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Dryer won't run: Do It Yourself Dryer Repair Advanced Inside that dryer: Thermal Fuse

Updated on October 23, 2010

General Encouragement For the DIY

Sometimes a job like this one and others seems daunting especially to people with low mechanical aptitude and those who are scared.  I don't blame you, it is hard to roll up your sleeves and get into a job like this the first time.

Here are some suggestions to help you make that first try easier and more successful.

  1. Collect together the proper simple tools.  See my hub on the tools needed.
  2. Follow the common easy safety precautions.
  3. Make sure you have time, and space to perform your work.
  4. Work slowly, this is not a speed test.
  5. Keep the hub directions handy so that you can refer back to them.
  6. Leave questions if you need help.
  7. If you have a friend who might want to do this with you, have them jump into the job with you.

Back Panel and Fuse Whirlpool Product

Back Cover
Back Cover
Back Cover Removed
Back Cover Removed
Fuse Located on blower housing above the thermostat.
Fuse Located on blower housing above the thermostat.

Test and Replace the Thermal Fuse

The thermal fuse is located on the blower housing on the back of the dryer.   To access it, you must remove the back panel.   

  1. You need to gain access to the inside of the dryer. For a Whirlpool product: Lay the dryer on its face, using a blanket, towel, rug to protect the surface of the machine. Remove the nuts that hold the back on, these will be 5/16 or ¼ nuts. Remove the back.

  2. A fuse is the most common safety device causing the dryer to stop. The fuse is normally located on the blower housing and is a non-resettable switch. Unfortunately, the fuse use and location varies by manufacturer. On a Whirlpool product check for a plastic disk or strip that is attached to the housing near the thermostats. It usually is made of white plastic and has a black strip and in held in place with one or two small screws. It will have two wires attached to it. This is a simple on/off switch that is not resettable. That means that if it shuts the dryer off, it must be replaced before the dryer can be operated again

  3. Test the strip for continuity. If it is bad the continuity test will show no continuity.  The dryer won't start.

  4. You've detected a bad fuse, replace it.  Replace the back cover, plug the dryer in, set the timer for 30 minutes it should operate normally.
  5. Laugh!  You just saved yourself at least $80 and you are a genius. 


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    • SteveoMc profile image

      SteveoMc 7 years ago from Pacific NorthWest

      Daddy Paul is absolutely correct, do not defeat any safety device in your dryer. You will lose the safety if offers and you may cause a huge problem for your dryer or worse yet dangerous electrical or fire situations.

    • Daddy Paul profile image

      Daddy Paul 7 years ago from Michigan

      One thing I would like to add. I have seen some people short this thermal switch out. The switch is there for your protection.