Clothes washer motor issue

Recently I had a load of laundry just stall after the washer filled. I can get it to fill, and I can get it to drain; no spinning/agitating though. There was this awful, chemical smell that came from the washer when it happened, and I could hear a buzz of operation inside.
This is a Frigidaire FWS800FHS0
I opened it up and made sure that the belt from the motor to the transmission was intact; it was. I manually turned the transmission at the belt wheel to test for any catches when operating; spins and agitates just fine.
So I plugged it in with the front cover off, set it to the gentlest cycle and smalled load setting and switched it on. Filled just fine, and when it came time to agitate, I heard the motor hum like normal, the light in the laundy dimmed a bit (typical), but nothing turned. I manually moved the transmission, I could hear the motor responding a bit as I did that. I tested to see where the hum was coming from; the motor for sure. Eventually the smell came back, and the motor shut down. I assume both occurrances are the result of the motor overheating.
So the motor seems to be "stuck". Is there a way to "un-stick" it, or do I have a bum washer motor. And let's face it, the replacement motor costs 80% of the washer's costs, so this could be a bum washer too.
I leave the floor open to the mechincally minded....
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Motor is kicking out on thermal overload. Could be bad bearings in the motor, or could be something else that does not allow the motor to spin but the belt would usually slip. Removing the belt would narrow that down.
You can get some diagnostics and cost of parts at www.repairclinic.com
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Edwin Pawlowski wrote:

Okay, new development; maybe good, maybe bad. It has been a couple weeks of my pouring over websites, and doing my laundry at the laundromat. Yes, one of the first things you suggested was that I take the belt off, but I have been so sure about the motor being dead, I did not bother.
Tonight I slid the belt off. I shifted it away so that it wasn't touching the motor pulley. Time to give it a go.
Washer fills fine, Then same thing, light dims (typical), motor hums. It's not spinning. I put the handle of my pliers on the pulley and rolled it. Hums a little louder but nothing. So I do it again. The next sound I can only describe as sounding like the photon torpedos from the old Star Trek (choo-WAH). The motor is spinning. I take a small piece of paper to confirm (I'm not getting my fingers caught!), and it was moving the paper.
"It was just gunked up!" I foolishly lie to myself. I shut it off, unplug, slip the belt back on, and go.
HMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM
I attempt the move the motor pulley manually. The louder humming, but no spin. Eventually that nasty smell starts again. Is it the belt? Also, should the two directions of the transmission spin freely? Once of them requires a bit more push (I'll find out and specify if it really matters).
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Is there a drive coupling on this washer? The smell may be from the coupling getting burned up. If you move the washer, are there a bunch of plastic pieces on the floor? . I have always done very well with Dave's Repair http://www.davesrepair.com/index.html . Good luck.
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JohnnyC wrote:

I'll check that out too.
No coupling. Just a belt that wraps around the pulley at the bottom of the transmission and the pulley on the motor.
Here are the guts of it if you're curious: ftp://ftp.electrolux-na.com/ProdInfo_PDF/Webster/95336491.pdf
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Bailey wrote:

Hi, B4 anything else, make and model of the washer? Motor may have burnt out partially?
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Tony, where you out of coffee this morning?
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Bailey wrote:

You could well be right about the cost of a replacement motor, this online parts store wants $225.71 for one!
http://tinyurl.com/2rfayq
I agree with the suggestion that you remove the belt, unplug the electrical cord and see if you can turn the motor pully by hand.
If youcan't, remove the motor and seeif you canlocate why it's "stuck". Might be just a seized bearing which you could match up at a local bearing shop.

As my tipsy uncle Al used to say, "Don't worry, you can't fall off the floor."
Jeff
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Bailey wrote:

Looking at the schematic diagram for that machine, the motor is a multispeed one with several run windings and a start winding. If it's not stuck mechanically, then perhaps a switching problem elsewhere in the machine is preventing power from energizing the start winding, which appears to be switched on both its ends, indicating a motor which may reverse rotation at some points in the operating cycle.
So, if that motor is not mechanically jammed then good luck to you, you're gonna need it to find out what's wrong!
Jeff
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I had similar symptoms when the centrifugal start switch stuck.
I lubed it and the washer ran for years afterwards with no more failures.
You could get lucky that way.
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TimR wrote:

