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Eric
Eric, Home Appliance Technician
Category: Appliance
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Experience:  Factory/company training at MAJOR retailer, now owns and operates an appliance repair business.
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I have an (old) Maytag Model A207 washer that is still going

Resolved Question:

I have an (old) Maytag Model A207 washer that is still going strong except for a recent problem. The washer occasionally just stops in the middle of a wash cycle and nothing happens for a while (at least 5 minutes and probably sometimes much longer). Eventually it restarts itself and finishes.

I assume that this is a timer related problem. Partselect.com lists a part PS2017078, a TIMER for $158 and part PS2017101,TIMER MOTOR 120-60 for $44.

What is your opinion about the source of the problem and if it is timer-related, which if any of the above parts are appropriate to replace?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Appliance
Expert:  Eric replied 5 years ago.
HelloCustomer My name is XXXXX XXXXX I am happy to help you today! I assume this happens both in the agitate and the spin/drain phase of the cycle, so it is LESS likely to be a timer motor problem especially if , when the washer stops, the timer continues to advance, but it is POSSIBLE that the contacts in the timer are worn out or have excessive carbon residue on them, which would inhihibit their ability to conduct. This kind of problem with the contact is usually not intermittent DURING a running cycle, when the machine spontaneously starts running again. The more LIKELY cause is that the drive motor is worn out and is running hotter than it used to , which will trip the motors' internal thermal cutoff. This cutoff operates thermostatically and cuts power to the motor until it cools down, then the circuit closes again and the machine continues to run. Since this is an intermittent problem, having a meter nearby nd some patience to catch the machine in a failure then measuring timer output to the motor, lid switch, power input to the motor would ensure that you didnt replace parts that were not bad, instead of blindly replacing parts like many techs do , eventually getting luck and replacing the one causing the problem. Please let me know if you need more information.
Thanks!
Eric
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Eric:
Thanks for your prompt response. Sorry I couldn't get back sooner, but I needed to take a closer look at the machine. I have two follow-up questions.

1. There are several connections to the timer. A picture is at http://www.appliancepartsworldwide.com/Store_Part.aspx?Id=727907

Dividing the view of the timer with the timer motor on the bottom into 4 quadrants, the terminal numbering and wire colors on our machine is as follows:

Lower left quadrant:

Terminal 9 White

Upper left quadrant, top to bottom

Terminal 22 Red Terminal 32 Black

Upper right quadrant, top row

Terminal 7 Gray

Upper right quadrant, bottom row

Terminal 3* Gray with black stripe

Lower right quadrant top row, left to right

Terminal 17 Green Terminal 7A* Red Terminal 7T* White

Lower right quadrant bottom row, left to right

Terminal 15 Brown Terminal 16 Yellow, Yellow with black stripe, Black
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------
The terminal 16 black wire connects to the timer motor.

Which terminals do I monitor (and for what) when measuring:

a. timer output to the motor

b. lid switch

c. power input to the motor

and how will I know from these measurements that it is the thermostat cutting power to the motor and not some problem with the timer contacts?

2. If I find that the stopping is from the thermostat /worn drive motor, is this worth trying to fix or should I just buy a new machine?

Thanks.

Expert:  Eric replied 5 years ago.
Thanks for that link to the picture of your replacement timer. Unfortunately, that and all the descriptions of the terminals and the wires coming out of each one will do no one any good without the scematic/wiring diagram unless they have a photographic memory of timer input/output wire colors and terminal numbers, which I am happpy to admit, I do not posses. In order to answer that question, I will (or you will ) need the wiring diagram for the washer . Every machine has a schematic/wiring diagram located under the console of the machine, unless someone has removed it Cry. If you find yours and you know how to read it, there is the answer to the question about where to test. All of your timer and drive system circuits are at 120VAC.
You dont need to "monitor" anything, unless you feel like it. A simple measurement when the machine has failed will suffice. Basically, you're going to check for voltage into the motor,right at the motor harness connector on the the motor itself when the motor has stopped unexpectedly, and if you find it, you can rule out timer, lid switch, harness shorts, basically everything except the motor itself.
Now as far as that "thermostat", remember, there is no "thermostat" on the motor or anywhere on the machine. I am only bringing this up because you seem motivated , and I would hate for you to go into a parts house or some online place looking for a motor thermostat that does not exist. It is a thermostatic switch which we just call the "motor thermal protector" or "motor thermal cutoff" and if it is the culprit, we can test between two terminals on the motor for open circuit very soon after the motor stops running, but once it cools , that switch will close again, sometimes fast, sometimes slower but unless the motor never runs and you want to find out why, there really is no reason to check it this way. If it is activating and you rule out all sources of excess mechanical drag that could lead to motor overheating, like worn bearing in the tub (if that were the cause, your failure would ONLY happen during the spin) , worn gearbox or seizing gearbox(same as before, if this were the case, the intermittent nature of the problem would be less intermittent, rather it would be isolated to either a spin phase or agitate phase exclusively), slipping belts, something stuck between the basket and the tub (spin phase only) , then you must replace the entire motor. It is part #12002353 which is subbed from the original 201807, and is $160 give or take.

Now, as far as the value of repair vs. replacement, that is purely up to you. Do you want to invest the time in diagnosing, then the time in repairing as well as the actual cost of the parts? Thats up to you . For me, I tend to look at the bigger picture. I could repair it now, but because this is such an old machine, the way MY mind works is that I am not getting long term value because of Murphie's Law, something else will break and now I've spent more money and time than the machine was ever worth, let alone what its worth now. That is JUST ME though.

Edited by Eric on 9/29/2009 at 3:05 AM EST
Eric, Home Appliance Technician
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 244
Experience: Factory/company training at MAJOR retailer, now owns and operates an appliance repair business.
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Eric
Eric
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Factory/company training at MAJOR retailer, now owns and operates an appliance repair business.