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It won't spin on the spin cycle

My Kenmore 70 Series washer won't spin on spin cycle. The washer fills, agitates, and drains just fine, but does not spin. It makes a whirring sound when it should be spinning, but the tub does not spin. What could be the problem? PLEASE HELP ME!

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  • Master
  • 10,865 Answers

This is one of the more complex problems to isolate. Read over the possibilities and you should be able to isolate the problem


If your washer won't spin, check these:

It doesn't pump or spin
It pumps, but doesn't spin
It spins only with the lid closed
It doesn't pump or spin If it doesn't pump water out or spin, check to see if the motor is running, then proceed as follows:

  • If the motor is running, your washer probably has a frozen pump pulley or a broken pump belt. To check the pulley, remove the pump from the washer and try to rotate the pulley manually. If it doesn't turn freely--if it's frozen or stiff--replace it. If the pump belt is broken or looks quite worn, replace it--but be sure to check the pump pulley before you change the belt.

  • If the motor isn't running, the lid switch may be defective. If so, the washing machine can't spin and may not function at all. The switch is inside the washing machine main housing near the door frame. Often you have to raise or open the top or front of the washing machine to get to the switch. If it's defective, you need to replace it.

It pumps, but doesn't spin If your washer pumps out the water but doesn't spin, check these:

  • The lid switch may be defective. If it is, the washing machine doesn't spin. The switch is inside the washing machine main housing near the door frame. Often you have to raise or open the top or front of the washing machine to get to the switch. If it's defective, you need to replace it.

  • The motor coupler may be broken. Many Whirlpool®-manufactured washers use a small, relatively inexpensive motor coupling. It's plastic and rubber and is mounted to the shaft of the motor on one side, and to the transmission on the other. Over time, the coupler wears out and fails. You may need to replace it.

  • A belt may be broken. Many washing machines have one or two belts. If a belt is broken or badly worn, you need to replace it with a genuine belt from the manufacturer. (Some washing machine belts are designed with special characteristics not found in automotive belts.)

  • The clutch may be worn. If your washer is a GE, it may use a clutch to come up to the proper spin speed. As the clutch wears out, it may prevent the unit from spinning well or at all. If the clutch is worn, you need to replace it. For this job, you probably want to hire a qualified appliance repair technician.

  • The drive motor may be defective. Many washer brands use a reversing motor. For agitation the motor runs in one direction, for spinning and draining, the other. It's possible for a motor to burn out in one direction and continue to operate in the other. If this happens, you need to replace the entire motor.

  • The transmission may not be shifting properly. Older washers produced by Whirlpool® have a transmission with an electro-mechanical shifter. If the shifter becomes even partially defective, the unit may drain the water but not spin. This is a complex system, if your washer has a shifter problem, you may want to hire a qualified appliance repair technician to repair it.

  • The spin bearing or basket drive may be worn or seized. These components allow the inner tub to spin freely inside the outer tub. When this is the problem, you usually hear a loud sound during the spin cycle. Call a qualified appliance repair technician.

It spins only with the lid closed For safety, washing machines are made so that they spin only with the lid closed. The lid switch prevents the spinning action when the lid is up.

Posted on May 29, 2009

  • Joe Hogan May 29, 2009

    This is one of the more complex problems to isolate. Read over the possibilities and you should be able to isolate the problem









    If your washer won't spin, check these:

    It doesn't pump or spin
    It pumps, but doesn't spin
    It spins only with the lid closed




    It doesn't pump or spin

    If it doesn't pump water out or spin, check to see if the motor is running, then proceed as follows:



    • If the motor is running, your washer probably has a frozen pump pulley or a broken pump belt. To check the pulley, remove the pump from the washer and try to rotate the pulley manually. If it doesn't turn freely--if it's frozen or stiff--replace it. If the pump belt is broken or looks quite worn, replace it--but be sure to check the pump pulley before you change the belt.


    • If the motor isn't running, the lid switch may be defective. If so, the washing machine can't spin and may not function at all. The switch is inside the washing machine main housing near the door frame. Often you have to raise or open the top or front of the washing machine to get to the switch. If it's defective, you need to replace it.






    It pumps, but doesn't spin

    If your washer pumps out the water but doesn't spin, check these:



    • The lid switch may be defective. If it is, the washing machine doesn't spin. The switch is inside the washing machine main housing near the door frame. Often you have to raise or open the top or front of the washing machine to get to the switch. If it's defective, you need to replace it.


    • The motor coupler may be broken. Many Whirlpool®-manufactured washers use a small, relatively inexpensive motor coupling. It's plastic and rubber and is mounted to the shaft of the motor on one side, and to the transmission on the other. Over time, the coupler wears out and fails. You may need to replace it.


    • A belt may be broken. Many washing machines have one or two belts. If a belt is broken or badly worn, you need to replace it with a genuine belt from the manufacturer. (Some washing machine belts are designed with special characteristics not found in automotive belts.)


    • The clutch may be worn. If your washer is a GE, it may use a clutch to come up to the proper spin speed. As the clutch wears out, it may prevent the unit from spinning well or at all. If the clutch is worn, you need to replace it. For this job, you probably want to hire a qualified appliance repair technician.


    • The drive motor may be defective. Many washer brands use a reversing motor. For agitation the motor runs in one direction, for spinning and draining, the other. It's possible for a motor to burn out in one direction and continue to operate in the other. If this happens, you need to replace the entire motor.


    • The transmission may not be shifting properly. Older washers produced by Whirlpool® have a transmission with an electro-mechanical shifter. If the shifter becomes even partially defective, the unit may drain the water but not spin. This is a complex system, if your washer has a shifter problem, you may want to hire a qualified appliance repair technician to repair it.


    • The spin bearing or basket drive may be worn or seized. These components allow the inner tub to spin freely inside the outer tub. When this is the problem, you usually hear a loud sound during the spin cycle. Call a qualified appliance repair technician.






    It spins only with the lid closed

    For safety, washing machines are made so that they spin only with the lid closed. The lid switch prevents the spinning action when the lid is up.


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