When a Frigidaire Affinity washing machine – or any washing machine, for that matter – malfunctions, you often have to remove the front panel to get to the root of the problem. For example, if the washing machine isn't draining properly, you need access to the water pump, which is usually located just behind the front panel at the bottom of the machine. Troubleshooting many electrical issues also requires removal of the front panel.
Consult the Manual Before Making Repairs
When undertaking any Frigidaire Affinity washer repair, it's a good idea to consult the owner's manual or the service manual. You might have trouble finding a model-specific one, though, because the Affinity line has been discontinued. Fortunately, Frigidaire publishes a generic use and care guide that applies to virtually all of its models, so the manufacturer's website is still a good place to start your research.
Top-Load Frigidaire Affinity Washer: Remove Front Panel
Before you remove the front panel from any washing machine or conduct any other type of repair, it's crucial to unplug it. Once you have access to the wiring, you can get a serious shock if you touch any of it while it's energized. It's also a good idea to remove the drain hose from the standpipe. This allows you to slide the machine, rotate it and tilt it as needed to make repairs.
To remove the front panel from a top-load Affinity washer, start by taping the lid shut with two pieces of duct tape. Work a stiff putty knife underneath the lip of the top panel and pry up the top panel. It should simply unsnap. Lift the top panel back and out of the way and secure it against a wall or with a chain attached to a screw hole in the side panel.
Crouch down to floor level and locate the two screws at the bottom of the front panel holding it to the washing machine chassis. Remove these screws with a screwdriver. The panel is now free. Lift it and pull it back to remove it, and then stand it against a wall while you continue the repair.
Front-Load Frigidaire Affinity Washer: Remove Front Panel
Removing the front panel from a front-load model again begins with unplugging the unit and removing the drain hose from the standpipe. To complete this procedure, you have to slide the washing machine away from the wall, so unhooking the drain pipe is important.
The next step is to remove the top panel. Locate the two screws in the back of the machine holding the top panel to the chassis and remove them. You can now lift off the panel and stow it out of the way.
Now you need to remove the control panel, which is located just above the front panel. To do this, pull out the dispenser drawer, depress the tab inside, remove the drawer completely and then remove the screws holding the dispenser housing. Locate the two screws on the inside of the control panel holding the panel to the chassis. Remove them and then lift the control panel and set it on top of the washing machine chassis. Work carefully because all the wires are still connected and you don't want to pull any of them off.
You also need to remove the drum-boot seal around the opening of the washer. Work a screwdriver under the clamp that holds this seal and pry out the clamp. Once it's gone, you can pull off the boot seal.
You're almost done. Tilt the machine back and support the legs on pieces of wood or bricks so you can access the screws at the bottom of the panel. Remove them and then lift the panel up and out. Finally, disconnect the wires and remove the panel, exercising caution because it is heavy.
Chris Deziel is a contractor, builder and general fix-it pro who has been active in the construction trades for 40 years. He has degrees in science and humanities and years of teaching experience. An avid craftsman and musician, Deziel began writing on home improvement topics in 2010. He worked as an expert consultant with eHow Now and Pro Referral -- a Home Depot site. A DIYer by nature, Deziel regularly shares tips and tricks for a better home and garden at Hunker.com.