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Bob Schauer
Bob Schauer, Home Appliance Technician
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 427
Experience:  30 years experience in commercial and domestic appliance repair
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My whirlpool (Roper) Dryer (model # XXXXX) wont heat.

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My whirlpool (Roper) Dryer (model # XXXXX) won''t heat. How can I tell if the problem is the Dial unit on the front, the thermal fuse, of the heating element itself??
The way that you can check the thermal fuse is to pull the wire that brings the power to the fuse and connect it to the lead leaving the thermal fuse. In dryers, often the reason the thermal fuse goes out is because the main thermostat has gone bad sometime in the past and then the dryer starts cycling on the thermal fuse until it goes out. Really the easiest way to check these components is with a volt/ohm meter. You can pick a cheap on up at Radio Shack, Home Depot, or Lowes. They are easy to use. The sales person can help you understand their use. It saves the possibility of getting bit off of a live circuit because you do 90% of you tests with the power off. You simply go to the component you want to test, set your meter to the highest ohms scale, with the power disconnected, disconnect one wire from the component and put one each of the meter probes on the contact of that component. Your meter should show no resistance if the switch is good. In the dryer the controls: safety thermostat, cycle thermostat, etc should be internally closed meaning the it is ready to pass currant through it. Then disconnect one wire from the element. Touch your probes to ease side of the element and you should see the needle deflect and yet it will show some resistance as that is why the element heats. You can ask the sales staff to help you understand how to use the meter, or you could come back hear and I would try to help you. This is the easiest way. If your not wanting to do it that way then you can make your self an inexpensive jumper cord by taking a piece of lamp cord and put a plug on one end and then a couple of alligator clips on the other end. Again, with the power disconnected pull one wire off of the thermal fuse and put one of the alligator clips on that terminal. Follow the wiring up to and through the element to the point where the power would exit the element. Remember you have to have your power going through the element or you will create a direct short. Place your other alligator clip on the terminal of the heater where the power would be leaving the heater. Plug the cord into a 120volt socket and see if the heater starts to heat up. Since its getting 120volts instead of 230volts it won't glow brightly but all your trying to do is establish the fact that there is a circuit completely through the thermostats and the element. Don't leave it connect for more than a few minutes because the element is designed to work with the fan running which remove heat from it. You should of examined the element first to see if you could spot any breaks in it. If the element is bad and you can replace it, you can order a new one on the internet or maybe you have a local appliance parts house. If you don't have a meter to check the thermostat and safety fuse then you should go ahead and replace them anyway as I don't think they cost a lot. If you find that the heating assembly is ok, then we will need to look elsewhere for the problem, but lets eliminate this part of the dryer circuit first. Oh yes, if you find the element is bad or either thermostat is bad, check you exhaust vent to see that it is clear all the way to the outside vent. If the heat doesn't have any place to carry the moisture to then the clothes will take longer to dry and your heating circuit will overheat and cause problems. Also be sure to clean the inside of your dryer because dryers full of lint are recognized as one of the leading causes of house fires. If this information has been of help then please leave good feedback and check the ACCEPT box. I hope that this helps solve your problem. Thanks, Bob
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