Many dryers on the market today still rely on dryer timers to function correctly. Besides that, many households still have older dryer models that have timers as standard features. Timers are meant to progress automatically and eventually stop. So, why would a dryer timer keep running?
Your dryer timer keeps running because one or more of the electrical contacts in the timer has failed. Besides that, many models use timers alongside electronic control boards or dryness control boards. Those boards could fail and cause the timer to run indefinitely. Lastly, dirty or failed moisture sensors and faulty heating elements can also keep your dryer running for longer than usual.
Dryer timers that keep running are a cause for concern. So, shut your dryer off and read this guide thoroughly. You’ll discover the reasons it’s happening and what you can do to solve them.
Why Does My Dryer Timer Keep Running?
Here are the reasons your dryer timer keeps running for much longer than it should:
Failed Electrical Contact On Dryer Timer
When you experience problems involving your dryer timer, the first thing you must troubleshoot is the timer itself. Starting your troubleshooting process here will likely save you plenty of time and effort compared to checking everything else first.
The reason you should start with the timer itself is that it is a complex component with plenty of moving parts, and it’s very common for those components to malfunction or wear out over time.
So when you discover that your dryer timer keeps running, the most likely reason is that one of its electrical contacts has failed. As a result, it no longer can progress through the different stages normally and shut itself off at the correct time.
As a result, the dryer timer and the machine continue running longer than necessary.
The solution: You can troubleshoot the dryer timer by removing it from the appliance. Then, perform a visual inspection of its components and electrical contacts.
Alternatively, using a tool like a
Once you confirm that the timer is the root cause, replacing it is the only option.
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Faulty Electronic Control Board Or Dryness Control Board
One important thing to remember about dryers is that they can differ significantly in their components alongside the dryer timer. Depending on your brand and model, your dryer timer might also work alongside an electronic or dryness control board.
Both are printed circuit boards (PCBs) with small electrical and electronic components. Generally, their purpose is to coordinate the functions of different dryer components.
Unfortunately, when those printed circuit boards become faulty, they can negatively affect other components, like the dryer timer. For instance, a defective board will cause the dryer timer to keep running even when it should stop.
These boards can become faulty for several reasons. For example, the board might suffer an electrical fault like a short circuit or voltage surge. Besides that, exposure to excess heat and moisture can also cause the same problem.
The solution: Firstly, you must inspect the PCBs in your dryer, whether the electronic control board, the dryness control board, or any other. You’ll likely find damage signs like burn marks, burn smells, or melted components on the board you’re checking.
When you confirm that the board is damaged, the most practical solution is to replace the board with a new one.
Be sure to take a photo of the wires connected to the board, as you’ll have to reconnect them to the new board later. The picture will be a handy reference to use when you do so.
Dirt Or Failed Moisture Sensor (Dryer timer keeps running)
Many dryer models also have automatic functions that extend or reduce drying times based on how wet your laundry is. Those models measure how wet your laundry still is with the help of moisture sensors mounted inside the drum.
Simply put, those sensors will keep the timer running if it senses that the clothes are still wet and require more drying. Those sensors communicate that information by sending electrical signals to the dryer’s controls.
However, those sensors will become dirty over time and can even stop working correctly. Whenever one or both of those things happens, the sensors will mistakenly tell the dryer that your clothes are still wet, even when they’re not.
As a result, the dryer will continue running its timer indefinitely, leading to increased power bills and damage to your laundry.
The solution: Like all the other components mentioned in this guide, you must first inspect the affected part closely. In this case, you might find the moisture sensor dirty from being used for many months or years.
If that’s the case, your first solution is to clean the sensors. A damp cloth is enough to remove light stains, but you might need rubbing alcohol for more stubborn ones.
Suppose that doesn’t work; a
You can avoid using the dryer’s automatic modes, as that will stop the machine from depending on those dryers to control the drying time.
Problematic Heating Element
Another common issue that affects many dryers is problems with the heating element. As you can already guess, the heating element generates the heat necessary to remove moisture from your clothes and leave them fresh and dry.
However, heating elements can fail partially or wholly, which results in a lack of heat inside the dryer’s drum.
When you combine that condition with the automatic function described earlier, the dryer continues running indefinitely because it senses that your laundry is still wet.
In other words, your dryer timer keeps running because the appliance isn’t generating enough heat (if any) to dry your clothes in the first place. So, the machine keeps running because your clothes aren’t drying as they should.
The solution: Whether your heating element is only partially heating or not heating, you must replace it with a new one. That’s because your dryer requires the full power of the heating element to raise its internal temperature and dry your clothes effectively.
Remember to disconnect your dryer from its power supply when attempting any repairs or parts replacement. Then, you can disconnect the heating element and unthread the screws that hold it in place.
Then, fit a replacement heating element in the same way and secure it tightly. Lastly, reconnect the wire harness attached to the heating element.
Dryers are appliances that use a lot of electricity and generate a lot of heat. So, you should not take it lightly when the dryer timer keeps running.
A dryer timer that runs indefinitely will cause problems one way or another. Aside from raising your power bills by wasting energy, they also increase the fire risks already associated with dryers.
On top of that, you risk damaging your laundry if they continue drying for too long.
So, troubleshoot your timer and fix the root cause as soon as possible.