You know how to wash laundry and what dryer settings are ideal for your items. You even understand the distinction between dryer sheets and dryer balls. You’re an expert at doing laundry, but the standard settings don’t seem to be cutting it any longer. Your garments are wet or moist, and they are taking a long time to dry. You’re dealing with a dryer that isn’t drying.
If your dryer is less than a decade old—the typical lifespan of washers and dryers—don’t rush out to get the newest and nicest washer and dryer set. There could be various reasons why your dryer isn’t drying your clothes properly, and many of them are simple adjustments that you can perform without the assistance of a professional.
There’s a significant probability your dryer isn’t working properly if you experience any of the following issues: The dryer isn’t working properly. It will not start or turn on. It isn’t falling. Alternatively, it creates a lot of noise. “You might not notice any of these obvious indicators of a damaged dryer,” says Gary Childers, a fabric care scientist and appliance expert at Procter & Gamble. “This is yet more sign that your dryer is broken.”
If your dryer isn’t drying your clothing, follow these steps.
Your garments aren’t drying in the dryer? There are several reasons why your machine isn’t working properly. You can rule out probable problems, figure out why your dryer isn’t drying, and fix it by following the steps below.
Check to see if it’s overcrowded.
One of the most typical responses to the query “Why is my dryer not drying?” is also one of the most straightforward to resolve. The problem is that you’re stuffing entirely too many clothes into the dryer. “It’s critical to make sure the dryer isn’t overcrowded,” Childers adds. “When there is too much weight within the dryer, it might cause concerns with drying performance and noise.”
When you stuff too many clothing into the dryer (probably in an attempt to do fewer loads of laundry), the airflow required to dry them properly is reduced, which could explain why your garments come out hot but not dry. Overloading the dryer makes it work harder, consumes more energy, and takes longer to dry. Never fill the dryer drum more than three-quarters full, according to Childers.
Examine the settings
Using the incorrect setting to dry your laundry might significantly increase the time it takes for your garments to dry. If you choose the air-dry or gentle cycle for a load of jeans, towels, and sheets, for example, your laundry may come out moist because you chose a too-low setting. After all, knowing how to wash towels is one thing; knowing how to dry them is quite another.
Pay attention to the laundry symbols on your items to ensure you’re not using too much or too little heat. They’ll let you know which dryer setting is optimal.
Remove the filter.
Shawn Ashby, a Whirlpool laundry brand manager, recommends examining the lint filter. Sure, you know you should clean it on a regular basis, but do you? Lint obstructing the dryer’s airflow is a typical cause of dryer failure.
Failure to clear lint from the dryer’s filter causes more than just a delay in drying your garments. According to the US Fire Administration, it’s also the top cause of dryer fires.
“We recommend that you keep the lint screen clean and clean it before each usage,” Ashby says. “Don’t brush or use water because wet lint is more difficult to remove.”
Begin by pulling up the screen, then carefully cleaning the lint off the screen by hand and replacing the lint trap. “The screen may be more difficult to clean by hand if you detect lint building on parts of the screen or blocking the mesh,” adds Ashby. This is when a more thorough cleaning is required.
Do a deep cleaning of the lint screen every six months. In four simple steps, here’s how to do it:
Lint is being removed from the Tumble Dryer’s Fluff Dust Filter by a young woman. The Clothes Dryer Filter traps dust and dirt. Laundry
- Remove the lint off the screen by rolling it.
- Using hot water, wet both sides of the screen.
- To remove any accumulation, scrub with a nylon brush, hot water, and liquid detergent.
- Rinse thoroughly with hot water and dry completely.
Examine the dryer vent from the outside.
The vent on the outside of the home where dryer air leaves is another place where lint can obstruct airflow. When your machine is turned on, an unimpeded stream of hot air should emerge from the vent. “If your clothes aren’t drying, or you can’t feel air moving through the outside vent, your dryer’s exhaust vent may be clogged,” explains Ashby.
It is critical to clean your dryer vent. If you can’t discover or access your dryer duct or exterior exhaust fan (or if you’re not confident in your DIY abilities), make a service appointment.
Clean the vent from the inside out.
It’s likely that there’s lint buildup further inside the vent if you’ve cleaned the lint filter or can’t feel the air blowing through the exterior vent. “At least every two years, we recommend eliminating lint from the whole length of the vent system,” Ashby adds.
If you can’t get a service appointment, you can clean your vents yourself by obtaining a vent cleaning kit and following these simple instructions.
- Remove the plastic cover that protects the end of the vent from your dryer’s exhaust vent.
- Remove the power cord from your dryer. “If you have a gas model, close the gas supply line shut-off valve, then detach and cap the supply line pipe,” he advises.
- Remove any tape or clamps that connect the exhaust vent pipe to the dryer’s back vent.
- Push the brush from your dryer cleaning kit into both ends of your dryer duct as gently as possible. Keep an eye out for any turns or corners.
- Clean up any lint that has escaped the duct on the other side, then reconnect the vent pipe, power cord, and/or gas supply.
