Here Is Why Dryer Keeps Blowing Thermal Fuse

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Dryers have many parts that can go bad. Two such part are the thermal (limit) fuse and the thermal cutoff.

In past years, house fires were commonly caused by failed dryers.

However, thanks to these components, this is a thing of the past, as both parts work to prevent fires.

Let’s take a look at some common issues with both the thermal fuse on the blower wheel and cutoff fuse on the heater assembly.

We’ll discuss some troubleshooting and possible fixes.

Thermal (Limit) Fuse On The Blower Wheel

This particular thermal fuse is located on your dryer’s blower wheel.

It monitors the temperature of the dryer, and when that temperature gets too high, it shuts power off to the motor (not to the heating element !!!)

Diagnosing a tripped thermal fuse is easy. You just need to have a multimeter and check continuity between two contacts.

But first, turn the dryer 240V power cord OFF from the wall and only then start to work on the dryer.

Every dryer has its own procedure on how to disassemble it and how to reach this fuse.

Failed Relay on the Control Board

Another common reason for Whirlpool and Maytag dryers, that this particular thermal fuse keeps tripping is due to a failed relay on the control board.

Usually, this relay becomes stuck in the “ON” position and sends the power to the heating element, ignoring ON/OFF commands from the control board.

This will cause the control board to constantly send power to the heating element while dryer running.

It will not send the power if the dryer is not running !!!

When the critical temperature is reached, the thermal fuse blows. Usually, this is happening at the end, when the dryer goes to the Cool Down cycle.

When this occurs, you’ll need to replace the thermal fuse and entire control board, because the relay is stuck.

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Here’s how to check the control board:

  • Unplug the dryer
  • Remove the screws on the back of the machine that hold the control panel in place
  • Flip the control panel over to expose the control board
  • The relay switch should be on the lower right of the board
  • Check for any melting or black marks to indicate it has failed
  • If there is nothing visible, change control board anyway

The Thermal Fuse is Wrapped with Lint

Lint can bypass the trap sometimes, and end up in the wrong places inside your dryer.

Once such place it can end up is wrapped around the thermal fuse inside the blower wheel.

When this occurs, it will cause the fuse to overheat and blow due to heat build-up.

If this is the issue, you’ll need to access the blower wheel and clean all lint and other debris from around it.

Then you will need to locate and replace the thermal fuse.

To make it easier to locate, keep in mind that the blower fan is attached to the drive shaft motor.

Thermal Cutoff (heater Assembly) Fuse Keeps Tripping

The thermal cutoff is located on the heater assembly and it controls the temperature of the dryer.

It also helps monitor the amount of heat being produced by the dryer.

If you notice that the drum spins but there’s no heat produced, the thermal cutoff switch is probably blown.

You may also notice that your dryer is producing a small amount of heat, but not enough to dry your clothes in a timely manner.

You can troubleshoot the thermal cutoff by testing it for electrical continuity. However, you’ll also have to determine what made it fail in the first place.

Here are the most common reasons a thermal cutoff fuse will keep tripping.

Dryer Hose or Vent Line Clogged

When dryer hoses or vent lines become clogged it prevents proper air circulation, which will eventually cause your dryer to overheat.

This is the most common reason a thermal cutoff fuse keeps tripping.

You need to remove the vent line from the back of your dryer and clean it out.

Here’s the easiest way to clean the dryer vents:

  • Unplug the dryer
  • Locate the vent on the back of the machine
  • Remove any clamps or tape holding the vent to your dryer
  • Move the dryer out of the way to give you room to work
  • Clean the duct from the interior side of the vent. This will be behind your machine in the laundry room
  • Once that’s as clear as you can get it, you’ll need to locate the exterior vent on the outside of your home
  • This area is easy to access by removing the duct cover or flap
  • Be sure to clear the entire line, this may take a few tries depending on how many twists and turns your duct work has
  • Once you feel confident that all lint is removed, reconnect everything

Sometimes you can discover bird nest on the very end of the vent line.

Heating Element Grounded

When the coils in the heating element expanding, they can touch metal casing and it can cause the heating element to become grounded.

When this occurs it will cause your dryer’s heating element to remain “ON” constantly, even during the fluff or AIR ONLY cycle.

