5 Common Dryer Issues and How to DIY Repair Them
Eighty-five percent of American households have in-home laundry facilities, according to a 2016 report from the U.S. Census Bureau.
If your setup includes a dryer, then you know just how important of an appliance it can be. Rather than stringing up your clothes and waiting for them to air dry, this device warms them up and tumbles them, removing the moisture in a matter of minutes.
So, dryer problems can stall you from getting all of your laundry done in an orderly fashion. That’s why you want to fix yours ASAP.
The good news is, some common dryer problems can be fixed without the help of a professional. Here are five typical issues that you might have with your appliance — and how to remedy them.
Your Clothes Come Out Wrinkled
One big issue you might have with your dryer is that it’s not drying your clothes well. Perhaps they come out slightly damp or, worse yet, they’re fully dried, but they have lots of wrinkles.
This issue may have nothing to do with the dryer itself, but how you load it up. You may need to put less into your dryer so that the device can work more effectively. Or, you might have to move your clothes from the washer to the dryer immediately — don’t let them sit for too long, or else they’ll start to wrinkle, too.
Another possibility is that you aren’t using enough fabric softener, which helps smooth out wrinkles as your clothes dry. If all else fails, try your dryer’s permanent press setting, which is specifically designed to produce wrinkle-free garments.
The Dryer’s Not Hot
Perhaps the dryer drum tumbles as designed, but it’s not heating up.
If you have a gas dryer, you should call in a technician to expect the flame. It might not be as high or as hot as necessary to warm the device.
Electric dryers may be fixable without the help of a pro. If you find that your appliance has been plugged into an extension cord, that’s a problem. A dryer uses so much electricity that it has to be plugged in directly to the wall. If yours isn’t set up this way, then change it, and you should have heat.
If the cord is plugged directly into the wall and you still don’t have a hot dryer, check to make sure the cord isn’t frayed or damaged. At this point, though, you’ll have to call in a technician whether or not you find anything. The pros can swap out the cord or figure out what else is causing the cool air to come out.
Your Dryer Makes Noise
Another one of the most common dryer problems: the appliance makes strange, repetitive noises while in use.
It’s normal for your dryer to make some noise, of course. Perhaps you have something heavy in the drum, or a garment with metallic hardware, for example. As these pieces hit the sides, they will make noises — so, check and make sure it’s not your clothes before you panic about sounds.
However, if you hear a constant squealing, humming or squeaking coming from your dryer, there is something wrong. In many cases, a part needs to be replaced. The glides that move the drum, for example, may be so worn down that it’s rubbing with each cycle.
The main belt of the dryer or its blower wheel could need replacement or repair, as well. Again, this is the time to call in a pro — they can figure out the source of the noise and how to fix it.
Your Clothes Won’t Dry
You’ve checked the drum, and it gets nice and hot. Still, your clothes won’t dry after a few cycles in there. What gives?
Well, if a dryer’s not drying, it could be that your lint filter is full. If you haven’t cleaned it out in a while and it piles up with too much lint, it forces your dryer to use more energy than usual. So, it runs through an entire cycle, but your clothes never get dry.
If your lint filter’s empty, though, you might have a larger problem, such as blocked ventilation or a broken part. The former can be incredibly dangerous, so it’s important to get that unclogged as soon as possible. Meanwhile, a technician might have to come out and replace the Whirlpool dryer heating element, which is vital in getting your appliance to temperature.
The Dryer Turns On But Shuts Off Quickly
It’s frustrating to have a dryer that will not start. But it’s equally as annoying to have one that’ll turn on but turn off shortly thereafter.
In most cases, this is down to the device’s built-in thermostat. The temperature reader is malfunctioning, leading your dryer to shut itself off mid-cycle. You will need a professional to come out and replace the thermostat with a new working model.
It could also be that you have overloaded your machine, and you do so often. So, try putting a smaller load in the dryer to see if it will run properly. Again, check the lint screen and vent, too — if they get clogged, the dryer might shut itself off, too.
Dryer Problems? Not Anymore
These are five dryer problems that can make laundry even more of a chore. Luckily, though, you now know how to fix them. Whether you need to roll up your sleeves or call in the pros, one thing’s for sure — you can fix this and get your appliance back to its best in no time.
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