- Reinstall your dryer and run an empty dryer cycle for ten to fifteen minutes to blow out any remaining dust and ensure that the vent is clean.
Verify that the vent system is properly installed.
If the dryer still won’t dry after that, Ashby suggests reading the installation instructions from when you first installed your dryer to ensure the dryer vent system was installed correctly. “Whatever example, for the sort of vent you’re using, you’ll want to make sure the vent system falls within the recommended run length and number of elbows,” he explains.
What type of vent you utilize is also important. “Use only rigid metal or flexible metal vent material,” Ashby advises. “For the optimum drying performance and to avoid crushing and kinking, rigid metal vents are recommended.”
A kinked or crushed vent might be dangerous. He claims that “kinked or crushed exhaust vent material prevents wet air from leaving the dryer and increases drying time.” “Any plastic or metal foil vent should be replaced with a rigid or flexible heavy metal vent. The dryer vent should be four inches away from the wall when installed. You must ensure that the vent is not squashed or kinked.”
Wipe down the sensor
According to Childers, some dryers detect moisture by sensor bars inside the dryer. To get accurate moisture detection, several machine manufacturers recommend cleaning the sensors. “If these aren’t cleaned, the garments may take longer to dry in the dryer,” he warns. For particular manufacturer instructions, consult your user manual.
Place the dryer in a well-ventilated area.
One of the most common causes of a dryer not drying clothes properly, according to Ashby, is that it is placed in a closet that is too tiny for the equipment. “If positioned in a closet,” he explains, “the closet doors must include ventilation apertures at the top and bottom of the door.” “A minimum of three inches of airspace is required in front of the washer/dryer, with one inch on each side. The back of the washer/dryer requires four inches in most setups.”
Are you unsure whether your washer will fit in your space? For further information on space requirements, consult the installation instructions for your machine.
Examine the temperature.
Turn on the dryer for five to ten minutes to make sure the heat is working. “To assess air circulation, place your hand beneath the outside exhaust hood,” Ashby advises. “Clean the lint from the full length of the system and the exhaust hood if the air flow is less than a hair dryer on high speed.”
Is your dryer not heating but still functional? It could be a problem with the heating element or thermal fuse if there is no heat but the machine spins. In this scenario, the next steps should be found in your user handbook. If you’re confident in your ability to replace the broken part yourself, go ahead—but make sure you follow the instructions in your user manual. Otherwise, hire a professional.
A gadget in close-up
If your dryer won’t turn on, here’s what you should do.
It’s possible that your dryer isn’t drying because you can’t get it to switch on, rather than because of a lack of heat. You may have blown a fuse or tripped a circuit if this is the case.
“Be very careful when analyzing the circuits,” Ashby warns, “since messing with fuses and circuits might cause electrical shock.”
Childers and Ashby recommend following these measures if your clothes dryer won’t switch on.
- Ensure that all buttons and cycles on the controls are appropriately chosen.
- Make sure the dryer cord is not frayed and is fully plugged in after that.
- Verify that no circuit breakers have been tripped. If necessary, reset the circuit breaker.
- Make that both fuses are in good working order. Replace the defective fuses if necessary.
- Examine the doorknob. A door switch is used in some front-loading dryers to indicate whether the door is open or closed. The dryer will not operate if the door is open due to the safety function. However, according to Ashby, the door switch might potentially interrupt the electrical circuit (as can another malfunctioning sensor, the thermal fuse). Sensor malfunctions can cause the dryer to cease working properly. “With a few simple tools, [the door switch] can be readily replaced,” he says.
- “Please seek a trained electrician for assistance if the previous measures do not resolve the issue,” Ashby advises.
What should you do if your dryer starts but does not tumble?
If your clothes dryer begins but the drum (where you put your laundry) doesn’t spin, it’s possible that a belt that helps rotate the drum has broken or the engine has failed. “To troubleshoot, consult your user manual or a professional service expert,” Childers advises.
When should you consult an expert?
Any dryer problems should be addressed as soon as possible. “The idea is to identify the issue as soon as it arises rather than waiting till later to address it,” Ashby adds. “If you have any significant problems, you should seek expert help to troubleshoot and resolve them.”
When to bring in the professionals relies on whether the problem is beyond your capabilities. You may be able to save money if you can undertake the repairs yourself. If you’re not sure about your ability to follow how-to instructions correctly, call your local repair specialist.
“Seeing a specialist will help you understand the problem, troubleshoot it, and fix it,” Ashby says. Many appliance manufacturers provide extended service agreements for any model of equipment, which can save you money on repairs.
When should you replace your dryer?
Dryers usually last between 10 and 13 years. “Many advancements in energy efficiency and clothing care occur during that time,” Childers adds. “If your dryer reaches this age or starts to operate poorly, it may be time to consider replacing it.”
Many contemporary dryers offer important features like steam cycles (which eliminates the need for a steam iron), the ability to send notifications to your phone or tablet, and specialised cycles that older machines lack.