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....
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
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
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.
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
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
wrote in message
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:
You could well be right about the cost of a replacement motor, this
online parts store wants $225.71 for one!
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
As my tipsy uncle Al used to say, "Don't worry, you can't fall off the
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!
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"
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.
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.
On Nov 11, 5:36 am, email@example.com wrote:
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.
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.
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.
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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