The moisture sensors, which are metal inserts located on the inside of the drum and paddles, require periodic cleaning. If they become covered in a layer of lime scale they cannot sense the level of dryness in your clothes and therefore won’t know to produce the necessary heat to dry them. To clean the sensors, wipe them with a cloth soaked in vinegar. Do not use abrasive or bleach-based detergents to clean as these may damage the sensors. If you dry a load that is too large or mix heavy fabrics, such as jeans, with lighter fabrics, such as cotton t-shirts, this may result in incomplete drying. The cotton may dry faster, and if it brushes the sensors during tumbling, the sensors see this as an indication the load is done and stop the dryer.
Your dryer’s lint filter collects lint and other debris and requires regular cleaning. When it is clogged, the debris prevents the heat from circulating through the dryer. Lint may also build up in the lint filter housing, causing a blockage. Vacuum out the housing to remove debris and clean the lint filter before each load to prevent clogs. Remove the lint filter once a month and run it under warm water. Dry the filter with a cloth before replacing it in your dryer.
A problem with your exhaust vent may cause your dryer to put off inadequate levels of heat or no heat at all. If it is kinked or blocked, the air flow becomes restricted. This causes the heating element to cycle on and off frequently, making it seem like the dryer is not heating at all. Replace bent or damaged vents and clean out any debris inside using a vacuum. Exhaust vents should be vacuumed clean at least once each year to function efficiently.
When to Call for Repair
A blown fuse or tripped breaker may affect your dryer’s ability to provide heat. Dryers typically run on two fuses or breakers. Only one may malfunction, allowing the dryer to tumble, but not producing enough power to run the heater. Reset the breaker or replace the fuses and run your dryer again. If it does not fix the problem, the heating element may have burned out. Heating elements aren’t repairable and must be replaced when they malfunction. Loss of heat may also be caused by a problem in the main wiring connection in your home that has resulted in the connection to the dryer being broken. Faulty wiring may still allow the dryer to tumble but won’t provide enough power to produce heat. Contact a technician to check your dryer and replace the heating element or repair the wiring if necessary.