomfortable performing the task, it’s best to seek professional help to ensure a safe and accurate replacement of the resistance. Remember to always prioritize safety and exercise caution when working with electrical components.


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