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Thread: Washing machine? Yes

  1. #1 Washing machine? Yes 
    The Doctor Quantime's Avatar
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    I bought this second hand washing machine from some of the family's friends, I set it up and then switched on the thing, and click! The main switch for all the plug sockets in the house switched off. I tried again but it kept on causing the switch. My step Dad had a look for me and noticed nothing was wrong with the cabling, or the wires. I consulted my brother who is a specialist on electronics (not washing machines though) and says that because there is a computer onboard (there is a small motherboard or sort of like one) it is for some reason causing the main house socket switch from staying where it is.

    Please can anyone tell me what is going on? I need my washing doing!

    It is a Beko Eco care.

    Thanks.


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    If you mean your circuit breaker is tripping, the washing machine motor probably has a short circuit in it. Did it work at its previous location? Also, your main breaker should not be tripping before the branch circuit breaker feeding the washer. You need to have a qualified electrician check that out. The other possibility is that the main breaker is defective and is tripping too early.


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    The Doctor Quantime's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    If you mean your circuit breaker is tripping, the washing machine motor probably has a short circuit in it. Did it work at its previous location? Also, your main breaker should not be tripping before the branch circuit breaker feeding the washer. You need to have a qualified electrician check that out. The other possibility is that the main breaker is defective and is tripping too early.
    Whats the main breaker? Do you mean the main switch I was talking about?
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    I'm not too familiar with the way houses are wired in England. I'm guessing you have an electrical service panel in your house. It either has fuses or circuit breakers feeding the individual circuits in your home. In the USA the main breaker in the panel would be rated at say 100 amps, and the branch circuits would be 15 or 20. But yours might be different because I think all your wiring is 240 volts instead of 120 volts. Anyway, tripping the main breaker will kill all the electricity in your house.

    The other thing that could be shorted besides the motor is the solenoid valve that fills your washer up with water.

    But for sure you have to get to the bottom of the circuit breaker issue.
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    Harold is correct. If your circuit breaker is shutting off then this is a safety issue. Do not plug it in. A washing machine (unlike a dryer on a non-dedicated circuit)) is unlikely to trip a breaker because of overload. (Also, computer circuitry problems shouldn't trip a breaker).

    The one thing you could do relatively safely is try the washing machine on your stove (oven) circuit. If you have a stove with electrical outlets on it then try plugging it into one of those. the worse you can do is blow a fuse in the stove which can be replaced easily. If the washer works fine in a stove outlet then, as Harold points out, it could be a faulty breaker.
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    All right, I have been reading about British house wiring and it's way different than the US. You probably don't have a main breaker, there is probably a fuse instead. You might have something called an "Earth Leakage Circuit Breaker" (ELCB). This would trip and shut off your whole house power if any of the appliances has a ground fault. If that's the case maybe it's just a ground fault in your washer, or you inadvertently grounded something when you installed it. If your home is small, you could just have one lighting circuit breaker, and that's what is tripping off.

    Can you give me a detailed description of the switch that tripped off, and what you did when you installed the washing machine?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    All right, I have been reading about British house wiring and it's way different than the US. You probably don't have a main breaker, there is probably a fuse instead. You might have something called an "Earth Leakage Circuit Breaker" (ELCB). This would trip and shut off your whole house power if any of the appliances has a ground fault. If that's the case maybe it's just a ground fault in your washer, or you inadvertently grounded something when you installed it. If your home is small, you could just have one lighting circuit breaker, and that's what is tripping off.

    Can you give me a detailed description of the switch that tripped off, and what you did when you installed the washing machine?
    Alas Harold, you are right - a number of British homes still use fuses.

    From what willmer says, however, it sounds as though he has a circuit-breaker box like most of us (and yes, I live in London).

    I entirely agree that, if the machine is tripping the circuit breakers it's a matter for the electricians.

    One question, willmer: is the washing machine's plug a sealed unit or one that has been wired in by hand?
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    Quote Originally Posted by sunshinewarrio
    Alas Harold, you are right - a number of British homes still use fuses.

    From what willmer says, however, it sounds as though he has a circuit-breaker box like most of us (and yes, I live in London).

    I entirely agree that, if the machine is tripping the circuit breakers it's a matter for the electricians.

    One question, willmer: is the washing machine's plug a sealed unit or one that has been wired in by hand?
    I wasn't implying any backwardness on the part of the British wiring methods. There's nothing wrong with fuses and the idea of ground fault protection for the whole house is a pretty good safety feature. Of course, it could be causing Willmer a problem getting his washer running, if that's what the problem is.
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    Considering the amount of current it takes to blow most main breakers I would doubt it's actually shorting out. I think you would see smoke rolling off the wire insulation before then. Also there has to be branch breakers as stated rated at a much lower amperage. I would say the idea of the ground fault tripping sounds like the most logical answer remaining. It may even be that the wiring of the plug from the washer is wired backwards somewhere in the circuit.
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  11. #10  
    Forum Professor captaincaveman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harold14370
    Quote Originally Posted by sunshinewarrio
    Alas Harold, you are right - a number of British homes still use fuses.

    From what willmer says, however, it sounds as though he has a circuit-breaker box like most of us (and yes, I live in London).

    I entirely agree that, if the machine is tripping the circuit breakers it's a matter for the electricians.

    One question, willmer: is the washing machine's plug a sealed unit or one that has been wired in by hand?
    I wasn't implying any backwardness on the part of the British wiring methods. There's nothing wrong with fuses and the idea of ground fault protection for the whole house is a pretty good safety feature. Of course, it could be causing Willmer a problem getting his washer running, if that's what the problem is.
    Its usually on older house Harold,or ones that will probably soon need updating(ours is a 1970-80's house, that we re-wired when we moved in to update the old system, some ten years ago)

    All house built over the last god knows how many years have individual breakers for lighting, oven ring mains, upstairs and downstairs sockets etc and a mainbreaker for the lot
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