Gasket problem with Whirlpool Duet washers
DAMASCUS, OREGON -- In July of 2007, my husband and I purchased a new Whirlpool Duet washer and dryer set. A few days ago, we started smelling a musty odor coming from our laundry room and discovered the floor around the washer was wet. Both of our older kids sometimes do their own laundry, so we asked them if they knew why there was water on the floor. Neither one had any idea. I decided to try a load of wash to see where the leak was coming from, so I set up a chair next to the machine. About ten minutes into the wash cycle, it started leaking from under the machine (ours sits on a pedestal, so it was leaking between the washer and pedestal). The repairman came today and told me the gasket was torn and would need to be replaced. Fortunately, for us, the machine is still under warranty. I asked him what would cause such a thing to happen, and he said it could be from a belt buckle or something else with metal that could get caught up on the gasket and tear it.
I asked if he had seen other Duets with the same problem and he said there had been quite a few. That made me suspicious, especially since I don't wash clothes with belt buckles in my washing machine, and could not think of anything else that could cause such damage. Ironically, when I was at the grocery store that same day, I happened to mention to the checker that I had my washer repaired that day. He asked me what was the brand and I told him Whirlpool. He said that he and his wife had just repaired their Whirlpool Duet because it leaked and ruined their hardwood floors and that it was because of a torn gasket! Their machine was only one month old.
I plan to write to the company and file a formal complaint. There appears to be a serious design/gasket quality flaw in this machine. I am expecting this to happen again very soon and, once the warranty runs out, this would probably be an expensive repair, as the top and front of the machine has to be removed in order to remove and replace the gasket. We thought we were paying for and receiving a high-quality product. Now I'm not so sure!