Dryer: Starts then stops

If the the dryer starts, but then stops before the load is dry, it could be that the dryer overheated and tripped the thermal fuse. Or the timer could be malfuntioning, the main electronic control board could be getting or sending the wrong signals, or the motor relay (if your dryer has one) might have failed. These repairs can help.

These repairs may help solve your Dryer problem:

Replace the dryer thermal fuse

Thermal fuse

The thermal fuse is usually mounted on the blower fan housing. It detects the temperature of the air venting from the dryer to the outdoors and trips if the air becomes too hot. It typically trips if the vent tube is clogged or the exterior damper is closed. In an electric dryer, thermal fuse shuts off the dryer when it trips. In a gas dryer, it prevents the dryer from heating but the dryer still runs. The thermal fuse doesn't reset when the dryer cools and must be replaced if it trips.

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

Replace or repair the dryer drive motor

Drive motor

The drive motor rotates the motor shaft, which in turn rotates the idler pulley, which rotates the drive belt that's wrapped around the dryer drum. The motion of these components causes the drum to rotate during the cycle. The drive motor also rotates the blower fan blade on most dryers. The wire harness connections on the motor can be repaired, but the internal components on the motor cannot. If the drive motor doesn't run when voltage is applied to it, replace the drive motor.

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

Repair or replace the dryer electronic control board

Electronic control board

The electronic control board governs the timing and execution of dryer functions. The wiring connections on the control board can be repaired, but the control board itself cannot. Replace the electronic control board if it's receiving voltage but isn't transmitting it to the dryer components, causing the dryer to not work. It can be difficult to determine if the electronic control board is the problem (unless you see burn marks on it) and it's an expensive part that can't be returned once installed; for that reason, have a trained service technician perform advanced diagnostics on control board before you replace it.

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

Replace the dryer timer

Timer

The timer on the control panel lets you set the drying time by turning the timer's control knob. A small motor on the back of the timer advances the timer during the cycle. The timer's internal cams open and close switches or contacts to operate the various electro-mechanical components in the dryer (mainly the drive motor and the heating element). Replace the timer if the contacts aren't working, the dryer won't start, heat or the timer won't advance.

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

Replace the dryer door switch

Door switch

The dryer door switch detects whether the dryer door is open or closed. The dryer won't start if the door switch senses that the door is open. If the switch reads the door as being open when it's shut, or if it allows the dryer to keep running when the door is open, replace it.

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

Replace a dryer motor relay

Motor relay

Some dryers have a motor relay, which is an electrically operated switch. The motor relay stays electrically closed to keep the drive motor running as long it receives the proper voltage from the electronic control board. When the voltage supply to the relay stops, the relay opens electrically to halt the voltage supply to the drive motor, which then stops. When a motor relay fails, the dryer motor stops running when the start button is released.

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

Replace the dryer door catch

Door catch

The door catch is the part of the door latch assembly that's usually attached to the front panel, but sometimes is attached to the door. When the door is closed, the spring-loaded door catch encloses and grips the door strike, which is mounted across from it. The tension of the door catch keeps the door from opening until it's manually opened. If the door won't latch closed and the strike is intact, replace the catch.

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

Replace the dryer door strike

Door strike

The dryer door strike is the part of the door latch assembly. It's usually attached to the door, but sometimes is attached to the front panel. When the door is closed, the door strike is pushed into the spring-loaded door catch mounted across from it. The tension of the catch keeps the door from opening until it's manually opened. If the door strike damaged, replace the strike.

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

Regular dryer preventive maintenance

Preventive maintenance kit

Preventive maintenance for a dryer includes cleaning lint from the vent tube that runs from the dryer to the outdoors. Trapped lint can clog the tube, which creates a fire hazard and can increase drying times. To get out crayon, ink or fabric-dye stains, spray the marks with a non-flammable household cleaner, dampen a clean rag with water and wipe the inside of the drum, and then put clean, old, dry towels in the dryer and run it on Air Dry for 10 minutes to remove residue. To remove gum, let the dryer tumble on the hot setting for 10 minutes. When it stops, soak a dryer sheet in a clothing stain remover and wipe the gum with the dryer sheet.

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.