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Is it the dryer or the breaker?

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A few days ago I posted a thread about my dryer not working after several months of intermittent squeaking noises.

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Old 07-31-2008, 08:48 AM
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Default Is it the dryer or the breaker?
Model Number: MDE546REW0   Brand: White-Westinghouse   Age: More than 10 years   

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A few days ago I posted a thread about my dryer not working after several months of intermittent squeaking noises. I thought the problem was solved when I realized the breaker had been tripped. But the dryer continued to trip the breaker (I reset it 3-4 times, after which the dryer would run for 10 minutes or more before tripping the breaker again). I also noticed an ozone smell in the air. Is this a dryer problem, or a breaker problem? If it's the dryer, what can I do to fix it?


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Old 07-31-2008, 08:52 AM
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Does the dryer heat when it is running?
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Old 07-31-2008, 09:11 AM
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Yes, it heats fine. I did notice that the back of the dryer was really hot to the touch though . . . I don't normally touch the back of my dryer, so I don't know if that's normal or not!
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Old 07-31-2008, 09:19 AM
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First thing to look at would be the terminal block at the back of the dryer, where the cord attaches to, make sure everything looks good, if that is not the problem, most likely you have a weak breaker. Normally if the dryer will run for any length of time the dryer is not at fault.
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Old 07-31-2008, 09:28 AM
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What does a "good looking" terminal block look like? There was a cobweb on the metal casing surrounding the cord, which I removed, and minimal dust inside the casing. I can't see too much inside the casing--the cord itself splits in 3 different sections to attach to the dryer, and I can only see where 2 of them attach. Each has about a quarter inch bare wiring between the attachment and where the wire coating starts, but they seem to be in good condition.
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Old 07-31-2008, 10:21 AM
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If it looked burnt, melted, or black it's bad, you can remove the cover to inspect further.
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Old 07-31-2008, 11:56 AM
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you said there was a squeaking noise before the dryer stop,maybe there is a piece of clothing in the duct,sometimes a socks or underwear get pass the lint filter and get stuck on the blower wheel,when this happen it can cause the blower wheel to get stuck,this will stop the motor from turning when the internal overload in the motor get too hot it will stop the motor,when it cools down the motor will try to start again,if this continue for a long period of time it can eventually trip the breaker.

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Old 07-31-2008, 12:10 PM
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The dryer doesn't stop on its own, it's the tripping of the breaker that stops it . . . the squeaking isn't something that happens right before the dryer stops, it's something that happens once in a while but didn't affect the operation of the dryer. There doesn't appear to be anything in the duct.
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Old 07-31-2008, 01:52 PM
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I know you said the dryer heats but will it dry? We use to see this problm a lot with venting that was obstructed. It was so bad moisture from no ventilation would cause an overheat and the breaker would trip, over time the breaker would weaken and just continue to trip on what seemed like a whim. It blows my mind that your vent is clear have you tried running it w/out a vent. For you techs out there what about a high limit thermostat, could that be a problem?

Last edited by wendlynb : 07-31-2008 at 02:08 PM.
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