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How to Repair a Faulty Washing Machine Switch

washing machine switch
Jun 2022

A washing machine may malfunction for various reasons. And a faulty washing machine lid switch is one of such problems. 

This switch is accountable for many of the machine’s functions, especially regarding top-loading machines. As a result, it’s impossible to use a washing machine if the lid switch is bad. 

Generally, plastic is the primary material for making washing machine lid switches. As a result, they’re prone to cracking and breaking. 

During potentially hazardous cycles, the lid switch tells the washing machine whether it’s safe to proceed to the next cycle. Therefore, it means the machine won’t go into its next cycle because it thinks the lid is open. 

In this article, we’ll take you through details on fixing a washing machine switch that’s not working. Let’s get into the groove!

The Lid Switch On A Washing Machine: What it is and How it Works

In past years, homeowners have sustained injuries from trying to reach into the tub of a washing machine during the agitation or spin cycles. The statistics and severity of these washing machine injuries led to the addition of the lid switch safety feature. Resultantly, when a machine’s lid switch fails, it’s more practical to replace the lid switch rather than the complete unit.

Lid switches may comprise various materials other than plastic. Such materials include metal, depending on the model.

And either online or in your local appliance component supply store, most replacement parts are easily accessible. Ensure you get the correct lid switch for your washing machine model and make.

Before proceeding further, here are some things you should know about the lid switch.

Location of The Washer’s Lid Switch

To access the washer’s lid switch, you’ll need to remove the lid. The strike on the clothes washer’s lid presses the lid switch. And when the lid closes, the strike pushes the washer lid switch.

Functions of Lid switch in Washing Machine

This feature ensures the washing tub doesn’t agitate or spin in an open state for safety concerns. Therefore, only a faulty lid switch can prevent your washing machine from spinning or agitating when the lid is closed. 

As mentioned earlier, the washer’s lid has a strike. Check to see if this strike is secure or missing before continuing. 

As soon as you shut the washer’s lid, a splinter pokes through the top of the cabinet. As soon as you press the lid shut, an electrical signal is sent to the washing machine, letting it run as expected. 

Cost Of Lid Switch Replacement

Changing the lid switch is a simple and cost-effective way to fix a washer that’s not working.

The cost of a new lid switch can range from $10 to $30, depending on whether or not you choose a third-party component or OEM part. The term “OEM” refers to the company that created the initial piece of equipment. Always use your washing machine’s original equipment manufacturer (OEM) part if you can afford it. 

Where to Get a Replacement For Lid Switch

Depending on the type, the lid switch features various materials, including metal. The vast majority of appliance replacement parts may be found either online or in local appliance component shops. Make sure the part you’re purchasing is compatible with your washing machine model and make.

Related Article: How to Repair Washing Machine at Home?

How To Test For A Faulty Washing Machine Switch

As earlier stated, there are numerous reasons why a washing machine may stop working. And one of the most common problems in a washing machine is a faulty lid switch. But how do you test whether the lid switch is the problem?

The following steps will guide you to determining if your washer’s lid switch is why the machine isn’t coming on. 

1. Unplug the Power Cord

Disconnect the washing machine’s electrical cord. A simple unplugging or a breaker panel switch flip will function well here. 

You may experience electrocution if you don’t turn off the power before diving into the machine. You can also suffer electrical burns.

2. Cleaning the Connections 

A striker and a controller activate the lid switch. Old laundry detergent or dirt can clog the switch and striker and make them ineffective. So, clean the switch and striker as thoroughly as possible with vinegar (white) and cotton wipes. Reconnect the washing machine’s power and do a test cycle.

This check may be all that’s required to solve the issue. However, if this isn’t the case, turn off the electricity and move on to the next step.

3. Examine for Potential Damage 

The metal strip within the switch that touches the striker is malleable. Therefore, it tends to bend from time to time. So, take your time and study it thoroughly. 

Check if the striker makes electrical contact with the switch when closing the lid. To ascertain this contact, apply a little charcoal powder to the striker. Then observe closely to see what the striker is touching once closed. 

Try bending the metal switch plate inside if the striker isn’t making contact with the switch. Replace the lid switch if that doesn’t fix the problem.

4. Test for Electrical Current 

Testing the switch is the only option if all else fails. Suppose you have a multitester; you should probe each wire terminal. 

“Infinity” should be displayed on the multitester. Then press the switch on top of the lid, and the reading should be zero. Replace the lid switch if it doesn’t meet these requirements.

The replacement is easy, and we’ll be explaining the steps to do it subsequently. But when you don’t want to go DIY, ensure to enlist a competent washing machine repair technician. 

test for electrical current 

How To Replace A Washer Lid Switch

Some problems happen to the washing machine that requires you to buy a new washer. But you still get to keep your washing machine when you have a faulty lid switch. You’ll only need to replace your machine’s lid and top panel. 

If the lid doesn’t close, you’ll probably have to replace the entire top panel. And the following steps are how to undertake this repair/replacement yourself.

1. Get Your Equipment and Materials

Start with what you need to get the job done. When it comes to appliances, you should always have at least one screwdriver on hand. Next, put on your gloves for work. 

