One can save serious cash learning to repair their own appliances. The Kenmore Elite washer that we replaced with a front loader was ridiculously easy to figure out.
There are really just 7 basic elements involved:
- The motor
- The transmission
- The spin drive
- The agitator
- The drum
- The drive clutch
- The drain pump
Maybe I'm missing something, but that's about it. All the fancy dials do is determine when to run the pump, which inlet valves to open, and what direction and when to run the motor. The out of balance shutoff mechanism is little more than a momentary switch that gets bumped when things get out of hand.
And front loaders are even simpler... They don't even have a transmission! They're direct drive. Then if you get into electric dryers... Belt, idler pulley, motor, timer, heating element, thermal circuit breaker. Nothing else to go wrong.
I've never had to work on a washing machine, but I had a drier quit drying on me once. I had never been inside one before, but as you guessed off came the back. Found the heating element, replaced it and used the dryer for several more years until we needed a new washer so I just bought both new. The old one is still sitting in the garage just in case.