Models > 3CA2781XSW0 > Instructions

3CA2781XSW0 Whirlpool Washer - Instructions

All installation instructions for 3CA2781XSW0 parts

These instructions have been submitted by other PartSelect customers and can help guide you through the washer repair with useful information like difficulty of repair, length of repair, tools needed, and more.

All Instructions for the 3CA2781XSW0
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No movement from Basket & agitator

  • Customer: Jeff from Wayne NJ
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Time to Complete: 30 - 60 mins
  • Tools Required: Pliers, Screw drivers, Socket set
  • 461 of 489 people found this instruction helpful
The job looked intimidating but turned out to be very easy.
First take off the water pump by removing the two clips that hold it in place. Place a shallow pan under the pump to catch the water that is in the pump and hoses. Open the hose clamps with a pair of pliers or channel locks (better) and slide the hoses off of the water pump.
The motor comes off next. Unplug the electrical connector from the motor and two wires from the capacitor. Remove the two screws holding the clamps in place and then pop off the two clamps. You will need to hold up the motor with one hand while you remove the clamps or it will fall to the floor once the clamps are removed.
One piece of the coupling assemble will be attached to the motor and the other will be attached to the gearcase drive shaft. If you want to clean up the mess created by the shredded rubber center piece of the coupling assembly you will have to take off the motor mounting plate. It is held on by two bolts and removing it makes installing the coupling easier but probably not necessary.
Push the back half of the coupling on to the gearcase drive shaft until the shaft is flush with the face of the coupling. Install the new rubber center piece on to the coupling then re-install the motor mounting plate. Install the other half of the coupling on to the motor shaft and lift the motor up to the coupling. You have to rotate the motor shaft by spinning the fan blades until the coupling lines up so you can slide it into the other half of the coupling. Then just reattach the motor, connectors and water pump in the reverse order of disassembly.

Water pump leaking when machine used.

  • Customer: Tom from Granby MA
  • Difficulty: Really easy
  • Time to Complete: Less than 15 mins
  • Tools Required: Pliers
  • 399 of 414 people found this instruction helpful
The hardest part of this job was pulling the machine away from the wall so the hoses could be disconnected and the machine flipped onto it's back. Putting the machine on it's back does two things. It drains the water left in the bottom of the tub so it won't pour out onto the motor when the old pump is removed, and gives the necessary access to the pump. Once the machine is on it's back you remove the hose clamps with a pair of pliers and disconnect the hoses. The pump is secured to the motor with a pair of spring steel retaining clips which are easily popped off by hand. Once the clips are removed, the pump is in your hand. Put the new pump in place, replace the retaining clips and hoses, and you're done. This has to have been the easiest repair I've ever done. I wish cleaning gutters was this easy.

spin cycle did not engage

  • Customer: Andrew from SLC UT
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Time to Complete: 30 - 60 mins
  • Tools Required: Nutdriver, Pliers, Socket set
  • 172 of 186 people found this instruction helpful
researched potential causes, found cluch dust under the washer and determined that it wouldn't engage because clutch was too worn. ordered the assembly, removed agitator from inside the tub as it is connected to the gear shaft, turned washer on it's back for access to motor, unattached the direct drive water pump from the motor drive, unbolted the 3 gearcase mounting bolts and took the entire gearcase, shaft, motor, etc... together, out from under the washtub. the clutch slides off the gearshaft with a little fidgeting and the new assembly is easily installed where the previous was. put everything back together... then... spin spin! worked perfectly

Broken Coupling

  • Customer: Hugo from Frisco TX
  • Difficulty: Really easy
  • Time to Complete: 30 - 60 mins
  • Tools Required: Pliers, Screw drivers, Socket set
  • 142 of 150 people found this instruction helpful
Very easy -
1. Removed hoses from the pump
2. Removed Wiring harness from the motor
3. Unscrewed saftey screws from both clamps which hold the motor against the motor bracket.
4. Using a screw driver I easily removed/pryed the clamps from the motor.
5. I then removed the broken plastic coupler from the motor shaft and installed the new one coupler.
6. I did the same thing on the clutch side.
7. I set the Rubber coupler in clutch side.
8. Put motor back on until couplers joined together.
9. Placed Brackets back on Motor (patience here).
10. screwed back saftey screws on clamps.
11. connected hoses back.

Thats it... 45 minutes at most .. Save me from having to buy a new easher. I was convinced I was going to have too until I peeked underneatch the washer and saw the rubber coupler on the ground...

