It is crucial to understand what is causing your dryer to shut off. Most people deal with this problem by turning off the dryer, checking it out and hoping it will start up again. However, this is a temporary fix that will ultimately cost you more money and time.
The best way to avoid this problem altogether is to get to the root of the problem by following a few steps that will decrease the chances of your dryer overheating.
Overheating is a common cause of dryers shutting off and can cause the dryer to overheat and eventually lead to a fire.
Dryers can get too hot if the vent is blocked, which disrupts the circulation of air. The dryer will automatically turn off to protect itself. If you ever notice that it’s turned off without any reason, check your lint trap immediately.
When your dryer stops repeatedly during a normal drying cycle, it’s most likely due to the dryer overheating or overworking. Usually, when too much heat builds up in your dryer, lint or debris such as dust and hair can ignite and cause a fire when sucked into the vents. This is what the thermostat does — it attempts to prevent fire with an overheat shutoff mechanism.
A broken thermostat could be sending conflicting information to the heating unit which could potentially cause a fire.
Dryer Overheats And Shuts Off – Troubleshoot And Diagnosis
If your dryer stops repeatedly during a normal drying cycle, it’s most likely due to the dryer overheating. A dryer vent clogged with lint or other obstructions will force the dryer to work harder, causing the unit to overheat.
When too much heat builds up in your dryer, lint or debris can ignite, resulting in a dangerous fire — and an extremely hot mess for you to clean up after the fact. The overheat shutoff is your dryer’s last-ditch effort at preventing this kind of danger.
1. Clogged Air Filter
The air filter in a dryer helps to remove lint, dust, and other particulates from the air as it is drawn into the dryer. This helps to keep the dryer operating efficiently and prevents these particulates from being deposited on your clothing.
A clogged air filter can cause the dryer to overheat and potentially catch fire.
Dirty and clogged filters result in excess energy usage. This is because the appliance must work harder to heat enough air for drying, resulting in a decrease in the efficiency of the dryer. As a result, it uses more energy and ultimately costs you more money to dry clothes on a regular basis — all thanks to a dirty filter!
Dryer air filter cleaning takes just minutes every few years and can save you up to a hundred dollars a year in energy costs.
To ensure that your dryer keeps working to its maximum capacity, clean the unit regularly.
2. Blocked Airflow
Frequent use of the dryer, residing in an area with a lot of trees, dryer vent placement, and dryer vent material/type all play a significant role in dryer vent blockages.
If you have to do a lot of loads in a row, you are more likely to run a hot dryer. When people over-stuff their machines, they can actually block the airflow that allows hot air to escape outside — leading to an overheated machine and reduced efficiency.
Clogged or rusty ducts can be a real problem — they cause serious concerns like dryer overheating due to the lack of airflow. When looking at the power of your air duct, make sure you check for both clogging and rusting.
Fire risks should always come first. To bring your device to the next level, please be sure to replace your old AC ducts with a new one that is approved by the National Fire Protection Association.
Make sure that you replace the old ducts in your HVAC system with new ones to prevent this from happening.
3. Heating Element Problem
A heating element in a dryer is responsible for generating the heat that is used to dry clothes. The element is typically made of metal, and it is heated by electricity. The element is usually located near the bottom of the dryer, where it can come into contact with the clothes.
A faulty heating element can cause a dryer to overheat. The element may not be getting enough power, or it may be shorted out. If the element is shorted out, it will need to be replaced.
When you buy a new dryer, it can heat up quickly, but that doesn’t last forever. After some time, the heating elements inside can shift and change how hot they are or become damaged in some way. This is referred to as an error code on your dryer.
If the heating elements have shifted and are now touching the drum, there is a chance of a fire starting, so it is best to call a professional to fix the problem.
If your dryer’s heating element is not working properly, you may need to call a technician to adjust it. However, if the heating element is broken or damaged, you will likely need to replace it.
4. Defective Cycling Thermostat
The cycling thermostat in a dryer cuts off the power to the heating element when the set temperature is reached and then turns the power back on when the temperature falls below the set point. This prevents the dryer from overheating and damaging your clothes.
If the cycling thermostat fails in a dryer, the dryer may overheat and catch fire.
Cycling thermostat is actually one of the most overlooked causes th eof dryer fires. If it isn’t functioning properly, it can overheat and shut off — causing a fire to ignite.
If your dryer isn’t getting hot enough, one possible reason is a faulty cycling thermostat. To test it, first unplug your dryer and then remove the back panel. Locate the thermostat and use a multimeter to test it for continuity. If it doesn’t show continuity, it needs to be replaced.
5. Check Dryer Settings
Many homeowners use dryers for everything from towels and bed sheets to delicate knitwear and cashmere sweaters. But how do you avoid overdoing it with the heat and potentially damaging your clothes?
The rule of thumb is that the temperature selector shouldn’t go above “medium,” which is a safe setting for most types of garments. Raising the temperature above medium increases the heat damage to your clothes and may cause circuit burns and other mechanical issues.
6. Clean The Dryer Drum
Unplug your dryer and pull it out from the wall. Remove the lint screen and clean it with a vacuum attachment. Reach up into the lint trap opening and feel around for any lint that may be stuck inside the dryer. Remove any lint that you find.
Next, open the dryer door and clean off the seal with a damp cloth. Use a vacuum attachment to clean the lint out of the crease where the door meets the dryer opening.
Finally, clean the inside of the dryer drum with a damp cloth. Wipe down the sides and bottom of the drum. Be sure to clean the area around the lint trap opening.
7. Avoid Overusing The Dryer
The dryer is one of the most commonly used appliances in the home, but it is also one of the most overused.
Overusing the dryer can cause the appliance to overheat, which can lead to a fire.
If you must use the dryer, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully and never leave the appliance unattended while it is in use.
Some dryers are known to overheat after an extended period of use. This is especially true if the dryer isn’t properly maintained or if you’re using it daily. Dishwashers, air conditioners and other household appliances also need a break — take some time out from doing laundry once in a while.
Drying your clothes for extended periods of time can reduce the overall lifespan of your dryer. Although some models have a lifespan of 1,500 hours, it is easy to overheat the coils and damage the inner circuits by drying your clothes for too long. Try to limit your drying time to 40-50 minutes at most.
If you’re looking to save on your energy bill, don’t use a clothes dryer to heat your home. Not only is this a fire hazard, but it also can damage your dryer.
8. Clean the Lint Screen
A lint screen is used in a clothes dryer to catch lint that is produced during the drying cycle. Lint can build up on the screen and cause the dryer to operate less efficiently.
Cleaning the lint screen regularly will help keep the dryer operating at peak performance.
When a dryer’s lint screen flooring becomes clogged, your machine can overheat.
If you want to keep your dryer running for a long time and protect it from damage, then you need to check the lint screen every so often.
Cleaning lint from your dryer’s screens and exhaust vents will not only keep things looking fresh, it will also improve the appliance’s energy efficiency.
The dryer lint screen should be cleaned after each load of laundry. To clean the screen, remove it from the dryer and use a vacuum cleaner with a soft brush attachment to remove any lint or debris. You can also rinse the screen with warm water to remove any residual lint.
Hi there! I’m Sam Hendricks, and I’m a repair technician and expert. I created this website to help people like you save money and time by fixing your own appliances.
Over the years, I’ve seen people spend a lot of money on unnecessary repairs or replacements. That’s why I decided to share my expertise and create easy-to-follow guides for fixing appliances on your own.