5 Common Reasons Why Electric Clothes Dryers Malfunction

Posted By On 07-09-2022

Doing laundry is not an easy task. However, with some appliances, people can now easily wash and dry their clothes. For example, an electric clothes dryer makes drying faster, regardless of outdoor weather.

But like other appliances, even electric dryers malfunction over time, needing repairs and eventually replacement. But knowing why they malfunction helps in preventive measures to extend their lifespan further. Here are some ideas.

1. Blown Thermal Fuse

The thermal fuse is a safety device that prevents overheating. It is located right behind the front panel of the dryer. If the dryer overheats, the thermal fuse blows, cutting off the electricity to the dryer. If the fuse blows, the dryer will not work. People cannot reset the thermal fuse—if it blows, it must be replaced.

If your dryer suddenly stops heating, it could be due to a blown thermal fuse. Open the dryer’s cabinet and test the fuse with a multimeter for continuity to see if the fuse has blown. If the fuse does not have continuity, replace it. Thermal fuses are available in electronics hardware, usually sold per pack.

2. Defective Thermostat

The thermostat is a switch that turns the dryer’s heat on and off. When the dryer’s thermostat is defective, it can cause it to overheat and the thermal fuse to blow. A dryer that overheats is a severe fire hazard. If you have a dryer with a defective thermostat, it’s essential to have it repaired or replaced as soon as possible. Meanwhile, if your dryer is overheating, you should first unplug it and call a qualified appliance repair technician. Do not attempt to repair the dryer yourself.

3. Broken Heating Element

The heating element is an electrical resistor that transforms electrical energy into heat. It is located in the dryer’s cylinder, where it heats the air that circulates through it. However, a broken heating element may cause the dryer not correctly heat up, affecting the appliance's overall performance.

A broken heating element can also cause the dryer to overheat, which can be a fire hazard. If you notice that your dryer is not heating up properly, or if it is overheating, you should check the heating element for damage. If the heating element is damaged, you will need to replace it.

4. Faulty High-Limit Thermostat

The high-limit thermostat is a safety device to prevent the dryer from overheating. It is located on the heating element and monitors the dryer’s temperature. When the dryer’s temperature gets too hot, the high-limit thermostat will shut the power off to the heating element.

If you need to replace your dryer’s high-limit thermostat, you can do it yourself with a few tools and some basic knowledge of dryers. But if you are not comfortable working with electrical components, it is best to call a professional to help you with this repair.

5. Obstructed Duct

The duct system in your dryer is fundamental to the proper functioning of your dryer. It carries the hot air from the dryer to outside your home. If the duct system is blocked or obstructed, it can cause your dryer to overheat and shut down. If your dryer duct becomes blocked or obstructed, it's essential to have it fixed as soon as possible. Not only can it cause your dryer to overheat, but it can also be a fire hazard.


There are several reasons why your dryer may be shutting down. It's important to troubleshoot the problem so you can make the necessary repairs. If you are not comfortable troubleshooting the problem on your own, it's best to call a professional to help you with this repair.

Pro Appliance offers appliance repair services in Toronto. Our professional appliance technicians help our clients get the most out of their devices and appliances by providing maintenance and repairs. Visit our website and schedule a consultation today.

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