Why Is My Washing Machine Not Spinning?

Jul 18, 2023, 16:29pm

Your washing machine has a spin cycle which allows you to dry your laundry as much as possible. The higher the temperature, the more water you will save. However, sometimes your washing machine does not perform the spin cycle correctly.

Several things need to be checked:

  • Choose the right washing program
  • Check the drain filter
  • Check the drain hose
  • Test the drain pump
  • Check the vent
  • Check pulley and belt
  • Check the motor brushes
  • Check the capacitor
  • Test the engine
  • Check the pressure switch
  • Test the electronic board

This page will guide you through the different steps to carry out, depending on whether it is a top washing machine (top loading) or a front loading washing machine.

Discovering that your washing machine is no longer spinning can be frustrating and inconvenient. The spinning function is crucial for removing excess water from your clothes and ensuring they come out of the machine as dry as possible. There are several potential reasons why a washing machine may fail to spin, ranging from simple issues to more complex mechanical or electrical problems. Understanding these causes can help you troubleshoot the problem and find a solution. In this article, we will explore the common reasons why a washing machine is not spinning and provide possible solutions to address the issue.

Why Is My Washing Machine Not Spinning?

1. Unbalanced Load

One of the most common reasons for a washing machine not spinning is an unbalanced load. If the laundry inside the drum is unevenly distributed, it can cause the machine to detect an imbalance and prevent it from spinning. This safety feature ensures that the machine remains stable during the spinning process and avoids damage. To resolve this issue, make sure to distribute the laundry evenly inside the drum and avoid overloading the machine. Small loads or single items may also cause imbalance, so consider adding more items to achieve a balanced load.

2. Faulty Lid or Door Switch

Most washing machines have a lid or door switch that detects whether the lid or door is securely closed. If the switch is faulty or not engaging properly, the machine may not start the spinning cycle. Check the switch for any signs of damage or misalignment. Ensure that the lid or door is closing properly and pressing the switch fully. If the switch is damaged or not functioning correctly, it may need to be replaced.

3. Broken or Worn Drive Belt

A broken or worn drive belt can also prevent the washing machine from spinning. The drive belt connects the motor to the drum, enabling it to rotate during the spin cycle. If the belt is damaged or worn out, it may slip or break, resulting in a lack of spinning action. Inspect the drive belt for any signs of damage, such as cracks or fraying. If necessary, replace the drive belt to restore proper spinning functionality.

4. Malfunctioning Motor or Motor Control Board

The motor and motor control board are essential components responsible for driving the drum’s spinning motion. If either of these components is faulty, it can cause the washing machine to not spin. Signs of a malfunctioning motor or control board include unusual noises, burning smells, or a complete lack of motor operation. Contact a professional technician to inspect and repair or replace the faulty motor or control board.

5. Obstruction in the Drain Pump or Filter

A clogged drain pump or filter can prevent the washing machine from spinning. If there is a blockage, the water may not drain properly, triggering a safety feature that prevents the spinning cycle from starting. Inspect the drain pump and filter for any debris or obstructions. Clean or clear any blockages to ensure proper water drainage and spinning function.


On older models, you may have a capacitor and not motor brushes. This cylindrical part will simply allow the engine to start.

To test the capacitor:

  • Start by unloading it by bringing the two terminals into contact with an insulated screwdriver.
  • Set your multimeter to 100 mF (micro-farad) and put the test tips on the terminals. If you find a value close to the value indicated on the capacitor then it is functional.


There are three types of engine. To measure them, you will need to set the multimeter to 200 ohms.

  • For the universal motor, it is necessary to place the test tips of the multimeter on the lugs of the windings, of the motor carbons and on those of the tachometer (which makes it possible to measure the speed of rotation of the drum). If a value is displayed, then the motor is functional, otherwise either the motor or the tachometer will have to be replaced.
  • For the induction type motor, if you find a value of 5 ohms across the two windings, then the motor is functional.
  • For the asynchronous motor equipped with a capacitor, measure each winding on the motor terminals. If a value is displayed, the motor is functional.

Why Is My Washing Machine Not Spinning?

Troubleshooting Steps

Here are some troubleshooting steps you can take when your washing machine is not spinning:

  1. Ensure that the laundry is evenly distributed inside the drum and avoid overloading the machine.
  2. Check the lid or door switch for any damage or misalignment, and ensure it is engaging properly.
  3. Inspect the drive belt for any signs of damage or wear, and replace it if necessary.
  4. Contact a professional technician to inspect and repair or replace a faulty motor or motor control board.
  5. Check the drain pump and filter for any obstructions, and clear them to ensure proper water drainage.

By following these steps, you can often identify and address the issue of a washing machine that is not spinning. Regular maintenance, proper load distribution, and attention to the machine’s components will help prevent future occurrences.

In conclusion, a washing machine that fails to spin can be caused by various factors, including an unbalanced load, faulty lid or door switch, broken or worn drive belt, malfunctioning motor or motor control board, and obstruction in the drain pump or filter. By understanding these common causes and following the troubleshooting steps mentioned above, you can often identify and address the issue effectively. If the problem persists or if you are unsure about any repairs, it is advisable to consult a professional technician to diagnose and repair the specific problem with your washing machine.


“If you’re in Toronto or the Greater Toronto Area and need your washing machine repair near me urgently, contact Shymon Appliance Repair, we know how to fix it!”