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I have a whirlpool washing machine (SM 8525079 REV). Whenever it runs, it always stops after a few minutes having filled with water. However, once you open and then close the lid, the machine starts again and works perfectly. (I believe it used to do this intermittently but it now happens all the time.)

Is this something that is easy to diagnose and/or fix?

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I suspect the lid switch. These used to be very simple, though the one I linked that, I think, is the one for your machine is a bit more complex. But if the switch is wearing out (I replace mine every few years), it can easily end up causing the machine to stop mid-cycle and start again by opening/closing the lid - which effectively "jiggles" the switch.

In my case (older model Kenmore), the switch only has to be closed for the spin/drain parts of the cycle and not for the filling or for agitate/wash, but I'd check the switch anyway. If you are able to stop the machine by lifting the lid, then the machine not running when it should is very likely related to the lid switch.

  • Thanks, I think this is probably going to end up as the correct answer. The washer certainly fills with the door open, I think it might require the lid to be shut for the agitate cycle but I'm not sure. I'm a bit confused about your last comment, however; you say If you are able to stop the machine by lifting the lid... but I was a bit confused about the implied logic. – Godot Jul 7 at 2:55
  • @Godot Next time you have the problem and open/close gets the machine working again, open the lid a second time and see if the machine stops. If it does, then the problem is almost definitely the lid switch - i.e., first time you have to open/close because it thinks the lid is already open, second time you are verifying that "lid open" really makes it stop. If second time opening does not stop the machine then there may be some secondary process going on like sensor/filter as described in another answer. – manassehkatz Jul 7 at 3:01
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    Just to confirm that this is precisely what happens. (Also, I can even get the machine to stop and not to turn on again if I close the lid very very softly.) – Godot Jul 7 at 15:15
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When is the last time you cleaned the drain filter? It could be detecting a partial clog and actuating the lid sensor causes the logic to reset the "not draining" sensor until it trips again. This happened to mine a few months ago and it all cleared up after cleaning an enormous quantity of hair out of the drain filter (part of regular washing machine maintenance).

  • Good suggestion! I will check first thing tomorrow. – Godot Jul 7 at 2:44

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