Cycling thermostat just not able to control amount of heat produced by the heating element.

Eventually, this will cause your dryer to overheat which will trip the thermal cutoff fuse.

To repair this problem you will need to follow these steps:

  • Unplug the machine
  • Remove the back panel from the dryer
  • The heating element will be located near the bottom of the machine, you’ll need to disconnect the wires going to it
  • Mark the location of each wire, so you can remember where they go later
  • Remove the high-heat thermostat from the old heating element and transfer it to the new one
  • Position the new heating element to the heater box properly and screw into place
  • Replace the wires and back panel
  • Plug the dryer in and test to see if it’s working properly

In the end, anytime the thermal fuse or cutoff trips, it will need to be replaced.

As a one-time use part, it’s not designed to be reset.

Also, remember to track down the actual problem when this fuse blows.

The simple fact is, it doesn’t happen for no reason at all.

Have you had issues with a thermal fuse tripping?

What brand machine do you have and what was causing the problem? Comment now and let us know.

Reader Comments (121)

  1. Hi ! Everyone, I got Maytag Neptune dry MDE9700AZW, started with no heat, after checking with Ohmmeter all 3 thermostats, heat elements and thermistor, found thermal cutoff (WP35001193) is dead. replaced it with L0887A, clean Lint Run a short test successful heat. Run a 50 mins cycle full load wet cloth. It works fine and then no heat close to the end. Cutoff is dead again. Cutoff is used L0887A from Supco.com. I got a replacement from vendor (not try yet). . Main board looks good. I suspect it is stuck relay on the board based on my reading from this site. Anyone can help or next step. Board is about $300 but not guaranteed to fix the issue. Is cutoff L0887A too cheap to use

    Thank you

    Reply
    • You can replace the heater relay by yourself if you have the proper tools and skills .. It is easy to check relay but not easy to replace…
      Relay has 2 inputs and 2 outputs. 2 Outputs indicated by red arrows on the picture. You need to set a multimeter to Ohms, disconnect wires from these contacts, and check if these 2 contacts have continuity. If they have, RELAY IS SHORTED, which means bad relay.
      Before doing any troubleshooting, disconnect the power plug, otherwise, you will be electrocuted
      Maytag Dryer Control board

      Reply
      • Thank you Eugene for your reply and instruction. I tested two red arrow contact with above instruction. No continuity between two contacts. What else can be the issued. I am thinking to install thermal cutoff and do another diagnostic to see if there is bad code. I did this when I replaced the 1st cutoff.

        Any suggestion ?

        Thank you

      • Thank you Eugene. Try the following

        1. install new thermal cutoff (#L0887A), Run diagnostic test and did not find any error code. one display “0” shows Sensor Bar Open based on service manual. Cutoff is TH3 in slide 45 of page 15 in the following PDF link

        http://www.uncleharrywizard.com/nephewclub/wizarddryer/maytag/maytag—27-inch-neptune.pdf

        2. Run Air fluff for 5 mins and get cool air flow
        3. Try regular 42 mins cycle without cloth twice and both test gets hot air. Each test was turn off after about 5 mins

        Note: On the first one I feel the temperature starts dropping after about 5mins when I tested it from the outside vent then Dryer goes cooling mode from dry mode. Not sure why. 2nd test is good. I tested temperature (52celsius) via service mode.

        Any other test before I do actual test with cloth which may trip the cutoff

        Thank you

      • I dont know what to check next. You covered almost everything..
        1. Did you test or clean the thermistor (temp sensor on the blower wheel)?
        2. Did you check the heating element for resistance and also to the ground? If yes, what is the resistance?

      • Thank you Eugene for your quick reply

        I only test Thermistor resistance and it is about 11K Ohm, vacuumed the dust around thermistor

        Did a visual check for grounding on Heating element and tested Heater resistance after removing blue wire and it is about 10 Ohm

      • I am running out of ideas, Daniel.. Yeah, heating element should be 10 Ohms, so yours is not grounded..

  2. My repair man says its something in the wiring I need a new dryer without looking at it. He just replaced the thermal cut off fuse and I dried one load and it went put again. What caused this. When he was here he just ✔ the fuse and replaced it. What causes this. He says I need a new dryer. True or not true.

