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Kenmore Elite Dryer Not Heating – What To Do?

You love your Kenmore Elite dryer because it makes drying your clothes a lot easier. But, you are baffled because your dryer spun, but your clothes still came out wet. What could be wrong? We asked the experts for their advice, and they provided the following information.

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There is a high likelihood there is a problem with the heating system of your dryer. It spins but does not dry your clothes. However, you can troubleshoot it as follows:

  • Electric Dryer
    • Replace the faulty heating element
    • Replace blown fuse
    • Replace faulty thermostat
  • Gas Dryer
    • Replace faulty ignitor
    • Replace faulty gas valve solenoids
    • Replace faulty flame sensor

A  dryer that is not working can cause a setback in your day-to-day routine. Continue reading to know how to troubleshoot in both an electric and gas dryer. Also, learn the costs involved with repairing your dryer, and how to maintain it. 

Kenmore Elite Dryer Not Heating - What To Do?, Light blue and gray cabinets with beautiful view out oversized windows, Kenmore Elite Dryer Not Heating - What To Do?

How To Troubleshoot Your Elite Kenmore Dryer

When your dryer runs, but your clothes are not drying, what could be wrong? You clearly heard your dryer spin and complete one drying cycle but your clothes did not dry. 

There are two types of Kenmore dryers; electric and gas. They operate the same way, though the causes of why they are not producing heat may be different. 

We shall look at each separately, starting with the electric dryer.

Electric Elite Kenmore Dryer

A dryer running but not drying clothes could be due to a problem with the heating system. One or more of the heating parts could be faulty.

The following are some reasons your dryer is not heating:

Replace Faulty Heating Element

The first place to check if your dryer is not producing heat is the heating element. If faulty, your dryer will not get hot enough to dry your clothes. Your clothes will be cool, and either partially dry or completely wet.

Heating elements wear out with time and become faulty. Fortunately, replacing one is not that difficult.

Check out this heating element kit on Amazon.

Go ahead and purchase a new heating element after verifying that it is compatible with your dryer. Wear safety gloves, unplug the dryer, remove the back panel, and replace the faulty one with the new one.

Screw back the back panel, connect back the power, and test if it is producing heat.

Check out the video below that shows you in detail how to replace a faulty heating element:

Replace Blown Fuse

When your dryer does not start at all, the fuse has most likely blown. A fuse is a gadget that stops your appliance from running when the power entering your appliance is higher than normal.

The high current melts the fuse, the current stops moving, and your appliance stops operating.

The solution is to replace a blown fuse. Have a look at the video below that shows you how to replace one:

After replacing your blown fuse, you may have to check the dryer vent. It is the flexible metal duct that is attached to your dryer.

If you find it blocked, it could have caused the dryer to overheat, causing the fuse to blow. Therefore, you need to unblock it if that is the case.

Replace Faulty Thermostat

A faulty thermostat can cause your dryer not to heat up. It could also keep the heat for long, causing your dryer to get too hot, and blow the fuse. 

You can check if your thermostat is working, by testing it either with a digital, or analog multimeter.

Place the probes on the outer terminals of the thermostat. If it reads zero, or close to zero, there is an electric current flowing through, and hence there is continuity.

If the digital display does not change significantly, or the meter needle of the analog multimeter does not move, then your thermostat is not working. 

Check out this thermostat on Amazon.

Replace your thermostat if it is not working. You can watch the video below that explains in detail how to change a faulty thermostat:

Gas Elite Kenmore Dryer

A gas dryer works the same way as an electric dryer. But, when it does not heat, the best way to troubleshoot is as follows:

Replace Faulty Ignitor

The igniter is found inside the burner assembly next to the gas valve. If all the parts of your dryer are working, the igniter will glow and produce enough heat to ignite the gas when the valve opens.

However, with time the igniter’s metal can break and will no longer produce heat.

Also, if the ignitor fails to pass a current through it, there'll be no complete circuit, and will not produce heat. You will need to replace the igniter like the one shown below.

You can view this igniter on Amazon.

The following video shows you how to replac the ignitor of a gas dryer:

Replace Faulty Gas Valve Solenoids

These are gas valve solenoids you can find on Amazon.

When your ignitor glows but does not light a flame, the gas valve solenoids could be faulty. You may need to replace one or more of them. 

These solenoid valves receive an electrical stimulus, which then translates to mechanical movements. This stimulus is what controls the flow of gas by opening or closing the solenoid valve. 

Watch the video below that shows you how to replace the solenoids:

Replace Faulty Flame Sensor

You can find these gas flame sensors on Amazon.

Air blows through the burner assembly of your gas dryer and heats the air.

The burner assembly in a dryer is made up of the gas valve, ignitor, and flame sensor like the one shown above.

If the sensor fails, the ignitor will not start and the gas will not flow. Therefore, replace it as shown in the video below:

Repair Costs For A Dryer Not Heating

Repairman fixing a heating elelment on a domestic tumble dryer

On average it would cost you between $100 and $350 to repair your Kenmore dryer. The labor costs are between $50 and $80. The price of the repair, however, depends on what is causing it not to heat up.

As you repair your dryer, have in mind that most dryers last for around 10 years. If the life of your dryer is coming to an end, it may be better to buy a new one. 

However, if your dryer has reached half its life, and the repair costs are equivalent to half the price of a new one, you may have to consider buying another one. This is known as the 50% rule when purchasing appliances. 

On the other hand, a new one costs between $600 and $1,500, whereas repair costs are between $100 and $200. If your dryer is at 50% of its life, look at the condition of your dryer vis-à-vis the costs and decide whether to buy or not. 

How To Maintain Your Dryer To Last Longer

Woman using wool dryer balls for more soft clothes while tumble drying in washing machine concept. Discharge static electricity and shorten drying time, save energy.

You most likely love your dryer too much because it makes your laundering much easier. But, you would also want it to last long. And the only way to ensure this is to maintain it properly.

Below are two tips on what you can do to prevent electrical issues with your dryer that would stop it from heating:

Clean The Dryer Vent Outside

The vent outside can get blocked. This could be due to small animals or birds making their home here. For example, birds can build nests here and block the airflow to your dryer.

Remember, as explained above, blocking the vent can cause your dryer to overheat, blowing up your fuse. This means your dryer will not work, and you will need to replace the fuse. 

Ensure The Outside Vent Has A Screen

This counteracts the first tip above. It prevents the vents from being blocked in the first place.

Have a screen fitted at the end of the vent outside at all times. This blocks out anything that could find its way inside the vent and clog it.  

Other than stopping small animals like rodents and birds from blocking your vent, it prevents unwanted guests in your home such as rats.

Final Thoughts

Washing machines, dryer and other domestic appliance equipment in the house

A dryer is a very important appliance in your home. You may worry if it does not dry your clothes because it either does not produce enough heat or no heat at all.

The good news is that you can troubleshoot before calling a technician. However, you may call a professional if you are not confident enough to find out what the problem is and fixing it. 

Repair costs can be fair. However, if the life of your appliance has reached halfway, or almost the end, then you may consider buying a new one.  It may not be worth repairing it. 

If you enjoyed reading this post, you are welcome to read more of our previous posts by clicking on the links below:

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