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Replacing a motor coupling

I just received a reply to my orginal question. The answer was that I need to replace my motor coupling. Can you direct me to how I can do this? Is this something I can replace myself? Is this part expensive? Thank you, Corina

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I'm assuming this is a Whirlpool or Kenmore model top loader washer (?). If so, replacing a motor coupling is not a terribly difficult process and its not expensive. The motor coupling itself only costs about $15-$20. The labor, however, would eat you up if you decided to have someone put in on for you. However, if you feel this is beyond your capabilites, don't hesitate to seek the proper assistance you need. If I'm correct in my assumption on brand name, follow these steps:

1. Unplug washing machine.

2. Remove console. This can be accomplished in one of two ways depending on which type of console you have.

a. If the console has removable end caps, the caps lift off by prying on the top from the back of the washer. The cap will pull off towards you as you are facing the unit from the front of the washer. There will be a screw under each end cap that you will need to remove.

b. If the console does not have removable end caps, you will need to slide a putty knife under the front corner of each side and push in while lifting up. There is a retaining clip under each side that has to be released.

3. Once the console has been released it will lift up and fold back over the back of the washer in its resting position. Use care not to stress the small plastic hinges that hold it on. They can break easily.

4. Under the console will be two large brass colored clips. Take a large flat blade screwdriver and place it in the groove of the clip on the washer top. With the screwdriver firmly in the groove, push away from you towards the back of the washer. This will release the clips.

5. Disconnect the lid switch connector plug. This is the white colored plug on the washer top under the console.

6. Remove the washer casing. Open the lid of the washer. Using one hand, grip under the front rim of the washer opening. Do not grab the wash tub, just the casing. Tilt the washer case from the back first towards you, slide forward slightly, then lift up. The entire case comes off exposing the wash tub and components.

7. Remove the water pump. This is a small pump located in the front of the washer directly under the wash tub. It has two hoses leading to it. LEAVE THE DRAIN HOSES IN PLACE and remove the two retaining clips. The front of the clip pops off with a gentle pry of a screwdriver, while the back is in a keyed slot. Once released from the pump, turn the clip to remove from the slot. Pull the pump off the motor shaft and push it aside while leaving the hoses attached.

8. Remove the Drive Motor. Remove the electrical connection(s) first using care not to break any of the wires. Loosen the two 1/4" hex bolts that hold the Drive Motor retaining clips in place. Now, place one hand under the motor and lift gently while prying the top retaining clip with a screwdriver. This will release some of the tension on the clip and make it slightly easier to remove. (WARNING: the motor has some weight to it, so be prepared to support it when it is released.). Once the top clip is released, the bottom one should come out fairly easy. The clips are similiar to the ones that hold the water pump in place. They are inserted into a keyed slot and are slightly longer.

9. Once the Drive Motor has been removed, the Motor Coupling is directly behind it. There are two plastic three-pronged pieces with with a rubber bushing connecting the two. Once plastic piece is inserted on the Drive Motor shaft, while the other piece is inserted on the transmission shaft. You may have to use a screwdriver to remove the old pieces. Make sure you replace BOTH halves of the coupling even if one side appears good.

10. Insert new coupling by tapping one piece onto the transmission shaft with a hammer. Use a dowel or something solid to tap the center portion of the coupling until the opening of the coupling is flush with the shaft. DO NOT hit the prongs or they will break. Do the same for the Drive Motor. Make sure you place the coupling on the correct side of the motor. If you forget, remember that the electrical connections are on the RIGHT HAND SIDE of the motor and that the coupling goes on the REAR shaft of the motor.

11. Place the rubber bushing over the side of the coupler that is connected to the transmission. Rotate the bushing so one empty hole is facing up and the other two are facing down. Now, rotate the coupler on the motor so the prongs will line up with these holes. It's a little tricky trying to get them to line of sometimes. I usually place the lower retaining clip in it's keyed slot so that it is resting on the floor. That way, when you get the motor in place, you can reach down while holding the motor up and snap the lower bracket in. You will still need to support the weight of the motor until you get the top brakcet keyed into its slot and snapped back into place.

12. Reinstall electrical connector to the Drive Motor.

13. Reinstall Water pump. You may have to rotate the motor shaft slightly to get the slot on the water pump to line up correctly. Make sure you re-install retaining clips.

14. Re-install washer case. With the lid of the washer open, place grasp case under front rim and place it on the washer frame. While looking down through the washer lid opening, make sure the front lip of the case is placed UNDER the washer frame and rocked back onto the frame to ensure that the small cleats on the frame fit into the slotted grooves on the washer case base. If you do not get the case seated correctly it will rattle and vibrate while the washer is in operation.

15. Make the back of the washer fits into the washer casing on each side and reinsert the brass clips. Place the clip into the slot on the back of the washer first, then forcefully push it into the opening on top of the washer. It will snap back into to place.

16. REINSTALL LID SWITCH CONNECTOR. It is easy to forget. If you do not reconnect it, the washer will not work correctly.

17. Reinstall console.

I know it seems like a lot, but it is an easy process if you take your time and follow the steps as written. If you have any further questions, please post back with comments. I hope this helps you.

PS If you need a part number, post back with your model number and I will get it for you. The part is carried by almost any appliance repair store.

Posted on Nov 05, 2007


I just wanted to say thank you. I was able to fix the problem. Thanks so much for you advice and help. I purchased the motor coupling and replaced the old one. This did the trick. The whole job only took about 30 minutes. Thank you, Corina

Posted on Nov 06, 2007


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