Hot Topics: Dryer Burning Smell

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Original Post: Whirlpool dryer burning smell at end of cycle

hcliffe - Member

I was gone for about eight days. When I came home I put a load in the dryer. When I pressed start, I heard a strange sound when it started for about 1-2 seconds, like it was dragging. Cycle ran fine to the end, including the moisture sensor. When I went into the laundry room I could smell a burning smell. Clothes were all dry and fine. I tried to start the dryer again, would not start. Unplugged for five minutes, still wouldn't start.

I took the front cover off, removed the front of the blower hosing. Cleaned lint etc. but wasn't too bad. Removed the hose from the back and inspected pipe going into the dryer and duct going out of house. Neither had much buildup.

Plugged dryer back in and it started ok again with that noise on startup. During cycle heard a little squeaking noise for a few seconds. Cycle ended same way as before. Ended fine, but had burning smell. I didn't notice any burning smell while it was running, just at the end.

I am suspecting it could be the belt. Maybe its loose/worn, causing that noise on startup, then the burning smell and the squeaking. Could also be the idler pulley? Maybe the roller bearings? Should I replace all of the above?

But if its the belt, I would think I would smell burning the whole cycle, not just at the end? Any help is appreciated.

The model number is: GEW9868KQ0, it is approximately 20 years old.

pugsl - Forum Topic Moderator

Noise was probably a groan sound. Needs a motor.

joecaption - Member

My guess would be the belt.

Simple to check the pulleys once the belts off to double check.

On start up that drum is going to be the hardest to get turning, as the belt gets hot it gets softer.

hcliffe - Thread Starter

Thanks for your input folks. I had wondered about the motor as well. I guess I'll start with the belt and see if that does the trick.

Regarding the pulleys, I'm guessing to check them, remove the belt and they should just turn easily by hand with no noise or wobble?

hcliffe - Thread Starter

Here is a picture of the inside. The motor has a lot of lint on it. Any chance the lint alone is causing my problem?

dusty dryer creating a burning smell

pugsl - Forum Topic Moderator

Looks like almost every dryer I have taken apart. Common problem with motor will start and run than stop or will not restart without a cool down period of about a hour. Takes that for thermal overload switch to cool and restart dryer. If you replace motor order blower wheel also as you will usually have to cut it off the shaft.

hcliffe - Thread Starter

Thanks again for your quick reply. Will work on this tomorrow and provide an update.

hcliffe - Thread Starter

Today I replaced the belt and ran the dryer again. Same noise when it starts and some minor squeaking while running. I detected a slight burning smell as well, but only ran it for about five minutes. The motor is on order, hopefully it will be here tomorrow and I'll replace it then.

Now the door will barely stay closed and opened while it was running. As part of disassembly, I removed the door switch, that seems to be pushing the door open and the latch is not holding well. Thoughts on that? Replace the small plastic clip on the door? Perhaps it is too worn to effectively hold the door in place?

manden - Member

Usually the latch comes as a kit, includes the strike and the catch.

Turn the drum in the correct direction manually to be sure it is rotating correctly.

You may have to do this on a couple dryers to get a feel for it.

Noise is often caused by the belt tension wheel.

Clean it and add a drop of oil.

Same goes for the rear support rollers.

Just a drop because more than that will attract hold lint.

hcliffe - Thread Starter

Today I replaced the motor and everything seems to be working fine. I have a latch kit on order.

Thanks to everyone for your help.

pugsl - Forum Topic Moderator

A lot of times something heavy was set on door. It will bend hinges, I always put a screwdriver handle in door near hinge and lifted door up. It will bend hinge back in place. Don't put to much force into this as you can over bend hinge fairly easy.

hcliffe - Thread Starter

Interesting. You say to use the handle part of the screwdriver, not the tip of a flat blade? Trying to visualize exactly where to put the screwdriver.

Edit: I tried using the flat blade to pry up the door, and it does seem to latch better! Will see on the next load, thanks much!

pugsl - Forum Topic Moderator

Put the plastic handle between the door and body of the dryer where they hinge. Lift up on door a little and hinge will bend into place most times.

hcliffe - Thread Starter

Thanks for the clarification. I'll try that next if it continues to pop open.