Thread Number: 94353  /  Tag: Vintage Automatic Washers
1986 Kenmore 60 Series DD--Refurb Project
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Post# 1190368   9/21/2023 at 00:40 (269 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

So I've been working on my 4th spare machine that has sat for over a year in storage, starting yesterday from the time of writing this.

The good news is that it still ran when I tested it. The bad news is that after having taken it apart, it will now need two parts definitively replaced, due to probably age and maybe sitting unused through the winter. I'm not even going to mess with the tubs lest I should damage the seals. Last it was used it worked perfectly without a hitch, which as you will see from the pics below, is amazing that it still did work. It will most certainly need a new motor coupler, that is without question, haha. Then the pump was rusted on the shaft of the motor, so it would not come off even with brute force or penentrating it with WD-40 So instead, I had to remove it using the "theapplianceman" method, by cutting out the front of the pump and the impeller so that it would eventually come off the motor. Was a sad decision to have to make, but such is.

Ordered the new parts as are mentioned above and should have them by this weekend.

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Post# 1190369 , Reply# 1   9/21/2023 at 00:54 (269 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

On to the main reason for pulling the machine apart:

I wanted to check the oil in the transmission. It always would sound like it was low on oil, if that makes sense, and if anyone even knows what that sounds like. Well, upon doing so, (I should have gotten pics) the oil level was actually fine, but it didn't really seem like it was factory OEM oil, it would fizz up when you move the parts, and I don't know if that's supposed to happen or not. In any case, that kind of makes me think that maybe at one point somebody did a refurbishment on the transmission, put new oil in, and put a new neutral drain kit in, because the neutral drain works flawlessly on this machine. Even after sitting a year or more not being ran, it only takes a few strokes of low speed agitation to fully reset it and hold without slipping into spin.

So with all that being said, I actually went and bought a quart of new oil to put in this machine, and maybe hopefully with it being 90 weight gear oil, it might help the sound a little better. I feel like whatever was put in there before was probably some real thin stuff, and maybe that's why it had no trouble staying in neutral drain. I took the parts out and let them soak in kerosene to clean the old oil off them

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Post# 1190370 , Reply# 2   9/21/2023 at 00:57 (269 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

That clutch will need cleaning from all the oil that splashed up onto it somehow. There's oil that has been flung around the bottom of the machine which may have been one of the reasons why the transmission was likely refurbished.

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Post# 1190371 , Reply# 3   9/21/2023 at 01:00 (269 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
Center-dial Kenmore DD

Slung oil:

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Post# 1190382 , Reply# 4   9/21/2023 at 06:58 (269 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        
1986 Direct Dr. washer

combo52's profile picture
This was a good era for this machine, from your pictures. Itís very unlikely anybody ever did anything to this washer certainly didnít change the oil thatís what the oil looks like in machines of that vintage

Itís very common for the pump to get rusted onto the motor shaft when thereís a slight leak at the pump, seal, be sure to file the motor shaft completely smooth so that the new pump slips on and off easily if you have to force the pump on the motor shaft, it will ruin the seal and the new water pump quickly.

You need to replace the two top oil seals in the transmission thatís where the oil is leaking into the clutch and being flung into the cabinet from.

There were a few problems with the neutral drain system on these early, direct drive transmissions with this feature, it wasnít until much later that they started to have trouble with the neutral dream pack. so it does not surprise me that it works perfectly.


Post# 1190387 , Reply# 5   9/21/2023 at 09:28 (269 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        

maytag85's profile picture
That reminds me, rebuilt the transmission in my Whirlpool in the spring of 2021. Havenít had a single issue in 2 years since the rebuild.

Not sure why the oil foams up when you manually move the parts inside the transmission, my guess is the anti-foaming additives inside the oil are beginning to break down after 37 years along with the other additives inside the oil. With a belt drive transmission, I donít think the oil has a chance of really foaming up since everything tends to move at a slower pace then the direct drives with the quick and short 90 degree agitation strokes as opposed with the 145 degree agitation arc in the older belt drive transmissions.

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Post# 1190401 , Reply# 6   9/21/2023 at 12:54 (268 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

I was able to clean the rest of the gear parts off and dry them. Now to assemble them back together. Cleaned the clutch up as well, much better. This one has notches cut on opposite sides of the clutch drum edges. Not sure why they did that, but maybe it was a feat. of that era. The clutch lining also has the six pads that are RED which is interesting.

