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Whirlpool Dryer Not Heating: Proven Ways to Fix It Fast

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Ever found yourself standing in front of your Whirlpool dryer not heating and wondering what went wrong? As an appliance repair expert, I’ve been there too. One evening, after a long day of fixing appliances, I tossed a load of laundry into my trusty Whirlpool dryer. 

An hour later, I expected warm, dry clothes, but they were as damp as when I put them in. It was quite a head-scratcher! Whether you have a gas or electric dryer, these steps will help you troubleshoot the problem. Let’s dive into some common reasons and simple fixes to get your dryer back to its warm, cozy self.

Common Causes for a Whirlpool Dryer Not Heating

So, your Whirlpool dryer is not heating? Don’t worry, we’ve all been there. There are a few common reasons why this might be happening. Let’s go through them together and see what’s going on with your dryer. Some of these fixes you can do yourself, but for others, you might need a pro.

Power Supply Issues (DIY)

Power Supply Issues
Fixing a Cold Dryer
  1. Voltage Check: First, make sure your dryer is getting the right power. Electric dryers need 240 volts. Use a multimeter to check the outlet. Each live line should give 110-120 volts. If it’s a three-prong outlet, you should measure 220-240 volts between the live lines.
    • How to Use a Multimeter: Set the multimeter to the voltage setting. Insert the probes into the outlet slots. A reading of 220-240 volts between the live lines means your outlet is good. If not, you might need an electrician.
  2. Power Cord: Inspect the power cord for any signs of damage. A damaged cord can stop your dryer from heating.
    • Replacement Tip: If the cord looks frayed or damaged, it’s best to replace it. You can find a replacement at any hardware store.
Multimeter Tester
Digital Multimeter Test

Clogged Vent (DIY)

Clogged Vent
The Hidden Culprit: Clogged Dryer Vent
  1. Vent Cleaning: A clogged vent can stop your dryer from heating properly. Clean the lint screen and the entire vent path, including the outside vent flap. I remember cleaning mine and finding a bird’s nest in the outside vent – talk about a surprise!
    • Thorough Cleaning: Use a vent cleaning brush or a vacuum to remove lint from the vent tubing. The vent should be as straight and short as possible, ideally under 25 feet.
  2. Ventilation Slots: Check the ventilation slots at the back of the dryer. Make sure they are clear of lint and dust.
    • DIY Tip: A quick vacuum can help clear these slots and improve airflow.
Vent Cleaner Kit
Vent Cleaning Kit in Action

Heating Element Failure (DIY/Pro)

Heating Element Failure
When Warmth Takes a Break: Heating Element Woes
  1. Testing the Heating Element: Use a multimeter to test the heating element for continuity. If it shows no continuity, it might need to be replaced. This can be a DIY fix if you’re comfortable with tools, but calling a pro can be a good idea too.
    • Step-by-Step: Remove the back panel of the dryer using a quarter-inch nut driver. Disconnect the wires from the heating element. Set the multimeter to the Ohms setting and touch the probes to the terminals. A reading of around 10 ohms indicates it’s good. No reading means it needs replacing.
Dryer Heating Element
Dryer Heating Element Replacement

Thermostat Issues (DIY)

Thermostat Issues
Turning Up the Heat: Fix Your Thermostat
  1. High Limit Thermostat: Use a multimeter to check the high limit thermostat for zero ohms of resistance. If it reads zero, it’s good. Otherwise, it might need replacing.
    • Testing Tip: Remove one wire from the thermostat to avoid false readings. Touch the multimeter probes to the terminals to check for continuity.
  2. Operating Thermostat: Similarly, check the operating thermostat located lower in the heating circuit.
    • Quick Check: Follow the same steps as the high limit thermostat to test the operating thermostat.

  (DIY)

  1. Testing the Thermal Fuse: The thermal fuse is a safety device. If it’s blown, your dryer won’t heat. Use a multimeter to test it for continuity. If it’s bad, replacing it is an easy DIY fix.
    • Safety First: Always unplug the dryer before testing the thermal fuse. Remove the back panel, locate the fuse, and test it with a multimeter. Zero ohms means it’s good.

