How To Investigate And Fix A Washing Machine That Does Not Spin

21 June 2017
 Categories: , Articles


Most homeowners have their own washing machines in their home to help them clean their laundry. If you are dependent on your top loading washing machine, then you may be unhappy when the appliance stops working. Washing machines can break or stop working for a variety of reasons and the inability of the tub to spin is one of the most common issues that homeowners experience. If you notice this issue, then keep reading to learn how you can troubleshoot and fix the problem.

Check The Lid Switch

You may know that front loading washing machines have their own special locks that keep the front door closed and also keep the washer from starting if the door is open. You may not know that your top loading washing machine also has a switch that is controlled by the closing of the washing machine lid. This switch is a fairly simple device that is pressed down when you shut the lid. If the switch is broken, then the tub will not spin. 

Lid switches are often pushed down with the assistance of a pusher or a pin on the lid of the washing machine. The pusher can sometimes some loose or wear away, so look for a small protrusion on the lid. If it is missing, then use a flathead screwdriver to push the switch where the push part meets the washing machine. If the washing machine spins, then this is the issue. Wrap a paperclip over the lip of the lid so it makes contact with the switch when closed.

If pressure on the switch does not activate the spin cycle, then the switch wiring that tells the drive motor to activate may be broken or faulty. You can change the switch. Typically, the switch itself sits just underneath the top part of the washing machine and wires attach to the motor towards the bottom of the appliance. You will need to remove the old switch, pull the existing wiring harness away from the device, and attach it to the new switch. Contact an appliance specialist to order a new switch for your model of washing machine.

Investigate The Drive Belt

There are number of drive parts that can break on your washing machine, including the drive motor itself. You can test the drive motor using a multimeter, but it is wise to allow a repair specialist to handle the assessment and motor replacement. Depending on your type of washing machine and its age, it can sometimes be cheaper to purchase a brand new appliance. The repair specialist can assist you with making this determination as well.

If the motor is working or if you want to investigate some other parts first, then you can look at the drive motor belt. This is a replaceable part that often fails after years of use. To inspect the belt, pull the washing machine out away from the wall and release the screws from the back cover of the device. Release the cover and inspect the bottom of the washing machine where the tub sits. You will see a center post jutting out from the bottom middle of the tub. A circular piece will attach to the post and a belt will sit around it.

The belt that you see will attach to the drive motor. Inspect the belt closely for signs of rips, tears, or other types of damage. If you notice this, then replace the belt with a new one. Most drive belts are called v-belts and the exact size can vary greatly between washing machines. Buy the replacement belt for your specific machine and replace it. 

If the belt replacement does not help to repair your washer, then the drive motor coupling or the clutch assembly may need to be repaired. Contact a professional to inspect and change these types of parts. For more information, contact companies like Anderson's Appliance Repair Service.