Most of the time, your tumble dryer will run smoothly and you’ll basically never run into any issues.
If you get unlucky, though, there are actually a few different things that could be wrong and it can sometimes be quite tricky to identify what the problem is.
In general, troubleshooting a tumble dryer of any kind is similar to troubleshooting any other electrical appliance. If the fault is an electrical one, then troubleshooting in this way will usually identify the problem. From there it is possible to diagnose further issues with the operation of the appliance.
In this piece, I will look at a general troubleshooting guide for fault finding in your tumble dryer.
This will also include guides on specific issues that you may have with your dryer.
General Troubleshooting Guide
If the tumble dryer just will not start, then there are several things to check for.
Check the electricity supply: The easiest way to do this is to unplug the dryer and plug in a separate appliance which you know works.
If this appliance doesn’t turn on, then you know that there is a fault with the supply.
If the appliance does turn on, then you can replace the fuse in the plug for the dryer.
Following this, if the dryer still doesn’t turn on, then there is an electrical fault with the machine. In this case, it is best to contact your supplier.
Check the door and program selection: This is a very easy one to check (and also an easy one to forget about).
The dryer will not start at all if the door is not fully engaged. Make sure the door is fully closed.
Once you have selected your desired program, make sure you press the start/pause button to actually start the program! This can be really easy to forget.
Check the water tank: This is specifically for condenser tumble dryers.
These have a water tank at the bottom which collects the water removed from your clothes.
If the water tank is full, the dryer won’t start, so make sure that this is emptied regularly.
Check for a delayed start: If your dryer isn’t starting and you’ve made sure that the program has been set up properly and you’ve pressed the start button, then there might be a delay added to the program.
To stop this, cancel the current program and restart with the desired settings.
That’s pretty much all you can do for general fault finding.
Now we’ll move on to some more specific issues that might need some maintenance to fix.
It’s important to remember that before investigating any of these, turn off your tumble dryer at the mains!
Tumble Dryer is not Drying Clothes
If your dryer is heating up as normal and spinning, but not drying your clothes at all, then this points to a clog somewhere, blocking the airflow.
The most common cause of such a blockage is lint.
Lint will build up on the filter inside the door after each cycle. Ideally it’s best to clean the lint off the filter each time the dryer is used.
Lint can also sometimes fall down into the condenser part of your dryer, where it will get wet and be pretty tricky to remove.
Remove the condenser assembly from the dryer and check it for lint deposits.
Any lint found can be removed by soaking the condenser in water for a few minutes, then flushing out with a showerhead.
Tumble Dryer does not Heat Up at all
If your tumble dryer is not getting hot at all, there are a few things to look for.
The first is the thermostat in the dryer. To check this, the top, side and back panels of your appliance all need to be removed.
Some thermostats will be located on the back and are resettable. If your thermostat has a small red button on it, then you can press this to reset it.
In most cases this will solve the problem. If not, then the thermostat might need to be replaced.
The other thing to check is the heating element. If the thermostat tripping wasn’t the issue, then it is likely that the heating element is faulty.
This is found on the side of the dryer on the inside. Disconnect the plug and check the terminals of this plug with a multimeter on the low resistance setting.
A working element will usually give a reading between 20 and 50 ohms. Anything drastically different to this will indicate a fault with your heating element and this will need to be replaced.
A third possibility for condenser dryers is a fault with the drainage system.
This is related to the reservoir at the bottom, which should be emptied on a regular basis.
With the reservoir empty, you should check if the pump itself is working as well.
Remove the container in the reservoir and turn the dryer on. Pour some water into the tray and it should drain down to the reservoir.
When you put the container back in, the pump should start moving the water through into the container.
If the pump does not work, then this will need to be replaced.
Tumble Dryer is not Turning
If your tumble dryer is not turning when you switch it on then you will need to get into the back of the dryer, to the inner workings which make the drum spin.
The first thing to check is the belt. Once you’ve removed the back and sides, you should be able to see this.
A common cause is that the belt has simply snapped and you will need to replace it.
Heating the new belt with a hair dryer will make it much easier to fit to your machine.
Check whether the belt has snapped by trying to spin the drum by hand. If you’re able to move the drum with no resistance, the belt has snapped.
If the belt isn’t the issue it can be down to the start capacitor or the motor of the machine itself.
Both of these can be dangerous to mess around with so only start looking into these if you know what you’re doing.
The best course of action here, though, is to contact the customer support of your dryer and get their advice.
Hopefully this guide has helped you identify any issues you might have had with your tumble dryer.
Most of the issues can be fixed relatively easily, but if you’re unsure, always contact the manufacturer and they will be able to send an engineer to sort your machine for you.
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