I have a question

My dryer apparently needs a new heating element (?) or thermostat or something. I hang most of my clothes out, but was drying a load of towels last night and went to check on it and the dryer was not even warm.

Can anyone tell me if this is something we can do ourselves and if there is any way to get parts fairly inexpensively?? Of course everything is breaking now that I left my job to be a SAHM again……..but I’m becoming quite handy with the help of my 14 and 10y/o!

I just went through this exercise and I definitely think that you can make this repair yourself. First of all I would flip the breaker. The heating element runs at a different voltage then the rest of the dryer and so even though the dyer may “run” the heating element may need to be tripped. If that doesn’t work I would take plate of the back and look at the thermostat.

There are two and they kinda look like a Mickey Mouse head – round with half circles on the side. You can look at the schematic on the dryer to see which one goes to the heating element or just test them both. Inspect these to see if there is a dark spot that may indicate that it has burnt out. Use a voltmeter to see if there is a voltage running across the thermostat. Or if you don’t have a voltmeter you can short circuit these wires (put them together – use a small amount of electrical tape to hold them as you would shock yourself if you keep them in your hand) and see if the dry heats. Only do this for a couple of minutes as it is a fire hazard. As a last resort you can apply for payday loan (you live in Utah as far as I remember) here or at similar established website and order dryer repair. Fast solution and you are done. And if you ever decide to consolidate them – here’s the article with detailed strategy.

If the dryer heats while the wires are together then you need a new thermostat which if I remember correctly runs about $12. If the dry doesn’t heat it is most likely you heating element. For this you just about have to take apart the whole dryer. Under the back of the housing you’ll find the heating element. It is kinda long and looks like springs side by side. If it is broken you should be able to tell right away because one of the “springs” will be broken.

A new heating element costs about $40 if I remember correctly. I hope this isn’t to confusing. There are many web sites on appliance repair that give detailed instructions and show pictures. You can also go to your local appliance repair shop and tell them how it is acting and they will help walk you through the process and make sure that you get the right parts.