A bunch of cunts, mostly in the Australian sense. Except that one guy.

Last night I spent 45 minutes taking my fucking dryer apart

Trying to figure out how to replace a squeaky belt.

I learned two things about my dryer:

1) For an expensive appliance, it's REALLY cheaply built inside.  It's just got a clean white shell over what looks like something out of the 1940's.

2) The "tensioner" on the belt isn't adjustable, it's just a simple steel spring with a stainless steel curve attached that the belt passes through.  To remove the belt, you hold the spring down.  To tension the belt, you let go.

also, the only thing holding the drum in place is the tension between the front of the dryer and the back of the dryer, and the heater is just 3 coils attached to a duct that vents into the drum.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
September 1st, 2006 10:04am
well, what would you expect a heater to be?
Permalink $-- 
September 1st, 2006 10:06am
Well, I expect it to have some coils and some sort of duct.  It was just strikingly cheap looking, as in, it's basically a flue with a coil attached to some wires.  Why does this machine cost hundreds of dollars?
Permalink Send private email muppet 
September 1st, 2006 10:07am
Ahhh.  It's the simple solutions that are the best.  I'll bet the controlleer is a little metal shaft with cams on it, too.
Permalink Somebody 
September 1st, 2006 10:07am
Heh.  Electronics are cheap.  It's all that metal and especially that non-chip enameling that costs.
Permalink Somebody 
September 1st, 2006 10:08am
Also, while the dryer belt is about 6 feet in circumference, it's only about a quarter inch wide.

Why the fuck wouldn't you make the belt a little wider on a "heavy duty, high capacity" dryer?  It seems like it's designed to wear out.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
September 1st, 2006 10:10am
and teh overheads.

they don't normally do much to make the bits you can't see look expensive, even on expensive kit.
Permalink $-- 
September 1st, 2006 10:10am
Hundreds of dollars? What's the brand?  Maybe you are pitching in for a celebrity spokesperson to tell you how great this dryer is?
Permalink r 
September 1st, 2006 10:11am
well, the length of the belt has no relation to how thick it needs to be. That's set by the load it is taking. It may or maye not be under-specced.
Permalink $-- 
September 1st, 2006 10:11am
It's a Kenmore, and it was around $275.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
September 1st, 2006 10:12am
Well OK I know the length and width aren't necessarily related, but the thing is supposed to be turning a drum with a volume of I'd guess 60 gallons or so, loaded with wet towels and jeans, so I'd figure that a little more surface area than 5.5' x .25" might be good.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
September 1st, 2006 10:13am
Yeah, you expect washers to cost a few hundred dollars because of their transmission, water valves, etc.  But there just isn't that much to a dryer. 

Motor.  Drum.  Heating element. Timer.  Dryness sensor if you opted for one.  In a metal box.

Why do they cost so much?
Permalink xampl 
September 1st, 2006 10:18am
Not a brandname we'd use. Kenmore was a lunatic asylum for many, many years. Pretty grim too.

http://www.records.nsw.gov.au/archives/asylum_records_2339.asp

OTOH, looking at appliance innards borders on lunacy :-)
Permalink trollop 
September 1st, 2006 10:19am
>Why do they cost so much?

Just look at the size (dimensions and weight) of it. See how much it costs just to ship something that large.
Permalink Send private email Dennis Forbes 
September 1st, 2006 10:20am
You'd shun a brand of appliance because the name is similiar to something unpleasant?  Dude, I'd buy a Hitler shower head if it was cheap and got the job done.

Anyway, I was looking at appliance innards because I was trying to repair the fucking thing without a $65 service call.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
September 1st, 2006 10:20am
Kenmore is the Sears "in-house" brand. Much like no-name products, it's actually built by name-brand companies. Most of the Kenmore washers and dryers, for instance, are actually maytag. I have a Kenmore furnace, and it's actually a York.

Consumer Reports loves Kenmore - they usually top the charts.
Permalink Send private email Dennis Forbes 
September 1st, 2006 10:21am
Shit, just tugging your chain, lad. I KNOW appliance guts aren't pretty 'coz I've been there.

