Dryer won't start due to lint overload - what part is fried as a result?

Looking for insight regarding how to diagnose and repair my fairly new (purchased in 2002) Whirlpool clothes dryer. In return, I'll trade you the comical story behind why it's broken. After several years of blissful cohabitation, my girlfriend moved out, leaving me to fend for myself regarding matters such as washing/drying clothes.
After about 2 months of doing so on a regular basis, the dryer up and died. Just wouldn't start. My own investigation into the matter determined the cause to be my negligence in cleaning the lint filter. Resultingly, there was literally a lint pillow residing in the slot two inches think and about a foot long.
Believe it or not, I'm fairly handy, and have little doubt I can purchase the appropriate pieces and make the replacement. However I'm having a difficult time determining which piece could have been fried as a result of my oversight. I've already checked the thermal fuse, and it's fine.
So what else could be broken as a result of dryer overheating?
Thank you! Jason
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Thermostat

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Many thanks for the quick response. However, isn't the thermostat responsible solely for controlling heat to the heating element, meaning the dryer would indeed run, just without heat? I could be wrong, just my understanding based on resources I'm reading on the web.
In fact, this is why I checked the thermal fuse first, because I understand that if it blows all power is cut, rather than just power to the heating element. Again, not an expert here, so please correct me if I'm wrong.
Thank you! Jason
troy wrote:

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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

There are usually several "thermostats" Usually at least two are safety devices (sounds like one of those) and at least one other to control (limit) the operating temperature. Do you have a wiring diagram for your dryer?
Also consider that you may have toasted the blower motor.
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Joseph Meehan

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Joseph Meehan wrote:

I do indeed have the wiring diagram, and will find out about the two safety thermostats. Thank you!
Curious, why would overheating ruin the blower motor?
Jason
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On Tue, 12 Sep 2006 15:08:13 GMT, "Joseph Meehan"

I had a dryer that wouldn't work EXCEPT for the motor. The motor was still the cause of the problem, as it switches power to the heater and timer.
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104 days until the winter solstice celebration

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Reminds me of the time a customer called to ask why his new dryer was constantly beeping. Told him it sounded like the lint filter full alert and perhaps the lint filter was full. His response.."the filter couldn't be full, the dryer was only three months old". I guess he expected to get 3000 miles on his filter. Have you checked the door switch as that would kill all functions. And of course, I assume you checked the house breaker or fuse which could have kicked out due to an overheating dryer.
Tom G.
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Tom G wrote:

Yep checked the door, and the fuse, both are fine.
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

How dead is dead? Any noise at all?
Could you have blown the motor on the belt? It would heat a little, then heat would go off and wouldn't make much noise because 90% of noise is from motor. Dryers are also real quiet if you brake a belt. I am assuming you checked that.
Gas or electric?
If you turn it on and start it, does the timer move if you walk away for a little while.
If not door switch, could it be "push to start" switch? Does it feel, sound okay.
Seems like time for the electrical tester and the wiring diagram.
Any chance of getting the girl back? Seems like that's the place to start. If you get back to Girlfriend 1.0 or later, just don't upgrade to Wife 1.0. Its tempermental and hard to maintain. Plus its really bad if Wife 1.0 find out you are also using Girlfriend.
Good luck with a girl ... I mean dryer.
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Most have overloads that are about the size of a 1/2 dollar & aren't prohibitively expensive to replace, if you can pull the front panel they should be findable. I usually make a jumper wire and by-pass them to check them, or you could use an ohm meter. Perhaps it would be better to use the meter as by-passing them tempts you to leave them that way if it works.
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Just emphasizing that leaving it jumpered is a really bad idea.
People perhaps don't realize that the duty cycle (on versus off cycling) of a dryer heating element is actually fairly short. It is _not_ on continuously while the dryer is heating.
Goes on for a few moments - VERY BRIGHT, VERY HOT, thermostat notices the heat, shuts off the power, and it "coasts" for a fair bit until the thermostat notices the temperature drop[+].
If the thermostat stuck, and the safety overrides were bypassed, you'd probably have a melt-down or flameout in fairly short order.
Especially with lots of lint.
Jumpering is a good diagnostic for checking for broken over-temp safety devices. But it is NOT a repair, and it mustn't be left that way. Even if it's a redundant safeguard.
[+] I recently had to replace a heater element in a Maytag. Just a long heater coil suspended in a chunk of duct. I left the elbow of the duct off so that I could observe it working after the repair. And was _quite_ surprised at how bright/hot it got in very short order, and how short the on-cycle was compared to the off cycle.
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

On a completely separate topic, how is it possible that you haven't found a replacement live-in within TWO MONTHS?
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Certainly not your ex-girlfriends heart.
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

For future reference: http://CleanYourOwnDryerVent.com /
Alisa LeSueur Certified Dryer Exhaust Technician
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

For future reference: http://CleanYourOwnDryerVent.com /
Alisa LeSueur Certified Dryer Exhaust Technician
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