Maytag Washer Stuck on Sensing? Try These Fixes

Maytag Washer Stuck on Sensing

The problem is that after you have started your Maytag washer, either the washer will not go past the sensing portion of the cycle or it will remain in the sensing state for far too long.

With washing machines being such a helpful appliance, you will want to get the core of what is causing your washer to function this way. Lucky for you, we will help you determine the reason and provide a fix for the said issue.

Why Is Maytag Washer Stuck on Sensing?

There are two critical roles that the sensing function is responsible for including sensing the amount of clothes or items in the washer and the second being, sensing how much water to use for the said amount of clothes/items.

You may be wondering how the sensor figures these measurements out.

It is rather simple, especially when you observe the washer in this state since for the sensing part of the cycle it will not use any water.

Instead, the drum inside the washer will typically spin one way, stop, then spin the other way.

This is when the washer is sensing how much clothes/items are in the load and how much water will be required to wash them properly.

Once the sensor has gauged both of these requirements, the Maytag washer will then initiate the water valve to release the appropriate amount of water for the load onto the clothes/items in the drum.

Now, this is around the time when the subject issue occurs, which is that your Maytag washer will either stay in the sensing state for too long or will remain stuck in this part of the cycle. Below, you will find common reasons why this occurs and what you can do to mend it.

1. Clogged Drain Pump

The smallest forms of a clog can be enough to cause your Maytag washer to get stuck in the sensing mode of the cycle.

As much as a washer needs a water supply to use for washing it also requires an appropriate drain pump to drain the used water.

However, if the drain pipe becomes clogged or blocked it can cause the washing machine to malfunction such as in this particular situation, where your washer is stuck in the sensing part of the washing cycle.

The drain pipe to your washing machine can quickly become clogged with dirt, grime, suds that have dried, or even detergent build-up.

With the washer being incapable of draining excess or used water, the Maytag washer could become locked in the sensing part of the cycle.

Therefore, the Maytag washer will likely remain in the sensing state until the clogged drain pump can be released.

Fix – Clear/Clean The Clogged Drain Pump

If you believe that a clogged drain pump could be the cause of your Maytag washer being stuck in the sensing part of the wash cycle, you will want to clear out the clogged or blocked drain pump.

The very first thing you will want to do is locate the filter access door on your washer, this part is typically located in the bottom right-hand corner of the Maytag washer.

Keep in mind, you may need a screwdriver for this part of clearing the drain pump.

Once you have located the filter access door, go ahead and open the door (this could require the use of the screwdriver).

Now, make sure you have a bucket or bowl and a towel to prevent making a mess in your laundry room or bathroom.

Next, behind the filter access door, you will find a round dial and a rubber drain hose.

Once you have located both of these, disconnect the drain hose and then empty the hose into the bowl or bucket.

When you remove the cap from the drain hose, the water will likely come flowing out forcedly.

So, make sure you have the bowl or bucket with a towel beneath it ready for the quick water. Now, as for the drain pump filter, it will be the round dial that is next to the drain hose.

To unlock the drain pump filter from its holding is to turn the dial counterclockwise. After you have removed the filter, you will want to rinse it with water and clear out as much dirt and built-up muck as you possibly can.

Consider using a small brush to clear out the small crevices, nooks, and crannies.

After you have cleaned the filter, make sure to also clean the filter holding slot. When reinstalling the filter in the washer, in order to put it correctly back into place, turn it clockwise.

Next, connect the drain hose while making sure that the hose is securely connected.

If you happen to notice any damage on any of these parts, be sure to replace them since simply cleaning any of these damaged parts will not help with the sensing issue.

Also, you should close the filter access door correctly. If you had to remove any screws, make sure to screw them back into place.

2. Broken or Faulty Capacitor

The reason why your Maytag washer is remaining in the sensing part of the wash cycle could be a broken or malfunctioning capacitor. The capacitor in your washer is responsible for changing between voltage and current.