    Reply
    • Hard to say if its true or not. What is the brand of your dryer? Which thermal fuse he replaced, on the heater or on the blower wheel assembly?

      Reply
  3. I have a Whirlpool Cabrio dryer model WED7000DW1 that keeps blowing the thermal fuse. I have put in all new vent ducts. It will dry a few loads then blows the fuse. The heating coil read 9.8 ohms and 0 when I checked each terminal to the case. The clothes come out hot. I ran it on No Heat for 5 minutes and it heated up to 122 degrees as measured at the vent. Only thing I can think of is the Hi Temp Thermostat or a stuck relay in the control panel. I had the control board out and and didn’t see any obvious damage. What else might it be? This dryer is only 3 years old.

    Reply
    • There are 2 relays on the board. One of them is the heater relay. So, Heater relay is stuck in ON position. You need a new control board or a new relay (if you will be able to fix it)

      Reply
  4. I Have LG dryer, thermal fuse was blown, I replaced new, 2 loads of drying cloths, again its blown, my dryer exhaust is all clear and no clog, what could be the other reason. please anyone respond.

    Reply
  5. I don’t know what else to do i have replaced all part in back. It will get hot now but it gets cherry red and it blows the fusewhat do I do now

    Reply
  6. We have a Kenmore elite h3 .
    The dryer wasn’t heating so we replaced the heating element it immediately blew fuse.
    Before we replace fuse is there something else to look for first

    Reply
  7. My Maytag Med9600sq0 dryer stopped heating up, but it would tumble. I put a new heating element in, but that didn’t do it. Then I replaced the thermal cut off kit (two parts attached to the heating assembly). The dryer worked!… For about a week. Now it’s not heating up again. I did a pretty good check of the venting and exhaust – but I guess I’ll look again. Lucky for me I bought the thermal cut off kit in a pack of 2,si I’m not dead in the water.

    Reply
  8. I have a Samsung dryer, at first I had the heating element go out, I replaced it, happened again, it was exhaust clogged with lint. That is now cleared and my thermal cut off is blowing, 3 in 3 days, not sure what could be the problem this time. Ideas?
    I’m getting good at taking my dryer apart and reassembling though.
    Jay

    Reply
    • Try to run a couple of load without connecting the vent hose (if you have this opportunity) . Will it blow thermal fuse again? Does it produce heat on AIR FLUFF only?

      Reply
      • We’ve have the same problem with our Samsung dryer. We’ve checked the lint line, that’s not the problem. Keeps blowing the thermal fuse. We’ve replaced every part but the control board which is no longer sold. Any suggestions?!?!?

  9. Hello I have a Maytag medc465hw0 dryer and it will run for a while and then shutoff but when it cools down it turns back on. Nothing gets hot on air fluff mode, but it will still shut off after 20-30 minutes. This is running without the vent hooked up.

    Reply
  10. Hi Eugene,
    Great site. Very informative.
    I have a 1997 Whirlpool LTE6234DQO, stacked w/d, electric. The 8′ vent run is very clean. New vent hook-up hose. I removed every possible piece of dust/lint from entire unit.
    Stopped producing heat, so replaced thermal fuse from heater box, 255° limit stat; 155° limit stat & 2nd fuse (?) from blower housing, (4 oem components).
    It ran & produced heat with and w/o vent hook-up, for about 20 minutes. Did a small add’l load & again, success.
    Next day, no heat . . .
    No control board in this ol’ baby. What’s left to replace?
    I assumed the heater coil is good because it does produce heat, until the fuse fails, though, I haven’t measured it.
    Please help solve the mystery. Thanks much.

    Reply
    • Do you have a multimeter? Did you check heating element, to make sure its not grounded? You need to measure resistance from the heater housing to the one of the coils. If you will have some readings on the multimeter, heating element is grounded and will be producing heat even when the dryer going to the cooling cycle.