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Post# 1190402 , Reply# 7   9/21/2023 at 13:02 (268 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
Top seals

DADeOS, I'll look into getting new seals, thanks for the info. If they really never did anything to the transmission, then it actually stayed in really good shape for it's age. I made sure to fix the motor shaft with a file and a piece of Emery cloth. Sean, I think you're probably right on the oil. If it is foaming from parts moving at the faster pace they do in the DDs, probably best to change it so it doesn't eventually become a problem down the road.

Post# 1190403 , Reply# 8   9/21/2023 at 13:43 (268 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
My mistake haha

John, I'm terribly sorry haha. Had you confused with DADeOS there for a minute because he recently commented on one of my old posts. BTW, there's two seals in the top of transmission?

Post# 1190775 , Reply# 9   9/27/2023 at 22:37 (262 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

New pump and couplers came in the other day. Bought a 5 pack of non-metal reinforced couplers for about 14 bucks on ebay, and then immediately was permanently banned from using ebay for no reason at all, and they wouldn't tell me why on the phone.

Put the pump on today, and the other day, I went ahead and put a new coupler on the motor and transmission so it'd be ready to go. I'll keep the old coupler because the fingers for it are both still good.

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Post# 1190778 , Reply# 10   9/27/2023 at 22:52 (262 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        
Reply #9

maytag85's profile picture
Itís a real bummer that eBay decided to ban you for no reason. I believe Amazon may have some parts you may need on there for your direct drives.

Post# 1190780 , Reply# 11   9/27/2023 at 23:06 (262 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Yeah and from what I've read, they've done that to some other users who have been using fleabay for 20 years or more for no reason whatsoever. Shame that it's come to that now. They claim that it's because they feel for whatever reason that the user may be threatening to the community, even though they haven't done anything conducive to being a threat. Likewise with myself.

Oh well, who needs them, I got my parts I ordered so no real harm done. The transmission seal I had just ordered the other day from Amazon, and it says it'll be here next Monday or so.

Post# 1190781 , Reply# 12   9/28/2023 at 00:06 (262 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        
Reply #11

maytag85's profile picture
I thought about ordering a seal for the transmission I rebuilt 2 years ago out of my Ď63 Whirlpool but decided to just use Permatex gasket maker and so far, no oil leaks on the 2 years since Iíve done the rebuilt. On the other transmission I have, might just pack it with corn head grease since it basically turns into a heavy gear oil when mixed around but returns back into a grease once it settles. Packed the oscillation box on the 1950ís GE Vortalex fan I have with corn head grease and so far havenít had a single issue with it.

Post# 1190782 , Reply# 13   9/28/2023 at 03:04 (262 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Can't imagine how that would work on a seal that sits around a moving part? But again, I'm not one to talk. Only thing I knew how to do was break it when I tried getting the old one out, so it's rather beyond repair now.

Post# 1190787 , Reply# 14   9/28/2023 at 08:36 (262 days old) by DADoES (TX,†U.S. of A.)        

dadoes's profile picture

Reply 12 may be referring to the cover perimeter seal on his '63 WP transmission, not a shaft seal.

Post# 1190797 , Reply# 15   9/28/2023 at 12:34 (261 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        

maytag85's profile picture
If you have any more questions about my Ď63 Whirlpool, you can just send me an email. Just donít want to create anymore confusion or get off topic on this thread about the rebuild of your Kenmore 60 Series direct drive washer.

Post# 1190823 , Reply# 16   9/28/2023 at 21:43 (261 days old) by SwedesApplServ (Cheyenne, WY)        

I have made the mistake of attempting to use the "pickle fork" method of levering off seized pumps and wound up crushing the bearing caps on the motor.

Post# 1190904 , Reply# 17   9/29/2023 at 21:24 (260 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
Letz go!

New transmission seal in!

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Post# 1190910 , Reply# 18   9/29/2023 at 23:05 (260 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
Finally after forever!

She's reassembled and ready to......sit for another day 'til the new gasket dries....*sigh*

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Post# 1190920 , Reply# 19   9/30/2023 at 03:03 (260 days old) by Stan (Napa CA)        
Good job again

stan's profile picture
Heres a pic of what actually failed on my neutral drain.
It was hard to see till after cleaning. Nothing else was wrong except this thin metal hub
Just a heads up for your next one.


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Post# 1190921 , Reply# 20   9/30/2023 at 03:20 (260 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Did yours have the plastic cam around the underhub of the spin gear, or was it old enough to just have the metal spring like what I've seen in some of the older patent files for these? Mine has the plastic cam/tang.

Post# 1190980 , Reply# 21   9/30/2023 at 19:58 (259 days old) by Stan (Napa CA)        

stan's profile picture
Was plastic
But still in good shape as well as the metal parts.
It was just that thin metal hub that had broken.

