Dryer suddenly died

My Whirlpool clothes dryer died in mid cycle. Now it will not start, there is no indication that it is getting power. The dryer light does not come on. I am not certain whether it was working before or not, but suspect I would have noticed if it was not. Circuit breaker is fine. I took of the switchplate and the plug is fine to visual inspection. What is my next step in diagnosis?

220 or 110?

Are there 110 dryers?

Googled: yep.

Also, I’ve used this site in the past to help get me to the problem with other appliances.

Does this dryer have an electronic control panel? Those can have a fuse or fusable link that can blow. If you have a multi-meter or voltage detector you can take off the back and see if there’s power past the plug. Some chance you are in for an expensive repair bill, but it could be as simple as a loose connection. It’s undoubtably 220 volts, be very careful, don’t even open the back if you don’t know how to do this. 120 is just a tingle. You’ll definitely remember a 220 shock for the rest of your life, which hopefully will be longer than a few seconds.

It is 220. I know where the circuit breaker is so this should not be a problem.

Probably an over-temperature cutout has tripped.

That’s what I was thinking, too.

If you’re familiar with electrical troubleshooting, you could open it up and poke around with an ohmmeter. A wiring diagram would be handy. Voltage measurements would also be useful, but I would not recommend making voltage measurements on a live circuit unless you absolutely know what you’re doing.

Hopefully you have a lo-fi dryer with simple dial controls. Those are easier to troubleshoot.

And if that happened, I’d check the vent to make sure it isn’t stuffed with lint.

Using the site given by Kneadtoknow I figured out it was the door switch very easily. Thank you very much. How do I look up the part number so I can order it online?

use your dryers model number.


I only see one whirlpool door switch

Thanks. That is the exact part.

Holy crap, I provided useful information?

Try not to make a habit of it. And above all else, avoid the temptation to start a “Ask the posted who provided useful information” thread.



Anyone else read the thread title and think that Congressman David Dwyer had died? Yes, I follow politics too much.

Just in case anyone sees this and takes it literally, let it be said that 120 volts is quite capable of killing a person.

Yes, but really you have to be an unlucky or unhealthy person for 110 (it’s 110, dammit!) to kill you. I’ve been hit by 110 dozens of times and while I wouldn’t call it a “tickle” you have to be in a bad situation for it to kill.

being grounded well while having a path through vital body areas is a bad situation.

A silly addition this late in the thread, but make sure you’ve unplugged the dryer before taking the back off, (or most likely, popping the top up). Even if you believe you’ve turned it off at the fuse box. Just to be sure…

110, 120, whatever it takes…

Normal household voltage is actually 117 now, but the acceptable range is anywhere from 110 to 125. If your power gets much out of that range, call the utility - a few years ago, I was getting 143. I called the power company, and they had someone at my house within two hours.

The standard was 110 decades ago as carbon filament light bulbs worked best at 100-110 volts, but metal filaments run better at a slightly higher voltage, so 120 was adopted. This also gave some leeway for transmission losses and heavy system loads - the power at my home is 118-119 in the morning, but it does sag to 111 in the early evening when the every air conditioner in town is running.

Correct. But I’ve never heard anyone refer to it as anything but 110. It’s sort of how a 2 x 4 is really only 1 1/2 X 3 1/2. It’s still called a 2 X 4.