How to Fix a Glide and Spring for a Washer With a Burning Smell

When the drive belt or pump belt of a clothes washer gets overheated, it may be because of a worn-out glide and spring arrangement. When the glides wear out, there is too much friction from the belt, which results in a burning smell. Use the information below to determine if the source of the burning smell in your washer is a worn-out glide and spring. If you need to replace the part, our step-by-step instructions and videos show you how.

What is a Glide and Spring?

Some top-load washer models use a glide and spring arrangement on the motor base, which provides tension for the belts. Usually, this feature includes a pivot for the motor, which is mounted to the frame of the motor base, and a spring that brings tension to the belt. Under the motor will be a lubricated glide made of nylon or plastic, which lets the motor slide along the base frame of the washer. When the motor starts, the gliding action allows the pump belt or the drive belt to slip slightly, the same way a clutch would work. When the glide wears out or isn’t properly lubricated, the belts make too much friction and start to make a burning smell.

Where is the Glide and Spring Located?

The drive motor glide and spring in your washing machine is typically located on top of the base frame, under the motor.

A 3D diagram showing the components of a washer and specifying the location of the glide and spring

How to Access, Remove, and Inspect the Glide and Spring in a Washing Machine

  1. Unplug your washing machine before beginning.
  2. Remove the front panel of the washer in order to locate the glide and spring arrangement. The drive motor glide and spring is normally located on top of the base frame.
  3. Verify that the motor pivots properly, that the spring is not stretched, and that the surface is free of any dirt or rust.
  4. Inspect the glide and spring for any signs of burning, wear, or damage, lubricating if needed.
  5. If you find any issues or broken parts while performing these checks, you will need to replace the glide and spring arrangement. It is worth noting that the glides and springs in the overall arrangement will likely wear at the same rate, so we recommend replacing everything at once to avoid future repairs, even if only one component within the entire arrangement appears damaged.

How to Install a New Glide and Spring

  1. Before installing a new glide, clean up any debris or build-up from the motor base. Check for any signs of corrosion and then apply the provided lubricant and install the new glide or glides.
  2. Insert the lower portion of the motor base back into the upper portion, and ensure that it slides freely.
  3. Once the base and the pulley are installed back on the motor housing, insert the new spring or springs.

The instructional video below will guide you on how to replace the glide and spring on a Whirlpool washer. Your washer may require a different process.

Next: Troubleshooting the Motor Pulley

Go To Main Page: Burning Smell

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