How to Replace a Washing Machine Tub Seal
If you know how to replace a washing machine tub seal you can save hundreds of dollars on repair costs. You will need a few simple tools and a lot of patience. To successfully disassemble the washing machine, you will have to generate a lot of torque in a confined space. You must also pay careful attention to your work or you can flood the area. Before starting, obtain appropriately-sized replacement seals from your washer’s manufacturer or a hardware store.
Step 1 – Pull out the Washer
Unplug the washer and shut off the water supply before disconnecting the hoses. Drain as much water from the machine as possible before beginning repairs. Avoid working in poorly drained or carpeted areas.
Step 2 – Open Cabinet and Begin Disassembly
Slide a putty knife between the cabinet and the washer lid. Locate the spring catches in the corner and push up on them while lifting the lid to release them. You can now fold the lid back and expose the tub ring. Pop off the ring clips and pull it out, then unscrew the agitator cap to expose a nut. Unscrew this nut and pull the agitator off of the impellor.
Step 3 – Remove the Inner Tub
Place the spanner wrench against the spanner nut. Tap the wrench with a hammer while holding the inner tub tight against the outer tub. This takes a lot of force and there is little room to maneuver, so be patient. Once the nut is free you can lift the inner tub off of the impellor.
Step 4 – Remove the Outer Tub
The outer tub is still held onto the impellor or drive shaft by a drive block. Tap the block lightly with your hammer and slide it off. You can now lift off the outer tub. Disconnect the air dome, which is connected to the tub by a rubber hose near the back of the machine.
Step 5 – Replace Seals
Remove the old defective seals and clean around their openings. Install the new replacement seals. In addition to the tub seals at the bottom of the cylinder, there are seals at the air dome and the center post gasket. You may wish to remove deposits of minerals, rust, or soap scum while you have the machine disassembled.
Step 6 – Reassemble and Test Tub
Reattach the air dome and slide the outer tub back onto the impellor. Replace the drive block, then slide the inner tub back onto the impellor. Tighten the spanner nut and replace the agitator. Tighten the agitator nut and screw the agitator cap back on. Now clip the tub ring back into place and shut the lid. Before adding a load of laundry, run the washing machine for a full cycle to make sure that it is watertight. If it continues to leak, this could indicate a damaged pump, a clogged drain, or an improper seal at the supply hoses.