I'm looking for some input and help diagnosing a problematic Wirlpool top-load washing machine. There is a video link at the bottom, if you prefer to skip right to that.
We bought this unit late in 07 or early 08. It saw about 4 months of use, and then was kept in storage until a week ago. It was working when we put it in storage, but now on the first use we are having problems with the agitation part of the cycle.
The lower agitator base barely moves back and forth, and also makes a gut wrenching plastic-on-plastic grinding sound. The spin cycle and drain pump work fine. To clarify, I am specifically talking about the lower agitator base, not the upper part with the dog teeth in it (which works fine as well).
The agitator works fine, until some load is put on it, such as a tub full of water. Although this has deteriorated to the point where even a completely empty tub will reproduce the problem.
As you can see in the video linked below, with the lower agitator base on the output shaft of the transmission the spindle does not make a full 1/4 turn before reversing its direction. With the agitator base off, the spindle makes a full 1/4 turn.
I have confirmed the splines inside of the agitator base are not stripped, both with visual inspection and by using a replacement agitator base. Also, I was able to thread the 7/16 bolt into the spindle slightly to verify it moves exactly as the agitator base does.Link to video of problem.
My thoughts at this point are obviously transmission related. Anyone seen this problem before?