What Causes A Dryer Heating Element To Burn Out ? [ Clear Guide 2024]

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By Jacob G. Turner

There are a few things that can cause a dryer heating element to burn out. The most common cause is a build-up of lint in the dryer. When lint builds up on the Dryer heating element, it acts as an insulator and prevents the heat from escaping.

This can cause the element to overheat and eventually burn out. Another common cause is a faulty thermostat. If the thermostat is not working properly, it can cause the heating element to stay on for too long, which can also cause it to burn out.

How long should a heating element last in a dryer?

A typical household clothes dryer uses between 1,500 and 5,000 watts of power. The average lifespan of a clothes dryer is about 13 years. The heating element in a clothes dryer is one of the first things to fail.

Most dryers have two heating elements, one near the top and one near the bottom. A dryer may stop heating properly for several reasons, including a blown thermal fuse, a failed heating element, a broken heating element, or a faulty high-limit thermostat. If your clothes dryer is not heating properly, the first thing you should check is the thermal fuse.

The thermal fuse is a small device that is located near the heating element. The fuse is designed to blow if the dryer overheats. If the fuse has blown, it will need to be replaced.

The next thing you should check is the heating element. The heating element is located near the bottom of the dryer.

What are the causes of the failure of Dryer heating elements?

One of the most common reasons for a Dryer heating element to fail is because it has burned out. This can happen because the element is too small for the amount of power it is trying to generate, or because the element is not able to dissipate heat properly. In either case, the element will eventually overheat and burn out.

Dryer heating

Another common cause of Dryer heating element failure is breakage. This can be caused by physical damage, such as a dropped element, or by excessive vibration. Once the element is broken, it can no longer generate heat properly and will need to be replaced.

Finally, Dryer heating elements can also fail due to corrosion. This is most common in elements that are exposed to moisture, such as those in humidifiers or dehumidifiers. Over time, the metal of the element will start to break down and will eventually fail.

Is it worth replacing a heating element in a dryer?

There are a few things to consider when answering this question. The first is the age of your dryer. If your dryer is less than five years old, it is probably still under warranty and you should check with the manufacturer before attempting any repairs.

If your dryer is older than five years, you will need to weigh the cost of the repair against the cost of buying a new dryer. The second thing to consider is the severity of the problem. A broken Dryer heating element is a fairly serious issue and will likely require the services of a qualified repairperson.

Finally, you need to consider whether you have the time and knowledge to complete the repair yourself. Replacing a Dryer heating element is not a difficult repair, but it does require some basic knowledge of electrical circuits. If you are not confident in your ability to complete the repair, it is probably best to leave it to a professional.

Can a dryer heating element get weak?

A dryer’s heating element can get weak over time due to the high temperatures it is constantly exposed to. This can cause the element to break or become damaged, which can lead to problems with the dryer not heating properly. If you notice that your dryer is not heating as well as it used to, it is important to have the Dryer heating element checked by a professional to see if it needs to be replaced.

Yes, a dryer heating element can indeed weaken over time, leading to issues with drying performance and efficiency. The heating element in a dryer is responsible for generating the heat necessary to dry clothes effectively. Over time, various factors can contribute to the weakening of the heating element, resulting in diminished performance and potentially causing the dryer to take longer to dry clothes or fail to produce enough heat altogether.

One of the primary reasons for a weakened heating element is normal wear and tear. Like any mechanical or electrical component, the heating element in a dryer is subject to degradation over time, especially with frequent use. Continuous exposure to high temperatures and fluctuations can cause the heating element to degrade, leading to a decrease in its ability to generate heat efficiently.

Another factor that can contribute to the weakening of a dryer heating element is the buildup of lint and debris. When lint accumulates on the heating element, it acts as insulation, preventing the element from reaching its optimal temperature. This buildup restricts airflow and can cause the heating element to overheat, leading to premature failure or damage.

Furthermore, voltage fluctuations or electrical issues can also impact the performance of the heating element. If the dryer is not receiving a consistent voltage supply, it may not be able to generate enough heat to dry clothes effectively. Additionally, electrical problems such as loose connections or damaged wiring can cause the heating element to malfunction or fail prematurely.

In some cases, the heating element itself may develop defects or damage due to manufacturing flaws or physical stress. Cracks, breaks, or other forms of damage can compromise the integrity of the heating element, leading to reduced heating capacity or complete failure.

Fortunately, there are ways to diagnose and address issues with a weakened dryer heating element. If you notice that your dryer is taking longer than usual to dry clothes or if your clothes are not drying completely, it may indicate a problem with the heating element. Conducting a visual inspection of the heating element for signs of damage or excessive buildup of lint can help identify potential issues.

Cleaning the dryer vents and lint traps regularly can also help improve airflow and prevent lint buildup, reducing strain on the heating element. Additionally, performing routine maintenance checks and ensuring that the dryer is receiving a consistent voltage supply can help prolong the lifespan of the heating element.

In cases where the heating element is severely weakened or damaged, it may be necessary to replace it entirely. Professional assistance may be required for diagnosis and replacement to ensure proper installation and safety. By addressing issues with a weakened heating element promptly, you can restore your dryer’s performance and efficiency, allowing for optimal drying results.


There are a few things that can cause a dryer heating element to burn out. One is if the dryer is overloaded and the element is constantly running. Another is if there is a lint buildup on the element, which can cause it to overheat.

Finally, if the dryer is not properly ventilated, the element can overheat and burn out.

Explore how to use, maintain, and maximize your dryer for quicker, fresher laundry with our easy tips. Upgrade your laundry experience today

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