On Christmas Eve (!) our washing machine packed up with a loud bang!
The fuse had blown. Against my better judgement my wife persuaded me
to simply replace the fuse and I was surprised when it appeared to do
the trick. However, not for long! The fuse then blew with another
I am wondering if this behaviour is likely to be the motor having
burned out or simply that the brushes need renewing. I've removed the
motor and the brushes. There is clear evidence of electrical burning
and black dust, but both brushes are intact, although I notice that one
is a few millimetres shorter than the other.
To me the logical next step is to risk replacing the brushes and if
that does not work decide on whether to try to test the motor.
Anyone have any suggestions or advice?
firstname.lastname@example.org wrote in message
I can't think of a situation where defective brushes would lead to a fuse
blowing. The motors are series wound and so brushes not making contact, will
reduce supply current rahter than blow a fuse.
It could be that the armature has developed a short on some sections and if
the motor comes to rest with these sections in contact with the brushes, the
fuse might blow on re-starting.
Motor testing is not trivial unless you have some reasonable specialist
equipment such as a variac. Do not be tempted to connect diectly to the
mains supply. The unloaded speed of these motors may destroy the windings.
I assume that when you replaced the fuse, that the motor did run for a
while, or did it blow as soon as the the motor first turned after filling?
if the former, I would think the motor is shot. If it were the controller at
fault, I would expect the fuse to blow instantly.
the second blow.
Would it have reached the stage in the cycle where the pump is
activated? My Hotpoint suffered nasty chafing of the wires supplying
the pump power, resulting in a short and fuse blowing at the end of the
On 27 Dec 2004 07:18:32 -0800, email@example.com wrote:
The brushes are a fiver and take half an hour to replace. Worth a try
before calling the repair man?
Although I have never had blown fuses from brushes. Smells, firework
displays and stuttering spins, but not fuses.
my wife says there might have been stuttering spins, but is not sure!
I wondered that if the motor stopped turning (because of a faulty
brush), then maybe the current through that particular winding would
increase enough to blow the fuse. If there were no movement there
wouldn't be any back-voltage. Maybe I'm just wishful thinking! I'll
see what others say but will probably change the brushes as a first
shot at a solution. Thanks.
On 27 Dec 2004 08:18:45 -0800, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
You are correct, motors like these are very crude and when they stop
with power on the brushes, a short circuit is very likely across the
If you do the brushes, be very gentle if you have to bend the metal
clips to get the old out and new in. They break very easily and
fabricating a replacement can be very boring.
The build up of carbon from the brushes can cause arcing to the casing of
the motor, so if the area around the brushes is heavily coated with carbon
powder, then this can cause enough of an electrical arc to blow the fuse in
You may be able to clean the motor enough, and extend the springs on the
brushes enough, to allow the machine to run for a little while longer until
you get to the shops for new carbons. A lot, if not all now, motors in the
likes of washing machines have carbon brushes already set in holders that
just slip into the motor casing. To replace them is as simple as removing
one wire spade connector and pressing a moulded clip on the holder to remove
it from the motor casing. Slide the new holder in to place and connect the
Remember to clean all the old carbon dust from the motor with a vacuum
cleaner and a small paint brush. If the armature in the motor, the bit that
actually spins, is showing signs of burning, then gently turn it and place a
fine grade sand paper on the part the brushes sit on to clean them back to
the bare metal. They should be quite shiny and clean to make the motor run
Good luck with it.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.