When you first notice a problem with your dryer, your first reaction might be to call your local repairman. But in this economy, who can afford to spend hundreds of dollars every time a household appliance breaks down? Before you grab your phone and dial the repairman, perhaps you should try your hand at fixing your dryer yourself. You might be surprised to see how simple it is to fix some minor problems with your dryer.
Before you start taking your dryer apart, you should understand how a dryer works. Essentially, a dryer is a temperature and heat controlled spinning drum. The dryer is powered by a series of pulleys which work as a motor. The motor pulls the drum while heat is pumped in.
If your dryer is very noisy, there might be problems with the rollers or the wheels that support the drum. Over time, these parts tend to get worn and might not move as freely as they once did. If you replace all of the rollers and wheels, the dryer will operate more quietly.
If your dryer will not operate, you should let your dryer cool down before attempting any repairs. Waiting ten minutes or so should be sufficient. If your dryer still does not work, then there is something wrong. Once you are sure your dryer needs to be repaired, first unplug the electricity to the dryer. If your dryer is gas powered, shut off the gas. If your dryer came with an instructional manual, it might include a detailed illustration of the inside of your dryer. If you cannot find one, however, you can still manage to repair your dryer because most dryers are very similar.
If your dryer will start but the drum does not move (meaning your drum will not tumble), then there might be a problem with the motor, capacitor, or the belt. If you can easily move the drum with your hand, then the belt must be loose and probably needs to be replaced. A working belt should be quite tight and resistant to force, meaning the drum should be difficult to spin with your hand. If the belt is in fact broken, you might want to call a professional because it can be a tricky job as the belt is not easily accessible.
If you notice a humming sound, there might be a problem with the capacitor or perhaps the motor is jammed. The capacitor is what turns the motor on, and the motor spins the drum. There is a way to determine which part is broken. Turn the dryer on, open the door and spin the drum with your hand. If you close the door and the drum keeps spinning, then the capacitor is to blame. If the drum is very stiff, the motor needs to be replaced.
If the dryer will not operate at all, then there might be a problem with the door switch. If this switch is defective, you need to replace it. The switch is located in the top or front of the dryer.