If the capacitor is malfunctioning or damaged, the washer will not be able to begin any of its wash cycles and subsequently, it will not shift from one cycle to another.

You may be wondering “How do I tell if it is the capacitor?” This is relatively obvious since you will likely hear a buzzing noise coming from your Maytag washer.

If you do hear such a sound, it means that the washer’s drying or washing motor is encountering an issue while attempting to start. The motor rotation may still start; however, it will likely be weak and slow going.

Fix – Replace The Machine’s Capacitor

When we’re talking about replacing a broken or faulty capacitor, it will typically cost just as much as it would to purchase a new Maytag washer.

The capacitor plays a critical role in the capabilities of your Maytag washer or any washer for that matter.

So, if you believe that the capacitor in your washing machine is malfunctioning or damaged, you will need to replace it as soon as possible, as the washer will not function without the part working properly.

You will want to research how much it will cost to replace the capacitor since it may be wiser and more affordable to simply purchase a new washing machine.

3. Damaged or Broken Actuator

A rather common issue with Maytag washers is a bad actuator, this could an electrical issue, mechanical, or even both.

The actuator is primarily responsible for managing the change between wash cycles on your Maytag washer.

The importance of the actuator should not be taken lightly as it is required for essentially all models of washers from Maytag.

A damaged or faulty actuator can certainly render your washing machine to be stuck in the sensing mode since it will not be able to switch between cycles or modes of the cycle.

It may also make it essentially impossible for the Maytag washer to switch out of the sensing state.

Fix – Replace The Broken Actuator

Unfortunately, once again, you will want to make some cost comparisons between replacing the actuator for your Maytag washer or simply purchasing a new washing machine.

However, if you do not feel absolutely certain that the actuator is the primary issue, you will want to speak with a professional or get the washer inspected by a professional to make sure.

This way you can make an informed decision about whether to buy a new washing machine or to replace the actuator part on your current Maytag washer.

4. Faulty or Damaged Lid Switch

Now, if your Maytag washer’s lid switch is damaged or faulty, not only will stop the washer door from completely closing but it can also prevent the washer from beginning the wash cycle along with getting stuck in the sensing part of the cycle.

This can spell trouble for your washer and it can for you as well since a broken or faulty lid switch can potentially cause the door to open in the middle of a wash cycle, which can spill water onto the floor and present danger to anyone walking by the machine.

Not to mention the leaking water can also find its way to an electrical outlet or power bar, which is very dangerous.

Fix – Clean or Replace The Lid Switch

It is important to note that the lid switch on your Maytag washer may not be damaged or broken, it may simply have build-up gathered on the switch.

If you believe that the lid switch only has a buildup from spilled detergent or otherwise, you can use hot water and a small brush to clean the switch and all of the small crevices around the switch. This should be enough to get the lid switch back to a functioning state.

However, if you are certain the lid switch is damaged, broken, or faulty, it is essential to get the lid switch replaced.

You will want to check and see if your Maytag washer is still under warranty and if it is, you should have no issue getting the lid switch replaced at one of Maytag’s service shops.

5. Faulty Water Inlet Valve

A faulty or broken water inlet valve is bad news for any washing machine. This is because the machine will be capable of ever reaching an appropriate water level while the water inlet valve is broken.

A broken or faulty water inlet valve can even result in water leaks, which can become quite serious in the wrong situation. In the scenario that no one is available to shut off the water supply, the water damage can be quite critical.

Keep in mind, that the water inlet valve is responsible for allowing and adjusting the flow of water into the drum of your Maytag washing machine.

Fix – Install a New Water Inlet Valve

The water inlet valve is a part of your Maytag washing machine that will need to be replaced as soon as you have notice that the part is broken or faulty.

If you have experience working with washers you can install a new water inlet valve on your own; however if you have no prior experience with washer repair, we recommend you contact a licensed professional to make the repair.


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