Post# 1190988 , Reply# 22   9/30/2023 at 22:02 (259 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Thanks for the info Stan.

Post# 1190989 , Reply# 23   9/30/2023 at 22:07 (259 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Went ahead and put a new lid switch that I had laying around in this one since it didn't originally have a properly working one when I got it in 2020.

Now finally ready to reassemble everything else back together and test everything!

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Post# 1190992 , Reply# 24   9/30/2023 at 23:03 (259 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
Dry run test

Put the engine, pump & tranny back in and did a quick dry run to make sure I put it back correctly lol. Just ran it for a minute so I don't burn the new pump out (idk). Works so far! No oil leaks as of yet! Now for the definitive water test!

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Post# 1190993 , Reply# 25   9/30/2023 at 23:04 (259 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Also cleaned the oil off the base and cabinet as well. (Some of that is rust)

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Post# 1190995 , Reply# 26   9/30/2023 at 23:13 (259 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
Brother & Sister

Some twin shots I thought were cool.

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Post# 1190996 , Reply# 27   9/30/2023 at 23:27 (259 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
Water test

Filling up now as I type this....

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Post# 1190997 , Reply# 28   9/30/2023 at 23:38 (259 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
Water test

Filling up now as I type this....

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Post# 1190998 , Reply# 29   9/30/2023 at 23:41 (259 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
Didn't mean to post twice.....

Now agitating. So far no leaks, and sounds & works normal!

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Post# 1190999 , Reply# 30   9/30/2023 at 23:48 (259 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
Drain & Schpin!


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Post# 1191000 , Reply# 31   9/30/2023 at 23:54 (259 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

The obligatory pump bubbles as well....

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Post# 1191001 , Reply# 32   10/1/2023 at 00:02 (259 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
And last but not least:

The lovely elusive final spin only singular spray rinse on this particular one.

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Post# 1191002 , Reply# 33   10/1/2023 at 00:35 (259 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

We be golden! Back together and ready for another 15 years of service if I might say so?

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Post# 1191003 , Reply# 34   10/1/2023 at 01:19 (259 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        


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Post# 1191004 , Reply# 35   10/1/2023 at 01:58 (259 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

DeliCatô cycle

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Post# 1191007 , Reply# 36   10/1/2023 at 02:59 (259 days old) by Stan (Napa CA)        
Great Job

stan's profile picture
Thanks for sharing with us.

Post# 1191012 , Reply# 37   10/1/2023 at 05:37 (259 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        
Direct drive, washer, rebuild project

combo52's profile picture
Nice job Steven, these machines are relatively easy to rebuild. If you go through them and correct the problem as you did.

The 24 inch Kenmore should last many more years, we have an original 1981 24 inch whirlpool direct drive in our museum that we completely rebuilt about 20 years ago.

It recently experienced a timer failure and luckily we found one on eBay itís a difficult timer to find.

Only one complaint Steven please straighten the hinges on the 24 inch Kenmore. I canít stand to see the lid hitting the enamel top like that when itís in the open position , when the lid is open, it should stand nearly vertical with just a slight lean to the left.

John and

Post# 1194086 , Reply# 38   11/22/2023 at 18:58 (206 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
Need help:

Well upon testing the machine after sitting a month in my cold shop, I found it started leaking from the bottom of the tub by the back suspension support. There isn't any other place I can store it that's warm or insulated at the moment, so I just need to figure out what to do to fix it so I can hopefully sell it ASAP. I determined that it wasn't the main gasket seal at the bottom of the tub.

I pulled the agitator and inner tub out and filled it with water. Filled it just above the level of the main gasket and then let it sit a moment. Nothing. Then filled it past the level of the middle center-post seal and let it sit a moment. Started leaking again. Clearly points to the middle seal which encompasses the brake shaft. I went ahead and bought the main gasket and the middle seal and went ahead and installed the new tub gasket. But upon removing the old center-post seal, the part I bought doesn't look like it'll work. I went on and put in the order for the part which the diagram showed I needed. I must have missed something though because it doesn't look like the original seal for one, and there are more seals/bearings underneath the one that sits on top, which look on mine as though they'll need replaced as a whole.

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Post# 1194087 , Reply# 39   11/22/2023 at 19:00 (206 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
Model #110.81362150

Now upon looking further at the diagram, I realize I may have jumped the gun and ordered one of the lower support seals.

