From Dryers to Blenders: An Appliance Blog

Dryer Heating Issues

If your dryer isn't producing enough heat to dry your clothes properly, or it's not turning on at all, this could indicate a problem with one or more parts. Some of these issues are simple enough that you can diagnose them on your own. However, sometimes the problem will require replacement of an electrical element. Therefore, it may be safer to bring in an expert in dryer and washer repair. Here are some of the causes of dryers not heating up.

Malfunction Heating Elements

The heating element is what generates the heat in electric dryers. It's usually made up of a coil in an enclosed chamber. The coil heats up when electricity is turned on. If the coil is defective, e.g., broken or if the wires connecting the coil to the source of electricity is cut, it will not heat up. A multimeter can be used to check if the coil is broken at any point.

The High Limit Thermostat

This device is used in the heating chamber to keep the dryer from getting too hot such as when the exhaust vent is somehow blocked. If the temperature inside the dryer gets too high, the thermostat will interrupt the electrical system or trigger a valve that will turn off the gas in gas-heated dryers. These thermostats aren't designed to be activated more than a few times and quickly fail if they consistently operate under such conditions. If damaged, the thermostat should be replaced and the cause of overheating also corrected.

Malfunctioning Cycling Thermostats

These thermostats are used to control the temperature in the drum of the dryer. They turn the heating element off or on to ensure the temperature within remains within a certain limit. Cycling thermostats are known to become defective after a certain period of time and may need to be replaced at some point.

Problem With The Igniter

If your dryer is gas-fueled, it will have some means of igniting the gas, e.g., an igniter or a glow bar. Igniters are fragile and should only be handled by someone who knows what they are doing. Igniters can fail after some time too.

Sometimes The Problem is A Simple One

Although sometimes the problem may be serious enough to warrant expert intervention, in many cases, the problem will turn out to be incorrect voltage, a trip in the circuit breaker or just a socket that's not properly plugged in. Be sure to eliminate all such possibilities first.