5 Reasons Why Your Dryer Won't Spin

What to do when your dryer won't spin? Follow these tips to see if there is an easy DIY solution before contacting a repair technician.

Dryer problems inspection

It's a common problem: You put a load of wet towels in the dryer, only to discover that your dryer won’t spin. There are a variety of issues that might be causing your dryer not to spin, so how can you determine the source of the problem?

Start by checking whether or not your dryer is plugged in. If it is, check your circuit breaker box to ensure that the dryer’s two circuit breakers are both turned on. If they aren’t, reset them.

If the plug and circuit breakers are fine, check the dryer's door switch. When you close the dryer door, a plastic peg should click and allow the switch to start the dryer. If the peg is bent or broken, you’ll need to straighten or replace the peg. If the peg is fine, the switch has probably failed and will need to be replaced.

If your dryer starts, but the drum won’t spin, it's probably due to one of these common reasons.

1. Broken Drive Belt

A broken drive belt is the most common reason a dryer won’t spin. To fix this issue, turn the drum by hand. A working belt should provide some resistance, so if the drum turns very easily and loosely, the belt is probably broken. Unplug your dryer and remove the lid so you can inspect the belt to confirm that it’s broken.

2. Worn Drum Rollers

Most dryers have two drum support rollers on the back of the drum, and some dryers also have two in the front. If the rollers don’t spin freely, the motor will become overloaded, and the dryer will stop. To determine whether the drum rollers are worn out, remove the belt from the dryer and turn the drum by hand. If the drum doesn’t spin freely, check the rollers for wear. If one or more of the rollers don’t turn freely, it’s a good idea to replace them all at the same time.

3. Worn Roller Axles

If the drum's roller axles are worn out, the drum rollers won’t spin freely, causing the dryer to stop. While you’re checking the rollers for wear, inspect the drum roller axles. If the drum rollers spin freely without wobbling, the axles are in good condition. If the roller wobbles, the axles need to be replaced.

4. Worn Drum Glides

The drum glides are small plastic pieces that support the drum. When the drum spins, it slides on the drum glides. If the drum glides wear out, the drum can start binding, which strains the motor and causes it to shut down. Inspect the drum glides for wear and replace them if necessary.

5. Worn Drum Bearing

The drum bearing supports the rear of the drum. When it wears out, it puts strain on the motor, causing it to stop. To determine if this is the problem, remove the dryer belt and turn the drum by hand. If the drum is hard to turn and/or makes squealing or grinding noises when turned, the bearing is worn out and needs to be replaced. 

If these tips don't help fix your dryer that won’t spin, your home warranty can help. The service technician can diagnose the problem and get your dryer back up and running. Refer to your American Home Shield Warranty for details.

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New Jersey Residents: The product being offered is a service contract and is separate and distinct from any product or service warranty which may be provided by the home builder or manufacturer.