Washing machines require lots of power to run. To prevent electricity from frying its electrical componentry and making the entire appliance useless, an automatic washer has either one or two main fuses. One fuse sits in the power cord to the washing machine and will blow if a power surge reaches the washer. The other fuse sits in the lid switch on some machines; if the washer overheats or there is a power surge, the washer will not run again until the fuse in the switch is replaced.
Check the home's fuse box and inspect the laundry room fuse. Look for a crack in the filament in the middle of the fuse. Replace the fuse by unscrewing it from the circuit breaker and putting in an identical one. Screw it into place and test.
Remove the fuse from the power cord by opening the small plastic compartment at the end of the power cord. Pull out the fuse and inspect it for damage. Replace the fuse with the same model. Model numbers are printed on the side of the fuse.
Open the lid to your washing machine and locate the lid switch, which is a small component somewhere along the top of the washer lid opening. Unplug the washing machine from the electrical outlet. Remove the two screws that hold the lid switch in place, then remove it from the machine. Locate the fuse. Some units will not have one. Inspect the fuse for any cracks and replace it if necessary.