How to Fix a Kenmore Washer That Won’t Turn On -
DIY Appliance Repair

Your Kenmore Washer Won’t Turn On? Try These 5 Simple Fixes!

Written by

Jason Carter

Your Kenmore Washer Won’t Turn On? Try These 5 Simple Fixes!


We all hate it when we condemn our washer to the storage room, and think of replacing it just because it won’t turn on.

It’s a common reality. The good news is:

Repairing a faulty Kenmore washer is usually less expensive than purchasing a new one.

Chances are that:

It could be a minor fault that you would be able to fix on your own.


This article will walk you through all you need to know to identify these faults and what to do to rectify them to get your washer working again.


Why Your Kenmore Washer Won’t Turn On

Burnt-out electrical outlets, broken thermal or line fuses, and a tripped circuit breaker are a few potential causes of your Kenmore washer not turning on. Sometimes all your washer needs is a reset. On rare occasions, a faulty power cord or control board may be the cause of the issue.

Kenmore Washer Won’t Turn On

1. Check Your Electrical Outlet


You’ve most likely plugged in and unplugged your washer numerous times before concluding that it is faulty and should be replaced.


It could be that the electrical outlet may have developed a problem and is not receiving any power.


You should inspect the electrical outlet your washer is connected to. This would require you to connect another appliance to that outlet.

If the appliance isn’t turning on, the electrical outlet is faulty. In most cases, it is caused by loose or burned out connections.

In any case:

All you have to do is replace the electrical outlet. Luckily, this is a simple repair, and you can do it yourself.


Ensure that you gather the necessary tools you would need for the repair and turn off the power to the electric outlet. You can do that at the main service panel.


You should remove the screws holding the cover plate in place, then take off the plate.

Before you continue:

You can test the outlet with a circuit tester to ensure it’s not receiving any electrical power.

After that:

You should uninstall the mounting screws holding the outlet in the wall box.


Unscrew the wires connected to the outlet. If your outlet is old, you may be using a back-wire connection. In that case, you can use a flat-head screwdriver to remove the wires.

At this point:

You will install the new outlet, and all you have to do is reattach the wire to the outlet by using a plier to secure the wires around the screw and tightening the screws to keep the wires in place.

But that’s not all!

You still have to secure the new outlet in place with the mounting screws you removed earlier and screw the cover plates back in.


Turn your power back on and test the new electrical outlet to see if it’s receiving any power.

Pro Tip:

Ensure that the electrical conductor of the new outlet can supply the adequate current your Kenmore washer needs to avoid it burning out often.

That’s it!

2. Replace Defective Power Cord

Kenmore Washer Power Cord


If the electrical outlet is receiving power and your washer still won’t start, then it is possible that the power cord of your Kenmore washer is defective and would need to be replaced.


It is uncommon for the power cord of your washer to get bad. To be certain that the power cord is faulty, you should use a digital multimeter to test for continuity. If there is no continuity, the power cord is bad and should be changed.


This is a very simple repair, and you should be able to do it with the aid of the steps below.

Before you start:

Ensure that you disconnect your Kenmore washer from its power source.

After that:

You should detach the caps of the control panel at both ends and remove the screws holding the control panel in place. You can use a Phillips head screwdriver for this.


You should lift the control panel, detach the power cord wire connector, and release the retaining wires by depressing the tab so you can fully remove the old cord.


You can put the new power cord in position by inserting the wire connector through the rear panel and snapping the retaining cord back in place.


You should connect the wire connectors and lower the control panel before screwing it in place. Don’t forget to replace the control panel caps at both ends.

Reconnect the Kenmore washer to its power source, and you are good to go!

3. Change The Timer If Faulty

Kenmore Washer Timer

Did you know?

The timer acts as the brain of your Kenmore washer, and is used to control all the functions of the washer.

That’s right!

What does this mean?

If the timer of your Kenmore washer is bad, it will affect every component of the washer and could cause your washer not to turn on.

A timer is not very cheap to replace, so you might want to make sure that’s the reason your Kenmore washer is not turning on.


If you suspect that your washer’s timer is bad, you can confirm by using a multimeter to test the timer for continuity. If there’s no continuity, the timer is faulty and should be replaced.


If the timer on your Kenmore washer is covered in soot as a result of carbon buildup, you should consider replacing it rather than cleaning the soot.


It is quite technical to clean the timer, and time-consuming. Then timers that have once been covered by soothe are prone to developing faults subsequently.


The following steps will assist you in replacing the timer in your Kenmore washer in no time.

Shall we?

  • Step 1: Unplug your washer from the power source and gather all the necessary tools you’ll need for the repair.
  • Step 2: Remove the control panel caps at each end by pulling them off.
  • Step 3: Take off the screws securing the control panel.
  • Step 4: Rotate the timer dial knob in the anti-clockwise position to remove the dial.
  • Step 5: Uninstall the mounting screws securing the timer.
  • Step 6: Carefully lift off the control panel.
  • Step 7: Depress the retaining tab to detach the old timer from the wire connectors.
  • Step 8: Attach the wire connectors to the new timer and put it in position on the control panel.
  • Step 9: Reattach the mounting screws, and make sure to tighten the screws.
  • Step 10: Lower the control panel. Remember to screw the panel back in place.
  • Step 11: Replace the timer knob and tighten it by turning it clockwise.
  • Step 12: Realign the caps of the control panel at both ends and snap them back in place.
  • Step 13: Connect your Kenmore washer back to its power source.

Easy peasy!

4. Reset Tripped Circuit Breaker


If your washer tripped the outlet’s circuit breaker, your Kenmore washer would not turn on.


