November 1, 2015

How to replace a downdraft vent blower motor

By Lyle Weischwill
How to replace a downdraft vent blower motor

This DIY repair guide explains how to replace a blower motor in a downdraft vent. The blower motor, located in the housing on the air box, turns the fan blade that draws smoke and moisture away from the cooktop. Replace the blower motor with the manufacturer-approved replacement part if the motor is worn or locked up.

Use these basic repair steps to replace the blower motor in common Kenmore, Broan, GE, Whirlpool, KitchenAid, Frigidaire and Electrolux downdraft vents.

Quick links
Tools required
Work gloves
1/4-inch nut driver
3/8-inch nut driver
7/16-inch nut driver
5/32-inch Allen wrench
Repair difficulty
Time required
30 minutes or less
Repair difficulty
Time required
30 minutes or less
How to replace a downdraft vent blower motor repair guide video.

Replacing a downdraft vent blower motor video.

Instructions

  1. 01.

    Disconnect power and remove the downdraft vent from the counter

    Unplug the cooktop and the downdraft vent.

    Remove the cooktop from the counter. Remove the downdraft vent from the counter. Wear work gloves to protect your hands.

    Tip: Use the installation manuals for the cooktop and downdraft vent to guide you when removing the appliances from the counter.
  2. 02.

    Remove the gear motor cover

    Remove the mounting nuts from the clamp channels and then remove both clamp channels.

    Remove the screws from the gear motor cover.

    Pull the gear motor cover up. Disconnect the gear motor wires and then pull the wires out of the gear motor cover.

    Remove the clamp channel nuts.

    Remove the clamp channel nuts.

    Remove the clamp channels.

    Remove the clamp channels.

    Remove the gearbox cover screws.

    Remove the gearbox cover screws.

    Remove the gear motor cover.

    Remove the gear motor cover.

    Disconnect the gear motor wires.

    Disconnect the gear motor wires.

  3. 03.

    Remove the blower housing cover

    Remove the mounting screws from the blower housing cover and pull the cover off.

    Remove the blower housing cover screws.

    Remove the blower housing cover screws.

    Remove the blower housing cover.

    Remove the blower housing cover.

  4. 04.

    Remove the blower motor

    Loosen the Allen-head set screw and lift the blower fan wheel blade off the blower motor shaft.

    Pull the rubber boot up on the motor capacitor.

    Place a slot screwdriver with an insulated handle across the capacitor leads to make sure it no longer has an electrical charge.

    Disconnect the wires from the capacitor.

    Pull the wires out of the boot.

    Carefully tilt the top of the blower housing up and disconnect the blower motor wire harness.

    Flip the blower housing assembly over and lay it on the air box.

    Pull the capacitor wires through the blower housing grommet.

    Remove the motor mounting nuts and pull the blower motor out.

    Loosen the fan blade set screw.

    Loosen the fan blade set screw.

    Remove the fan blade.

    Remove the fan blade.

  5. 05.

    Install the new blower motor

    Position the new blower motor on the mounting studs and reinstall the mounting nuts.

    Thread the capacitor wires through the blower housing grommet.

    Flip the blower housing assembly upright and position it on top of the air box cover.

    Tilt the blower housing assembly up and plug in the blower motor wire harness.

    Lower the blower housing assembly into place.

    Feed the capacitor wires through the rubber boot.

    Connect the wires to the capacitor.

    Reinstall the rubber boot on the capacitor.

    Align the flat part of the motor shaft with the set screw on the blower wheel and push the blower wheel down.

    Position the blower wheel 1/8-inch above the top of the motor shaft and tighten the set screw.

    Install the new blower motor.

    Install the new blower motor.

    Install and tighten the mounting nuts.

    Install and tighten the mounting nuts.

    Thread the motor capacitor wires through the grommet.

    Thread the motor capacitor wires through the grommet.

    Plug in the motor wire harness.

    Plug in the motor wire harness.

    Lower the blower housing into position.

    Lower the blower housing into position.

    Feed the motor capcitor wires through the rubber boot.

    Feed the motor capcitor wires through the rubber boot.

    Connect the motor capacitor wires.

    Connect the motor capacitor wires.

    Reinstall the blower wheel blade.

    Reinstall the blower wheel blade.

    Tighten the blower wheel set screw.

    Tighten the blower wheel set screw.

  6. 06.

    Reinstall the blower housing cover

    Place the blower housing cover over the blower housing and reinstall the mounting screws.

    Reinstall the blower housing cover.

    Reinstall the blower housing cover.

    Reinstall the blower housing cover screws.

    Reinstall the blower housing cover screws.

  7. 07.

    Reinstall the gear motor cover

    Thread the wires through the gear motor cover and reconnect the wires to the gear motor.

    Position the gear motor cover over the gear motor and reinstall the mounting screws.

    Reinstall the clamp channels and secure them using the mounting nuts.

    Reconnect the gear motor wires.

    Reconnect the gear motor wires.

    Reinstall the gear motor cover screws.

    Reinstall the gear motor cover screws.

    Reinstall the channel clamps.

    Reinstall the channel clamps.

    Reinstall the channel clamp nuts.

    Reinstall the channel clamp nuts.

  8. 08.

    Reinstall the downdraft vent and cooktop

    Reinstall the downdraft vent and cooktop in the counter following the directions in the installation guides.

  9. 09.

    Restore power

    Plug in the power cords for the downdraft blower and the cooktop.

Warning: Undertaking repairs or maintenance to appliances or power equipment can be hazardous. Should you choose to undertake repairs or maintenance, you are assuming the risk of injury to your person or property. In an effort to reduce the risk, use the proper tools and safety equipment noted in the applicable guide and follow all instructions. Do not proceed until you are confident that you understand all of the steps and are capable of completing the repair. Some repairs or maintenance, however, should only be performed by a qualified technician.

Symptoms common to all downdraft ventilation systems

Choose a symptom to see related downdraft vent repairs.

Main causes: lack of electrical power, up/down activation switch failure, bad vent gear motor
Main causes: fan control switch failure, bad blower fan motor, broken blower wheel, wiring failure
Main causes: electrical power failure, up/down activation switch problems, vent gear motor failure
Main causes: problems with the vent limit switches, up/down activation switch failure
Main causes: clogged grease filters, air duct problems, fan motor failure, broken blower wheel

Repair guides common to all downdraft ventilation systems

These step-by-step repair guides will help you safely fix what’s broken on your downdraft vent.

How to replace a downdraft vent up/down button pad

The up/down button pad located on top of the air vent engages the activating switch when pushed to raise the air vent. Replace the up/down button pad if damaged.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 15 minutes or less
November 1, 2015
By Lyle Weischwill
How to replace a downdraft vent gear motor

The gear motor raises and lowers the air vent when you push the activating switch. Replace the gear motor if defective.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 15 minutes or less
November 1, 2015
By Lyle Weischwill
How to replace a downdraft vent blower motor

The blower motor spins the fan blade that removes smoke and steam from the cooktop area. Replace the blower motor if it doesn't run when activated.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 30 minutes or less

Articles and videos common to all downdraft ventilation systems

Use the advice and tips in these articles to get the most out of your downdraft vent.

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