Just getting into felting. Took apart a coat of 100%wool. Serged all the raw edges and tossed the works into the washer with hot water. Thinking I was doing it right. NOT. Even with the edges serged, the wool came out of the fabric in clumps. Next think I knew the washer wasn't washing. I thought it was off balance, Redistributed the fabric and now it tried to move but only for 2 or 3 seconds. Called the repair man. He came yesterday. When he took the case off it you could see the beautiful deep purple between the tub and the plastic shell dried on in large clumps. They took the pump off, cleaned it out and then tried to get the lint that had dried on to let go. Their directions to me when they left was to use - The works toilet bowl cleaner in hot water - about 1/4 bottle. Keep the lid shut and don't open it. Agitate through the longest cycle and put the drain into the wash sink that empties into a 4" drain pipe, not down the regular 2" drain. Then I was suppose to wash again with white vinegar about a cup or 2 to neutralize the toilet bowl cleaner. I put a drain filter on the wash sink to get as much as possible out before it went down the sink and plugged the pipes. Kept washing without fabric till the lint stopped coming. 6 washes later I was good to go. Only cost me $100. I could have bought a lot of felted wool for that.
I did finish my project - this time I put the wool into a 5 gal pail in the wash sink. Agitated with a clean toiled plunger and rinsed well with a vinegar rinse and then clear water and wrung out the pieces. Hung them over a drying rack. If they are slightly damp this morning, I'm going to toss them in the dryer for a little bit on high heat.