This step-by-step dryer repair guide shows how to replace a dryer thermistor. The thermistor, which is usually attached to the blower housing, measures the temperature inside the dryer. If the thermistor fails completely and stops sensing the temperature, the control panel usually displays an error code, and the dryer stops. If you suspect that the thermistor isn't accurately sensing the temperature, you can check it with a volt/ohm meter. Consult the tech sheet that came with your dryer for information about thermistor testing and, if the thermistor is the problem, replace it with a manufacturer-approved replacement part.
This repair procedure works for Kenmore and Whirlpool dryers with the vent screen housing located at the bottom of the door opening. The basic repair procedure also works for similar dryers such as Maytag, Amana and GE dryers with removable service panels on the front of the cabinet.
Shut off the power
Unplug the dryer. If it's a gas dryer, shut off the gas.
Remove the service panel
To release the clips that hold the service panel in place, push a putty knife into the gap above the service panel on each end.
Pull the top of the service panel forward and remove it.
Release the service panel clips.
Pull off the service panel.
Remove the lint duct assembly
Pull out the lint screen.
Remove the screws that secure the lint duct assembly to the lint duct housing.
Pull the lint duct assembly out of the dryer and set it aside.
Pull out the lint screen.
Locate the lint duct assembly below the drum.
Remove the screws from the lint duct.
Remove the lint duct.
Detach the thermistor
Locate the thermistor atop of the blower housing. Carefully remove the wires from the thermistor.
Using a 1/4-inch wrench, remove the mounting screws that secure the thermistor to the top of the blower housing. Remove the thermistor and set it aside for disposal.Tip: While the dryer cabinet open, vacuum dust and lint from the bottom of the dryer cabinet.
Disconnect the wires from the thermistor.
Remove the thermistor mounting screws.
Remove the thermistor from the blower housing.
Install the new thermistor
Position the new thermistor on the blower housing and fasten the mounting screws.
Connect the wires to the new thermistor—it doesn't matter which spade connectors you attach the wires to.
Replace the lint duct assembly
Place the lint duct assembly in its housing. Insert the mounting screws and tighten firmly.
Reinstall the lint screen.
Reinstall the service panel
Line up the bottom lip of the service panel with the base of the dryer.
Push the top of the service panel to engage the locking clips.
Restore power to the dryer
Plug the dryer into the wall outlet. If it's a gas dryer, turn on the gas supply to the dryer.
A rattling noise or lack of air flow through the dryer could indicate that the blower wheel is damaged. Follow the steps in this repair guide to replace the blower wheel in your dryer.
If the dryer heats initially but then stops heating, the problem is usually the gas valve coils. This step-by-step guide explains how to replace the gas valve coils in a gas dryer.
These easy tests will help you check the heating element, high-limit thermostat, timer, thermal cut-off fuse and operating thermostat.
Learn how to repair broken, frayed or damaged wires in your appliances.