Kenmore 70 Series Washer Won't Spin? (Possible Causes & Fixes)

Stacy Randall
by Stacy Randall

A broken washing machine can be very frustrating, especially if you have a large family. What should you do when your washing machine doesn’t spin? Don’t call a professional just yet; diagnosing the problem may be easier than you think.

If your Kenmore Washer Series 70 won’t spin, there could be many reasons why this is happening. Troubleshoot the washing machine by redistributing the laundry load, leveling your machine, and checking the washing machine’s power source. You should also check the hose for any kinks, remove blockages in the drain, and check the drive belt.

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How to Troubleshoot Your Kenmore Washer That Won’t Spin

Your washer shouldn’t leave your clothes soaking wet. If it does, you immediately know there’s a problem. Before calling a professional, there’s a DIY fix to get your washing machine working again.

While Kenmore no longer manufactures the Kenmore Series 70 of washers and dryers, you can still purchase replacement parts. This will save you money on out-of-warranty repair fees from Kenmore.

Step 1: Redistribute the Laundry Load

One of the most common reasons the washing machine is no longer spinning is an unbalanced laundry load. Sometimes clothes can settle on one side of the drum, throwing off the washing machine’s motion. This happens most often when washing heavy items like comforters, towels, or heavy winter coats.

If you think the lack of spinning may be due to a distribution issue, rearrange the wet laundry. After rearranging the laundry, try running the spin cycle again.

Step 2: Level Your Washing Machine

If your washing machine rests unevenly on the floor or pedestal, it won’t spin correctly. Other signs of an unlevel washing machine are excess noise and vibration during the washing process. If this is the case, adjust each leg higher or lower until you completely level the washer.

Step 3: Check the Washing Machine’s Power Source

Sometimes, a simple thing like the power source can often cause bigger problems. Double-check that you’ve plugged in the washer. Plugs can often come loose mid-cycle if there is a bump, causing the plug to come out of the outlet.

Re-plug the power cord back into the outlet. Check your home’s circuit panel to make sure that there isn’t a tripped breaker. You should never use an extension cord to run power to your washing machine. It would be best if you plugged the power cord directly into the outlet. Most extension cords can’t conduct enough electricity, causing the cord to overheat and shut itself off.

In addition to being dangerous, when the motor overheats, it can shorten the lifespan of your washer.

Step 4: Inspect the Spin Switch

A top-loading washer like the Kenmore Series 70 has a switch that depresses when you close the lid. This is a safety precaution that detects when the lid is closed. If the tab on the underside of the lid is damaged, it won’t activate the switch.

You can test to see if this is the problem by opening the lid and selecting the spin cycle on your washer. Manually press the switch with your finger. If the machine starts spinning normally, readjust the tab so that it triggers the spin switch properly.

If the washer did not spin when you manually pressed the switch, the problem could be with the switch itself. Replacing a broken switch can be a relatively easy DIY project. You can purchase a switch replacement on Amazon for about $10.

Step 5: Check the Hose for Any Kinks

If the washing machine hose has any kinks, it can hinder the water flow to the appliance. This results in the spin cycle starting, but it never reaches the appropriate speed and won’t drain the water. To determine if your machine has a hose kink, pull out the washer and check that it is kink-free.

After, carefully push the machine back into place and ensure that you don’t crimp the hose again.

Step 6: Remove Any Blockages In the Drainage System

Sometimes you might forget to empty pockets before throwing clothes into the washing machine. Small items like pennies, keys, buttons, and clothing clips can lodge in the washing machine hoses. The hoses attach the washer to the drain pump.

The blocked drain pump prevents the machine from spinning. Consult your owner’s manual for specific instructions on locating your drain pump. Remove the clamps that hold the hoses in place and clear any clogs, then reattach the hoses.

Step 7: Replace or Readjust the Drive Belt

If the drive belt slips off the pulley wheel, it can cause the washer to agitate during the wash cycle. However, the drum will remain still during the spin cycle. To determine if this is the issue, remove the back of the washer.

After removing the back of the washer, check to see if the belt is on the pulley. If it’s not, you will need to replace the drive belt. Make sure that you purchase a drive belt that is made specifically for Kenmore Series 70 Washing Machines.

Four Scenarios When You Should Call a Professional

Sometimes a DIY-fix isn’t the solution to your washing machine problems. If your washing machine has any of the following issues, it’s best to contact a professional.

