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Washer only agitates and spins intermittently

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A couple months back my washer started to behave oddly. It fills with water just fine, and will begin agitating,

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2013, 01:20 PM
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Default Washer only agitates and spins intermittently
Model Number: WPSF4170W0WW   Brand: GE   Age: More than 10 years   

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A couple months back my washer started to behave oddly. It fills with water just fine, and will begin agitating, but then after about 10 seconds of agitation it will stop. After about a minute of being stopped, it will agitate again for about 6 seconds, and then stop again for another minute.

Once it gets to the rinse and spin cycle, it does the exact same thing. It will spin for about 6 seconds and then stop for a bit; spin for another 6 seconds and stop for a bit.

I've searched all over to try to find what the problem is, and I'm coming up short. I'm hoping one of you fine people can give me a lead!

Thanks,

Luke


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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 01-27-2013, 02:12 PM
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Assuming the motor stops completely, no humming, just silent, you will need a multimeter to troubleshoot this one. Remove the front panel and have your meter ready and set to read ohms. Run the washer and as soon as it cuts off, quickly unplug the washer, unplug the motor and check continuity between pins 1 and 2 on the motor. This is where the orange wire and yellow wire connect. If it's open, the motor overload has tripped. Wait a minute and see if it closes again (closed, dead short, zero ohms). You need to be quick about taking the reading. Post the result.

Eric
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Old 01-27-2013, 03:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fairbank56 View Post
Assuming the motor stops completely, no humming, just silent, you will need a multimeter to troubleshoot this one. Remove the front panel and have your meter ready and set to read ohms. Run the washer and as soon as it cuts off, quickly unplug the washer, unplug the motor and check continuity between pins 1 and 2 on the motor. This is where the orange wire and yellow wire connect. If it's open, the motor overload has tripped. Wait a minute and see if it closes again (closed, dead short, zero ohms). You need to be quick about taking the reading. Post the result.

Eric
Thank you Eric. I'll have to get my hands on a multimeter. I'll stop and pick one up tomorrow.

Just to add a bit more information, when the agitation stops the motor does stop. The only sound is the ticking of the timer.
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Old 01-28-2013, 01:21 PM
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Nevermind, checked the agitator coupling and that looks just fine.

Can anybody give me just a rough idea of what the problem might be?

Last edited by lukas_s : 01-28-2013 at 02:29 PM.
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Old 01-28-2013, 02:47 PM
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It could be any number of things, motor, timer, electronic switch circuit board, bad connection, faulty wiring. You can either troubleshoot to the faulty part with a multimeter, or throw parts at it til it's fixed. The symptoms can be caused by any of the things that Iv'e listed. I'm willing to help you troubleshoot the problem, or I can give you the part numbers of the various parts that can cause the problem.

Eric

Last edited by fairbank56 : 01-28-2013 at 02:50 PM.
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Old 01-28-2013, 03:31 PM
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Thanks Eric. I'm just waiting for the snow to slow down so I can head out and buy a multimeter. This washer issue has just been on my mind all day and I'm brainstorming. It's strange that I can only find a handful of reports on the Internet about the same problem, with no resolution. I hate technology.
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Old 01-28-2013, 04:24 PM
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Well it's an older washer (14 years?) but worth fixing if it's otherwise in good shape (clean, no rust). It is a bit unusual in that it has a mechanical timer and electronic circuit board for motor control. If you hate technology, you don't want one of the newer designs, not to mention that your current washer actually uses water to wash clothes

Eric
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