Dryer Shutting Off Mid-Cycle

Watch this on YouTube - How to Troubleshoot your Dryer that Shuts off Mid-Cycle

There are a couple things that will cause your dryer to shut off before it has finished drying your clothes.  The issue we are talking about here is when the dryer shuts down in the middle of a cycle.  Below is a list of things that will cause this to happen.  This will help you in the troubleshooting process and steps you need to take to fix it.

Dryer MotorBad Motor

There are a couple signs that you can be sure you have a bad dryer motor.  When a motor starts to go bad, it will run hotter than it normally would.  This excess heat build up will cause the motor's overload protection to kick in and shut the motor down.  Most of the time the motor will start back up after it has had some time to cool.  At some point it just won't start back up no matter how much it has cooled down.  Another sign that the motor is going out is when you stop the dryer while it's running, then try to start it back up.  More often than not, it will not be able to.  All you will hear is a humming sound but the motor won't turn.  Normally when you press the start button on your dryer, it should kick right on.  After the motor wears, the hum will get worse and worse when you start it up.

Dryer Thermal FuseThermal Fuse

The thermal fuse on your dryer is a little white thermostat that tells the dryer that the blower housing is cool enough and to keep running.  When you have an airflow restriction or a cycling thermostat that has stuck closed, the blower housing will get too hot.  When this gets too hot the thermal fuse cuts the power to the motor and shuts the dryer off.  This is to prevent a fire or burning of your clothes.  When the thermal fuse trips, it's telling you that you have a problem that needs addressed.  A quick way to tell if this is why your dryer stopped before the end of a cycle is, to bypass the thermal fuse and try to start the dryer.  If it starts up, you probably need to clean your dryer vents or lint filter housing.  Do not dry clothes with the thermal fuse bypassed.

Dryer Blower WheelBlower Wheel Obstruction

The blower wheel is the fan that moves air through the dryer and out the venting in the rear.  This fan is usually connected right to the motor shaft.  When you leave something in your clothes when you stick them in the dryer then can get lodged into the blower housing.  The object will prevent the blower fan from rotating and of course this will prevent the motor from turning.  This could happen at anytime during a drying cycle.  A way to check for this is to simply open the door and try rotating the dryer drum.  If you are unable to turn it by hand, then you probably have an obstruction.  This will require you to disassemble the dryer and remove whatever is stuck in the housing.

Circuit PanelCircuit Breaker

The circuit breaker in your house can go bad over time.  It may trip at a lower amp draw then it did when it was new.  If this happens, then at anytime the heater cycles on in your dryer, it can trip the fuse.  You would have to reset the breaker for the dryer to come back on.  Replacing the breaker would be something you would want to do in the near future if you want to continue to use your dryer without it shutting off all the time.