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3 Answers

Dryer operates but doesn't heat

My Kenmore electric dryer spins but doesn't heat.
This must be a common problem but I couldn't find specific instructions regarding fuses or heating parts for my dryer model number, so before I open it up and do something stupid, I thought I'd ask for help here first ;-)
(Sears won't offer phone support and wants $75 just to send someone. Next appointment is in 5 days... rip-off!)
Make: Kenmore Model#: 110.69902890 (purchased in 1999)
Any clue would be much appreciated!
Thanks, -- jj.

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  • 6 more comments 
  • J.J. Enser
    J.J. Enser Jun 22, 2008

    Thanks. I had already checked the breakers on the electrical panel, no trip. I flipped them both off and back on just in case, but no change. Is there a fuse to check in the dryer itself? What else can I look?

  • J.J. Enser
    J.J. Enser Jun 22, 2008


    Amp88Guard: How do I know if I have a bad thermostat or heating element? can either be easily replaced?


    Reg501: wow, thanks for the level of details! However, is the attached drawings for my model (69902)? Things don't look quite like that once I open the front panel. I can locale the heater - the only spring I see - but not the HI-limit. I may see better once I start removing screws... I just need to remember how to put everything back together :-o

  • J.J. Enser
    J.J. Enser Jun 22, 2008

    I've removed the heating unit and this is how it looks:








    Based on Reg501's diagram, 47 is at the bottom of the picture (looks like Amp88Guard's thermal fuse photo), the center piece (red/white) should be 48 (not sure *what* it is) and the top "plug" connects the heating coil inside the housing.
    I don't see this part on the diagram, but that's the only one that fails continuity test. The bottom 2 appear to be closed.


    I looked at the coil the best I could without removing it from the housing but don't notice any discontinuity. Is this part something I can take to an appliance repair center and buy a new one?


    Thanks,
    -- jj.

  • J.J. Enser
    J.J. Enser Jun 22, 2008

    I removed the 2 screws at the top of my photo, and that frees the "plug" but the inside "tray" with the coil around it doesn't want to slide off. something else is holding it, and I couldn't see what. I'll look at it tomorrow... it's 9pm here :-)
    Anyway, I can also take the entire housing as is to a place where they will know what to sell me, and maybe even replace it.
    Any recommendations? Do I have to get it from the sharks at Sears?
    Acknowledgments: This is the first time that I look for troubleshooting tips online, and I'm glad I found the right place at my very first attempt. You guys rock!

  • J.J. Enser
    J.J. Enser Jun 22, 2008

    A better view at the culprit:



  • J.J. Enser
    J.J. Enser Jun 22, 2008

    Although I had already washed my hands to come back to the computer, I had to go back and take another look in the garage... Hooray, I just needed to pull a little harder, and the element came out. Yep, it looks just like the one on Amp88Guard's link (thanks!) 
    I might try and find it in a store tomorrow, and if I can't I'll order it online.
    Again, many thanks to Amp88Guard and Reg501.

  • J.J. Enser
    J.J. Enser Jun 22, 2008

    Found the *real* culprit:






    The nearest Sears service/repair center has this part # in stock and I will pick it up tomorrow. Yeah! Hopefully I can reconnect everything properly ;-)

  • J.J. Enser
    J.J. Enser Jul 05, 2008

    Gosh, I thought I was done with my dryer... it worked fine for a week after I changed the heating element, but it stopped heating again yesterday. Coincidence? Did I f* something up? ;-)


    It took me just minutes to open and remove the housing (I'm a pro now!). I tested the 3 pairs of connectors for conductivity and this time, it's the hi-limit fuse (or "Termo cut-off" as called on Sears web site) that seems to be in cause.
    It should show a closed circuit, right? (like the heating element and the other thermostat)


    Just want to confirm before I buy it online (http://www.searspartsdirect.com/partsdir...)



    Thanks!

×

3 Answers

Since you've gotten into the dryer, the 2 most likely faults would be the thermal fuse (I do not see the thermal fuse on reg501's diagram - 48 should be the cycling themostat, and he already labeled 47 as the high-limit, many put the thermal fuse near the blower housing)... or heating element - if you have an ohm meter, simply check the fuse and element for continuity (if good, they should read closed). The element can also be visually inspected - if you see a break anywhere in the coil, you know it's bad. Note that when checking the element for continuity, it MAY read closed if the element coil broke and fused itself to the element housing, so make sure you visually inspect it even if it reads closed (good).

Posted on Jun 22, 2008

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  • Master
  • 413 Answers

If the power to the machine is OK then check these items.......
Before you begin, UNPLUG DRYER.
Remove bottom access panel by using a putty knife to depress panel clips (item 46).
Dryer operates but doesn't heat - 7b869c5.jpg

Check the High limit fuse and heater for continuity. Heater (item 14) <20 ohms and HI-limit (item 47) <0.3 ohms.
d57be2a.jpg
If the heater or HI-Limit has failed it may be that the exhaust air flow has become blocked or restricted. Check the hose in the back of the machine for crushed hose. If OK, the vent pipe may need cleaning... check out www.linteater.com for vent cleaning info.