Pantyhose might be quieter. Run it around and tie a knot. Don't screw the back panel back on until you're happy.

'Kay?

(Dunno about you but this is like shooting architects in a barrel.)
Permalink trollop 
September 1st, 2006 10:37am
I wasted my time unbolting the back panel (20-something bolts) because all of the access to the drive and belt is through the front.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
September 1st, 2006 10:40am
Ummm don't forget about the heat.  Pantyhose would turn into a bubbly black sticky mess.

What you want to stop the squeak is a can of dryer belt-dressing.  It's sold at the Sears parts counter (which for some strange reason, is never anywhere near a Sears store).
Permalink xampl 
September 1st, 2006 10:41am
Well if you can buy parts you won't buy a new dryer, right?


Anyway I thought about spraying the belt with tac spray but figured it's easier just to buy a new belt and not have to worry about repeating the exercise in 3 months.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
September 1st, 2006 10:42am
That'll work.  Probably costs about the same, too.
Permalink xampl 
September 1st, 2006 10:43am
Deadly seriously. Do not EVAH acquire stuff from Fischer&Paykel or Bendix. ASCO isn't bad.
Permalink trollop 
September 1st, 2006 10:53am
You should be thankful you don't live in the UK where all white goods are price-fixed and cost about double what they cost in the US.
Permalink Ross 
September 1st, 2006 11:25am
Problem 1: Kenmore is crap.

It's built by a name-brand manufacturer all right, but to a vastly inferior quality standard.  My dad used to work for Gibson when they had the contract for the Kenmore refrigerators.  The stuff that rolled off the Kenmore line would have been scrapped on the Gibson line.  Serious corner cutting goes on.

When we bought our dishwasher the local Sears had a Kenmore, and the same model Bosch sitting side by side, uncrated.  The quality difference was immediately apparent, with the one having the Bosch label having significantly more insulation and better quality components that would have been hidden if it were installed.

Problem 2: You probably have glazed belts.  Nothing will fix that but new belts.  An appliance store will probably sell them to you, if it isn't one of the big national chains.
Permalink Send private email Clay Dowling 
September 1st, 2006 11:33am
>Problem 1: Kenmore is crap.

While obviously experiences will differ, this doesn't seem to come through in the empirical evidence. Seriously, grab Consumer Reports when they do appliance guides -- they get user responses from hundreds of thousands (in some cases millions) of customers, and Kenmore is almost always near the lowest in number of defects, and highest in user satisfaction.
Permalink Send private email Dennis Forbes 
September 1st, 2006 12:05pm
Kenmore might be different in Canada than the US, Dennis.
Permalink Send private email Ward 
September 1st, 2006 12:17pm
Well the results I'm talking about are from the US -- Consumer Reports is an American magazine, with just a little insert for Canada.
Permalink Send private email Dennis Forbes 
September 1st, 2006 12:19pm
I'm glad you've had good luck with them Dennis.  Sears products and my family don't have a strong track record.  There have been very few Sears products that we were ultimately happy with, other than one stolen appliance dolly.
Permalink Send private email Clay Dowling 
September 1st, 2006 12:47pm
>I'm glad you've had good luck with them Dennis.

Heh, but I'm not talking about me! I'm talking about Consumer Reports rankings, which seem to paint it in a very positive light.
Permalink Send private email Dennis Forbes 
September 1st, 2006 12:49pm
Dunno why they paint it in such a light.  Maybe I have higher expectations from the things I buy.  Maybe I just hold on to them longer.
Permalink Send private email Clay Dowling 
September 1st, 2006 1:01pm
Mom had a Kenmore dryer for 25 years that only needed a new belt every decade, and a new heater loop once or twice.  Eventually, she just got tired of it.
Permalink xampl 
September 1st, 2006 1:05pm
Apparently it's nearly impossible to buy a belt for this thing witout calling SEARS' hotline and ordering it from them for too much money.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
September 1st, 2006 2:42pm
Go to Sears and take the one in the display model.
Permalink Rick Tsang v2.2.1beta 
September 1st, 2006 2:44pm

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