Your clothes dryer does a big job, drying all those clean clothes you just washed in the dryer. Depending on how much laundry you do, your dryer may be a very important appliance in your home. The last thing you need when doing your laundry is to find that your dryer isn't drying your clothes like it used to, forcing you to turn the dryer on for another 30-40 minutes. This can back up your laundry process, as your clothes in the washer now have to sit longer. Other problems like your dryer making banging noises or causing burn marks on your clothing can also be a pain. See below for instructions on how to repair these common problems yourself.
Dryer Not Drying
If your dryer isn't heating up enough to dry your clothes, causing you to run your dryer longer than usual, this can damage your clothing, and cause an increase in your energy bills. If you notice the dryer isn't heating up properly, first check the lint trap. Clean out the small lint tray, then lift it out to vacuum out the inside of the trap using the thin vacuum extension. If you notice a lot of lint being pulled out of the trap, you may want to clean out the vent at the back of the dryer as well. Lint can become trapped in the vent causing a problem with air flow. You could also have an issue with the temperature sensors. Check your owner's manual to find where these are located (usually beneath the drum), then change them out. If this doesn't repair the problem, it may be time to call in the professionals.
Drum Banging Around
Loud banging noises should never come from your dryer unless you're drying tennis shoes. If you notice a lot of excess noise coming from your dryer, first try to dry smaller loads. You may be drying too much at once. If you still hear the banging noise, it's time to check the drum. Unplug your dryer (if it's a gas dryer, turn off the gas), then take the back panel off. Check that the screws are all in place around the drum. Tighten any that may be loose and replace any missing ones. Next, check the drum belt and rollers around the drum, as these can wear out over time.
Dryer Burning Clothing
If your dryer is beginning to cause burn marks on your clothing, it could be a sign that there is a ventilation issue, causing the dryer to overheat and scorch your clothing. Check the lint trap for lint and clean it out as directed above. Check the flexible vent at the back for lint and for kinks. If the vent is kinked, it can cause a lack of ventilation as well. Also check that the dryer is tumbling properly. If it isn't tumbling, some clothing may be getting hotter than others. Check the drum, rollers, and the drum belt. Also be sure to check that the rubber seal on the dryer opening is intact and not damaged.
Your dryer has a big job to do. Be sure to care for it properly by keeping it clean and free of lint and never overloading it. If you have issues with your dryer and aren't able to repair them yourself, contact a professional appliance repair technician for help, such as those found at Arnie's Dependable Appliance Repair.