A circuit will trip or shut off if it senses an extreme amount of energy or current flowing into it. The circuit protects your Kenmore washer from overheating or receiving too much power, so it doesn’t get damaged.

What should you do?

Locate your circuit breaker and examine it to see if your washer’s circuit was tripped. If it is, flip the switch to reset the circuit. You can tell that a circuit has been tripped if the handle is at the mid position.


When some circuit breaker trips off, the handle moves to the off position instead. You might want to consult your owner’s guide on how your model works.


You can reset the circuit yourself, especially if you’re certain an overload caused the trip. However, working around a circuit breaker board can be dangerous, so you should ensure that you are observing safety protocols.

First off:

You should put together all the equipment you’ll need for the repair, such as a flashlight, safety goggles, and a work glove. You should also ensure that you’re wearing rubber-soled shoes.


Turn off all the devices on that circuit breaker, including your washer, that might have caused the trip.

After that:

You can access the service panel by sliding the plastic switch, then opening the door. Locate your washer’s circuit and turn it off before turning it on again.

At this point:

Your washer should be working again.

Simple right?


If an overload triggered the trip, it would be best to connect the appliances one at a time.

You can also avoid causing another trip on the circuit by connecting your washer to a circuit breaker that is not drawing much power or removing other appliances connected to your washer’s circuit breaker.

Pro Tip:

If the problem with your circuit is beyond an overloaded circuit or the circuit trips too often, you should call a professional electrician to help you with this repair. At best, contact Kenmore Customer Support.

5. Replace Damaged Main Control Board

Kenmore Washer Main Control Board


The control board functions just like the timer in your washer to enable the smooth running of all the components of your Kenmore washer.


If there is a problem with the control board, it is possible that your washer won’t turn on.


It is rare for the control board to be at fault for your Kenmore washer not turning on. Therefore before replacing the control board, check for the more typical faults.


You can test the control board of your Kenmore washer for continuity using a digital multimeter. The main control board of your Kenmore washer is faulty if there’s no continuity or if it gives a false reading.

You have to replace the main control board if there is a problem with it.

If that’s the case:

Don’t attempt to replace the main control board. Instead, contact Kenmore Customer Support to do that for you.

Most Affected Models


Kenmore washers rarely fail to turn on, and more often than not, the problem is not with the washer.


These are some models that would most likely stop turning on:

1. Kenmore Front Load

Kenmore Elite


The Kenmore front load washer is very easy to use, and is energy efficient. They also clean clothes better than top-load washers.

In addition:

They have sensors that help you calculate your load size and how rigorous or light your wash will be.


The Kenmore front load washer occasionally refuses to start, usually due to a faulty timer.

2. Kenmore Top Load

Kenmore Series 700


The Kenmore top load washers have a longer life cycle than their front load counterparts. They are usually not prone to the risk of molds or bad odor since water evaporates out of the washer easily.


The Kenmore top loaders have longer wash cycles compared to other Kenmore washer models.

3. Kenmore Model 796

Get this:

The Kenmore 796 model has a large capacity which enables you to wash large loads in one wash cycle.


The most common reason for this particular model not turning on is a tripped circuit breaker caused by more than one appliance attached to it.

4. Kenmore 110 Series


The Kenmore 110 Series is portable and can be connected to practically any faucet with the provided adaptor. They have very powerful motors and up to four wash cycles with different temperature and load combinations.


These models are vulnerable to a variety of faults that could lead them to stop working, which could be a tripped circuit breaker or a faulty electrical outlet. In very rare cases, the power cord could also be responsible.


Honestly speaking:

Every appliance would develop a fault in their time of service. But leaving your Kenmore washer to rut in your storage room because it won’t turn on is not a step in the right direction.

As such:

If your Kenmore washer is not turning on, you can diagnose the problem and work out a quick solution with the help of these troubleshooting guides.

  • Replace the electrical outlet if faulty or burnt out
  • Reset the circuit breaker and endeavor to connect only a few appliances at once.
  • Contact a professional technician to help you change your washer’s main control board.


You can perform a master reset of your Kenmore washer or use a multimeter to examine the power cable to see if it needs to be replaced.

You can also contact Kenmore Customer Support for more assistance on any repair.


We would love to get your feeback. Let us know if any of these tips worked for you and other tricks you might have discovered.

Remember to leave your comments and suggestions in the comment box below!

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Is My Kenmore Washer Not Turning On?

The first thing you need to do is check if the outlet that your Kenmore washer is plugged into is receiving power. If the electricity is getting power, but your washer isn’t turning on, the problem may be with the main control board, the timer, or the circuit board to which your washer is connected. In rare circumstances, your Kenmore washer power cord may also be defective.

How Do You Reset A Kenmore Washer?

You can reset your washer by pressing the control button twice on the control panel, then the power button. After that, you should select a wash cycle and a wash option before finally pressing the start button to complete the whole process.

Alternatively, you can disconnect your Kenmore washer from its power source and wait for at least 3-5 minutes before reconnecting it and turning your washer back on.

How Long Will A Kenmore Washer Last?

The average lifecycle of a Kenmore washer is usually 10-13 years. Generally speaking, top load washers last longer than front load washers. It is possible for your Kenmore washer to last longer than 13 years.

How Do I Know If the Fuse Of My Kenmore Washer Has Blown?

A damaged fuse will be black in color, and you have to replace it. You should also inspect and remedy the issue that caused the fuse to blow.

Is It Worth Fixing A Washer That Won’t Turn On?

Yes. Most of the time, the reason your Kenmore washer isn’t turning on is not due to a problem with the washer. And in the situations that it is, the fixes are very easy, and you can do them yourself or contact Kenmore Customer Support for further assistance.

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