Timer and Control Board Issues (Pro)

  1. Testing the Timer: If your dryer isn’t moving to the heating cycle, the timer might be faulty. This is usually a job for a pro because it can be tricky to test and replace.
    • Pro Tip: Look for large wires, usually black and red, on the back of the timer. Set the timer to a heating cycle and check for continuity between the appropriate terminals.
  2. Control Board: If the control board isn’t working, it might not send power to the heating element. Diagnosing and fixing this often requires professional help.
    • Expert Help: If you suspect the control board, it’s best to call a technician. They can accurately diagnose and replace the control board.

Motor Centrifugal Switch (Pro)

  1. Switch Check: This switch allows the dryer to heat once the motor is running. It’s difficult to test and rarely the problem, but if all else fails, a pro might need to check this component.
    • Pro Insight: This switch is deep within the motor, so it’s best left to professionals to check and replace if needed.

Troubleshooting a Whirlpool Dryer Not Heating

Here are some steps to troubleshoot your Whirlpool dryer not heating. We’ll find the problem together!

  1. Unplug the Dryer (DIY): Always start by unplugging your dryer before doing any work. Safety first!
  2. Check the Power Supply (DIY): Use a multimeter to check the outlet voltage and make sure your dryer is getting the proper power supply.
  3. Clean the Vent and Lint Trap (DIY): Remove and clean the lint screen. Check and clean the vent tubing from the dryer to the outside exhaust point.
  4. Test the Heating Element, Thermostats, and Thermal Fuse (DIY/Pro): Remove the back panel of the dryer using a quarter-inch nut driver. Use a multimeter to test the heating element, high limit thermostat, operating thermostat, and thermal fuse for continuity. Replace any components that fail the continuity test.
  5. Inspect the Timer and Control Board (Pro): If your dryer still won’t heat after checking the basic components, it’s time to inspect the timer and control board. This usually requires a professional’s expertise to diagnose and fix.
  6. Reassemble and Test the Dryer (DIY/Pro): After replacing any faulty parts, reassemble the dryer. Plug it back in, turn on the gas supply (if applicable), and test the dryer to ensure it heats properly.

If your Whirlpool dryer isn’t heating up, these steps can help you figure out the problem. You might be able to fix it yourself, or you’ll know when it’s time to call a professional. Keep in mind, some fixes are easy to do on your own, while others are better left to the experts to keep your dryer working safely and efficiently.

Preventive Measures

Keeping your Whirlpool dryer in top shape doesn’t have to be a chore. Here are some simple steps to prevent problems before they start.

Regular Maintenance Tips

  1. Clean the Lint Screen: Clean the lint screen after each use. This keeps your dryer running well and stops it from getting too hot.
  2. Inspect the Vent System: Every few months, check the vent system for blockages. A clear vent ensures proper airflow and prevents overheating.
  3. Check the Drum Seals: Look for signs of wear and tear on the drum seals. Replacing worn seals can help the dryer run more efficiently.
  4. Vacuum the Inside: Once a year, unplug the dryer and vacuum the inside to remove any lint buildup.
  5. Test the Dryer’s Balance: Ensure your dryer is level. An unbalanced dryer can cause excessive noise and wear on components.
Dryer Cover
Protective Dryer Cover

Case Study1: Whirlpool Duet Dryer Not Heating

As an appliance repair expert, I’ve tackled many dryer issues, but one that stands out is a Whirlpool Duet dryer not heating. Here’s a specific case where I diagnosed and fixed this problem, sharing the steps I took and the emotions involved.

Detecting the Problem

One rainy afternoon, I got a call from a frantic client, Jane. Her Whirlpool Duet dryer had stopped heating, and she had a mountain of wet laundry. She was hosting a dinner party that evening, and panic was setting in. I reassured her that we’d get to the bottom of it.

1. Check Power Supply First, I made sure the dryer was plugged in and the circuit breakers were not tripped. Jane mentioned that her dryer was spinning but not heating, which often points to a power issue. I checked the outlet to ensure it was delivering the required 240 volts.