Reason 1: A Damaged Drain Pump

The drain pump can cause the washing machine to stop spinning. You can use a multimeter to check for continuity on the drain pump’s motor connection. However, if the drain pump isn’t functioning, call a specialist to replace it.

Reason 2: A Broken Motor Coupler

The motor coupler is a small, rubber, and plastic connector piece between the washer’s motor and transmission. To determine if there is a broken motor coupler, conduct a test. Set the dial on the machine to a wash cycle and turn it on, allowing the drum to fill with water.

When the water reaches the fill level, the agitation should begin. However, if you hear the motor turn on but the agitator doesn’t move, the machine needs a new coupler. A replacement coupler is about $20, but this fix is only for those who are skilled in repairing motors.

Reason 3: A Defective Motor

If the motor doesn’t run after checking the power connections and your home’s circuit breaker, the washing machine won’t spin. Some motors contain carbon brushes that can become worn over time. However, the problem can be more extensive than a carbon brush.

It’s not possible to determine what’s wrong with the motor without removing it and testing it. Even when the washer is unplugged, these motors can still cause electrocution. Because of this, leave motor testing and repairs to trained professionals.

Reason 4: A Worn Clutch or Electromechanical Shifter

Some washers feature clutches or electro-mechanical transmission shifters. When they become worn, this can cause the washing machine to leak. This problem will require attention from a professional.

What to Do If Your Kenmore Washer Series 70 Won’t Drain

If your Kenmore Washer Series 70 isn’t draining, first verify that you fully close the lid. Otherwise, the washer won’t enter the spin cycle. Also, check that you have selected the correct cycle for the load.

Debris Is Clogging the Pump

The washing machine pump is responsible for removing water from the tub after the spin cycle. If you think debris is clogging the pump, locate the pump in the washing machine’s main access panel. Check the pump to see if anything is blocking it, like socks or other small clothing.

If you do see debris, remove it with needle-nose pliers. However, if there is no clog in the pump, inspect it for other broken parts. After looking things over thoroughly, if you spot damaged parts, you should replace the entire pump.

Make sure to check that the pump pulley is freely rotating. If it isn’t, you can purchase a new pump pulley from a Kenmore authorized parts dealer. They are relatively inexpensive and shouldn’t cost more than $15.

The Hose Is Too Long for the Washing Machine

If the drain hose is too high, the water will flow back into the washing machine. Do not install a drain hose that is higher than 96 inches from the floor. If the hose is the proper length, check for kinks and straighten it.

If the hose is crushed, you need to replace it. Remove the hose from the washing machine and check for clogs. The drain hose should not extend more than four inches into the tub, so remove any excess hose.

The Lid Switch Has Malfunctioned

The lid switch’s purpose is to let the washer know that the lid has closed. If it’s not working properly, your washer may not work at all. You can find the switch in the door frame of the washer.

To determine if the lid switch has malfunctioned, disconnect the washing machine from the main power source. Then, remove the access panel and use a multimeter to test the switch for continuity. If it’s defective, replace the switch.

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Related Questions

How do I reset my Kenmore washing machine?

Most newer washing machines feature reset buttons. This is for the consumer to reset the machine if there is an error code or fault. To reset your machine, first, locate the control panel. Press the STOP button two times, and then press the POWER button. Next, select a wash cycle and a wash option, such as hot or cold. Finally, press the START button to complete the reset process.

How do I determine when to repair or replace my washing machine?

When deciding whether to repair or replace your washing machine, you should consider the extent of the issue. Repairing is best when it would cost less than 50 percent of the price of a new appliance. If your washing machine has several years of life expectancy left, a repair is worthwhile. Repairing is best when solving an inexpensive problem on your own such as replacing the machine’s belt or seal replacements. Fixing a pump or motor can require a professional to help, but it can still save you time and money. An older machine that often breaks down and has needed several repairs in the past few years can be detrimental. If the source of your issue is a cracked tub, it’s much easier and less expensive to replace the machine. If the defective part costs 50 percent more than a new appliance, purchase a new one.

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Stacy Randall
Stacy Randall

Stacy Randall is a wife, mother, and freelance writer from NOLA that has always had a love for DIY projects, home organization, and making spaces beautiful. Together with her husband, she has been spending the last several years lovingly renovating her grandparent's former home, making it their own and learning a lot about life along the way.

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