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My Whirlpool LSR5233AWO washer, agitator spins freely clockwise after replacing clutch dogs

16 posts in this topic

Ok, before replacing the feed dogs on my washing machine, the agitator spun freely both ways. But if I pushed down on it it would work ok. I took it out, replaced the feed dogs, put it back in and expected that my $10 had just solved my problem. But.. now it is still not working unless I push down the top. The whole time it is agitating with a load of clothes, it just spins clockwise, until I push it down slightly with my hand. Could I have put it together wrong? Or is there a problem with some other part? I read somewhere that it should only spin counter clock wise??

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Is the tub full of water and clothes?

Or just barely full?

Edited by RussTech

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full model number ?

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I think the model number is LSR5233AWO.

It was full of water and a fairly large load of clothes.

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I read somewhere that it should only spin counter clock wise??

No, you have the directions backward.

If the machine is not running, transmission is in neutral mode (as after the final spin is finished), and you grab the top of the agitator (auger) and turn it back and forth by hand ... the auger section should rotate freely *clockwise* ... and when turned counter-clockwise it should latch to the agitator base and turn it as well. That's the purpose of the clutch dogs ... the auger "slips" in one direction and is driven by the agitator base in the other direction.

If the agitator *base* is turned back and forth (rapidly, which is what the transmission does when the machine is running in agitate mode), the *opposite* of the above takes place: The auger "slips" when the base turns counterclockwise and is driven when the base turns clockwise .... so the spiral can push the clothes down toward the base.

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I think the model number is LSR5233AWO.

Topic title edited.

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when you put the agitator back together, it's possible that two white alignment tabs got folded under and have the top section slightly too high and tilted, just enough to cause poor locking and unlocking of the dogs, When I take the top section off, I break those tabs off flush with a flat blade screwdriver, That way, when i put it back together, the top section fits correctly. Was there a washer between the lower segment and the upper one? If that is gone, it will cause poor function of the upper segment, even with new dogs.

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Thanks for the help. I am running another load and holding the agitator down out of pure desperation (can't handle the laundry mountains any longer) but when it is through I will try taking it apart and reassembling carefully. I don't recall there being a washer between the upper and lower segment, and I thought there should have been... I will look carefully and see if that went missing somewhere in the process.

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Oh, I also noticed that the top portion of the agitator wobbles a bit from side to side.. could this be a sign something is wrong, or is this normal?

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OK, I took it apart and reassembled it carefully, making sure everything lined up properly. There was no sign of a washer between the upper and lower agitators. With a full load of clothes and water, the top portion of the agitator is still spinning around clockwise during the agitating cycle. I can make it agitate properly easily with one hand. I'm certain the feed dogs are working properly after thoroughly reading DADoESTX post above and testing it.

I would be willing to buy the kit above it I was certain it would solve my problem... I'm concerned there might be a deeper problem. Any thoughts?

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With a full load of clothes and water, the top portion of the agitator is still spinning around clockwise during the agitating cycle.

I'm not understanding why that's a problem, being as the auger is *supposed* to rotate clockwise during agitation.

I can make it agitate properly easily with one hand. I'm certain the feed dogs are working properly after thoroughly reading DADoESTX post above and testing it.

What exactly do you mean when you say "agitate properly?" What is your description of proper agitation?

Can you put a video on YouTube of what you view as being incorrect agitation vs. proper agitation?

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Hmm, maybe I'm confused because of how it used to agitate, and perhaps that was improperly agitating then? I don't have the option of uploading a video, but I just youtubed some videos of washers agitating correctly and they're doing exactly what my washer is doing now and what you say is correct. Before this washer "broke" the top agitator moved back and forth and the clothes were continually circulating quite a bit. (After it broke it did nothing -- just stayed stationary during agitation but could spin both ways) Now it's spinning around in a circle but the clothes are barely moving -- only the bottom ones are actually being agitated and cleaned. (When I ran a load through that included some shorts the husband mowed in, the shorts floated on top in the washer and came out of the dryer still smelling like grass.) If I manually make the agitator move back and forth, the clothes begin stirring around.

Is it possible this problem is as simple as not enough clothes to water ratio?

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Here is a video I found of a washer agitating -- the agitator is moving in jerky clockwise motion. Mine just goes around and around without a care in the world.

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If your worn dogs have been replaced and they're latching and releasing in the proper directions, it's unlikely you have a problem.

The video you linked above is of a much older belt-drive washer. Agitation runs at a slower 68 strokes per minute on a wider arc than your direct-drive unit (180 SPM on high speed on a shorter arc). That being said, both augers work to the same function.

You are correct that *more* water with *less* clothes will make for reduced interaction between the clothes and auger ... which may make it spin around faster and more continuously. The lowest water level typically is below the auger so there's no way for it to contact the clothes and again it may simply spin around, particularly due to inertia at high speed agitation. That's normal.

Here's a video showing the effect, advance the clip to the 10-min point. Completely normal.

And another video, I believe of the same machine, with clothes, and the auger turning more rhythmically due to interaction with the clothes. Advance to about 11:20 to catch start of agitation. Notice that the auger occasionally spins a little faster and longer if it looses the "grip" on the clothes. Again, completely normal. (IMO, this is a bit underloaded.)

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Thanks so much for those videos, I think I understand now! I've always been paranoid about overloading my washing machine -- now I think I must err on the overcautious side. I will try more clothes and give it a go. Thanks so much for your help.

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