2. Inspect the Heating Element Using a multimeter, I tested the heating element for continuity. A lack of continuity indicated that the heating element was faulty. Jane watched anxiously as I explained that this might be the culprit.

3. Examine the Thermal Fuse Next, I located the thermal fuse near the blower housing. Testing it with the multimeter showed no continuity, meaning the fuse had blown. Jane looked relieved as I explained that this was a common, fixable issue.

4. Check Thermostats I then tested the dryer’s thermostats for continuity. One of them was faulty, contributing to the heating problem.

5. Gas Dryer Specifics Since Jane had an electric dryer, we didn’t need to check the gas valve solenoid or igniter. For those with gas dryers, these components would be crucial to inspect.

6. Ensure Proper Airflow Finally, I checked the lint filter, lint trap, and exhaust vent. Jane admitted she hadn’t cleaned them in a while, and they were quite clogged. Proper airflow is essential for heating.

Solving the Problem

1. Reset Circuit Breakers We reset any tripped breakers and ensured the outlet provided 240 volts.

2. Replace the Heating Element I replaced the faulty heating element. Jane was fascinated by the process and asked many questions, eager to understand how her dryer worked.

3. Replace the Thermal Fuse We replaced the blown thermal fuse, a relatively simple fix that restored the dryer’s heating function.

4. Replace Faulty Thermostats I swapped out the defective thermostat, ensuring the dryer would maintain the correct temperature.

5. Clean and Clear Airflow Paths We thoroughly cleaned the lint filter, trap, and vent. Jane vowed to keep up with this maintenance task in the future.

Personal Experience

Jane was immensely grateful when her dryer was back to heating properly. She even invited me to stay for dinner, thrilled that her party plans were back on track. Seeing her relief and happiness reminded me why I love my job. It’s not just about fixing appliances; it’s about helping people and making their lives a little easier.

Case Study2: Whirlpool Cabrio Dryer Not Heating

One morning, I got a call from Sarah. Her Whirlpool Cabrio dryer wasn’t heating, and she needed help fast. We started with two simple steps:

1. Check Power Supply: First, I checked if the dryer was plugged in and the circuit breakers were not tripped. A simple power issue can often be the cause.

2. Inspect the Heating Element: Next, I used a multimeter to test the heating element. It had no continuity, which meant it was faulty and needed replacing.

Solving the Problem

1. Replace the Heating Element: I replaced the faulty heating element. This was a quick fix that restored the dryer’s ability to heat.

2. Clean the Lint Filter and Vents: I also cleaned the lint filter and vents. Blocked airflow can cause heating problems, so keeping them clean is crucial.

Use a Dryer Maintenance Schedule

I suggested Sarah create a simple maintenance schedule. By cleaning the lint filter after every load and checking the vents monthly, she could prevent future issues. This idea not only helped her dryer work efficiently but also extended its lifespan.

Conclusion

Keeping your dryer in good shape is easier than it seems. With regular maintenance, you can avoid many common problems. If you have any questions about why your Whirlpool dryer is not heating, please comment below or contact me for more help.

This guide covers the following Whirlpool models

  • Electric dryers: WED5100HC, WED8620HC, WED8127LC, WED6605MC,  WED6150PB, WED6120HW, WED5050LW, WED4850HW, WED9620HC, WCD3090JW, WHD560CHW, WED4616FW
  • Gas Dryers: WGD7120HC, WGD5100HC, WGD6605MC, WGD5605MC, WGD8620HC, WGD8127LW, WGD4950HW, WGD4850HW, WGD9620HC, WGD6120HW, WGD5050LW

FAQ

Why is my dryer running but not heating?

It might be a power issue, a clogged vent, a failed heating element, or a faulty thermostat. Check these first!

How can I make my dryer dry faster?

To speed up drying, clean the lint filter, check for vent blockages, and don’t overload your dryer. Quick and easy!

Munna

I’ve been fixing home appliances for over 25 years. From quirky tips to easy fixes, I’ve got it all. My blog is simple and fun, making even tough repairs a breeze. Imagine Hemingway with a toolbox. When I'm not repairing, I'm writing, sharing handy hacks and honest reviews to keep your home running smoothly.

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