      Reply
  11. I have a Maytag MEDB400VQ1. I’ve replace thermo cut off kit
    280148 twice. The vent is clean all the way to outside. The heating element is not grounded. I’ve tried to switch from air fluff to heat and that works fine. I hope it doesn’t blow the fuse again. It lasted about 3 weeks and then blower the second time I replaced it. Anymore ideas? Thanks

    Reply
  12. We (my wife and I) are in the process of troubleshooting our electric dryer in basement that keeps on blowing a thermal fuse. We do think the original problem was a clogged pipe with lint. Note: when the lint filter light goes on and off for 2 months, listen to it! Sigh. Ok so the venting is totally clear now. Just replaced with solid pipe too-a 3′ section in wall was pretty clogged. We cleaned up all the lint in side dryer after taking everything apart (and it was bad too). Replaced the heating element (entire), thermistor, thermal fuse -this will be the third one now. NOW looking for any blackened wires that could of got damaged when the original problem likely started all of this (smelled the burn-and a few blackened areas esp in original element). Will also try running on air to see if control bd switch is staying ON. Will ALSO see if any air backflow obvious making dryer to heat up too much. Will check continuity of everything before we proceed again as well. When I replaced the thermal fuses, the dryer would run for part of a load (did this 2X) and heat would shut down, not the tumbling. This thread is great btw! WE (my wife and I) can take apart this dryer in our sleep. haha If we are overlooking something, please help 🙂 Thank you.

    Reply
  13. kenmore elite oasis model 110.68062801 thermal fuse blowing.
    first time was that the area below the blower fan was clogged and didnt see that with out pulling front of dryer to get to thermal fuse figured that was it. replaced fuse, after one load dryer wouldnt start. fuse blown again. i replaced thermal fuse and thermister(even though thermister checked good) i checked heating element had 9.8ohms of resistance. checked connectors on element to ground and found no shorts. connected to high limit and cut offs they had continuity and used hot hair dryer to see if they would open, they did not, not sure if not hot enough or if they are basically thermal switches and are stuck shut. i am running a couple small test loads right now on lower heat. first was with just air and it disnt heat up then bumped it up to low didnt get to hot now trying medium and so far it seems to be working. will check temp here soon. the first fuse i replaced was with a cheap one off amazon not sure if it was a cheap knock off and not rated right.

    Reply
    • update when running on medium heat it wasnt heating. pulled apart to see i forgot to connect the cut off so. connected back up plugged back in and now heating but is heating even on just air. getting pretty hot. so think either high limit or cut off stuck shut. or would this lead to the control panel?

      Reply
  14. I have a Samsung electric dryer, Model DV218AE. Stopped heating 11-20-2019. Found the Thermo Fuse tripped. Would still run etc… The heating element had burned through the coil and caused the problem. Unit is at least 10 years old. Changed the heating element and both the Therm Fuse and High Limit Thermostat on heater. (Cleaned all the venting, interior of the unit along with blower etc… Ran well afterwards.

    11-30-2020 quit heating again . Weird almost one year to date. Found the Thermo fuse tripped again. Checked the heating element, all good. ( Was not dirty but vacuumed the interior again. Replaced both Thermo Fuse and High limit again on heater. Ran well.

    2-8-2021 tripped the Thermal fuse again on heater. Could not find any issues with any lint or kinks in the vent line. Replaced the Thermo fuse and High limit again.

    3/22/2021 not heating again. All working except no heat. Have been so careful for the past year to keep the vent screen clean, lint out of lines and interior of unit etc… Heating unit has continuity. High limit is ok. Tripped the Thermo Fuse. on heater.

    1. How many bends can the vent line have before it exits to the exterior? It comes out the back at a 90 deg. down then has a gradual 90 deg arc transition, to go to the left on out straight to the exterior of the home. Run is 8 foot. Could this be the issue of having back pressure and causing to much heat in the unit?
    2. Is there something else I am missing as when it does run, it heats and runs well and no other issues have occurred. I remember that you had told others to check the heat temperature coming out of the back before installing the venting to exterior. What was that temp. what should it be at or no more and why? What would be causing it to be too high to trip the Thermal Fuse?
    Thank you.