Clothes washer would not spin with more than a couple socks in it. It would barely spin when empty.

  • Customer: Shawn from Longmont CO
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Time to Complete: 30 - 60 mins
  • Tools Required: Pliers, Screw drivers, Socket set
  • 99 of 101 people found this instruction helpful
Diagnosing the problem was the toughest part. I originally called a repair man - described to him the problem and he said it was most likely the transmission (gearbox)... of course that is one of the most expensive parts! I asked him if it was maybe the clutch... he said there was no clutch.. only a brake... I knew he was wrong after researching. The fact that the washer would agitate fine and spin very light loads but not spin anything heavy told me it was NOT the gearbox.. or the brake.. it was the clutch.. it had to be... so I called the repair man and canceled the appointment I had made then ordered the clutch assembly. Showed up very quickly. Now to the repair. I realized that I did not have to take apart the cabinet section of the washer.. I only needed access to the bottom. My washer - a 5 year old Whirlpool Gold Ultimate Care II had just a piece of foam blocking off the bottom of the washer... Easy access... I disconnected the hot and cold water and the drain tube. I removed the hot and cold water tubes from the back of the washer also so they would not get crushed when I laid the machine on its back. I unplugged the washer also. The drain tube I left connected to the washer.. I was afaid of it getting crushed while on its back, so I bunched up a large towel put it on the floor and tilted the washer slowly back onto it... the towel was enough of a spacer to keep the drain hose from getting crushed. I used a couple pieces of Duct Tape to hold the lid shut while on its back. I then removed the foam insert on the bottom. Then I unplugged the wiring harness. and a single wire that had a spade connector in the same area. I then removed the clips from the plastic water pump and slid it off the motor (I used Duct Tape again to suspend the water pump up and out of my way while I proceeded) I did NOT have to remove the motor from the gearbox. I used a socket wrench and unbolted the 3 gearbox bolts. I was able to take the whole unit, gearbox and motor out in one piece.. it slid right out (you will have to unscrew the the bolt in the top of the agitator/dispenser shaft - then the gearbox unit with the shaft will slide right out, I did this before I put the washer on it's back) Once it was slid out, I removed the clutch then reinstalled the same way I took it off. The only hard part was the circular wire retainer install for the clutch. It CAN all be done .. I ended up using 2 screwdrivers to put the new retaining ring into the new clutch assembly.. One screwdriver would hold down part of the retaining ring and the other I used to continue pushing the ring into place.. don't give up! You will get it in.. even with normal tools (This was the hardest part of the whole install) It took me 5 minutes with some force and fiddling. I also swapped in the new plastic piece that came with the clutch assembly... you will see where it goes... the old plastic piece looked fine, but I changed it out anyways - it hooks the clutch to the brake system it looks like. After the new clutch assembly was installed I just put it all back together the way I took it apart. One thing I will add was I was not sure if the clutch had to be lined up when I slid the shaft back into the washer.. It does not have to be.. It will align itself automatically. You know when you hear that click/pop when the washer is about to spin?.. well that is that plastic piece engaging with the clutch... there was a piece or two that fell off the shaft when I had removed it.. While sliding the shaft back into the washer I had to just put the pieces back on the shaft before I put the bolt back into the top of the agitator/shaft...

Summary:
Get the washer on its back - unplugged!
remove wire(s) Harness from motor
remove water pump
unbolt 3 bolts holding the gearbox
slide gearbox and motor out as one piece ( a bit heavy)
remove and replace clutch assembly (pay attention to how things are removed)

Done! put it all back together... hope that helps. It worked perfect for me.. and m

Washer tub slammed into washer body during spin cycle

  • Customer: Brian from Seattle WA
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Time to Complete: 15 - 30 mins
  • Tools Required: Pliers, Screw drivers
  • 103 of 115 people found this instruction helpful
If you load a washing machine unevenly, it will spin out of balance. But our washer seemed to make noise during the spin cycle regardless of how the load was distributed. I suspected that the suspension or balancing springs were getting tired, and ordered a replacement set.

First I disconnected the washer from the water and power supply, then I laid it on its back.

The tub rested on the back of the washer, making two of the three suspension springs relax, and they were pretty easy to pull out with pliers. After the first two were out, I had to support the tub with a couple 2x4s to relax the third suspension spring.

Installation was the reverse of removal - install the lower suspension spring, remove the 2x4s, then install the two other suspension springs.

