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How To Replace Washing Machine Bearings

How To Replace Washing Machine Bearings

The drum bearings are an important component to your machine, sitting at the back behind the drum, they allow the mechanism to spin nice and smoothly. You’ll know if your machine’s bearings need replacing as the machine will make a loud rumbling noise when in operation, particularly during the spin cycle when then machine is working at its highest capacity.

Something else to check is the amount of movement between the drum and the outer tube. If you open the door and push on the bottom of your drum, there should not be too much movement away from the outer tub. If yours does, this suggests your bearings need replacing.

The Repair Job

Replacing bearings is a big job, and you will need plenty of space to work and time to complete the job properly. It may seem very daunting, but will save you a very large sum of money compared to just buying a new machine, or calling out an engineer. Hopefully the instructions down below will help you get through the task, and can make life a little less stressful for you.

The Parts

There are 3 parts to a washing machine's bearings. There is the front bearing (the large ring), the rear bearing (the smaller one) and the bearing seal. Most of the time they will come as a set, however if for your make and model they do not, it is important to purchase all three parts as if there is a problem, you will need to replace all the parts.

NB: You will also need a new tub seal (which also may be part of the set) because the whole tub will be removed and divided.

Top Tips

  • Don’t have the right tools for the job? Ask a friend, neighbour, or colleague if they have tools that you could borrow. But having a good set of tools is a sound investment for many jobs and DIY tasks round the house, so may be a good investment for you to consider.

  • If you’re unsure of what you’re doing, take photos of each step you do. That way, when you put everything back together, you have a handy reference of how and where things go so you can’t make a mistake.

Repair Instructions

BEARINGS: 150A (255/255/130X)

  1. First start by removing the top panel. This is simply done with two screws at the back. Most are secured with a Torx-head screw.

  2. Once the lid is removed, now you need to remove the soap dispenser. This is again simple: just pull out the draw then at the back there will be a clip that will release the draw so it will now easily slide out.

  3. Now to remove the fascia (front panel with the controls). For this, there will be screws around the front that will be holding it in place. Simply remove these so the panel will come free. You will be removing lots of screws and different secures during this repair: it is best to keep them separate – and even labelled to their part – so that you won’t get confused when putting everything back together.

  4. At the back of the fascia, the control panel will be connected with various electrical connections. It is not necessary to disconnect these, as hopefully you should be able to just rest the whole panel on the side of the machine’s frame, out of the way of your work. However, if you do wish to remove these connections, it’s best to take a photo so you can see how to put everything back together correctly.

  5. Next you will need to remove the kick plate at the bottom of the machine. This should come away if you just pull to release it, but some are secured with screws (which again just need removing and the panel will release). Then remove the drain hose from the kick plate and put that to one side.

  6. Now you need to remove the front panel. Most likely this is secured with screws located in various places (most likely at the top and sides). Remove these before then removing the door seal. This is done by releasing the outer retaining band (a small metal spring band you should find just under the seal). Once wiggled out, it will just pull away. Then you can remove the front of the seal away from the front panel by pushing it into the drum. Now all you need to do is remove the screws around the door lock and then the front panel will come away.

  7. Next the detergent tray needs disconnecting from the tub. First remove the cross member which is a metal bracket at the front. Now you will be able to access the detergent hose going from the tray to the tub. Simply use pliers to release the clip and pull the hose away from the tub so you can then move the detergent dispenser out of the way, balancing it on the side of the machine once again.

  8. Next, you will need to remove the counter balance weights. This can vary from machine to machine for where they are placed, and how many there are. Most of the time however, they will be secured with bolts, and you will simply need to remove them and the weights should come free.

  9. Now you need to remove the heating element. Again, it’s best to take a photo of the wire connections to keep record of where they all go. Then all you need to do is loosen the nut securing the element and remove it.

  10. Next, you will need to remove the sump (drain pipe) from the tub itself. Remove the pressure hose away from the side of the tub and then use either pliers or a screwdriver to release the securing clip around the sump pipe.