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Post# 1194088 , Reply# 40   11/22/2023 at 19:26 (206 days old) by Repairguy (Danbury, Texas)        

repairguy's profile picture
You have in your hand a new oil seal. One goes under the top bearing and two under the bottom bearing originally. This machine had 2 top water seals which you may still be able to get but whirlpool went to a single top triple lip seal for the top water seal above the bearing. Iím away from the part number at the moment but hopefully someone will come along in the meantime with the updated number.

Post# 1194089 , Reply# 41   11/22/2023 at 19:30 (206 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Thanks Mel. Maybe if I can find all the oil and water seals, might as well just go ahead and replace them all for being nearly 40 years old.

Post# 1194090 , Reply# 42   11/22/2023 at 20:43 (206 days old) by Jr2712 (Maracaibo-Zulia-Venezuela... )        
Seals interchangeability

jr2712's profile picture
Sorry for asking in this thread but I would like to know if the water seals and oil seals of the DDs work on the BDs and vice versa

Post# 1194092 , Reply# 43   11/22/2023 at 22:03 (206 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        

maytag85's profile picture
Interestingly enough, the center post seals on both the belt drive and direct drive are completely interchangeable, even the tub seal is the same. Whirlpool shortened the center post seal in 1978, unfortunately lots of the later belt drives (even some direct drives) had issues where the center post seals would fail, water could possibly make itís way to the transmission and to quote Gordon: ďWould spill itís gutsĒ. All Whirlpool machines built before 1978 (1977 and older) have the full height center post, usually the bearings and seals would last a good while before needing replacement.

Post# 1194121 , Reply# 44   11/23/2023 at 11:30 (205 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Have you seen or heard from Gordon at all? Does he still post here?

Post# 1194122 , Reply# 45   11/23/2023 at 12:37 (205 days old) by Jr2712 (Maracaibo-Zulia-Venezuela... )        

jr2712's profile picture
Thank you Sean!

Post# 1194123 , Reply# 46   11/23/2023 at 13:39 (205 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        
Reply #44

maytag85's profile picture
Gordon is still around, heís just been busy with life. He commented on a thread regarding the timer on my Whirlpool, but havenít seen him post for a good while. Tyler in NC talks to Gordon every now and again, even he was storing some machines of his at this house back in 2019 but even then, itís been awhile since Iíve talked to Tyler on the phone since heís been busy as well. Been almost a solid year since Iíve talked to anyone really.

Post# 1194134 , Reply# 47   11/23/2023 at 17:59 (205 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
Reply #46

Good to know he's still kicking 'round. He and I chatted over email some time ago about direct drive timers and the various subtle differences between models that are similar to each other. He's very informed about Kenmores in general, especially the older belt drive machines.

Post# 1194158 , Reply# 48   11/23/2023 at 20:16 (205 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        
Reply #47

maytag85's profile picture
I believe Gordon even worked for Sears in the 80ís and early 90ís from a few threads in the archives.

Btw, is your email working? I sent you a email as a reply, but I must have not gone through or something. Might be something on my end since Iíve had that happen before where Iíll have to send a email a few times to get through. Might be something with the server or the internet in some regions.

Post# 1194587 , Reply# 49   12/2/2023 at 18:28 (196 days old) by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Would this work, and is there any place cheaper I could get it? Thanks

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Post# 1194598 , Reply# 50   12/2/2023 at 21:10 (196 days old) by Repairguy (Danbury, Texas)        

repairguy's profile picture
Yes that is the kit for a direct drive. For some reason they are expensive.

Post# 1194600 , Reply# 51   12/2/2023 at 21:22 (196 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        

maytag85's profile picture
Not sure why they are expensive, probably because a bearing replacement on a direct drive was few and far between hence why the bearing kit was expensive. Wonder if direct drive bearings will fit on a direct drive since the spin tube is the same size.

Post# 1194627 , Reply# 52   12/3/2023 at 10:31 (195 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        
Direct drive washer, center post bearings

combo52's profile picture
Are the same size as belt drive washer, bearings and seals, Iíve never seen bad bearings in a direct drive washer. I have replaced the upper seal on occasion when doing a complete rebuild and lubricated the bearings.

I think this is what Sean was trying to say that theyíre the same on both style whirlpool top load washers.


Post# 1202274 , Reply# 53   3/25/2024 at 23:20 by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Well, I decided to just buy the seal & bearing kit from and they just came today. What sort of grease do you recommend to put inside the tub support shaft?

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Post# 1202285 , Reply# 54   3/26/2024 at 05:36 by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        
Replacing bearings and seals

combo52's profile picture
Hi Steven, you just use turban oil to lubricate the inside of the center post tube and the outside of the bearings when you install the bearings.