The tub balancing spring was easy to replace, and probably wasn't the cause of the problem.

With $25 in parts and about 15 minutes, my washer spins much more quietly.

Water leaking on floor

  • Customer: Stanley from Warwick RI
  • Difficulty: Really easy
  • Time to Complete: 15 - 30 mins
  • Tools Required: Pliers, Screw drivers
  • 66 of 71 people found this instruction helpful
I removed the two spring clips that hold the pump and two wire spring clips that hold the hoses. Then I had to pry the pump off the shaft (it was frozen with rust). Then I cleaned the shaft with sandpaper and installed the new pump (which, by the way, came the next day, thank you very much) which made my wife very happy, and I thank you for that , too.

Would not spin unless helped

  • Customer: Ernest from Oakdale CT
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Time to Complete: 30 - 60 mins
  • Tools Required: Pliers, Screw drivers, Socket set
  • 62 of 68 people found this instruction helpful
Turned off water supply, disconnected hoses so I could lay on its back.( drain hose also ) have something to catch all the water in. There will be some residual water so have something to wipe it up. Removed agitater, then I removed the spanner nut with hammer and punch. layed it on its back, removed the three mounting bolts that hold the gearcase to the tub support. Removed wire harness and ground wire , pulled gearcase and shaft out . Removed spin tube thrust washer, removed support ring from groove in shaft , removed retaining ring , slid clutch off shaft ,installed new clutch. Take care to watch how parts are removed so that they are installed in proper orientation. Since I had it this far apart I decided I should replace the coupling. I removed the two motor retainers , seperated coupling , pulled both halves off shafts , installed new halves , they go on a lttle tight , newer couplings have metal inserts , aligned coupling halves , inserted together , put motor retainers back on , tightened small screws,done.

Wouldn't agitate or spin.

  • Customer: Roger from Swainsboro GA
  • Difficulty: Really easy
  • Time to Complete: 15 - 30 mins
  • Tools Required: Screw drivers, Socket set
  • 52 of 59 people found this instruction helpful
First, I removed two screws holding the bottom fiberboard panel in place, and the panel, to gain access to the motor, transmission, and pump. Unfortunately, I had the machine tilted to the front, and didn't have room to release the pump. I had to set the machine back up, and get manuvered around so I could lay it on it's back (I was working in the confines of a small laundry room). Once on it's back, I released the two clips holding the pump with a flat head screwdriver, lifted it up and out of the way without having to disconnect any of the piping, then I released the two clips holding the motor, again with a flathead screwdriver, disconnected the wiring plugs, and capacitor wires, then lifted the motor up and out of the machine. I then removed the two bolts holding the motor mounting plate to the transmission. Then, again using a large flat head screwdriver, I pried the transmission coupling half off the transmission shaft, I had to work it up, while turning the shaft, and then the same for the motor half. I then wiped off both shafts, and gently tapped both coupling halves back onto the shafts,
( this is easier using a socket that is just large enough to go over the shafts). Then I reinstalled the motor mounting plate, slipped the rubber coupling onto the transmission coupling half, lifted the motor into place, and rotated from the pump end to line up with the remaining holes on the rubber coupling. I then reinstalled the clips used to hold the motor in place, reinstallation only took thumb pressure to snap back into place, then, I reinstalled the pump, using the same method, and reconnected the wiring plugs and copacitor leads. Lastly, I reinstalled the fiberboard panel into the bottom, and set the machine upright, slid back into place, and reconnected the hoses and electrical, and tested the machine. Worked perfectly.
In actually took longer to disconnect the machine, and get it out and back in, than it did to replace the coupling.

Machine rocking about like crazy on spin

  • Customer: john from middle river MD
  • Difficulty: A Bit Difficult
  • Time to Complete: 15 - 30 mins
  • Tools Required: Screw drivers
  • 44 of 48 people found this instruction helpful
Took some online research to figure out how to get the cabinet off. Once inside I fitted the wear pads which were a breeze to remove using a knife blade to pry them up and removing them using the screwdriver. The springs were replaced one by one using strong fingers. The machine went through the spin cycle without any rocking or self-destruct noises.

The washer wouldn't spin or agitate.

