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Can you repair a burned-out electric motor?

Updated April 17, 2017

If an electric motor operates at too high a voltage, excess current flowing through the windings can cause them to become hot and burn out. While it is normally not practical to repair small, direct current (DC) motors that have burnt out, other motors can be repaired by rewinding.

Short Circuit

When a motor burns out, a short circuit occurs in the windings and the motor ceases to turn. You can test for a short circuit by checking the resistance of the windings with an ohmmeter; a reading of 0 ohms (Ω) indicates a short.

Winding Removal

The first step in rewinding a motor is to remove the old winding. Commercially, this is done by baking the stationary part of a motor in an oven at 343 degrees Celsius for several hours.

Rewinding Coils

The new windings are wound on a coil winding machine, under the supervision of a technician, who controls the tension, layering and number of turns. The newly wound coil is dipped in epoxy varnish and, once again, baked in an oven to complete the process.

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About the Author

A full-time writer since 2006, David Dunning is a professional freelancer specializing in creative non-fiction. His work has appeared in "Golf Monthly," "Celtic Heritage," "Best of British" and numerous other magazines, as well as in the book "Defining Moments in History." Dunning has a Master of Science in computer science from the University of Kent.