Clothes washer stopped

My clothes washer is a Maytag, probably 10 years old at least, that has never given me any trouble.
Today I put in some clothes and set the dials as usual. Suddenly noticed things were too quiet. Opened washer. Water had filled to desired level, but was not agitating.
Light was still on; electricity OK.
I moved the dials to all settings, checked everything, but no luck.
Went to my neighborhood appliance dealer. They said it was probably the switch that indicates "lid closed". Sometimes it sticks, or..? Suggested I bang the lid down hard a few times, and/or insert knife blade to push switch in. Did all that. No luck.
What else could be wrong? Appreciate any suggestions. Need to decide whether it's worth paying for a service call, or get a new washer (not a happy alternative; $$$ situation is bleak).
Thanks!
Aspasia.
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aspasia wrote:

Sounds like your washer is agitating to me -- it's just agitating the wrong thing.
Could be any number of things but the switch is a good starting point and fairly cheap. It's also a great project to do yourself because it's only 2 screws.
Go to the appliance store and get a new switch and have them show you how to open the lid on the washer. It's easy but might require a flat screwdriver (which you probably have already). Unplug the washer. Open the lid. Make sure the washer is unplugged. Remove the screws. Will probably take a #2 Phillips screwdriver (you probably have one already). Again make sure the washer is unplugged. Pull off the two wires. Put in the new switch. Reconnect the wires. Lower the top. Give it a good pop to close it. Then plug it in and see if it works.
If so, you'll say, "wow, that was easy". Then you'll say, "wow, I just saved $75 for a service call".
Switch $9.99 Phillips screwdriver $2.99 Flat screwdriver $1.99 Doing it yourself and having a smile you can't wipe off: Priceless.
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Agree with Pat. With a tester, you can check the switch out. It may be possible to bypass it with a jumper also to check it out. I don't know your skills and if you can safely work the an live circuit.
If none of that works, go to www.applianceaid.com or www.repairclinic.com for some help.
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Pat wrote:

Save $9.99 by by-passing the switch. Don't you want your kids to have the same opportunities you had?
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wrote:

Thanks to all for great suggestions.
I have low skills, and a damaged dominant hand, but can probably get the lid off; I see where it fits into two depressions on the sides.
1. Once it's off, will I see the wires leading into the switch underneath?
2. HeyBub, how would I bypass the switch?
Aspasia
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snipped-for-privacy@adelphia.net wrote:

I think you could do it with a damaged hand. A little help would be nice, but it is still do-able.
All of us had the first thought of "bypass it" but thought better of it.
The switch should have 2 wires going into it. On the end of each wire is a femail coupler. The switch has two male couplers. If you don't know the difference, think about it for a while.
You could pull off both wires and hold the couplers against each other and wrap tightly in electrical tape and see if the washer works. This would NOT be a long term solution.
You could also get a #12 or #14 wire, cut a piece about half of an inch long, pound it a little flat, and slide it in each female connector. Again, wrap in tape.
I highly recommend against it. First off, it probably takes a bit more skill, a piece of wire, and some tools. Still not rocket science, but not as easy as 2 screws. Second, the washer won't stop when you open the door. Third, you have to do the same amount of work to bypass it as to fix it. If you want to test, it would be understandable (but I still would recommend against it), but it's not a good long-term solution.
Remember to unplug it before you work on it or you may, as Robin Williams called it, "feel the power of comedy". He said it might knock your ass across the floor, but someone will get a good laugh out of it.
Even with a bad hand and few skills, it a great learner-project. It is simple and if it works, a small investment in parts and time could have a huge impact.
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wrote:

No amount of lid-banging or knife-insertion could activate the switch. So I guess it's dead.
Here's where I'm at:
1. Removed lid and bailed out most of water.
2. Wrestled washer most of the way out of its niche (blocks entry to kitchen) but still can't get at the back unless I unscrew the hoses.
3. Removed two screws in front; freed up switch.
4. Dug out installation instructions. Noted that exploded diagram shows three (3) horizontal components to washer:
a. Panel.
b. Narrow component - seems to be where lid switch lives ?
c. Main body of washer.
Question: What do I have to unscrew to get at lid switch? Don't want to take apart things unnecessarily.
Thanks for staying with me on this!
Aspasia
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