Every cycle begins with just a little push. Be it metaphorically, like a few words of encouragement and a pat on the back, or literally through the actual push of a button, this is where the action begins.
But for some, starting the dryer is a woe. And in the world of electronics and appliances, there are instances where your tasks and chores are going smoothly, yet out of nowhere, these start buttons suddenly stop working. A once sturdy machine now has trouble functioning.
Such is the case when you see your start button on the dryer not working. As with every DIY appliance repair, begin your project by first knowing your dryer’s condition to determine why it is malfunctioning. You can do so by identifying the root cause of the problem and the best solution to fix the issue.
Your dryer may not start if it has a faulty push-to-start switch, broken door switch, or even a blown thermal fuse.
Can I Really DIY This?
Known to be a durable appliance, dryers are not too prone to wreckage. So there’s no need to worry: we came up with a list of troubleshooting tips for you to try out, no matter your skill level.
Push-to-Start Button On Dryer Not Working
Generally, dryers are operated using the control panel. In this panel, you’ll see the push to start button and a knob that indicates the temperature level of the dryer. In normal circumstances, the knob and button are the only parts we concern ourselves with. Simply pressing the button and twisting the knob will do the trick, and voila! Hello, dry clothes. Thank you, dryer.
But if the dryer won’t start after pressing the start button, it could be an error related to the push-to-start switch. Push the start button and listen for the noise it typically makes – a quiet dryer is a hint that the start switch has failed to start the drive motor and needs replacing.
You can also verify the status of the start switch by checking the continuity of electric current to the start switch using a multimeter. An interrupted or dead connection indicates that it’s time to replace the switch.
As a safety precaution, remove the plug from its power outlet to prevent electrical shocks, burns, and other injuries while repairing. Once the dryer is unplugged and out of power, remove the button or knob off the post and set it in a secure location.
From behind, unscrew the back cover to gain access to the control panel. We recommend taking a photo to document the correct placements of the wires since you’ll have to reconnect these later. Disconnect the wires attached to the back of the push-to-start switch.
As you check the back panel components, you’ll notice a locking tab securing the start switch to its proper position. In this repair, you’ll need to take the tab out from the control panel first before installing a new one. Freeing the tab will enable you to remove the broken switch from the control panel and install a new one.
Lock in the new switch by aligning it in the same position as the previous start switch. Reconnect the wires to the new start switch as they were previously wired to the old one. Refer to the photo you took earlier as a reference.
Refasten the back cover after you’ve attached all the wires correctly. Next, take the knob or button pulled out earlier and align it down to the new switch. Once everything is set into the right place, plug the dryer back into its power outlet and push the start button to test whether the dryer is starting again.
For a visual demonstration, you can watch this video showing the steps of replacement.
Nonetheless, if you find this suggested solution too complex, it’s always best to contact a trusted service technician for your appliance repair.
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But My Start Switch Is Working Fine!
Don’t fret! Below we’ve listed other likely causes as to why your dryer isn’t turning on, as well as how to resolve them:
1. Door Switch
Perhaps the push-to-start switch is working just fine. However, there’s a possibility that the door switch on your dryer needs further inspection instead, and to undergo some repair.
Found near the dryer door, the door switch is responsible for signaling to the dryer control panel that the door is closed and ready for the cycle to safely start. Naturally, a dryer with an open door will prohibit the dryer from starting. When the door switch is functioning, you’ll hear a click. A soundless door switch, however, is malfunctioning and will need to be replaced since the dryer won’t start if this switch door can’t fully close.
To ensure that it is indeed the door switch at fault, test its continuity using a multimeter and examine whether the electrical path is continuous or not. If the multimeter displays no continuity or interrupted continuity, then replacing this switch is the way to go.
To prevent electric shocks and burns or other injuries, unplug the dryer from the power source. Next, remove the lint screen that traps unwanted dirt in the dryer drum and unfasten the screws found behind it. Your dryer might have clips in the corners that keep the lint filter lid in place. Press on these corners until the clips are free and allow you to raise the lid.
This switch is commonly situated in the corner. Unhitch in from the door, then push the switch lever or actuator upward. Gain access to the switch wiring locking tab and disconnect the wiring connector from the dryer’s wiring using pliers. Install the new switch lever and set it in the wiring locking tab. Link the wiring connector back and ensure that the clips mentioned earlier are snapped back in place.
Refasten the screws you removed and plug the dryer back in again into its power source. Now it’s time to shut the door and press the start button for a test run. The dryer should start.
2. Thermal Fuse
Perhaps both the push-to-start switch and door switch are working. Your culprit could be the thermal fuse, which is one of a dryer’s most essential pieces. Its main job is to prevent the dryer from overheating by shutting the heat off when the air reaches a certain temperature. Without the thermal fuse, the dryer could reach dangerous heat levels and cause unintended fires.
If you find your dryer not starting, conduct a continuity test on the thermal fuse using a multimeter. A multimeter showing no continuity or interrupted continuity is an indication that the thermal fuse is due for a replacement.
This situation requires you to unplug the power cord first and remove the panel covering the broken thermal fuse. Then, disconnect the wires attached to it and begin unscrewing. Next, install the replacement thermal fuse in the right position and reconnect the wires. Finally, put the panel back to its original spot to protect the fuses along with the other pieces.
A Sturdy Start
Dryers are practical appliances meant to be long-term fixtures in our households. They’ve become essential parts of our chore list, saving us time and effort by drying our clothes for us and freeing up our schedules to do other tasks.
Despite that, these reliable machines are not infallible. Sooner or later, you will need to replace a part of your dryer. This list is here for your reference when you – or your dryer – need a push to start!