  11. On the front side now your tub should be detached, just remove any attachments like cables.

  12. Now turn your machine around/access the back to remove the rear panel. Then, remove the drive belt which will come off fairly easily. Simply unhook a bit from the sin wheel, then turn the wheel so that the belt just comes away.

  13. With only two components to detach from the drum, the second to last is the motor. This is easily removed once again, but first make sure to take a picture of the electrical connections so as not to forget. Then you just need to unbolt the motor and it should just pull away from its housing (be careful, it’s heavy!).

  14. The final thing to remove is just the pressure chamber beneath the tub. It should just be clipped in at the bottom and simple to remove.

  15. Now you have detached all components from the tub itself, the only thing holding the tub in place is now the legs and the springs. Start by removing it’s supporting feet, and then you can simply unhook the springs to release the tub.

  16. Take the tub out of the machine, and then remove the door seal by removing the inner retaining band (like before) then removing the seal.

  17. Now it is easier to flip over the machine to get at the bearings. Remove the pulley wheel which is just bolted on to the main spindle. With this, you should be able to feel the drum dropping through, but if your bearings have seized completely, you may need to hammer it through so the drum is released.

  18. The next job is to separate the tub completely. The tub should be secured with Torx head screws but you may also have plastic tabs going all the way round. It is impossible to separate the tub and keep these all intact, so it is easy enough to snap them off. This can be done with a pair of pliers, sharp snips, or a sharp edged chisel to knock them off. Hopefully your drum will simply be secured with the screws though, which will make separating it a lot easier.

  19. Turn the tub on its side to pull away the front part of the tub and put to one side. Then the inner drum should just come free also, which can again be put to one side. When the drum comes away, you will be able to see the spindle. This can collect a lot of damage over the years with limescale and a buildup of detergent and gunk. This is why it’s important to run a maintenance wash once a month with descaler and detergent remover.

  20. Now, after all the disassembling, you can now get to replacing your bearings. In the rear part of the tub you will be able to see the bearings fitting snuggly into the middle. At the back you can first see the bearing seal, which behind sits the front bearing, with the smaller rear bearing behind that on the outside of the tub. What you need to do is start by hammering these old bearings out of their housing.

  21. Start with the smaller rear. Sit the tub on some kind of blocks so there is space for the small bearing to pop out underneath. Then, using a flat edged chisel, place it through to the small bearing (through the hole in the middle of the seal and the larger bearing) and start gently tapping out the bearing, moving round as you go to push it out evenly. Be gentle and move slowly so you do not damage the housing that the bearing sits in.

  22. Next do the same for the front bearing. You can turn over the tub and simply knock out the bearing (with the seal which will come out as you tap the bearing through).

  23. Once all free, it’s time to give everything a good clean. Use limescale and detergent remover to clean the whole tub, and make sure that where the bearings will sit is also clean and free of any kind of dirt and grime. You don’t want that to cause damage to any of your new bearings.

  24. Once everything is clean, you should start with the larger, front bearing. You will be knocking this down as far as the race/lip. With tapping the bearing, it is important not to hit against the centre part of the bearing. This can cause damage to the part, and you will then have to replace the new ones, putting you back where you began. So use a flat head chisel and carefully tap the edges of the bearing, going around as you go to ensure it goes in level again. You’ll feel that the bearing is in position once it comes up against the race.

  25. Once that’s in, you can no push in the seal, hammering it in so it’s level with the bottom of the tub.

  26. For replacing the tub seal, it may also be beneficial to use a silicone sealant over the rubber seal. Then line up the front half of the tub and join the two together. Now you just need to tighten the screws. On your machine, these screws may be numbered for the order you should tighten them. If not, alternate sides in which you tighten the screws to ensure the tub pulls together evenly.

  27. Now, simply replace all your components, checking your images as you go to make sure everything is returned correctly.

By all means, not a simple task, but well worth the money. Manufacturers don’t put emphasis on looking after the bearings because they know individuals will be put off the repair job and put off with the cost of repair, so they know people will be tempted to just pay for a new machine. However, just because of a damaged bearing does not mean your washer isn’t capable of living a long and happy life.

Here at we hope we can help you get your machine fixed, as well as saving you some money in the long run.

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