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Kenmore Washer Intermittent Drain and/or Spin Problem

Kenmore Elite Catalyst Model 110.22032100

My washer intermittently stops after the first or second rinse at either needing to drain, or drains, but fails to spin. When it does hang, the motor buzzes and overheats. After letting it cool down, I can restart the washer in drain/spin or second rinse cycle (depending were it hung) and it will finish.

I have ran through all the t1-4 diags and never get an error code. If it is not locked up, it cycles through the 3 speeds on the t4 test with no problems.

I also removed the pump and ensured there was no blockage and the pump flows freely. Lid switch also functions properly. I have not noticed any black shavings to indicate a broken coupling either.

So, being that this is a direct drive model, and the intermittent nature and timing (during the forward/neutral/reverse gear change) of the freezing/lock up, I am assuming the problem is with the gearbox and/or the clutch.

I wanted you expert opinion in case I missed anything in my troubleshooting. I am hoping to only have to order parts once and take this thing apart only one more time :)


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Well, this is a tricky one...but, it does sound like you've doe your homework when it comes to troubleshooting. If the motor coupling were bad the washer would not drain or spin at all. Here's my list of possibilities:

1. Gearcase (transmission) - of course, this is a possible suspect, but I usually have seen them get to a point where they do not spin at all, or make a lot of noise when doing so. A usual symptom is a light amber colored oil leaking from them on floor underneath the washer.

2. Clutch and Brake Assembly - Could be that the clutch is staying engaged causing the brakes to stick. This would definitely cause the drive motor to bing up in an attempt to turn the transmission. This could also be related to the overheating issue.

3. Drive Motor - Another possibility, but diagnostics procedures at t4 tests the motor operation during neutral drain sequence. Just to be sure, you can double check the motor windings by checking at the connector plugs at the control board. Unplug the washer and take resistance readings of the Low Medium and High Speed motor windings. Readings are as follows:

Winding Connector Plug Resistance Reading

Low P7-2 (WH/OR) to P9-2 (WH/BLK) 2.6 ohms
Medium P7-1 (OR) to P9-2 (WH/BLK) 1.5 ohms
High P7-2 (WH/VT) to P9-2 (WH/BLK) 2.3 ohms
Start @motor across RED/YELLOW 5.1 ohms

There is a possibility of a bad start winding. This could also cause the motor to strain on start and overheat.

4. Centrifugal Switch - the drive motor has a centrifugal motor start switch that engages when the motor reaches a certain rpm. If the switch were bad, however, I believe the motor would attempt to run when you pressed start, then shut off shortly thereafter. I don't think you would get a motor hum.

5. Start Capacitor - located in the start winding circuit. If the capacitor goes bad the there will not be voltage induces across the start winding to start the drive motor. You could have a capacitor that is starting to fail.

Am I confusing you yet? Look under the washer and see if there any signs of oil leakage from the transmission, if not double check the motor windings. Chances are the centrifugal switch is good, because you stated the motor is energized and it does pass diagnostics. If everything checks out, you may be able to narrow this down to the clutch, or start cap. (gearcase a maybe)

HINT: Here's a long shot for you...I have actually seen this happen before. Remove the agitator and inspect the wash tub THOROUGHLY, paying particular attention to all the small holes in the wash basket. I have seen a dry wall nail or screw get caught on one of these holes, stopping the inner basket from turning. The result is the same symptoms you have described.

I hope this answers some of your questions. I tried the best I can, but there is a degree of uncertainty because I can't actually SEE what is going on. I'm sorry if cannot narrow it down any better for you. Let me know what you decide and if you need further assistance, I'm available.

Posted on May 25, 2008


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