Inoperative Whirlpool Tub Motor

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  #1  
Old 02-02-13, 02:05 PM
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Inoperative Whirlpool Tub Motor

For some reason the motor in our whirlpool tub won't start. It is on a separate 20 amp circuit with a toggle wall switch and a manual push button switch in the tub. The circuit breaker is tripped and won't reset. Any guidance you can give me to troubleshoot this problem will be greatly appreciated....thanks, buzcar
 
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  #2  
Old 02-02-13, 02:30 PM
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Is this a regular circuit breaker or a GFI type circuit breaker ?

You should have some kind of access plate to get to your motor unit. Normally there would be a receptacle at that point.
 
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Old 02-02-13, 04:23 PM
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It's a GFI type breaker. The motor unit is accessible through a removable panel on the outside of the house and the motor has a pigtail that plugs into a receptacle inside the enclosed area where the motor is. I thought it might be a faulty breaker since it's over 20 years old.
 
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Old 02-02-13, 05:16 PM
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You should try unplugging the motor and see if the breaker will set then.
 
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Old 02-02-13, 05:21 PM
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Thanks....I'll try that in the morning. What would that indicate if it resets.....a short in the motor???
 
  #6  
Old 02-02-13, 05:27 PM
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Not necessarily a short in the motor but a leakage between hot and ground. Could be caused by a sweaty motor or sweaty control box. Water can cause excessive leakage to ground.

While you are in there....check for any excessive wet or damps conditions. If you found anything damp you could use a blow dryer to dry it up. Recheck the GFI breaker. Find cause of excessive moisture if that was the problem.
 
  #7  
Old 02-03-13, 10:47 AM
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I disconnected the motor and tried to reset the breaker as you suggested without success. I then checked the wall switch and found that one of the connections appeared to be loose so I rewired it. Then I tried to reset the breaker but still no luck. While doing this I noticed that the wall switch is rated at 15A but the breaker is rated at 20A. Is this acceptable? I also tried to find the Siemens 20A GFI breaker online like the one in the panel, but was unable to do so. The one installed is only 1 inch wide but all the ones listed in the Siemens site are 1-1/2 inches wide. I am assuming it is a GFI breaker because it has a Test button. Could it be another type breaker?
 
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Old 02-03-13, 12:11 PM
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While doing this I noticed that the wall switch is rated at 15A but the breaker is rated at 20A. Is this acceptable?
That is fine.

I disconnected the motor and tried to reset the breaker as you suggested without success.
Next I would try disconnecting all wires from the GFI breaker and see if the GFI breaker will reset. If it will not reset, you probably have found your problem. If it will reset, the problem is in the circuit.

I also tried to find the Siemens 20A GFI breaker online like the one in the panel, but was unable to do so. The one installed is only 1 inch wide but all the ones listed in the Siemens site are 1-1/2 inches wide.
Try here.

Shop Siemens QP 15-Amp Ground Fault Circuit Breaker at Lowes.com

Any wider would probably be a 2 pole GFI breaker.
 
  #9  
Old 02-03-13, 12:26 PM
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Thanks....I'll check the breaker as you suggested....after the Superbowl!!!!!!
 
  #10  
Old 02-04-13, 11:07 AM
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You guys are great!
I checked the breaker and it was indeed defective so I replaced it and the whirlpool motor is working fine.
I thank you......and my wife thanks you even more.....buzcar
 
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