Dryer Doesn't Heat


  #1  
Old 08-03-02, 04:52 PM
wielandbob
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Gas dryer won't heat and I'm out of clues

I've got a 7-year-old Kenmore 110 gas dryer with the lint filter on top. It abruptly stopped heating but the motor turns OK. No lint buildup but I replaced the exhaust hose since I was back there and also put a new gas line on.

I replaced the igniter because most help sites indicated that was the first part to go. Then I read another site that said be sure to disconnect all wires before checking for continuity ... bingo! The thermal fuse was bad. So I replaced the fuse and the dryer worked for 2 days and quit again.

The fuse, cutoff and thermostat all checked OK so I replaced the gas valve coils. I also checked the motor switch, opened it up and cleaned a corroded contact. Still no flame, and the gas is not flowing.

My suspicion now falls on the radiant sensor. With wires disconnected, it tests closed (zero ohms) But I understand that it opens when hot to allow the gas to flow. If I unhook one of the wires, will that simulate an open circuit, allowing gas to flow?

As for the igniter: I've turned the dryer on with the drum removed, but don't see any indication of the igniter glowing (it's hard to see into the cone), so is there a chance the brand new Whirlpool part burned up?

I'm feeling pretty stupid and my wife is ready to pay 100 bucks for a service call, so any help would be appreciated! Thanks, Bob
 
  #2  
Old 08-03-02, 09:56 PM
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Re: Gas dryer won't heat and I'm out of clues

Hello Bob. Welcome to my Gas Appliances forum and our Do-It-Yourself Web Site.

Your statement:
My suspicion now falls on the radiant sensor. With wires disconnected, it tests closed (zero ohms) But I understand that it opens when hot to allow the gas to flow. If I unhook one of the wires, will that simulate an open circuit, allowing gas to flow?

My reply:
If I am reading the above paragraph correctly, but I may stand to be corrected, you have the wording backwards. Wires disconnected, it should be an open circuit, wires connected a closed circuit.

Your statement:
As for the igniter: I've turned the dryer on with the drum removed, but don't see any indication of the igniter glowing (it's hard to see into the cone), so is there a chance the brand new Whirlpool part burned up?

My reply:
Always a chance the ignitor is defective. Problem is this part is non returnable and non refundable. Test for voltage at the wire terminals from the wire quick disconnection connection end to verify voltage is getting to the glow coil.

Suggestions:
Read the manufacturers online web site for product information, problem possibilities, causes and solving methods, part locations, disassembly, reassembly methods, repair proceedures and instructions, pictorials and schematics, which may be available online.

An excellent source for orginal replacement parts is your local retail appliance parts store. Appliance parts dealers test and carry replacement parts for all appliances. Parts dealers are listed in the phone book.

Retail parts dealers can also help determine what the possible problem may be. Bring the make, model and serial numbers if you stop in at the store. The info will help to determine the exact parts used in the model assembly line run and possible problem causes.

Tips:
The do-it-yourself person can do electrical tests and continuity tests on several electrical parts. However, I do not recommend relying solely on either test to determine if any electrical or electronic part or parts are causing the problem. The idea is not to replace costly parts until the defective one is positively found.

The only positive proof any part is functioning correctly, is to carefully remove the part or parts you suspect to be the potential problems and have the local appliance parts store person test it or check it. Appliance parts dealers carry replacement parts for all appliances and are listed in the phone book under appliances.

If you need further assistance, use the REPLY button. By doing so, the additional information you add or questions you may have, will remain within this posting. Using this method also moves the topic back up to the top of the list automatically.

Check the prior questions pertaining to dryers, within this forum, for other postings on this topic for additional information.

TCB4U2B2B Company Enterprises
Energy Conservation Consultant & Natural Gas Appliance Diagnostics Technician.
 
  #3  
Old 08-04-02, 10:01 AM
wielandbob
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OK, Tom, thanks for the input! My confusion comes in the sequence by which the burner is lit. (I do have voltage at the valve and have replaced the coils) ... It is my understanding that the igniter glows, the radiant sensor feels the heat and then energizes the secondary coil, allowing gas to flow and ignite.

My suppositions are:

1) if the igniter is defective, and not heating the radiant sensor, I can wait all day for gas and never get any.

2) Ditto for the radiant sensor. First the heat, then the gas, then the flame. If the sensor is bad, no gas.

In checking the radiant sensor, I disconnected the white and blue wires from the coils and used an ohm meter to check for continuity. Stone cold, the sensor carries current and reads just like a good fuse.

So what happens when the sensor gets hot? Does that circuit break? If I wanted to make the gas flow, would I connect the sensor leads together (bypassing it) ... or leave them disconnected?

Many thanks, you guys are great! Bob
 
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Old 08-04-02, 11:07 AM
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Hello: Bob

Your last paragraph statement regarding the bypassing of any device and or system part is frightening to me and something I do not advocate for one moment.

I think I understand what you mean. Bypass to test the system. However, others reading this posted topic could interpret the intent incorrectly and bypass something to their endangerment out of some need or plain forget.

Risks I would prefer to avoid and the main reason why I avoid posting replies with those types of testing methods and or procedures.

Circuits are made in this instance but in some devices they are broken. These devices that break circuits are safety devices and or parts that provide safety functions & features.

Simply offered as a means to help you:
Retail parts dealers can also help determine what the possible problem may be. Bring the make, model and serial numbers if you stop in at the store. The info will help to determine the exact parts used in the model assembly line run and possible problem causes.

Good Luck.
Forum Moderator,
Tom_B
 
  #5  
Old 08-04-02, 06:16 PM
wielandbob
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You bet, Tom, Safety first! I finally went back to the only item not checked and found the 3-week-old igniter had burned up! I'll pick up a replacement tomorrow.

But one more question thread and I'll leave you alone ...

This is two igniters in a row that have gone south. So could another part be causing them to fail? What makes the igniter turn off after the gas is flowing? Is it the radiant sensor? Is it possible the igniter is staying on too long? I plan to take the sensor to the store and have it tested, but just want to know how it all works.

Thanks, Bob
 
  #6  
Old 08-04-02, 07:17 PM
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Hello: Bob

All boils down to a reply I posted recently to another person. Copy below:

Buy OEM parts and NOT Generic or Universal, one size fits all, replacement parts. The money saved buying generic no brand name parts usually costs more in time, labor and problems then buying OEM parts, which fit correctly the first time.

I also suggest to everyone to buy the OEM specific part because I believe the part will last longer and function better during it's normal service life expectancy then any non OEM part.

Thanks for making my point clear by posting your detailed explaination & experiences installing the GENERIC parts.

As that old saying goes...buy cheap...get cheap.
Actualy Bob...those coils are frail and fragile...handle with care...and yes...they are made cheap.

Regards & Good Luck
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Tom_Bart........"Fast, Fair, Friendly & Highly Proficient"......
TCB4U2B2B.....Company Enterprises.
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