icemaker, no ice, motor noise

I have an ice maker in my side by side Whirlpool fridge. It will drop a load of ice about once every two weeks. Other than that, it just makes noise. It's like a grinding noise. I believe it's the motor because I can feel the vibration when I put my hand on the large gear that the motor runs. Besides, what else could be making noise? An icicle slowly grows from the cub tray downward. With the fridge unplugged, I read 72 ohms from a digital multimeter between the "L" and "H" test points. This is exactly what my fix-it-yourself book says it should be so I think the heater element is good. Between "L" and "M" I read a very low ohm value, not zero though. This reading was read with a cheapo analog meter because the 9v in the digital died. Here are my guesses at possible problems:
1) Although the heater element is good, something is wrong with the controls to turn it on and off. It's not cycling correctly and not melting the ice enough for the motor to turn.
2) Something mechancical is jamming the motor. Motor doesn't have enough torque to drop the ice. Either a faulty motor or something down the line is physically jammed.
3) A stripped gear. This is hard to see because of the cover over the motor gear. Maybe I can remove the motor and inspect the gear. As I re-read this email this seems like the most likely, almost obviously so, culprit. As soon as I get home today, I will check this first.
If anybody has any wisdom to share, I would sure appreciate it. These things are cheap enough that I should just replace it but our budget is so tight right now I could only afford to buy some new cube molds.
Thanks in advance, Poor but handy, Chris
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The supply line on my sisters ice maker clogs yearly. I don't remember a funny noise but....
Will Niccolls
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Hi Chris,
You'll want to replace the module, prt # 628366. I get around $60 for them. Includes the entire front of the icemaker, motor and commutator. Basically replaces everything functional except the tstat and heater, which rarely fail.
Yours is a common problem, and it's not feasible to repair these motors, and they aren't available separately - must buy the whole module.
It's an easy part to replace, too. Remove 3 screws, pull the old one off, push a new one on, replace the 3 screws.
It's always a good idea to check the fill level when you do this, though. Jumper T & H and catch the fill in an old baby bottle (graduated in cc's). 140-145 cc's per fill is ideal. There's a small adjustment screw on the right side of the module. Only yields a small amt of adjustment, but try to get it as close as poss. They'll run with as little as 100 cc's, but lower fills will cause problems.
Hope that's of some help...
God bless,
Dave Harnish Dave's Repair Service New Albany, PA www.DavesRepair.com snipped-for-privacy@sosbbs.com 570-363-2404
Free home appliance tips from a 32-year pro repair technician! Get your monthly email newsletter here: (Back issues now posted too!) www.DavesRepair.com
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Chris) wrote in message

Hi,
No model# posted, but may be a module style icemaker.... http://www.applianceaid.com/icemaker-modual.html
jeff. Appliance Repair Aid http://www.applianceaid.com /
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Here is a follow up. I have checked the gears and there is no missing or damaged teeth. It is a module type that makes crescent shaped cubes. How can I be sure that it is the module? I can't afford to buy a module and then be wrong and have it be the heater. I have definitely elimitated the valve as a problem. As the motor makes its noise, I can watch the big gear rotate back and forth almost imperceptibly. Is there another set of gears inside the motor that could be stripped and causeing the noise and this back and forth motion of the large gear? Can someone take me through diagnosis step by step or at least give me a detailed list of steps that the machine goes through to make and dump a load of cubes so I can understand it better.
Thanks, Chris
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Chris) wrote in message

Hi,
Certainly *sounds* like a bad module....any cubes stuck inside the body part?
Motor or gears don't have to be stripped to be bad, also has a printed circuit under that main gear, motors inside could be bad as well. Some helps....
http://tinyurl.com/5noq6 http://tinyurl.com/6n0r
http://www.repairclinic.com/referral.asp?R 3&N 24 Whirlpool icemaker repair module.
jeff. Appliance Repair Aid http://www.applianceaid.com /
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