I would do some additional removal of rust inside the tube at the top of the center post, it Has to be completely smooth for the bearings to go in easily, and also keeps it from damaging the seals as they pushed in place.


Post# 1202297 , Reply# 55   3/26/2024 at 13:31 by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Thanks John!

Post# 1202298 , Reply# 56   3/26/2024 at 13:50 by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        
Hang on....

Did you mean to say *turbine* oil? Just making sure haha.

Post# 1202299 , Reply# 57   3/26/2024 at 13:53 by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        
Reply #56

maytag85's profile picture
Turbine oil aka Zoon Spout oil which is SAE 20 weight non detergent oil.

Post# 1202301 , Reply# 58   3/26/2024 at 14:20 by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Thanks Sean.

Post# 1202309 , Reply# 59   3/26/2024 at 16:41 by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        
Reply #58

maytag85's profile picture
Youíre very welcome. Turbine oil/Zoom Spout is important when dealing with sleeve bearings on vintage washers and dryers, especially when dealing with the Maytag HOH dryers. A detergent oil has gumming agents which can cause the wicking material to be clogged with dirt and varnish which is bad news since itíll mean the bearing wonít get proper lubrication. Thatís what I use whenever I oil the main drum bearing on my HOHís, or when I happen to do the annual cleaning a lubrication of the vintage GE Vortalex fan I have (will need to make a video of it at some point) or the vintage Windsor box fan I picked up a few weeks ago.

Post# 1202370 , Reply# 60   3/27/2024 at 19:46 by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Would 30W-100 non-detergent oil work in this case? Since that's all I could find.

Post# 1202371 , Reply# 61   3/27/2024 at 19:53 by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        
Reply #60

maytag85's profile picture
Since itís non-detergent oil, should work fine despite being slightly heavier. May even want to put a small amount of grease on the spin-tube to prevent scoring the surfaces when installing it back into the center post.

I believe 3 in 1 oil in the blue can will work as well since itís similar to Zoom Spout.

Post# 1202414 , Reply# 62   3/28/2024 at 21:28 by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

New seals & bearings are in! Took a brass wire wheel lightly to the inside of the center-post shaft to rid the rust from it.

Finally, now everything can go back and hopefully, no more leaks!

Post# 1202415 , Reply# 63   3/28/2024 at 22:05 by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Forgot to add photos lol

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Post# 1202427 , Reply# 64   3/29/2024 at 01:34 by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Wow, thought I added all the pics but I guess I didn't. Once!

Back together and running a few cycles through it. Had to replace the pump because I had the great idea to leave it sitting out in the cold shop through the winter here. Now it's noisy upon testing it. I thankfully had another spare pump on hand. No leaks so far!

BTW, I love how you can see the water moving through the housing of this new pump!

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Post# 1202428 , Reply# 65   3/29/2024 at 05:07 by chetlaham (United States)        

chetlaham's profile picture

Incredible job and tenacity in keeping a great machine going!



Can I ask- what is the cycle sequence like? You mentioned only one spray rinse. Is it like that for all cycles? 

Post# 1202429 , Reply# 66   3/29/2024 at 05:41 by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        
New center post bearings and seals

combo52's profile picture
Nice job Steven. Itís amazing what you can do if you put your mind to it what did you use to press the bearings and seals into Place?

About a month or two ago, we brought that exact same washer back to the shop. We sold the customer new Maytag front load washer we saved the direct drive like yours. It was in such good shape. She was just one single person. It didnít have that much use, it came with the house in 1984. This is such a nice slightly compact, simple washer that gets the job done, and much easier to work on than just about anything else out there if you do want to do a major repair.


Post# 1202445 , Reply# 67   3/29/2024 at 14:05 by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Chet: Thanks! As for your question on the cycles, yes, it's just one spray rinse on the last spin cycle for all the cycles.

Combo: Thanks John! I used one of my dad's seal drivers that he has in a kit to press everything into place.

Nice! I bet the neutral drain works great on that one just like mine. Or is it a spin-drain model? You say 1984, which IIRC is right before neutral drain came out. Mine says the 17th week of 1986, but it's a 1983 model year, so that must be why the last 3 digits of the model# say 150 instead of just 100. I think Kenmore used to do that to signify a revised version of that model.

Post# 1202459 , Reply# 68   3/29/2024 at 19:37 by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

I've now listed this machine in the shopper's square forum. Anyone who wants it and can pick up, make offer!

Post# 1202559 , Reply# 69   3/31/2024 at 22:22 by DDFan92 (Boise ID)        

Machine has been sold today! Hopefully it'll go on to serve the next person well. Farewell!

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