If you need further assistance please let me know..
Regards
reg501
The FixYa Team

Posted on Jun 22, 2008

  • 3 more comments 
  • Richard
    Richard Jun 22, 2008

    The drawings provided are for the exact model number you provided in your post.
    The hi-limit is hard to get to.. it's way in the back attached to the heater housing.
    To test either..you will need some type of continuity checker.

    Regards
    reg501
    The FixYa Team



  • Richard
    Richard Jun 22, 2008

    If the thermal fuse is open, the dryer will not even turn on, so don't bother with that.
    If you don't have a continuity checker or ohmmeter, (BE CAREFUL THIS IS POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS) take a fresh 9v battery and place across the terminals of the device to check. (best done under low light conditions) if you notice a spark at the terminals or the battery gets warm REMOVE IMMEDIATELY this indicates the device is good.

    Regards
    reg501
    The FixYa Team



  • Richard
    Richard Jun 22, 2008

    You did good....
    The item you are referring to that fails continuity test is the heater, item 14 in the second diagram. It can be removed from the housing by removing the screw on the side (item 2 next to item 48), near the terminals then pulling out of the housing.



    If you need further assistance please let me know..
    Regards
    reg501
    The FixYa Team



  • Richard
    Richard Jun 22, 2008

    Provided you have removed the correct screw, It's in there pretty tight, it will take some pulling and tugging but it will come out.

    You're doing great!

    Let me know how it all turns out, until tomorrow;
    Regards
    reg501
    The FixYa Team



  • Richard
    Richard Jul 05, 2008

    If the 'Thermo cut-off' has now failed, (should show a closed circuit) it is a sure indication that the exhaust air flow is blocked or restricted. Check the hose in the back of the
    machine for crushed hose. If OK, the vent pipe may need cleaning...
    check out www.linteater.com for vent cleaning info or a local Home Improvement center and purchasing vent cleaning kit. Read instructions CAREFULLY..

    Clogged or restricted exhaust is the primary cause of failure in all residential dryers. Blowing the the system with a shop vac is only a temporary solution. The system needs to be cleaned (2 to 3 times per year) with a rotary brush to scrape lint collecting from the sides of the pipe. Also consider replacing flexible plastic or foil pipe with rigid metal type. Dryer will vent 30% to 40% better. If condition persists for too long, the high limit fuse mounted on the heater will open causing the heater to no longer operate.

    If you need further assistance, let me know
    Regards,
    reg501


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  • Contributor
  • 8 Answers

There are many reason why a dryer won't heat, but the simplest thing to check yourself without tearing your dryer apart is to check for a blown fuse, or a tripped circuit breaker at your house. If your house electical system uses fuses, your dryer should be connected to a separate box (30-amp) from your main fuse box. There will be 2 fuses - 1 controls the motor, the other controls the heating element - just check both for a bad fuse. If your house has circuit breakers instead of fuses, 1/2 of the breaker may have tripped (which you will not likely notice), so simply switch the breaker off - wait a few seconds, then switch it back on. That should reset the breaker and may fix your problem.

Posted on Jun 22, 2008

  • 3 more comments 
  • Kevin Emmel Jun 22, 2008

    Yes there are fuses inside the dryer, also thermostats which could be the problem, but if your house breakers/fuses are okay, the most likely problem is a bad heating element, especially if this is the first time you have experienced this problem, since it is 9 years old. Also of note, most element failures are related to poor air circulation (plugged exhaust vent), so make sure you check your vent line from your dryer to the outside of your house (your vent flap on the outside of your house may be clogged too).

  • Kevin Emmel Jun 22, 2008

    This is what a thermal fuse looks like:





  • Kevin Emmel Jun 22, 2008

    Sorry, I didn't realize it had logged me out, so my comments got separated and it put it on as a guest rather than my nickname. I'm new here :)

  • Kevin Emmel Jun 22, 2008

    The part that failed the continuity check is actually the heating element (on Reg501's diagram, look at the heater - the front of it is the 'plug' that you said failed the test). It appears as though you need a new heating element. Elements are available from multiple sources.

  • Kevin Emmel Jun 22, 2008

    Sears is only one option - any local appliance repair shop should either have one in stock or can quickly order one from their parts supplier, although some appliance repair shops won't sell parts over-the-counter (in other words, they only install the parts themselves = more money!). If you're comfortable ordering the parts online (and therefore waiting for shipping), there are numerous places you could go to (and therefore many different prices), but I have personally dealt with repairclinic.com. Based on the information you provided, here is a direct link to the element you need: http://www.repairclinic.com/SmartSearch/... - they don't sell it with the housing, so you would need to find a way to remove the element from the housing. I'm sure somebody sells the complete assembly if you don't want to, or can't, remove the element. Hope that helps!

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