  • Customer: david from Monroe MI
  • Difficulty: Very Difficult
  • Time to Complete: More than 2 hours
  • Tools Required: Nutdriver, Pliers, Screw drivers, Socket set
  • 36 of 38 people found this instruction helpful
Frist I disconnected the water lines and power cord. Then I leaned the washer back against the wall. Removed the 2 pump retainers and then the pump. Next removed the 2 screws from the motor retainers and pulled off the retainers and motor. Then removed the 3 bolts from the Gear case. Then removed the cap from the top of the agitator with a flat screw driver. Then removed the bolt from the top of the gear shaft. and removed the auger and agitator assembly. Then removed the gear case from the washer. Next removed the slip ring and then the clutch from the top of the gear case. Next removed the 1/4" screws from cover of gear case and removed the cover. Found the top gear bad. Ordered the new gear and pinion kit. Couldn't find any part #'s to match what PartSelect had. Ordered the gear that they should that fit most washers. The pics they had up looked the same as the one that was bad. Had the new gear in 3 days put it back together and it still wouldn't work right. Took it apart again and looked at it and found a small clip on the bottom side of the gear was upside down. Fliped it over put the gear back in and ran the washer with the gear case out and it worked. Put it back together again. And learned a good lesson always watch how you take things apart for when it's time to put it back together!

would not completely spin all the water out of clothes

  • Customer: Ron from bellbrook OH
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Time to Complete: 1- 2 hours
  • Tools Required: Nutdriver, Pliers, Screw drivers, Socket set
  • 35 of 36 people found this instruction helpful
I replaced the clutch and coupler. The clutch was well worn. My wife had washed three or four loads of heavy rugs and we think that was the cause of the premature wear. We now take the rugs to a commercial laundry. The coupler was OK but the new coupler has metal instead of plastic inserts so I decided to replace it while I had it torn apart. The machine is now running like it was new.

0.Disconnect supply hoses and electrical. Refer to the parts breakdown pictures on the PartSelect website. I refer to only the numbers so you may have to match the part to a particular diagram.
1. Remove the agitator by pulling up on the fabric softener dispenser #1. Clean out the excess liquid and "residual gunk". Grab one off the tabs of the plastic cap #23 and pull gently. The plastic cap (~ 3" in dia) is held in place by a rubber O-ring #24. The cap comes out easily exposing the bolt that holds the agitator to the drive shaft. Remove the bolt. and the agitator comes right out.
2. Turn the machine over on its front. You do not need to remove the back panel.
3. Get plenty of rags to soak up the water before you remove the hoses from the water pump #22 on the end of the motor. A quart or more remains in the pump and hoses. Remove the two hoses.
4. Disconnect the wiring harness from the motor#29. There is a small plastic "catch" on the bottom of the connector that must be lifted to remove the connector. It's kind of hard to see but it's there and it's part of the connector.
5. Remove the three bolts #10 that hold the gearcase #9 to the bottom of the tub assembly.
6. Remove the gearcase, the drive shaft, the motor, and the water pump as one unit. You will need to lift them a little to get clearance because the tub has settled down. Just lift the tub and all and pull the assembly out. Get them out to a spot where you have room to work on them. The water pump may still have bit of water.
7. Replacing the clutch. Remove the clutch parts from the bag and lay them out where you can see everything. Refer to the instructions in the bag to select the correct spring and to see how the keeper spring is installed. Remove the washer, keeper ring, and clutch assembly, and plastic clip#15 remembering the order and the orientation. Install the new clutch in reverse order.
8. You will have one plastic part #15 left over. It goes on the bottom of the tub after you remove a key ring.
9. Replacing the coupler. note the orientation of the water pump#22 and remove it by removing the two retainers #21. set it aside.
10. Remove the screws#23 and retainer clips#17. Separate the motor#20 from the gearcase#9 to expose the coupler. Replace the coupler, reattach the motor to the gearcase, and the water pump to the motor.
11. The reassembly is pretty much a reverse of the assembly.

Washer not spinning completely and at time not at all

  • Customer: Jason from Henderson KY
  • Difficulty: A Bit Difficult
  • Time to Complete: 30 - 60 mins
  • Tools Required: Pliers, Screw drivers, Socket set
  • 35 of 39 people found this instruction helpful
I have to admit that before attempting to replace the clutch, I had no clue how to do it. With the help of the diagram of the parts, I was able to access from the internet at PartSelect.com. I felt comfortable enough to attempt the repair because the diagram was easy to read and accurate.

