Thread Number: 36756
Whirlpool la9800T
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Post# 546888   10/2/2011 at 09:10 (4,440 days old) by mulligan ()        

There is a problem with our washing machine the water fils in the tub but it never start to wash the clothes, or spin

Post# 546892 , Reply# 1   10/2/2011 at 09:46 (4,440 days old) by Tomturbomatic (Beltsville, MD)        

Is the motor running? If so, you might have a broken drive coupler between the motor and the transmission.

Post# 546905 , Reply# 2   10/2/2011 at 12:12 (4,440 days old) by whirlcool (Just North Of Houston, Texas)        

I have the same washing machine! This is the Whirlpool Electonic Controlled machine. A fantastic washer!

Do you hear the motor running but no agitation? Yup, it's the drive coupler. The part is available for about $15-20 or so and will take you about 15 minutes to repair. It's a very easy repair easy for a do it yourselfer. If you call someone out to do it they charge about $169.00.

These drive couplers are made of hard rubber. Some are nylon reinforced. They are there to reduce strain on the transmission. I'm willing to bet you have run some heavy clothes or blankets in your washer. If the motor is overloaded the drive coupler will break rather than the transmission or motor breaking. This is a good thing. Reserve your heavy stuff (blankets, comforters, rugs, etc.) for the coin op and you'll be good to go.

Here is an instructional video about how to do the job yourself.

BTW, your two screws will be on the front of the console at the bottom of the sides in a recess directly under the consoles chrome end caps.


This post was last edited 10/02/2011 at 12:53
Post# 546962 , Reply# 3   10/2/2011 at 19:23 (4,439 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        

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The drive cupeling is there to stop transmission of the motor vibration to the rest of the machine and make for any slight misalignment between the motor and transmission shafts. It does not in any protect the motor or the transmission from any damage from overloading. These are very strong commercial style washers and you can wash anything that can be easily put in this machine as long as it can circulate when washing without any harm. These drive couplings do ware out eventually and will need replacement.

Post# 547153 , Reply# 4   10/3/2011 at 12:41 (4,439 days old) by whirlcool (Just North Of Houston, Texas)        

Not to challenge your authority, but our drive coupler went out when our machine was 2 years old and since I didn't know about I called a repair guy who fixed it very quickly.

The service guy said we probably had been washing heavy items in it (we had) and to take things like big blankets and comforters to the coin laundry so we won't break the drive coupler again. We took his advice and the machine is now going on 18 years old with the same drive coupler he put in 16 years ago.

Anyway the serviceman told us that the driver coupler was there to protect the transmission and motor and I didn't question him. He seemed to know what he was doing so I didn't question him.

Post# 547294 , Reply# 5   10/3/2011 at 19:32 (4,438 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        

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Often the last person to ask engineering questions is a repairman. The drive couplings have been improved to the point that now they seldom break. I know what I said is correct, you will not find what your repairman said in any official WP literature, thanks for responding John.

Post# 547351 , Reply# 6   10/4/2011 at 00:49 (4,438 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

when I did buy a Sears Kenmore Dd machine years ago-the inner and outer drums had to be replaced under warrantee-the outer one cracked.Both replaced at no charge.The technician did caution against putting things like tennis shoes in a DD washer-like if the shoe wedged between one of the agitator blades and the tub-it could break the coupler.These WP-KN couplers must be sort of like a Lovejoy coupler-Lovejoys used a lot in some of our transmitter tune drives-the rubber coupler spider breaks if a drive is jammed-say from a bad vacuum capacitor ar a binding variable coil.The rubber coupler breaks or shears to prevent any more damage.

Post# 547421 , Reply# 7   10/4/2011 at 11:47 (4,438 days old) by whirlcool (Just North Of Houston, Texas)        

The rubber coupler breaks or shears to prevent any more damage.

Thank you..that's pretty much what I've been told and thought too. If it wasn't there to prevent further damage why did they put it there in the first place? Why didn't they just bolt the motor directly to the transmission with a metal gear or shaft?

Post# 547547 , Reply# 8   10/5/2011 at 00:34 (4,437 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

In some types of gear drives a "sacrifical"gear is made from phenolic or plastic to prevent damage to other parts of the machanism if it is jammed-in some cinema projector mechanisms they are made this way-so if there is a film jam-then the sacrificial gear breaks instead causing further damage to the drives.A "machanical" fuse.We have several boxes full of rubber Lovejoy "spiders" here.Many times a vacuum cap fails-the plates get welded together and jams the drive.Or a coil gets jammed-you have to take the coil assembly from the transmitter-repair,clean and relube it,then put it back-and these items are over 60 years old!At this old transmitter site were are CURATORS as well as operators.Its fun,though!Working on equipment older than I am!And if the rubber breakaway parts weren't used-could burn out a irreplaceable motor!The motors in these older tune drives are NLA-we have to have them rebuilt or salvage them from another similar peice of equipment.

Post# 547590 , Reply# 9   10/5/2011 at 11:17 (4,437 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        

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Hi Allen go back and read post #3, that is why they did not just bolt the motor to the transmission.


Hi Rex I have never seen any washer or dryer that has any parts in it that are designed to break if the machine is overloaded. We are not talking about movie projectors. 


WP DD washers are even used in commercial installations and they use the same transmission and motors and an even stronger drive cupping and yet transmissions and motors usually last more than 10 years in these installations where they are constantly overloaded.


Imagine if the DC was actually designed to break if the washer was overloaded. When people bought thier new WP  super capacity washers they would want to try them out with a big load while they are still under warranty. And WP would end up with the warranty repair bill, yet I have never seen a DC break under first year warranty. If it was actually designed to break they would add a disclaimer in the warranty and not cover this type of repair, It might also say something in the repair manuals that this part is designed to break. [ it doesn't ]


DCs like belts and other parts of machines do ware and weaken over time and yes a severe overload can break a weak DC or belt. But it would have soon broken anyway. I always love how our customers like to blame themselves for any thing that ever breaks. Often when I replace a bake element in an electric oven I here oh I must have left something boil over or I must have gotten oven cleaner on it, just nonsense LOL..

Post# 547691 , Reply# 10   10/6/2011 at 00:39 (4,436 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

the parts like belts and drive couplers can indeed break if overloaded-better that than having to replace a transmission or motor.a belt has the advantage over a coupler-if its overloaded the belt will "slip" momentarily-no damage-this is the principle behind another item common in the South-the belt driven KEE lawn mower.the blade is not fastened to the motor shaft-instead the mower has a belt drive to the blade shaft-that way if you hit a stump,large rock,survey stake the belt absorbs the shock-yes,the motor will stall or stop like the direct blade models-but no damage.On a direct drive mower-the engine crankshaft may get bent or broken.In two of our transmitters-they use cog belts-if there is a machanical "fault" you will hear a loud "thumping" noise as the drive turns-STOP-you will strip the teeth from the belt if you continue.This is typical when the belt is turning a vacuum capacitor and the cap shorts-the plates weld together.You find em fast that way.Many types of power tools use the cogged belts-and some sewing machines have them-and these are good for holding"timing".and some vacuum cleaner brushroll drives have cogged belts.They do last longer than flat belts.Cogged ones will still wear eventually.-just takes longer-and can transfer torque better.

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