A bad lid switch is a common problem with top-loading washers. The switch is made of plastic, so it can be broken off or damaged under the right conditions. When the lid switch is bad, you won't be able to do your laundry, so quick repairs are in order. This is how a lid switch works, the signs it's bad, and how to fix the problem.
The Purpose Of The Lid Switch
The lid switch on a washing machine is a safety feature that prevents injuries. It lets the control panel know the lid is closed so it's safe to start agitating or spinning. When the washer is spinning and you raise the lid, the movement stops because of the lid switch. In this way, the switch could save you from an injury caused by putting your hand in a washing machine basket that's moving.
Signs The Lid Switch Is Bad
If the lid switch is bad, the control panel of your washing machine interprets that as the lid being open. If the control panel doesn't detect the switch as being engaged, then the washer won't agitate or spin when you close the lid.
Your washer may or may not fill with water when you have a bad lid switch depending on the model you have. When the lid switch is bad, your washer may not fill with water or it may fill with water and then not advance to the next step of agitating your clothes.
Repairs For A Bad Lid Switch
A bad switch usually has to be replaced. When you call a washer repair person to check the problem, they can test the wiring and switch with a multi-meter to verify it's bad, but sometimes you can see that the switch is broken off. Replacing the switch entails removing the cover on the control panel of the washer to disconnect the switch. Then, the switch parts have to be removed from the side of the washer and the lid. The job doesn't take too long to complete, so the repair person will have your washer back in service fairly fast.
One thing to keep in mind if you're thinking about DIY repairs is electrical safety. Make sure the washer is unplugged and remember that the capacitor in the washer can hold an electrical charge for several minutes after you unplug the appliance. That means you could potentially get a bad shock even with the washer unplugged, so if you don't know how to work on appliances, call a professional to make your washer repairs.