Can you repair a washing machine rotor?

Depending on the extent of the damage, you can either repair or replace the rotor. Having said that, the rotor is a vital part of the washing machine, and attempting to repair it without proper knowledge and experience can cause further damage to the machine.

If the washing machine’s motor rotor has minor damage, it can often be repaired, and this is usually done by machining the surface of the rotor.

However, it’s the severity of the damage that determines whether it can be repaired or if a replacement is necessary.

That being said, it’s best to get the rotor replaced instead of attempting to get it repaired.

So, if you are experienced with repairing electrical motors, this can be a relatively straightforward process to work on.

And if you are not comfortable working with electrical components, it is best to leave such repairs to a qualified professional.

Key Takeaways

  • The rotor is inside the motor housing, typically at the end facing the shaft.
  • In order to access the rotor, you will need to remove the outer casing of the motor and then the stator (the surrounding, stationary portion of the motor).
  • Repairing of rotors can be done by professional mechanics, however, it depends on the type and severity of the damage.
  • In order to replace the rotor, unplug the washer, and remove the back panel to access the rotor. Next, unscrew the mounting screws to take the rotor out and place the replacement rotor in its original position.

What is a rotor in a washing machine?

A rotor is a rotating device that works with the stator to create the rotating motion needed to move the drum. A strong magnetic field is created when the rotor and stator interact with each other, making the drum spin back and forth.

The stator is the stationary part that holds the motor and typically consists of stacked electromagnet coils and windings.

When current flows through these coils, they create a magnetic field that interacts with the rotor to make it turn.

How does the washer’s rotor wear out?

Actually, there are many different ways that the washer’s motor rotor can become damaged.

Here are some common reasons why a motor rotor may wear out:

Regular wear and tear

When washing a large load of laundry, along with the motor, the stator and the rotor also take a lot of stress, and as a result, they may wear out depending on your usage.

Furthermore, aging and general use eventually lead to the rotor wearing out over time.


Another way that rotors can be damaged is through overheating.

If you constantly run the washing machine for too long, the heat can damage the winding insulation and cause the coils to overheat.

To avoid this, it’s important to make sure that electric motors are properly cooled and to not run the washer for extended periods of time without breaks.

Damage during shipping or servicing

Damage to the rotor can also occur during shipping or installation if the motor isn’t handled carefully.

Also, this can happen if you are on the verge of servicing your washer or repairing a connected part to the motor of your washing machine.

Lack of lubrication

Failure to timely lubricate the washing machine’s motor can also have a negative impact on the rotor, causing the rotor to wear out prematurely.

Note: These are not the only reasons responsible for a washing machine rotor failure; however, they are some of the most common ones.

How do you diagnose a problem with the rotor in a washing machine?

Troubleshooting and diagnosing a problematic rotor can be tricky, as the same symptoms may exist for other issues within the washing machine.

However, there are certain steps that you can take to figure out if the rotor is problematic.

  • Begin by inspecting the machine’s power supply and ensuring that it is properly connected and receiving power.
  • Listen to the machine during the wash cycle to see if it makes any strange noises. If you hear a loud grinding or knocking noise it could be due to a problematic motor rotor.
  • Open the back panel (if it’s a front loader) or bottom panel (if it’s a top loader) and inspect the rotor for any visible signs of damage.
  • Check the machine’s manual for error codes or messages that could mean the motor rotor isn’t working right.

If none of the above steps help you narrow down the problem, contact a professional technician who can help you diagnose and repair the issue.

Washing machine rotor replacement procedure

Replacing the rotor is fairly easy once you know the exact location of the motor rotor in the washing machine.

Here’s how you can replace the rotor in a washing machine, step by step.

Replace the rotor in the top load washer

  • Start by unplugging the power cords and disconnecting the water supply from the back of the washer.
  • Place a thick towel on the floor and tilt the washer so that the back panel rests on the (towel) floor.
  • You should be able to access the bottom part of the washer once you have tilted the washer.
  • If the washer has a panel that covers the bottom part, simply unscrew the bottom panels to access the rotor.
  • Now, unscrew the mounting screw that secures the rotor in place and carefully lift it out of the washer.
  • Attach the new replacement rotor to its designated place and secure it with the mounting screw you have removed previously.
  • Attach the bottom panel back (if applicable) and make sure that it is firmly attached.
  • Now level the washer and move it back to its original location followed by re-connecting all the water and electric supply lines.
  • Finally, run a test cycle to confirm that the washer is working as expected.

Replace the rotor in the front-load washer

  • Step 1: Move the washer away from the wall, unplug the power cable and disconnect the water supply.
  • Step 2: Remove the back panel of the washer by unscrewing the screws that hold it in place.
  • Step 3: Remove the mounting screws that hold the rotor in place.
  • Step 4: Detach the rotor by applying gentle force.
  • Step 5: Once the rotor is detached, put the new rotor into the washer, and use the mounting screws to secure it in place.
  • Step 6: Reassemble the washer and run a test cycle to confirm if everything is working as expected.

Things to keep in mind while replacing the washer’s rotor

  • Before attempting to replace a rotor, you should ensure that the new rotor’s diameter is compatible with the current model of your washer.
  • The motor will not function properly if you attempt to replace the rotor with an incompatible model.
  • Be careful while disassembling the washer’s rotor as this is where a lot of mistakes tend to happen. There is a high chance that you may end up damaging other parts of the washer if you do not pay close attention to what you are doing.
  • Once the faulty rotor is removed, it’s best to clean the inside part with a cloth to remove any debris or dirt that could damage the new rotor.
  • Most importantly, make sure the replacement rotor is seated correctly and that all of the screws are tightened securely.
  • Lastly, after reassembling the washer’s motor, test it to ensure it is running correctly before placing it in its place.

Final Thoughts

In my opinion, changing a washing machine rotor yourself isn’t a good idea if you haven’t done basic electrical tasks before.

It is best to let a qualified appliance repair technician handle this kind of repair.

If your washing machine isn’t working properly at first, it’s recommended that you try some basic troubleshooting, like making sure the machine is plugged in correctly, inspecting the water supply hoses for obstructions or kinks, or making sure the machine is level.

If none of the basic troubleshooting steps work, don’t think twice about calling a qualified appliance repair technician.

Lastly, see if your washer is still under warranty. There is a good chance that the manufacturer will fix the problem with the rotor as part of the warranty.

Manish Singh is an expert in electrical engineering with a Diploma in the field. With over 12 years of experience, he specializes in repairing music systems, washing machines, dryers, and other laundry-related appliances. His in-depth knowledge in electrical repairs and decent knowledge about garment care makes him a trusted authority in the field of appliance repair and laundry related topics. If you have any questions or need assistance with your appliances, you can reach out to Manish through email: manish.singh (at)