The replacement top panel is unquestionably the most crucial item to purchase. Please double-check your model number to ensure you have the correct part number for your washer. You may also need a nut driver. 

2. Ascertain Safety

Ensure that you and the appliance are safe during the repair process. You should be cautious to avoid electric shock and wounds and protect the appliance from flooding.

Do the following to ensure overall safety:

Remove the Washer’s Power Cord

You’ll need to disconnect the electricity to the washer’s lid switch to perform this repair. In other words, disconnect the washer’s wall plug.

Remove the Water Pipes

Turn off and disconnect the water lines to prevent flooding during the repair. Catch any water that may be in the tubes with a small tub.

Put on a pair of Protective Gloves

Each panel’s underside and inner borders may be angular. Protect your hands from pricks by wearing gloves.

3. Dismantle The Washer’s Cap

To access the lid switch, remove the washing machine’s lid and any screws or bolts that keep it in place. So that putting things back together would be easier, remember where each screw or bolt belongs. 

You may have varying sizes when it comes to nuts and screws. Therefore, you need to be very careful to know where each fits. 

The washer should come off with minor repositioning and tilting once all the screws or bolts are out. Don’t damage any wire connecting the top of the washer to the bottom.

4. Remove The Lid Switch And Replace It

Here, you’ll need to find the malfunctioning lid switch. After locating it, remove the screws that secure the lid switch. 

The switch on the lid will have different wires connecting to it. Therefore, remove the lid switch’s wiring harness with care. Then, to fix the problem, remove and replace the defective lid switch. 

To keep the new lid switch in place, use screws or bolts that come with it. And ensure each screw in every hole is the proper diameter and length specified on the packaging.

5. Ensure the Washer’s Top Is Tightly Screwed into Place

Replacing the washer lid is as simple as reconnecting the lid switch. But to avoid problems, double-check that it’s sitting correctly on the washer. In order to keep it in place, replace any screws or bolts you removed before.

6. Carry Out A Washer Safety Inspection

Reinstall the washer back in its normal position. Ensure all the connections on the rear of the washer are secure, and the water is running before using it. 

Connect the washing machine’s electrical cord. Then test to confirm the lid switch is operating correctly by running a test wash.

Maintenance Of Washer

A faulty washing machine switch is usually due to a dent or hard hit. This position means you can largely avoid it if you are extra careful with your washer. In fact, you can prevent a lot of problems with your washing machine once you adhere to some precautions.

Here are a few washing machine maintenance suggestions that will enable you to better care for your appliance.

1. Cleansing in Depth

You’ll need to clean your machine from time to time thoroughly. But during such cleaning, you want to avoid ruining the plastic and metal components of the appliance. Unfortunately, overlooking this precaution can lead to a faulty washing machine switch. 

You can avoid such incidents by cleaning with a powerful machine cleaner that removes all of the debris gently. There is no need to buy the most costly machine cleaner. However, choosing the cheapest one is not a good idea.

2. The Rubber Gasket should be Wiped Down With Soap And Water

The gasket is a crucial component of your machine that sees a lot of use and is highly susceptible to damage. But, thanks to the rubber gasket, your clothing and hands will be safe from sharp edges. 

In cleaning the rubber gasket, you should do so every week. And also, clean it with care.

3. Preserve the Machine’s Paint Finishing

You don’t only care for your washing machine to avoid core damages like a faulty lid switch. You need to care for it for aesthetic sake. 

New and well-maintained appliances boost your home’s beauty. In contrast, an outdated washing machine is usually unappealing and may even detract from the overall appearance of a room or house. 

Simple maintenance procedures can keep your machine looking new for years to come. 

The best approach to keep your machine looking new for as long as possible is to maintain the pre-installed original finish. Therefore, using a glass cleaner, wipe off the top and sides of your machine to avoid damaging the finish. 

Additionally, don’t put anything too heavy on top of the machine. Likewise, ensure the machine is always covered while not in use. Scratches won’t form as a result of this.

4. Take Steps to Prevent Spills

Detergent spills collect in washing machines as well. Even if you use the most excellent softeners and detergents available, the residue they leave behind will eventually attach to your clothes and begin to smell. 

A gentle dishwashing liquid works best for removing this gooey buildup.

5. Keep the Door Open at Specific Times

After using your washing machine, don’t close the door right away. Moisture will have difficulty developing in the machine if you leave the door open for 15 to 30 minutes. 

In addition, the tub will dry well, and the airflow will protect delicate parts from moisture-related problems.

Related Article: Common Washing Machine Problems and Solutions

door open at specific times


If you test-run your washing machine with the pre-test steps in this article, you may realize your lid switch isn’t faulty. However, your washing machine’s lid switch may indeed be faulty. But you’re now in control with the steps we have provided you on how to repair a faulty washing machine switch. 

When your washing machine switch is not working, you can expressly troubleshoot it yourself. But sometimes attempting to troubleshoot and fix a washer lid switch can be confusing. 

In such situations, our washer repair technicians at Prime Appliance Repair can deliver timely repair solutions. Call 647-905-7496 to book a repair appointment today! 

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