Kenmore Washer Stops...Lid Switch? HELP!

andrelaplume2October 5, 2009

I have a Sears Kenmore Washer form 2001. I think its Model: 11.20922990 / Automatic Washer, 3 speed with options and Speeds switch.

I posted a few weeks back that the wfe said it was stopping after filling and she'd have to manually turn it to get it drain. When I got home it was working fine. Well its acting up again.

I remember someone suggested the lid switch might be disloged or bad or not being activated because the part that activates it in the lid above it broke off.

Well, that pointy piece that activates it is still there. I banged on the lid a few times and sure enough it started running so I assume the switch is either bad or loose or something.

I am somewhat mechanical. Is this something I can replace or tighten down myself? Do we just junk the washer? Does anyone have any experience with this model and how specifically how I would go about fixing it.

I carefully pushed a screwdriver into the switch opening to try to take a peek (no sure what I was expecting to see!), anyway, I saw nothing but the screwdrive came out on it. Should I push one of the dust / hair removal clean out brushes in there to try to clean it out?


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Sure sounds like a bad lid switch to me. Remove the top of the machine and you will see the switch, there are usually a couple of screws with clips in the back, remove the screws and flip the top up. Once the top is off you will see how to remove and replace the switch. Lid switch is like $10-$15 or so. It is a very easy fix. Hope this helps.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2009 at 4:29PM
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The model would be 110.20922990. The leading 110. indicates it's a Whirlpool-manufactured machine, as are all Kenmores of this design.

The top doesn't come off, the entire outer cabinet of the machine is removed to access the lid switch.

Per the parts diagram of the machine shown at, it has the decorative trim hiding the console screws.

Photobucket Slideshow - Removing Console Trim & Screws

The lid switch is of course under the top. Get the part from Sears, linked above. Search your model number, find the lid switch listed on the "Top and Cabinet" diagram, item #11.

YouTube Video - Removing the Cabinet. Ignore the part about replacing the motor coupler, of course. When replacing the cabinet, make sure the slots on the lower rear corners of the cabinet fit onto the tabs on the machine's base. And don't forget to reconnect the wiring harness under the console.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2009 at 4:58PM
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wow..I will check all this out when I get long as it comes apart easy and I can't mess anything major up..I will give it a try!

    Bookmark   October 5, 2009 at 5:12PM
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awesome info guys. Now the piece I want will actually be in the housing correct? I assume it pops off...?

    Bookmark   October 5, 2009 at 7:43PM
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sears does not make it easy...Is this what I need #3949238 for $35.16...or is it a piece of this thiing...also it shows smilar parts...confusing which one is it seams more expensive than described...maybe I am looking at the wrong theing....I went to the link, cut and pasted the model number, clicked on Top and Cabinet and did a search on: lid Switch....

    Bookmark   October 5, 2009 at 8:01PM
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That is the correct part. 3949238 Lid Switch with wiring harness, $35.16. Ignore the similar items listed across bottom of the web page. The wires are tucked under the top, run to the terminal at the back where the connector beneath the control panel plugs in. and have it listed at a little better price. You have to search again by your model number at other sources, the individual part numbers may be different per their numbering systems.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2009 at 8:31PM
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I DID IT! Thanks for the video. It literally took 15 minutes. Well, it took another because I figured I'd clean things up a bit while it was apart. It worked for one load so far. I did notice thay one of the female plastic pieces that one of the two screws that held the switch in place was crakced off...maybe that was allowing the switch not to fully engage...not sure...I just put the new one on rather than trying to concote a way to salvage the old one.


    Bookmark   October 12, 2009 at 8:41AM
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See there! Washer repairs sometimes aren't all that difficult. :-)

    Bookmark   October 13, 2009 at 2:52AM
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Doing a search for the very same issue on our 110.20922990 Kenmore washer and found this old thread. I just ordered the lid switch from RepairClinic for ~$36 with FedEx shipping.

I wish there was a published length for the actuator, but my actuator does not appear broken. So I will assume it's ok. If I press down hard on the lid where the actuator is located, the washer starts back up.

Here is a link that might be useful: Lid switch at RepairClinic

    Bookmark   May 21, 2011 at 8:59PM
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