Everything had to be accessed from the bottom of the machine. I tipped the machine backwards enough get under it. To replace the clutch, I had to remove the motor drive. To do so, I disconnected the electrial to the drive motor by simply unconnecting the quick connect harness. I then removed two screws from the two retainer brackets located one on top and one on the bottom. Once this was done the motor drive simply dropped down. I then removed the three bolts holding the gear case to the tub. I had to remove one bolt from inside the tub underneath the fabric softner dispenser. Once this was done the gear case slid out. The clutch sit on top of the gear case. I then simply removed the old clutch and installed the new clutch by reversing the process. The only real difficulty that I had was with the retainer ring. Once done, I reinstalled the gear case and motor drive. I would suggest replacing the direct-drive coupling at this time. I had earlier replaced the coupling hoping to solve the problem. The coupling was redesigned and is more likely to last longer than the orginal coupling.

bad water pump

  • Customer: carrie from magna UT
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Time to Complete: 30 - 60 mins
  • Tools Required: Nutdriver, Pliers, Screw drivers, Wrench(Adjustable)
  • 31 of 34 people found this instruction helpful
We received the part we needed in a timely manner. First we took the back off the washer and found out later we didn't have to, because you can access the pump from the bottom of the Whirlpool washer and when we turned it on it's back a brass colored pin about 2" long fell out and we have no idea where it goes.Looking around the bottom frame we saw another pin in a plastic little cup mounted to the frame and another empty cup .So we changed the pump easy,put the pin in the empty cup and the washer runs great! That's our story.Still don't know what the pin is for,it's not on the parts schematic.

Washer wouldn't spin or agitate. Made louder-than-usual noise during those cycles.

  • Customer: Paul from Boonton NJ
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Time to Complete: 1- 2 hours
  • Tools Required: Pliers, Screw drivers, Socket set
  • 31 of 35 people found this instruction helpful
1. Read many other repair stories for similar symptoms. PartSelect Forum was an excellent resource.

2. Posted my problem on PartSelect Forum and awaited reply. Read replies, and followed provided link to step-by-step guide for the procedure. PartSelect forum moderators were excellent advisors!

3. Performed the first half of the procedure to get to the diagnosed root cause. In some of the stories I had read, people had turned the washer on its back or tilted it up to get at the area from underneath. I am so glad I followed the conventional instructions, and left the washer standing and simply removed the cabinet. It was surprisingly easy. There's a reason why it was designed that way. I am also glad that I chose to remove the pump from the motor. While it is true that you don't *have* to remove the pump from the motor to get at the coupling...it hardly seems to make sense to remove the hoses instead. Removing the pump was incredibly easy, and by doing so, I never had to break any "wet" connections, and not one drop of water spilled over the course of the entire repair. (Even though I forgot to shut the water supply valves before I got started. Ooops! At least I remembered to unplug the power cord.)

4. But despite the open valves, the galoshes came into play not for their ability to repel water, but for their value as an electric insulator. I wrapped the galoshes around the handle of a long screwdriver when I discharged the motor's capacitor. :)

5. Ordered parts. Washed clothes in sink. Waited. Washed more clothes in sink. Waited some more. Washed more clothes in sink. Waited still more. Came very close to stopping payment to PartSelect because the very simple, commonly-requested part I ordered, which was supposedly in stock on the day I ordered it, didn't ship until the day it was supposed to arrive--even though I paid extra for expedited shipping. And I was never sent an e-mail to warn me that the parts were going to be delayed. And then to top it all off, rather than make up for some of the lost time caused by their own error, and ship it overnight, PartSelect chose to ship it 2nd day. All that good will generated by the excellent website completely evaporated by the failure to correctly complete the simple tasks that the business has needed to be good at since before computers were even invented. I will never use PartSelect again.

6. Prying the old coupler halves off of the motor and the washer took some effort, but was not overly difficult. I wound up removing the motor mounting plate in order to get better access to the half that was stuck on / needed to be attached to the drive train of the washing machine. Mounting plate was a breeze to remove and attach with a socket driver. I used one of those stubby flat-head screwdrivers to pry the old parts off. This was the one time where I thought it might have been easier to have the washing machine tilted up or on its back...but I muddled on through without even removing the bottom panel, and it wasn't too awkward. I used a large socket and a full-size hammer to not-so-gently tap the new parts into place. Putting all of the parts back together took a bit longer than it took to break them down, but it was easy. The instructions for putting the electronic control panel into test mode had been rolled up and taped to the cabinet inside the top panel. After I put the cabinet back on, I used those instructions to test all the cycles before fastening the top panel and testing the machine with an actual load. So far, so good...
All Instructions for the 3CA2781XSW0
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