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
So what else could be broken as a result of dryer overheating?
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
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.
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.
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,
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.
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.
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.
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
It\'s not just anyone who gets a Starship Cruiser class named after them.
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