Motor overheating


Washer Repair

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Hi, Machine will operate beginning at the 15min cycle, but will shift to a slower agitation during the last 6min

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 04-23-2009, 12:55 PM
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Default Motor overheating
Model Number: WASE4220AOWW   Brand: GE   Age: 5 - 10 years   

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Machine will operate beginning at the 15min cycle, but will shift to a slower agitation during the last 6min cylce, then stop. Timer continues to count down to drain/spin cycle.

Found the motor to be very hot, spin cycle initiates, water pump drains fine, but there is a lot of clunking, sometimes it seems like it slips out of gear, then goes back again, if I'm lucky it will speed up to spin when the motor is cool, but it seems to go into thermal protection mode.

I pulled the motor, not very serviceable, but it spins fine, bearings seem ok. No visual overheating, just very hot and electrical smell from overheating.

My question is, could it be the transmission/brake causing the motor to overheat? There is some reddish oxide/crusties at the shaft to basket area. No wet water at this time, but there is some nasty residue in that area. Also, with the lid up, should I be able to turn the basket/drum freely by hand? I can not at this time, it seems to be locked up very tightly, I can turn it, but it has a lot of drag, leading me to think that is causing the motor to heat up. It is the orginal motor, not the current upgrade with the external capacitor and new wiring harness.

Any help is appreciated, I am a do-it-yourselfer, so I'm not afraid to tackle this and save some bucks.


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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 04-23-2009, 06:54 PM
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You have to turn the tub by the transmission pulley or the brakes will be holding the tub in place. Check the clutch it could be slipping causing a lot of friction and may be the source of the heat. If there is a lot of grease on the belt it can also slip a lot causing heat as well. Also check to see if the tub will turn freely when you turn the transmission but chances are that if the tub were hard to turn it wouldnít spin at all. The motor may be bad you may want to run it without the belt attached to see if it will overheat without a load and if it does you will know itís the motor. Clothes Washer Repair Guide
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Old 04-23-2009, 09:13 PM
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Thanks for the reply, I was searching around and found your repair guide link, well I found this video, please check it out and what the author has to say about it. This is EXACTLY what my machine is doing, though my motor isn't sparking as his is, look closely at the upper bearing area. But the sounds and jerking motion are EXACTLY what mine is doing.


What do you think?
It makes sense to me, because when I switch the 'speed selector' to 'gentle speed' it sounds like the motor is kicking in and out.

Curious to see what your thoughts are,
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Old 04-24-2009, 06:28 AM
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It sounds like one of the windings on your motor is open. What will happen is that the motor will start on the start and normal windings then the motor switches it to the slow speed windings. Once the motor switches it to the slow windings it cuts out because they are open and the motor switch goes back to start windings and itís a never-ending cycle. This is the best I can explain it but to make a long story short the motor is bad.
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Old 04-24-2009, 05:24 PM
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Hello Applianceman,
Thank you so much for the reassurance of the motor condition. Just for the heck of it, I contacted GE, explained the situation, and they gave me a very good deal on the replacement motor.
I should have it in a few days, and I will post and update after it is installed.
Thanks again for your help,
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