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John, Home Appliance Technician
Category: Appliance
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Experience:  Appliance repair business owner for over 43 years.
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Maytag Performa Washer Makes A Buzzing Noise And Stops.

Customer Question

I have a Maytag Performa washer which makes a buzzing noise after filling up and stops. Even after I changed the timer and hood switch, it still does the same thing. I have to turn the knob to start it. It also works if I lift and close the lid a couple of times.

Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Appliance
Expert:  John replied 4 years ago.

Appliance doctor: Can you send me the model number please .

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : pavt144aww

Appliance doctor: If it works by hitting the lid, the lid switch actuator is worn or caked with dried up detergent.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : That is ok on spin cycle if I lift the door it stops spinning.

Appliance doctor : It's supposed to stop spinning when the lid is lifted but if the actuator is jammed with detergent it wont work all the time.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg : Right after it fills it makes a buzzing noise then again when it gets to rinse I have to move the timer around.

appliance doctor : If you move the timer ahead just a touch it will continue on with the cycle selected.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Yes most of the time

appliance doctor : Ok, let me know what you find.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Going to put it on cycle just filling with water. Now it starts to buzz after it is full of water. It smells like something is burning. I lifted the lid, it stopped and started to buzz. Closed it a couple of times and it restarted.

appliance doctor : That is a lid switch problem. Check that lid switch I'm sure it will fix the problem.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : I installed a new lid switch in today

appliance doctor : Did you clean the actuator ?

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Is that the piece that is on the door? It is just a plastic piece.

appliance doctor : Yes its the plastic part that hits the lid switch when you close the door .

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : How do I clean it?

appliance doctor : Spray WD40 on it that should clean it out.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Ok i took it off and cleaned it. This piece just pushes in the switch.

appliance doctor :Yes that's what it does, If that's ok and you replaced the lid switch and it still hums. I would suspect a bad contact in the timer or the motor switch .

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : I put a new timer in still did the same thing

appliance doctor : Yes I know the timer has been replaced and that leaves a dirty contact in the motor switch .

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Where do i find that?

appliance doctor : Use some electrical spray cleaner on the switch see if that fixes the problem .

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : I have dielectric grease. Why do i smell a burning smell when it is buzzing

appliance doctor : That's the motor your smelling the 'start winding' is burning up.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Should I remove the contacts and put some dielectric grease in there?

appliance doctor : You cant do that, all you can try is the electrical spray on the switch.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Do I have to take the door switch off to do this?

appliance doctor : The motor switch is located on the end of the motor not the lid switch.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : So I have to tip it from the back to get at it? Is there a plug on this switch? i do not have the electric spray. Is there something else i can do? How do i get to the motor?

appliance doctor : Theres a clip at each front corner about 3 inches from it. Use a flat screwdriver and push in at the clips this will release the front panel. Check the blue and red wires for a poor connection. The motor is on the left.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : This is at the back of the machine.

appliance doctor : I said the front panel of the washer, use the screwdriver to push in at the clips, this will release the front panel. Let me know how you do please.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Do i have to remove the timer panel?

appliance doctor :

Here's the complete breakdown of the model, look for the motor at the front of the washer on the base on the left side.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : ok i popped the top now take off top screws
at the motor.

appliance doctor : Check the red and blue wire for a poor connection.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Can i put some elec grease on the connections?

appliance doctor : Yes you can do that, also the WD 40 it penetrates the inside of the motor switch better.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Ok now do I put it back together?

appliance doctor : If the lid switch is back on you can try it with the panel off the front. Don't use WD 40 on the motor switch, just use the electrical spray.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : I just have elec grease.

appliance doctor : Ok, that's fine just try the washer and let me know the outcome please.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Ok filling up. Motor still buzzed turned timer on and off and it starting working.

appliance doctor : Your problem has to be the start winding in the motor which means you require a new motor.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Will this let it buzz at each cycle?

appliance doctor : Its not supposed to buzz, it should start up and wash or spin. A new motor will fix that buzz and not starting problem .

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Is the the only thing left since I replaced the timer and the switch?

appliance doctor : That's correct its the only part left that would cause that problem.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Ok i will have to try a motor, I have read on the net some people had have put in a motor and same problem.

Hope this solves my problem.

appliance doctor : The timer and lid switch have been replaced so it has to fix the problem.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : So why when i move the knob forward does it work again? Does this kick the motor going?

appliance doctor : Yes a motor replacement will fix the problem.

JACUSTOMER-aev2l6jg- : Thank you for your help.

appliance doctor :
Your very welcome, Thanks and God bless.