Skip Navigation

Dryer Won't Start? All the Easy Fixes You Need to Know

Dryer Won't Start? All the Easy Fixes You Need to Know

There’s nothing worse on laundry day than being stuck with a sopping pile of clothes. If pushing the dryer start button is met with dreaded silence, there are a few potential issues that could be preventing your dry cycle. If the door is tightly shut and it’s still not working, try one of these fixes from our friends at Sears PartsDirect.   

Potential Fixes

Replace the Door Switch

The dryer door includes a switch that determines whether the door is closed and ready for the cycle to begin. If the switch senses that the dryer door is open, it will not start. If the dryer indicates that the door is open when it’s tightly shut, you’ll need to replace the door switch.

shop all door switches

Dryer door switch

Learn more about replacing a dryer door switch from Sears PartsDirect.

Dryer push-to-start switch

Replace the Push-to-Start Switch

Some dryers have controls that are mechanical instead of electronic. If you have such a dryer, the push-to-start button begins the cycle by initiating a voltage path through the drive motor. If this switch is damaged or defective, it may not complete the voltage path, and the dryer may not begin. In this case, replace the push-to-start switch.

shop all push-to-start switches

Learn more about replacing a dryer push-to-start switch from Sears PartsDirect.

Replace the Thermal Fuse

The thermal fuse is used to detect the temperature of air venting outward from the dryer. In an electric dryer, the thermal fuse will trip if the air gets too hot. This might happen if the vent tube is clogged or kinked, or if the exterior damper is shut. If you have a gas dryer, it will still run with a tripped thermal fuse but it will not heat. A tripped fuse won’t reset when the dryer cools, so it must be replaced.

shop all thermal fuses

Dryer thermal fuse

Learn more about replacing a thermal fuse in an electric dryer or 
gas dryer from Sears PartsDirect.

Dryer timer

Replace the Dryer Timer

Dryer timers include a small motor that advances the timer as it opens and closes small electrical contacts to control different components throughout the cycle. If the timer won’t advance or the contacts aren’t functioning properly, this could be preventing your dryer from starting or heating. To fix this, replace the dryer timer. 

shop all dryer timers

Learn more about replacing a dryer timer from Sears PartsDirect.

Repair or Replace the Electronic Control Board

The electronic control board is in charge of controlling timing and execution of various dryer components throughout the cycle. If the board itself is damaged, it must be replaced. If it’s a wiring issue, these can often be repaired. It can be hard to determine whether the control board is damaged, so it’s recommended that you have a service technician run diagnostics before it’s replaced.

shop all electronic control boards

Dryer electronic control board

Learn more about replacing a dryer electronic control board from Sears PartsDirect.

Dryer motor

Repair or Replace the Drive Motor

The drive motor is responsible for rotating the motor shaft that works through the dryer’s internal system to turn the drum. On most dryer models, the drive motor also rotates the blower fan blade. If the drive motor doesn’t run when electricity is applied, it must be replaced.

shop all drive motors

Learn more about replacing a dryer drive motor from Sears PartsDirect.

Replace the Drive Belt

The belt of the dryer could be broken or damaged, which will prevent your dryer from running. To check it, unplug the dryer and remove the top panel. If it is broken or damaged, it must be replaced.

shop all drive belts

Dryer drive belt

Learn more about replacing a dryer drive belt from Sears PartsDirect.

Dryer door catch

Replace the Door Catch

When the dryer door is shut, a spring-loaded door catch grips the door strike to hold its position. Tension from the door catch keeps the door from opening during a cycle. If you find that the strike is intact but the door won’t latch, you need to replace the door catch.

shop all door catches

Replace the Door Strike

The door strike is part of the latch assembly that keeps the door closed during a cycle. It may either be attached to the front panel of the dryer or to the door itself. When you close the dryer door, the door strike is pushed into the mounted door catch to hold the door closed. The door catch may be unable to grip the door strike if the latter is damaged, and the door won’t stay closed. In this case, you’ll need to replace the door strike.

shop all door strikes

Dryer door strike

Dryer motor relay

Replace the Motor Relay

Some models include an electrically operated switch called a motor relay. When it’s receiving electricity, the motor relay keeps the drive motor running throughout a cycle. If the voltage supply stops, the motor relay stops, which prevents the drive motor from running. A possible indicator of this issue is that the dryer only runs when the start button is being pushed. To fix this, replace the motor relay.  

shop all motor relays

Replace the Power Cord

If the power cord is damaged or dysfunctional, it could be preventing your dryer from drawing power. Unplug the dryer, then check for signs of overheated, loose or shorted wires or melted insulation. If there are visible signs of damage, replace your power cord.

shop all power cords

Dryer power cord