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Author Topic: Component level troubleshooting - are these switches just junk?  (Read 3299 times)

Offline JumpinJackFlash

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Component level troubleshooting - are these switches just junk?
« on: February 23, 2009, 06:59:06 PM »

Model Number: GHW9100L icon

I repaired a friends Hoover Wind Tunnel Canister vacuum today.   The unit would only occasionally turn on - but only the vacuum/suction - I couldn't get the power brush head to turn on at all.   I was thinking the issue might be in the handle where the buttons were located for: Off / Suction / Carpet-Floor.
I ohmed out the wiring between the canister and the handle up through to the circuit board that contained the switches and everything checked out okay.

Why am I writing about a vacuum in the Whirlpool washer section of this forum?    Because I "repaired" this vacuum the same way I repaired a Duet Washer.  

Several months ago, my friends washer - the same model as mine, stopped working.   They couldn't get the display to come on.   I brought home the front panel/display unit and checked it out.   It didn't seem like the Control On button was working.   I didn't have a spare, but since there are about a dozen of the same switches on this board, I ended up swapping the micro switch on the board with another switch that I thought they probably never or rarely used.   After resoldering the switches back in, I found that both switches now worked fine.   Problem solved and it's been working fine for about 3 months now.

So, here I am today, looking at what appear to be the exact same micro switches on this vacuum's control board.   Since it worked before, I decided to just re-solder the 3 switches on the board.   And it worked.    I don't think any of this was related to Cold Solder joints, I think the issue might be dirty internal contacts and the heat 'cleaned' them off...???.....but that's just a guess.    I had tried contact cleaner previously on the switch with no luck....but the spray probably wasn't getting inside the switch.

So, my questions are;
Do you guys ever troubleshoot to component level and have you found similar issues with these switches?     Have I only bought myself a limited fix here or could the resoldering have cured the issue for a long time to come?    Finally, if the issue with the vacuum or the washer returns, does anyone have a source to obtain these switches?    They are pretty small - square, with 4 legs and a round button switch on top.   The entire switch isn't much bigger than a pencil eraser.    
Thanks for your thoughts!

Offline JumpinJackFlash

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  • Member Since: Feb 2009
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Re: Component level troubleshooting - are these switches just junk?
« Reply #1 on: February 24, 2009, 07:53:06 PM »

It looks like the switches on the vacuum weren't the problem after all.    But, the washer did start working after I swapped those switches around.....maybe it was just a coincidence.   :-\

Offline brittsboilers

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Re: Component level troubleshooting - are these switches just junk?
« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2015, 10:41:34 PM »
i always test to componet level, to include resistors,cpu,diodes, caps, etc. If u have the knowledge, use it! I hate "parts changers", they sound like a shot in the dark.

Offline redrock

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Re: Component level troubleshooting - are these switches just junk?
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2015, 01:42:53 PM »
You probably soldered a cold connection and did a good repair. Cold connections on low current switches and relays often need a magnifier too see. For high current cold connections see Blaiser's repair in dryer F-1 error. All PCB switches and relays are generic and can be purchased from Digi-key or Mouser. BTW if not melted or physically broken, all switches and relays are repairable. :)


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