What to Check When a Dryer Won’t Turn On?

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You never want your dryer to have problems, but if it does have problems, it could at least give you some symptoms to work with. Unfortunately, there may come a day where you have a wet load of laundry in it and the dryer just will not start at all. No noise, no motion, no response – this makes it harder to troubleshoot, but here is what you can do to help diagnose the problems.

Check the Power

Your first step, in this case, should always check that it is not a power issue. Obviously, if your dryer has indicator lights that are lit, this is not the issue. However, if it has no lights to light up or they are off – check the power. Is the appliance plugged in firmly? Is the fuse blown at the circuit breaker? Does the outlet get power? Is there power in your house still?

Door Latch or Switch Issues

Your dryer is designed so that it will only run if the door is closed. In order to do this, there is a door latch that will trigger the door switch that serves as a sensor. If the door latch is damaged, it may not trigger the sensor. Alternatively, if the switch has gone bad, it may not be sensing the door latch. If your door latch looks damaged, it likely needs to be replaced. Your switch will need to be tested with a multimeter to see if it has gone bad.

Thermal Fuse Issues

The thermal fuse is similar to the fuse in your circuit breaker but installed in your dryer near the exhaust hose. This fuse is a one-time use part that is tripped if your dryer becomes too hot. The idea is to cut power to the heating function in order to prevent a dryer fire. In some models, this may cut power altogether while in others it may only cut power to the heating element. This means your dryer could run but produce no heat.

The fuse is easy to test with a multimeter and replace it. However, you will want to investigate the cause of the loss of function thoroughly. Check to make sure the exhaust hose, lint screen, and the vent in your home are not blocked. Occasionally a thermal fuse can just go bad and needs to be replaced, but it is better to be safe than sorry – especially if the fuse keeps tripping.

Start Button Switch

If you push the start button and everything else appears to be normal, it is possible that the switch behind the button has gone bad. When this happens, everything is fine, except for that one initial part. Test the switch with a multimeter to see if it has continuity.

Motor Issues

The most complicated cause of this problem is an issue with your motor. Luckily, usually, motor problems come with other symptoms so it can make it easier to spot. If you try to start your dryer, hear it make a few noises, and do nothing – then this is likely a motor issue. Of course, if you have exhausted all the above causes and it is still not starting, your motor could very well just be dead.

While many of the above are issues you can repair yourself with a bit of time and the right part, motor issues are typically a little too complex. If your dryer will not start and you can’t troubleshoot it yourself, contact us today. Sloan Appliance Repair can help you figure out the issue quickly and get it repaired so you aren’t left with a load of wet laundry and no options.

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