ECM and Washing Machines: A Little Forethought Goes a Long Way

By Steve Weissman posted 11-04-2013 12:04

  

Returning from a crazy stretch of travel, I learned that the household washing machine was on the fritz. Too many hours of research and shopping later, we ordered an expensive but hopefully heavier-duty, longer-lasting appliance than its myriad predecessors.

With delivery set for tomorrow, today is the day I must prepare my legacy unit for retirement. I've done this dozens of times, so I figure an hour at most to unplug the power cord, disconnect the hot and cold water hoses, and move some furniture to accommodate the replacement unit.

What could possibly go wrong?

Only this: our house is so old that in the years between washing machine past and washing machine future, not one but TWO sets of shut-off valves became inoperative, meaning I can’t disconnect the old machine without drowning. So I now have to call in an expert to apply the fix I need to successfully upgrade.

The irony here is that, as an information professional, I have been down this road numerous times when it comes to technology, and I always counsel my clients not to take anything for granted. When they find it necessary to begin exploring system expansion or replacement, I advise them not only to shop around for the best-balanced combination of money and longevity they can find, but also to consider any "gotchas" associated with their readiness to make the move.

The truth is, there are almost always surprises to contend with, no matter how much advanced preparation is done. But a little forethought goes a long way, and that's why I still have time to bring someone in before my timetable for implementation is ruined.

How about you?

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