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Have you checked the motor? Plenty of lint and dust gets indie it. If you can remove if and use compressed air to blow it out. Also don't overlook the fact all the spade connectors will also collect lots of lint and dust which is quite flammable. Also check the tensioner and guide wheel they get pretty dirty and when they heat up the lint can start buring.
Do not switch on the dyer unless this is checked out as the fault seems related to the coil heating some insulation or foreign particles when it is switched ON.
Sometimes this can be due to wires buring after coming into contact with the heater, the insulation being burnt out.
Also if the connection leads on the heater is bad then the JOINTS might heat more and thus burn the wires or any other materials that come in touch.
An inspection / with a good obserrvation lamp is most important.You can also start by observing the leads on the heaters.
If you are having problems with your gas dryer not heatingthe most common problem is that the ignitor goes bad. Even though it glowssometimes it is still not working properly.
if you dryer is gas check out this gas no heat tip....
If you have an electric dryer, you can have many differentthings that can go wrong causing the dryer not to heat.
check out this electric no heat tip...
Sounds like the motor went out. Before trying to start it it needs to be inspected. If you are not comfortable opening up the cabinet then I would would recommend calling a service tech. If you need further assistance please let me know. Ken
Disconnect the dryer from your vent completely,. pull dryer out 3 ft. from wall and test to see if the smell continues, You have to test for a few minutes to clear out any burning lint from vent restrictions. If the smell hoes away then you know you have venting problems. Also check on the grate that covers the element( the part you look through when you see the orange glow from the element) sometimes plastic or clothing burns onto this grate and needs to be cleaned off. I the smell remains, you will have to tear down the dryer to see if you can find the cause of the smell.
Any kind of lint or cobwebs on the element would cause a hot spot and fry the element or pop the limit that is mounted on top of the chamber. What your hubby soulda done is take the machine down and vacuum it out after sitting up so long. The fuse is not blown because it still runs so it must be the small guy pictured. It mount up top of the heat element chamber.
Have you painted or stained in your house or apartment recently? The smell gets everywhere, dryer, stove, heating unit. I recently primed with Kilz and the clothes from my dryer smelled burned. When I called for service, it was the first question the service person asked and said they made a lot of useless trips only to find nothing wrong with the appliance. That was my case. I had to rewash clothes and let the dryer run with towels for a while