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Ask Techdesk Your Own Question
Techdesk, Service Engineer
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 16409
Experience:  Whitegoods engineer working for a multibranded national company in the UK
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I have a Zanussi 1600 Aquacycle washing machine. It wont completely

Customer Question

I have a Zanussi 1600 Aquacycle washing machine. It wont completely drain and it wont spin at all. I have run through the test sequence that I have read about online here (it doesn't have a display) and the start light is flashing twice and the end light is flashing 5 times.

I have tried cleaning the filter at the front and I have blown through the little pipe that is next to the filter but is still doesn't work.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Appliance
Expert:  Techdesk replied 4 years ago.


When you take the filter out, does all the water drain out?

If you then put it on spin only, does it spin?


Can you post the actual model number of the appliance please?

It should be on a label in the door recess.



Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Sorry for slight delay, my washing machine is a few floors away from my PC.


Model number is ZWX1605W


When you undo the drain plug it does empty water. The machine will NOT spin if you then put it on spin only



Expert:  Techdesk replied 4 years ago.


OK, thanks for that.


Your machine is flashing error code E52.

No motor movement detected.


The most common cause of the problem you describe is , worn out carbon brushes on the motor.

It's a bit awkward to check/change the carbons on the motor without opening the machine up but, if it has an open base, you may be able to do it with the motor in situ.


You'll need a torch for this. Unplug the appliance first.


Tilt the machine rearward, have someone hold it for you.

Don't turn it upside down or lay it fully over.


You'll see the motor and the carbon brushes in their holders.


Take the holders off and check the carbon brushes.

The holders will be held by 2 screws or 2 5.5mm bolts.


If the carbon brushes are worn out, you'll need to obtain and fit new ones.


Assuming no other problems with the machine, this will get it going again.


If you search on Ebay for Zanussi carbon brushes this will bring up pictures of what they will look like.

If you decide to purchase them there, please check with the seller that they fit your machine.


Check it out, get back to me if you need more help.


Obviously, if you cannot do the work yourself, you'll need to get someone in.


Hope this helps

Let me know how it goes


Customer: replied 4 years ago.

OK, that is quite major as I have to pull out other appliances that are built into the kitchen to get the washing machine out far enough to tilt it backwards. I am probably capable but it will take me a while.


If I do replace these carbon brushes and that doesn't sort it, what is the most likely thing that it will be?



Expert:  Techdesk replied 4 years ago.


Apart from obvious broken wires, the motor and/or control board could be at fault.

Possibly both.


Both are expensive items so I'd suggest a fixed price repair from British Gas if it's not carbon brushes.


They charge £125 inclusive of parts and labour.

Repair is warranted for a year.

No charge if they can't repair.


I believe they reduce the charge to £75 if you put appliances on contract with them.


Check the brushes first, it's a common enough fault.


Hope this helps


Customer: replied 4 years ago.

OK, I just took a look under the machine.


If I am looking at the right thing. Are there two sets of brushes ?

Expert:  Techdesk replied 4 years ago.


1 pair of carbon brushes, 1 either side of the motor.



Customer: replied 4 years ago.
They are really difficult for me to get to. Does it cause major problems if I lay this machine on its back?
Expert:  Techdesk replied 4 years ago.


It's not designed to be on it's back, side or upside down.

If you can't do it from underneath, you need to take the top and rear half of the casing off.

Then, take the motor off.



Customer: replied 4 years ago.

OK, I managed to locate and fit a set of new carbon Brushes and this has not resolved the issue. Still getting the same error messages when I run the test.


The old brushes were definitely worn but there was still life in them so the problem is something else.


The drum fills with water and will partially drain but will still not spin. It makes noises like it wants to but nothing happens. The drum spins very freely by hand so it is not seized.


Checked all the wiring that I could visually check and that all seems OK . I have no idea how to check the main circuit board so it looks like I am stuck with having to call out an engineer.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Still waiting for a response guys ????

Expert:  Techdesk replied 4 years ago.
It's all in my previous answer.

If carbons don't cure the problem, it's a motor and/ or control board fault

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Problem I have here is that the brushes didn't sort the issue so I now have to call an engineer out anyway. I had the cost of this Ask the expert site plus the cost of the brushes and all the running around and I might have just as well called someone out and saved myself time,money and hassle.

Expert:  Techdesk replied 4 years ago.
We're the brushes worn out?

I've advised on POSSIBLE causes of the problem.
If they weren't worn out then they didn't need changing.
Did you release the carbons so they touch the motor?

Sometimes remote diagnosis doesn't work out.
It's not an exact science and relies a lot on the information supplied.

You haven't paid me anything.
Your deposit is still in your just answer account.
As long as you don't rate the answer, the deposit stays in your account.

Check your account and you'll see.

I can only try and help you with advise, including the most economical method of repair.