If bumping the washer caused it to work properly, I expect your
capacitors are OK, but the connections are dirty. I don't believe you
have a slipping belt. If you did, your laundry room would be full of
smoke and you'd smell burning rubber.
I expect you can find the correct capacitor online for under $10. You
may have to import it from the States, but that's no big deal, I import
stuff all the time and I can tell you how to fill out the Canadian
Border Services B3 form, and the procedure to follow to get it across
the border. However, keep in mind that even a $10 item will cost $10 to
20 in shipping costs.
The easiest way to understand how a start capacitor works is to
understand that there's no such thing as capacitor start or split phase
electric motors that use 3 phase electric power. With three phase
electric power you simply arrange the poles around the stator 120
degrees apart and you create a rotating magnetic field.
With 120 volt single phase power, you can normally only create an
oscillating magnetic field. To create a rotating magnetic field, you
have to use some kind of trick to create a rotating magnetic field for
the rotor to follow.
The way this is done with a capacitor start motor is to have two
identical windings wired in parallel and arranged at a 90 degree spacing
around the stator. So you have North pole of winding 1, South pole of
Winding 2, South pole of Winding 1 and North pole of winding 2 all
spaced 90 degrees from each other around the stator.
Now, we simply wire a capacitor in series with ONE of those windings.
With a resistor, the current is highest when the AC voltage sine wave is
highest, and the current is instantaneously zero when the applied AC
voltage sine wave is zero.
With a capacitor in series with the start winding, things are totally
different. With a capacitor, the current out of the capacitor (and
hence through the start winding) is highest when the RATE OF CHANGE IN
VOLTAGE of the applied voltage sine wave is highest, and that occurs on
the applied sine wave when the instantaneous voltage is ZERO volts.
That is when the voltage is changing from a positive voltage to a
negative voltage and vice versa. That's 90 degrees out of phase with
the winding that doesn't have a capacitor.
Similarily, with a capacitor in the start winding, the current out of
the capacitor (and hence through the start winding) is at a minimum when
the applied voltage sine wave is at a maximum or a minimum. That is
when one plate of the capacitor is fully energized and the voltage on it
is starting to drop, the instantaneous current out of the capacitor will
be zero. That's 90 degrees out of phase with the winding that doesn't
have a capacitor.
Consequently with the start and run winding wired in parallel, the
capacitor in the start winding will have it's current sine wave 90
degrees out of phase with the run winding, and as a result, the magnetic
field of the start winding occurs 90 degrees sooner or later than the
run winding. And, that's true even though both windings have the same
voltage sine wave applied to them.
So, the capacitance of the capacitor you use is important. You can just
take one from one motor and use it in another.
There is also another kind of induction motor that doesn't use a
capacitor. Instead, in a "split phase" motor, winding #1 will be made
with a small number of coils of thick copper wire, and winding #2 will
be made with a large number of coils of thin copper wire. Because of
the difference in resistance of these coils, they have different
resulting impedances, and that results in one coil developing it's
magnetic field earlier than the other, and that's what creates the
illusion of a rotating magnetic field for the rotor to follow.
In both capacitor start motors and split phase motors, the motor is
perfectly happy to turn in the reverse direction if you simply reverse
the polarity of one of the windings. So, if you switch the wires going
to Winding #1, the motor will start with the same torque, and it'll
reach the same operating speed, only it'll be turning backwards. Never
reverse the polarity of both windings in an induction motor. That will
cause a singularity in the space time continuum with the result that you
finish doing the switch before you began, and hence the motor turns in
it's original direction again.
Maytag washing machines have a reversing relay that automatically
switches the wires going to the run winding. That relay is controlled
by the timer, and it reverses the terminals to the run winding so that
the motor spins in one direction during the wash cycle (where the
agitator oscillates) and in the reverse direction during the spin cycles
(where the wash basket spins). Most washing machines use this
reversible characteristic of induction motors to reverse the direction
of rotation of the motor from the wash cycle to the spin cycle. In
Maytag's case the motor turns a belt that causes a pulley to rotate up
or down a helical shaft. When the pully rides up the shaft it engages
clutches in the transmission that lock the transmission up so that the
spinning of the pully directly results in the spinning of the wash
basket. And, when the motor reverses direction, that pulley turns the
opposite way and rides down the helical shaft to unlock the transmission
and allow the rotation of the pulley to cause the oscillation of the
In a case like this, I think your best bet is to got to a factory
authorized Kenmore repair depot to buy your parts. It's true that
you'll pay more for each part, but you also get all the expert technical
support tossed in free of charge. So, you spend a bit more on parts,
but you save all the labour by doing it yourself under the tuteledge of
a Kenmore appliance repairman.