I was this close to taking an ax to my washer this weekend...

I had thrown a load of diapers in the machine, and went about my business. When I thought they'd be about done, I walked back into the laundry room and was greeted by my washer making a weird mechanical BUZZZZZ... I have a front loader, and I could see through the door that the diapers were not rotating. I tried hitting the pause button to unlock the door, but no luck. I asked my hubby to come take a look at it. The first thing he did was hit power button. The numbers on the display disappeared, but the buzzing continued and the door remained LOCKED.

locked washer

Through the door I could see Jules, Chaplin, Spence, Marie... I knew there were other very special diapers in that load. Hubby pulled the plug, stopping that annoying buzzing, but the door still would not budge. "Welp, it's done," hubby said, Instead of mourning the loss of my washer, I focused on the more important issue at hand... "Ok, how are we going to unlock it?" He replied, "You can't. Those diapers are not coming out." I wasn't sure if he was playing with me or being serious... "What?! Oh, those diapers are coming out... we can find a way!"

I immediated started thinking of my options... I imagined myself taking an ax to the washer door, maybe a chainsaw or ANY kind of saw for that matter... I knew if there was a will, there was a way to get those diapers out of the washer. My huband looked at our youngest and said, "Sorry son, looks like it's underwear from here on out." I grabbed the handle and jerked back and forth on yelling, OPEN UP!!! But still no luck.

In that load I had bumGenius 4.0s in the limited edition Jules, Irwin, Chaplin, Spence, Marie, Eiffel Tower, and Jet Setter prints, Flip covers in Jules and Chaplin prints, an Albert FreeTime, a bumGenius Elemental, GroVia Hybrids in the Robots and Wild Things prints, Apple Cheeks in Wingin' It, a couple Sloomb fitteds, the new Bummis Dimple Diaper (my favorite new fitted coming soon to TGN), and a pair of Super Undies. Not a load I was not going to give up on that easy! Hubby continued to play with the buttons a little more and finally, POP! The washer came unlocked! I immediately opened the door and saved my precious, soping wet diapers from a watery grave.

diapers in washer

Once I got the diapers out, it started to hit me... we're going to have to get a new washer. :( As we drove to the appliance store, I worried about making such a big purchase. I wondered if it would be worth it to have someone try to repair it, or to just buy new... with parts and labor, probably not. Luckily we had a store credit card to help finance it, and they were running an 18 months, no interest promotion.

So with all four kids in tow, we reluctantly made our way into the store to pick out a new washing machine. As we looked at the different models, my two year old was getting really antsy. I forgot the Ergo at home, so I had no way to lock him up (yet another benefit of babywearing ;) ) He kept trying to hop out of the cart, wiggling out of the seat belt and trying to stand. Eventually I gave in and let him out of the cart so he could walk around with us run around like a wild child. I assigned my 11 year old babysitting duty while we tried to make a decision. We talked to the sales associate and told him what happened to our washer at home. "Hmm... sounds like it could be a pump problem," he said. We debated on whether or not to order a pump, but that would be $150 (not including labor) and we wouldn't know if it would even fix the problem.

Meanwhile, while under the watchful eye of our oldest child, the youngest had managed to take OFF HIS PANTS. Another associate laughed and said, "Hey, we've got a wardrobe malfunction over here!" I put his pants back on him and tried putting him back in the cart, but he just wasn't having it. He threw a huge tantrum, arching his back and doing everything he could to get down. I told my hubby, just pick one and let's go! I walked around with the baby trying to calm him down and distract him while hubby finished up. They scheduled our new washer to be delivered the next day. We were both unsure about it all... I could tell the wheels were turning in his head. I told him, "Look at the pump tonight, and if you think it can be fixed, we can always cancel the delivery and get a refund." 

When we got home, he went straight to work. About a 45 minutes later he came to me with a hand full of gross, cruddy coins and pieces of metal, "I think I found the problem." Somehow all that junk had made its way into the pump and was keeping it from running properly. It built up over time and eventually a metal pin for my hair curlers got jammed into the propeller, stopping it completely. After he removed it all and ran a cycle, my washer was running better than it had in quite a while!


I'm so glad the sales associate mentioned the pump to my hubby! When they deliver your new appliance, they haul away the old for free, so we could have sent away a perfectly good washing machine. I'm also glad I resisted my initial reaction to take an ax to it! ;) Not only did he save us $600 for a new washer AND a big portion of my son's cloth diaper stash, we also came out three dollars and thirty-seven cents richer with all those cruddy coins! Oh, how I love being married to a maintenance mechanic! :)

*Although I am compensated for my time writing, all opinions are 100% my own.



Stephanie Beck is a busy mama of four. She enjoys being outdoors and spending time with her family. Stephanie started her blog, Apron Strings Attached, because she wanted to share her experiences with raising kids, breastfeeding struggles and success, and cloth diapering. She now enjoys blogging about life in cloth diapers for TGN.