Maytag Bravos Washer Stuck On Sensing: 5 Quick Fixes

Does your Maytag Bravos washer keep getting stuck on sensing and never move on to the wash cycle?

A Maytag Bravo machine stuck on sensing fill is a clear sign that one (or more) of the washer elements is not functioning correctly.

We know that, for many people, the first instinct in this situation would be to contact a technician.

While this is undoubtedly the best choice when dealing with more complex issues, this troubleshooting guide may give you all the necessary answers.

Why is your Maytag Bravos washer stuck on sensing?

You may be wondering what the role of the sensing mode on your Maytag washer is and why it is so important to have a sensing cycle before a wash cycle starts.

The sensing mode, also known as sensing fill, allows your Bravos XL washer to determine the amount of the load before letting the water into the washer drum.

The water level is determined according to the weight of the load, with a few drum spins.

However, the Maytag Bravos XL washer will remain on sensing as long as something is blocking the wash cycle. Keep reading to discover the factors stopping the transition from sensing to wash cycle.

Damaged water inlet valve

The water inlet valve is the main element in the washer, distributing the water from the water supply into the washer drum.

However, if the water inlet is clogged or damaged, it will not be able to control the water flow or direct any water into the drum.

What’s more, a malfunctioning water inlet valve could also cause leaks in your bathroom or laundry room, which is something you want to avoid.

The inlet valve may be clogged with accumulated mineral deposits – usually limescale blocking the water flow.

Since the inlet valve is metal, it is prone to corrosion; over time, rust can destroy the valve.

Remember that, just like any other element, the water inlet valve also has a certain lifespan, and the inlet valve in your Maytag washing machine may have reached its limit.

Faulty lid switch

Yet another relatively common problem with a load washer stuck on sensing is that the lid switch is faulty or broken.

The lid switch lock has a critical role in safety since it prevents the washer door from opening mid-cycle and leaking all over the floor.

If your Maytag Bravos MCT washer does not start once you close the lid, there isn’t contact between the washer and the lid switch, and the door isn’t locked.

Moreover, the washer could start but suddenly stop after only a few seconds. This is yet another sign of a faulty lid switch.

There could also be something blocking the lid switch from locking into place, whether it be accumulated dirt, a coin, or another object that slipped out of your pocket as you were loading the washer.

Faulty control board

A couple of essential indicators could point to a malfunctioning control board.

In case the washer doesn’t start at all, the drum doesn’t fill with water or cannot begin to spinning, and the washer doesn’t drain, these issues could all point to a malfunctioning control board.

The control board of your Maytag Bravos washing machine is the element that controls all the processes of the washer, including water filling, motor running, and the beginning of each cycle.

Faulty drive motor

The drive motor is the element that powers the washer. In case it is inactive, your Maytag Bravo washer may not even be able to turn on, let alone start a wash or rinse cycle.

A faulty drive motor will often cause a burning smell and a whining or thudding sound in the washer.

If your machine is stuck on sensing, it is possible that the drive motor is damaged or failed.

Faulty shift actuator

Finally, a shift actuator has a significant role in the functioning of every washer since it helps the washer transition from one cycle to another.

Keep in mind that a malfunctioning shift actuator can also cause loud noises and intense vibrating of the machine as it struggles to switch from one cycle to the next (in this case, from wash to sensing).

How to fix Maytag Bravos washer stuck on sensing

Now that we’ve presented the most common problems that could have your Maytag Bravo washer stuck in the sensing phase let’s see what you can do to fix and prevent this issue.

1. Install a new water inlet valve

There isn’t much you can do if the water inlet valve is corroded or damaged. Trying to repair it would cost more than purchasing a brand-new one, so we recommend having it replaced.

When purchasing a new inlet valve, one thing to remember is that it must be compatible with your Maytag Bravos washer, so check the compatibility with your washer model.

However, if the water inlet is clogged and dirty, you can scrub it clean and check if it is working correctly once the clog has been removed.

2. Reset or replace the Maytag washer lid switch

If the lid switch isn’t broken or damaged, you could try resetting the washer, which often happens if the lid is stuck or malfunctioning.

To reset the washer, turn it off and unplug the power cable from the power source. Wait a few minutes before plugging the power cable back into the outlet. This method is also known as power cycling.

However, if the reset doesn’t help or there are visible signs of damage on the lid switch, you will have to replace it. 

3. Replace the main control board

Many people refer to the control board as the brain of the washer, as it is responsible for managing all the washer’s operations.

However, when it comes to investing in a new main control board, sometimes it is much wiser to invest in a brand new Maytag washer.

The cost of a new main control board often surpasses the price of a new appliance, especially if you factor in the technician’s fee (as it can be rather tricky trying to replace it yourself). 

4. Replace or repair the drive motor

Once again, it is necessary to compare the costs and determine if investing in a new drive motor makes sense.

In many cases, having the drive motor replaced or even repaired can be rather expensive, so you’re better off investing in a new washer

5. Replace the shift actuator

None of the methods we’ve mentioned will help if you still have a malfunctioning shift actuator in your Maytag washer.

Luckily, the shift actuator isn’t on the pricey side regarding Maytag washer parts. We recommend purchasing a new actuator as soon as you notice a problem with cycle switching.

Ensure that your shift actuator is compatible with your Maytag Bravos washer. Also, having a licensed technician install it is much better, as this part can get rather technical and tricky. 


How do you reset the sensor on a Maytag washer?

To reset the sensor on your Maytag Bravos, press and hold the Start/Pause button on the control board for about 3 seconds. All the light indicators on the board should go off. 

You can also reset your washer by rotating the cycle selector knob counterclockwise, which will clear any sequence and “refresh” the washer system. 

What does it mean when a washing machine says sensing?

The washer is sensing when determining the size of the load in the washer drum. Once the size of the load has been determined, the washer will also determine the necessary water level for the wash cycle.

This prevents the washer from submerging the load in the water, as this is not necessary for the wash cycle and could even lead to leaks.

On the other hand, a low water level could lead to clothes being improperly washed, which is why the auto-sensing feature on your washer is essential. 

Can I hard reset my Maytag Bravos washer?

There isn’t an option of hard resetting your Maytag washer or a button that would perform this operation.

However, as mentioned above, you can use the cycle selector knob to reset your washer. Turn the knob counterclockwise, and the system will be reset.

You may also perform a power cycle by unplugging the washer from the power source, waiting a few seconds, then plugging it back in.

Why is my Maytag washer not finishing the cycle?

There are a couple of underlying issues that could compromise the cycle of your washer. 

This could happen due to a failed thermostat, water issues in the rinse cycle, and drain pump issues.

If the drain pump is clogged or malfunctioning, the washer won’t be able to complete the draining cycle, leaving your clothes dripping wet. 

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