    Reply
    • Main reason why it keeps tripping fuse is poor airflow. Dryer Exhaust temp should be in range between 150-185F
      Did you think about installing a dryer vent booster? it helps dryer with poor airflow

      Reply
  15. We changed the thermal cutoff fuse a month ago. It had blown when I put a sopping wet quilt in the dryer (long story on why I did that). Dryer has been working great since….not taking near as long to dry clothes as before. Last night, I put the same quilt in to dry, only this time the washer had actually spun properly and the quilt was not sopping wet. Apparently, fuse is blown again because dryer is running but not heating. Would the heaviness of a wet quilt cause the fuse to blow? I have put other loads in that I’m sure were just as heavy, but my dryer seems to hate this quilt.

    Reply
    • I don’t think weight of the load can cause these issues. If it was my dryer i would check temperature of the dryer exhaust while drying quilt or on any other load. BTW, when did you clean dryer vent line last time?

      Reply
      • My son used a snake tool to check for any blockages to the vent line a month ago when we had this problem. Unfortunately, the line runs thru the attic (next house I will make sure dryer is vented to outside). When we get the new fuse I’ve ordered, we will check it again. Thanks for the reply.

  16. I have a Samsung Electric Dryer that keeps blowing the Thermal Cutoff (Heater Assembly) Fuse.

    I replaced the heating element about a year and a half ago, and replaced the thermostat and thermal cutoff fuse with it and replaced the thermostat And thermal cutoff fuse again two times approximately four and six months later. I cleaned the lint out of the vent line before the last time; it was very full.

    Two weeks ago it blew again, so I bought a set of all four thermostat/thermistor/thermal fuses replaced them all. The new thermal cutoff fuse blew after a week and I replaced it yesterday. It lasted one load and blew again.

    I have checked the dryer vent as best I can, It is clear of lint as far in as I can reach at both ends and air flows freely out of the vent when the dryer is running.

    I am at my wits end. Am I just getting bad parts, or is there something I am overlooking?

    Thanks,
    Tim

    Reply
    • Did you try to run a dryer on Air Fluff only? If its going to heat up on that cycle, most likely control board relay failed

      Reply
      • After replacing the thermal fuse again… Running the dryer on Air Fluff doesn’t heat it up but it does get very hot even when set on medium or low heat. It seems to know not to turn on the heat in Air Fluff, but not how to keep it from overheating when it is on.

      • Another thing to try is to disconnect dryer vent hose and let it run (even if you said vent line is clean). Will it blow a fuse again?

  17. This is in addition to my previous post just a few minutes ago. The vent is clear and has also been undone in the back of the dryer atm. Should I unscrew and open the closed vent area on the left by the blower wheel as well?

    Thanks,
    Cindi

    Reply
  18. Hi,

    I have a samsung he model #DV42H5000EW/A3, there has been no heat we originally changed the thermal fuse on heating element and the thermostat ( I think that’s what it’s called also there was a wire that was burnt going to the heating element but the element appeared fine. Ran for several months no problem and then the same fuse blew again decided to change the heating element, the same fuse and the thermistor again just in case even though the element looked fine, it blew again attempting to dry just a towel. Again a different wire from the fuse to the thermistor was burnt so repaired that and did the test where you bypass the fuse and everything seemed to run okay at least the load dried. I’m buying an oem fuse can you tell me what else to check as far as ohms and what not and how I check them should the wires be off, etc, I know to unplug the dryer but that is it. Should i also change the fuse by the blower i assume that is the other fuse that came in the package with element and fuse and thermistor. Sorry so long. I’ve also done the check with air fluff and there is no heat.
    Thanks so much for your time.
    Cindi

    Reply
    • Hi Cindi, you dont need to change fuse on the blower wheel. Thermal fuses should be checked for continuity, heating element should be checked for resistance (around 10 Ohms) . Make sure to squeeze wire contacts a little bit, to provide proper continuity. Thats why wire on the heating element was burnt, because you didn’t tight contacts after removing them from the element.

      Reply
      • Hi Eugene, my thermal fuse out on my lg front loaded dryer about 1 year ago. Last thursday my dryer stopped heating again. So I went and bought another thermal fuse and put it on. I dryer 1 load of laundry and now not heat again. Cleaned the inside off the dryer while replacing and cleaned and everything. It is getting good air flow, help please

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