There are so many potential sources of a noise on a washing machine that it can be difficult to find the cause. This one is about when the drum is turning on wash and it makes a strange tapping noise. Then when spinning it turns to a grinding, knocking, rattling noise.
AEG washer dryer
My examples of this particular fault are on an AEG washer dryer, but the same noise could occur on any other AEG washing machine and on most other brands too. Most washing machines have the exact same part that causes this noise (the drum pulley where the belt fits).
To make sure this is the right article for troubleshooting your noise have a listen to the video below..
Metallic rattle or tapping on spin
This video below shows the same washing machine but making a different noise during a faster spin. This one is more of a grinding noise..
What is causing these noises?
Both of the noises in the videos are caused by a worn drum pulley. The drum pulley is at the back of the drum behind the back panel. The drive belt goes around this pulley and around a much smaller pulley on the motor. When the motor runs it turns the drive belt and then the drum pulley, which in turn makes the drum revolve.
Where is it worn?
The drum pulley slots onto the drum shaft. The part of the drum pulley that slots onto the drum shaft becomes worn. It rarely used to happen, but these days parts aren’t made that well.
In this particular case the entire drum pulley is made out of plastic with a metal insert pressed inside in the centre. This metal is simply not very durable. Once the metal on the drum pulley has worn sufficiently it allows the drum pulley to move left and right. See the video below..
The drum pulley is usually still tightly secured to the drum shaft with the bolt. But there is excessive play when you move the drum pulley left and right. If this is what is causing your noise it should be very obvious indeed.
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Drum pulley is worn
The video below shows the exact nature of this fault after the drum pulley has been removed. You can see how the metal insert in the centre of the drum pulley has just worn and is no longer making a tight fit. This is the source of this particular noise.
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How do I fit a new drum pulley?
Fitting a new drum pulley should be quite easy. One possible complication though is if the bolt holding it on is a right-hand thread. I would expect most of them to be a normal left hand thread and undo by turning anticlockwise. But if it doesn’t seem to be coming off just bear in mind a possibility of a right-hand thread.
It is important to consider the following points –
If fitted with a hexagonal head, you need to use the correct spanner for the size of the bolt. Preferably a long one for leverage. If you use one that’s slightly too large, or worse still use mole grips or pipe pliers you’re very likely to damage the bolt head.
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