This video from Sears PartsDirect shows you what to do if your electric dryer won’t start or run. Several things could keep your dryer from operating normally. You could have a blown thermal fuse, which can happen if your vent hose has a buildup of lint. You could also have a bad door switch, a defective start switch or an issue with your power supply. This video shows a few easy tests you can run, including how to use a multimeter to check for continuity between these parts and locate which component is causing the problem.
1. Check for power
Open the dryer door and check if the light inside the dryer turns on. If it doesn’t turn on, check your power cord and the house circuit breaker. Try resetting the breaker to make sure it’s not tripped.
2. Check the door switch
With the dryer door closed, set a Timed Drying cycle and listen for the faint sound of the timer motor running inside the console.
• If the timer motor runs and the light comes on when you open the door, you know that the door switch is okay. Go to step 3.
• If the motor doesn’t run and the light doesn’t come on, check the door switch with a multimeter. For safety always make sure the power is disconnected before you check continuity. To access the door switch, pull out the lint screen. Remove the screws that secure the lint screen housing to the top panel. Release the clips and lift the top panel to access the door switch. Unplug the door switch from the wire harness. With the dryer door closed, put the meter leads on the door switch wires that connect to the blue and white wires on the other end of the plug. It should measure near 0 ohms of resistance. If you measure no continuity—on this meter that’s an OL—the door switch is broken and needs to be replaced.
3. Check the thermal fuse
With the dryer unplugged, remove the screws and pull off the back panel. Unplug the wires from the thermal fuse. Use the multi-meter to measure the resistance between the spades on the thermal fuse. You should measure near 0 ohms of resistance through the thermal fuse. If you measure no continuity, then replace the thermal fuse.
More often than not, if the thermal fuse blew, it’s because your exhaust vent is clogged with lint. Before you hook your dryer back up, check your vent and clean it out with a lint brush.
4. Check the start switch
Reassemble the dryer and then plug it back in. Open the door and push the door switch in. While holding the door switch in, push the start switch. You should hear a click as the relay engages. Then release the door switch and you should hear a click as the relay disengages.
• If you heard the clicks, the start switch is probably okay.
• If you didn’t hear the clicks, check continuity. With the dryer unplugged, remove the console back panel. Unplug the wires from the start switch. Have someone hold the start switch in and check resistance on the spades for the light blue wires. It should measure near 0 ohms of resistance with the start button pressed in. If it measures no continuity, replace the push-to-start switch.
5. Have a technician check the motor windings or internal centrifugal switch.
If all of the components have checked out ok, the motor windings or internal centrifugal switch could be defective. You should get a qualified technician to check it.
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