How To Repair A Direct Drive Washing Machine

You can learn how to repair a direct drive washing machine with a few simple tools and a little time. The most common problem with direct drive washing machines is a broken direct drive motor coupling. The motor coupling is designed to break to protect the motor and transmission from damage when excessive loads are put on these parts. This excessive load is almost always from overloading the washer. Fortunately, the motor coupling in inexpensive and is an easy repair on a direct drive washing machine.

To repair a direct drive washing machine, you will need:

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Flat screwdriver
  • Socket wrench
  • Motor coupling (You need the part for your particular washer, so get the model number before you go parts shopping.)
  1. Unplug the washer!  Do not forget this simple but very important step. You won't gain kudos for your appliance repair skills if you end up electrocuting yourself.
  2. Take the washer apart to get to the motor assembly. Remove the plastic trim on the sides of the control panel. Do this gently by pressing down on the top of the side pieces to disengage the latch. If that doesn't work, trying pulling up and toward you from the back of the piece.
  3. Remove the screws which hold the control panel to the cabinet. Lift the control panel up from the bottom and gently stand it up until it is fully tilted back You will then be able to see the two metal clips that attach the cabinet to the back panel. Use a flat bladed screwdriver in the front slot while pushing down on the handle of the screwdriver toward the back of the washer. Disconnect the electrical connector. Remove the cabinet from the washer by tilting it toward you and pulling it away from the washer.
  4. Remove the pump, which is connected to hoses underneath the tub. You don't have to take the hoses off, just pop off the two clips. Disconnect the electrical connections and use your socket wrench to remove the two hex head screws that hold the motor. Once you remove the motor you will see the broken motor coupling which is the cause of your problem. It is essentially a couple of gears that interface between the transmission and the motor. If it is difficult to work the coupler on to the transmission, a little silicone spray will help.
  5. Remount the motor to the transmission and reverse all the steps to put your washer back together. Voila! You are a genius and have tackled a repair that would have cost you easily $100 for about ten bucks. You have successfully learned to repair a direct drive washing machine.
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