Hot Topics: Dryer Stopped Heating

A washer/dryer set in a laundry room.

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When a DIYer has to run a load of laundry twice to get it completely dry, they know there's a problem that needs fixing. The problem is, they aren't sure if the gas line is something they can safely work with. Once again, the forum steps in to clear things up.

fidoprincess Member

I know it was my own fault because the venting is filled with lint and clogged. I'm lucky I didn't have a fire. The run is awful—20 feet or more under the house in a crawl space about 12" high.

I used to have an appliance guy come and clean it out, but he retired, life races by, and before you know it, the dryer is taking longer and longer to dry until it finally stopped heating up yesterday. I knew it was coming, but it's so hard to reconnect the dryer vent (almost impossible) in a tiny closet that is in a tiny hall with nowhere to pull out the washer and dryer. I will have to disconnect the washer and pull it out just to reach the back of the dryer, and so I put it off until now I have a bigger problem.

I have to pull the dryer out, clean the duct run and change the fuse that probably broke when it overheated. Changing the fuse looks so easy and the part is so cheap. I ordered the vent brush thing with the extensions that hooks to a drill and will use that to clean out the vent. That costs much more than the $4 fuse, but I will have it on hand to do yearly from now on.

My question is that I can't take off the back of the dryer to get to the fuse without taking off the gas line. Is this something I should NOT do myself? The gas line is flexible and attaches to a rigid pipe with a shut off valve. I know that I can do it, but I was reading how dangerous it is to reattach the gas line to the dryer myself and that the soapy water test is not good enough for a gas dryer.

What are my options and what do you think I should do? Can you walk me through step by step? I'm confident with everything except hooking the gas line back up to the dryer after the rest is done.

Furd Member

Of course you can do it yourself—all you need are proper fitting wrenches.

Technically, you are supposed to replace the flexible pipe when moving appliances, but that little bit of information is from the makers of the flexible piping so use it as you may. My personal opinion is that if you take care to not bend the pipe any more than necessary in removal, it should be fine to reuse in the same location.

You can buy a proprietary leak detection solution at the home center or well-stocked corner hardware store. It's probably a bit better than a home mixed soapsuds solution. A small bottle is just a few dollars and will be enough to last your entire life even if you pull the dryer out every year.

fidoprincess Member

My dryer is an LGR5636PQ0 Whirlpool Dryer and I ordered parts 3387134 and 3392519, Cycling Thermostat and Thermal Fuse for Whirlpool because one video said to replace both parts and it was only $7. I hope they are the right parts. I hope I can get it up and running quickly. I use my dryer every single day so I am mad at myself for neglecting it.

There are lots of generic videos that show how to take the back of the dryer off and that looks simple except for disconnecting the gas line. However, there is one video that shows taking out the drum and having to replace the part from inside the front. How do I know for sure if mine is the easy, take-off-the-back-and-pop-in-the-parts one? I couldn't take out the drum—too heavy!

I wonder if I had a helper just hold the back up while I change the fuse if it would be possible to not even detach the gas line? If not, do I need to use pipe tape when I put the gas line back on the dryer? I will just detach it at the dryer and leave the other side intact. It looks so simple, but I will pick up some of the leak detector just in case.

Furd Member

The gas connection is a "flared" fitting. Absolutely no tape or sealant necessary.

PJMax Group Moderator

Whirlpool dryer thermal fuse WP3392519 is replaced if the entire unit dead.

Whirlpool dryer thermal cutout fuse W10480709 is replaced if just no heat.

Whirlpool dryer cycling thermostat WP3387134 doesn't usually go bad from overheating.

Marq1 Member

When I replaced my thermal fuse last year, all I did was remove the top, remove the drum, and then remove the front. You do not have to remove the gas line to replace the fuse.

pugsl Forum Topic Moderator

PJMax is right except on that dryer, the thermal fuse just cuts out the heat. This only happens on gas dryers.

fidoprincess Member

So I just ordered the wrong parts? I read that if the dryer still runs, but is not putting out heat because of a clogged dryer vent, it would be because the thermal fuse cut off to stop overheating for safety purposes to prevent a fire. Once open, it could not be closed and had to be replaced.

Is there any hope that replacing these two things I listed above will fix the problem? It runs—just no heat. The other part that PJMax listed is considerably more money ($25). Should I order that today, too? I really don't want to be without the dryer for very long.

Marq1, I am crossing my fingers that I don't have to do what you did! I am counting on just removing the back to access the fuse.

pugsl Forum Topic Moderator

On your dryer, the thermal fuse is behind the back. Just take the back off, leave the gas line on, and the fuse is on the left side with two blue wires. The thermostat that goes bad is the top one on the right side. Both thermal fuse and thermostat must show continuity to be good. Usually one or the other is bad—no need to take the top or drum off on your model. The thermal fuse is the right one, but this is the part # I get for thermostat: 280010.

fidoprincess Member

I finally found a video that showed how the back comes off and there's no need to take off the gas line. Since I can't see back there yet until I pull everything out, I just assumed that the gas line went through a hole in the back panel. That makes things so much easier.

I will just try to change the thermal fuse and if that doesn't do it, I'll order the more expensive thermostat. At least now I know exactly what to do. Thank you so much!

I should have purchased a multimeter first. Then I could see exactly what circuit was broken, but this was the cheapie way to go. I'll just cross my fingers that the fuse fixes it, but know that I'll probably have to get that thermostat, too.

I'm really dreading the cleaning out of the vent, having never done it before. I ordered a kit that hooks to my drill and spins a brush to clean the vent. I actually had to order two kits to have enough rods to reach all the way through, but at least I can reuse it again each year. I'll be lucky if I can actually get the thing through the long run without any disasters. Changing the fuse looks like a piece of cake in comparison!

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