How to Change the Clutch on a Whirlpool Washing Machine

A Whirlpool washing machine that does not agitate correctly may have a worn or failed clutch. Once you know how to change a clutch, you can save money on a costly repair bill. Be sure that you disconnect the power supply before attempting the repair. Also turn off the water supply and remove the water hoses from the rear of the washer.

Things You'll Need

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Flathead screwdriver
  • Socket wrench set
  • Pliers
  • Needle-nose pliers
  • Replacement clutch

Instructions

    • 1

      Use a screwdriver to remove the two screws that secure the front of the control console to the washing machine. When the screws are removed, flip the control console back so that it sits in the service position. It will rest on its hinges.

    • 2

      Disconnect the lid switch by depressing the plastic tab and pulling the wiring harness apart. The lid switch harness is located on the top of the washer where the control console covers it.

    • 3

      Remove the mounting clips to the washer cabinet by inserting a screwdriver and pressing the clips out. Remove the washing machine cabinet by pulling it forward and then lifting it away from the washer base.

    • 4

      Insert a flathead screwdriver between the agitator cap and agitator and pop the cap off. Remove the inner cap using the same technique. After the inner cap is removed, use a socket wrench to remove the bolt located in the center of the agitator. The agitator can now be removed in two pieces from the tub.

    • 5

      Locate the water pump and remove the two hoses attached to the pump. Use a pair of pliers to press in the pressure clamp and pull the hoses off. The water pump can now be removed from the motor by using a screwdriver to remove the two plastic retaining clips.

    • 6

      Disconnect the wires from the motor by using a pair of needle-nose pliers and pulling the wire leads from the motor terminals.

    • 7

      Remove the two clips that hold the motor to the washer frame using an appropriate-size socket wrench. Carefully slide the motor down and remove it from the gear case. The coupler between the gear case and the motor may have to be pried off with a screwdriver. Be careful when doing this to prevent damaging the coupler.

    • 8

      Place the washing machine on its back. You will be able to access the gear case assembly. Remove the three bolts that secure the gear case to the tub support using a socket wrench. Carefully pull the gear case assembly completely out of the drive tube, making sure that you do not damage the splined end of the shaft.

    • 9

      Remove the thrust washer by sliding it off of the shaft. Use a pair of needle-nose pliers to remove the support ring from the shaft. Remove the clutch retaining ring with a screwdriver and lift the clutch hub off the shaft. Place the new clutch hub over the shaft and slide it into position in the gear case.

    • 10

      Reconnect the retaining ring on the gear case shaft to secure the clutch hub in place. Snap the support ring back onto the shaft and slide the thrust washer back over the gear case shaft.

    • 11

      Insert the gear case shaft into the tub drive tube. Rotate the shaft back and forth to line the splined end inside the tube. Secure the gear case to the tub support by reattaching the three bolts that hold it in place. Set the machine back up on its feet.

    • 12

      Line the motor back over the gear case and resecure it to the washer frame with the retaining clips. Reconnect the wires to the motor terminals by pushing the leads back over them.

    • 13

      Reattach the water pump to the motor using the retaining clips. Attach the two hoses to the water pump.

    • 14

      Set the agitator back into the tub and attach it with the mounting bolt in the center of the agitator. Reconnect the inner and outer agitator caps by pressing them back into place.

    • 15

      Lift the washer cabinet back over the washer base and press down around the side to snap it into place. Reconnect the mounting clips on the top rear of the washer by pressing them back into their slots. Press the wiring harness together for the lid switch at this time as well.

    • 16

      Pull the control panel back down into its operating position and attach it to the washer top using the two securing screws. Reconnect the water hoses and the power supply.

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