I think this motor may be dead, but I'd like to be sure before I spend the money on a new one as opposed to something like a new belt.
Okay, so today I yank the motor out. I cleaned it a little (nothing extensive) and lubed it. It was spinning nicely and pretty freely afterwards. I then reinstalled it and started a load. I got the usual hum with nothing moving. I killed the power and slid the belt off again. I turned it back on, got the hum, manually turned it in the agitate direction, and it kicked on.
This is all of the same stuff I did before and with the same results. But this time, I let it keep spinning; smell or not. One thing I observed is that it was doing a constant spin in the agitate direction. That's not what it is supposed to be doing, is it? After a couple minutes of letting it spin, suddenly it sounded like it was building up to something, revving faster and faster. It finally made a loud click, and then stopped spinning. Then it followed a pattern of waiting 5 seconds, revving up, clicking, then stopping. If I even intervened during one of the pauses; even though it wasn't moving, it would suddenly sound like it was spinning down. All of this with that "hot" smell.
So is this something obvious, or does this motor just sound electrically screwed? If it's screwed, I'm happy to just get another motor in there. I just want to be more sure of it being gone.
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Bailey wrote:

I dunno, but I'm pretty sure a motor's not supposed to act like that!
Something else may very well be wrong, but I'd install a motor that wasn't, well, insane.
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There is an easy way to find out if it's the motor and not some control or something. Unplug the washer. Unhook the wires from the washer that go to the motor. Take a common cord and attach it to those wires and apply wirenuts or tape. BE SAFE. Then plug in that motor cord and see if the motor still sounds bad and smells hot. If it does, get a new motor, if not, there is another problem. Try doing this both with and without the belt on the pulley (assuming it's belt driven), or whatever is connected to the machine tranny.
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On Nov 11, 5:36 am, snipped-for-privacy@notmail.com wrote:

Good advice.
Also, get out the timer diagram. It's often tucked inside the top panel. Some of your symptoms sound like motor but some sound more like timer. Repairmen almost always change out the timer first, because it's expensive and up on top where it's easy to get to, but also because it goes bad more than any other part.
If the motor's good it's almost gotta be the timer. But I don't think the motors good. If you get the smell when the motor doesn't start, could be the stuck centrifugal switch. But if you get the smell when the motor runs, probably bad news.
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TimR wrote:

I apologize for my ignorance. I think I misunderstood before, but where is the centrifugal switch? I don't find that in the schematics at all, and I think I had a different idea of where it was before, but now I am not so sure.
I am also finding that since I disconnected and reconnected the motor, that the water doesn't drain. It doesn't attempt to. I wondered if it was because the belt is off, but the belt hasn't even been moving, so I am doubting it. So I either botched something, or the issue is getting worse. I'm about to drop a grenade in it, heh.
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My washer is a Maytag, I'm not sure what any other brand looks like.
On mine the centrifugal switch is on the outside of the motor on one of the collars on the shaft - opposite end from the pulley, I think, but it's been a few years and I don't remember for sure.
These motors have start windings and run windings. If you power up the run winding alone it draws a lot of current, hums loudly, and may smell. It needs the start winding to start, but when running that winding needs to be disconnected. The centrifugal switch is a little curved arm on the motor shaft that moves out when the shaft spins and *is supposed to* return back in when the motor stops. But if it hangs up the motor usually won't start.
Find the switch, flick it back and forth with your finger a few times. See if it's in the correct position. It should be along the shaft to start, out from the shaft to run. Be careful, if it's stuck in run and you flick it to start with power on, it will. Ouch.
I'm not saying that's the answer, could be a lot of other things wrong, but it's easy to find and usually easy to fix. I put a drop of high temp grease on it (left over from an auto distributor rotor) and mine never went bad again.
There should be a schematic that shows all the wiring, but there should also be a timer diagram, looks kind of like a Gannt chart. It's good to understand that one.
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TimR wrote:

So I was stil messing with this motor, and got the water draining again (I'd disconnected one of the cables internal to the motor, but when draining, the motor smoked. That told me that this was the source of my issue, and I ordered a new one. It got in yesterday, I installed it, and this one is doing the SAME behavior! Good lord, is it the timer? I just dropped 200 bucks on this, and it didn't fix my problem. Throw up my hands in surrender and call in Sears or what?
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I doubt this conclusion is correct. I think you could get many motors to smoke by disconnecting part of the internals.
That told me that this was the source of my

Why would you spend $200 on a part for a washing machine? Unless this is an expensive and relatively new machine, it would have been better to just buy a new one.
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Bailey wrote:

sounds like the "start" windings are working but the "run" windings aren't.
nate
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