All types of washing machines must have a control mechanism to ensure proper operation. In the past a washer timer was the standard, but in more recent years electronic controls are what control most washing machines. A washer timer is a mechanical device enclosed in a metal or plastic housing. On the outside of the housing in most cases, is a motor that turns gears that operate cams, used to open and close switch contacts within the timer to control the loads within the washer. When we say loads we mean electrical loads, such as the fill valve, the washer motor, and the motor and pump assembly. Most washing machine manufacturers today are using the more dependable, and in most cases less expensive to manufacture, electronic controls to control the loads on the washing machine. An electronic control is kind of like a mini computer that uses low voltage to energize coils on relays, to open and close contacts completing the circuit to the loads.
Washing Machine Pumps
All washing machines use at least one pump to drain the water at the end of the wash, and rinse cycles. A washing machine pump is sometimes attached directly to the motor, or is operated by a belt. More commonly today though a washing machine drain pump will have a separate motor attached to it. Again this cuts down on the mechanical parts necessary to manufacture the washer. A lot of front loading washers today have pumps with an access port in the front, so that you can remove debris.
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