How to Use a Washing Machine When Bearings Are Gone

When a washing machine begins to age, the bearings might go bad.
Often, special tools are required to remove and replace bearings.Often, special tools are required to remove and replace bearings.
The machine can limp along for a while with noisy bearings but eventually the bearings will go completely, leaving a non-functioning washer. If your washer has enough wear and tear, it might be better to find optional uses for it than to spend the money to fix it.

Step 1

Disassemble the steel drum from the washer and use it for a backyard fire pit. The size is right for a container to hold burning wood, and with the holes in the sides of the drum the fire will have a source of incoming fresh air.

Step 2

Place an ad on free classified websites offering parts from your machine for sale. Parts for an older appliance often are difficult to come by, and someone interested in fixing their machine instead of junking it might be looking for the part you have.

Step 3

Strip the interior mechanism from the outer shell and use the shell for a compost maker in the backyard. Cut an access door in the shell side or front with a reciprocating saw with a metal blade and add hinges on one side and a latch on the other. The top mount opening allows you to dump kitchen and yard waste into the shell and the door opens to pull out the finished compost on the bottom.

Step 4

Donate the washing machine to a high school or community college if they have a mechanical shop. The students always need equipment to work on and learn from, and even an older model appliance has a variety of applications to understanding how machines work and function.

Things You Will Need

  • Screwdriver
  • Wrenches

About the Author

Jack Burton started writing professionally in 1980 with articles in "Word from Jerusalem," "ICEJ Daily News" and Tagalong Garden News. He has managed radio stations, TV studios and newspapers, and was the chief fundraiser for Taltree Arboretum. Burton holds a B.S. in broadcasting from John Brown University. He is a 26-year veteran of the U.S. Navy/Navy Reserves and the Navy Seabees.