Saturday, February 10, 2018

I did it myself!

to learn how to take your dryer apart search it up on You Tube  

Most of the time I use a clothes line.  It's cheap! But when it's humid in summer, you can hang your wet clothes out for days and it will never dry it will however sour and mildew! In Winter your wet clothes will freeze I have had this happen, it's really funny when you can stand your pants up in the corner.  LoL. 
So that means a clothes dryer comes in handy.   This is the set I purchased in the 90's so they are kinda old. For the most part, still working. Except the dryer got soooo hot I couldn't even touch it. Needless to say I couldn't use it.   (tumble drum---->)
(<----thermostat compnent)

A dryer is a very simple machine.  It has a control center at top...mine has 3 switches the temperature selector, the start button, and the cycle timer switch. Then the cabinet on mine is like one piece of metal bent to a 3 sided configuration, then the front with the door attached, and the top...inside you have the drum it simply sits in there is turned by a motor and a belt much like in your car only smaller. 
There's 2 thermostats in the dryer one in the door, and one on top of the heating element this big round thing. So the problem according to my research could be the heating element is broken somewhere along the way and touching the cabinet and being grounded...or the thermostat is stuck open and not working. There's 2 of them I replaced one with a used one I found for $2.  I hope it works..and the other I ordered a replacement on Ebay. I made some notes to remind me what wire goes where and I took photos.  The heating element was not broken so I think it's the thermostat stuck in the open position, such a silly thing it has a bit of metal in it when it reaches 250 F it opens to cool the tempt down, then it cycles on and off in this it can get stuck...and I believe that is the problem.  You can not see this piece of metal it is sealed in the component. 

(control center ------->)

This is the control center from the back (top photo) showing the 3 electrical components, I had to replace the one on the end the shaft was broken off the temperature  selector knob, I accidentally broke if off when I was moving the dryer out of the house...I got a used one at the appliance store downtown for $10.

Wish I could repaint this control panel but then all the graphics would be gone, so it looks okay and will have to do! I probably could find a replacement one but that is simply cosmetic. 

the heating element 
The heating element of this Hotpoint Dryer (General Electric) is attached from the inside in the very back you have to completely disassemble the unit to get at it! Some have the heating element right at the back for easy access.  

                        the motor                                                                                the belt tension pulley

I decided to paint it while it was apart, the almond color does not go well in my quirky Laundry/Solarium Room so I wanted stainless steel.  I didn't do a perfect job on the paint but it's not bad looking either.  Here's the top getting it's second coat.  I cleaned out all the dust bunnies of which there were many!! I took the cabinet outside and actually used my air compressor with blow off connection and blew it all out! 

Painting the top & cabinet 

This is the fan, its sucks the air down through the lint trap, and then out through the vent pipe, and then out to the outside.  I gave it a good cleaning out.  Once I got the cabinet painted and while waiting on the thermostat to arrive I began the reassembly.  I can get to the top thermostat with the top of the cabinet off.  So I put the drum back in you simply sit it in and on back of the drum is a spindle, and it fits into the hole in the center of the heating element.  The belt goes around the drum then onto the shaft of the motor and the tension pulley keeps the belt taught so the drum is pulled around by the spinning belt! I tested it by rotating by hand, it glides around smoothly.

the drum back in place

I didn't take a before shot! But I intend to paint the washer too so I'll do a before on it they look identical.  That is the washer in the background, it will be moved when everything is done in this room.  

the front panel with door reattached 

Once the thermostat arrived it took me 2 seconds to install it!  I then put the top back on and fed the wiring harness up through the top and attached the wires in the correct place to the back of the control center.  

The control center attaches to the top and now it's ready to test.  Not one screw was left over but honestly there is very little holding these things together, all you need are a couple of screw drivers one with a star head a straight, and a phillips, and then a couple sizes of nut drivers.   I used a small battery powered screwdriver, and just changed out the bits as needed.  


IT WORKS! I dried a load of sheets...the only problem is some black marks got on the sheets..I hope that goes away in time...I had to re-level the drye it was not sitting Another $80 saved in this case more like $180.  My estimate. (service call probably $100 he wanted to charge me $40 for a $12 component, and the other parts he would have gouged me for those too... My cost was $10 for the used selector switch, $2 for the used door thermostat, I got the main thermostat for a bid of $12.50 free shipping, 3 cans of stainless paint $15.  So I did it for about $40 give or take....And some of that paint goes to the washer.  I probably should of waited till I had the washer done too before posting this but one Appliance make over is about like any other...the washer is only getting a paint job. 
I will try to remember to take an after photo when it's all back in place, that could be a while! 

Every day is a new Adventure.


  1. Great job! And did you know that the paint color you used is now the NEW stainless on new appliances? They showed it on a commercial from a local appliance store here. If you can keep those machines going good for you. The new machines are annoying and the washer sounds like a coffee grinder. These fix it companies are out of touch with there prices. Just like the 3 companies that came in to give me prices on a new furnace, not one of them bothered to see if it was fixable. New furnaces range from $2,500. to $3,000. I was fixed for $100. Just wish I had your talent.
    Love your plants that is a great room.

    1. Thank you Jo! I have a long way to go yet to get that room put together the way I want it to be but it's getting there! I know the repair men have to make a decent living, but they price themselves out of getting the work sometimes. When I had my small business I felt if I kept my prices lower, then I'd never be out of a job and that worked!! I was always busy, but I didn't get rich!

  2. You are brilliant. the only experience I can relate to here is hanging clothes in freezing weather. Half a century ago I hung diapers outside every day and brought them in like cordwood to thaw in the middle of the living room in front of our oil stove. (All the other laundry once a week too).

    Have you thought of making your own YouTube channel? I'm sure you'd be popular.

    1. Oh I didn't do the cloth diapers, so my hat is off to you on that one. Today is my son's 37th birthday!! I do put many of my DiY projects on You Tube, but I generally forget to take a video or what I'm doing!

  3. Great skills! Too many are quick to get rid when something doesn't work right. My mum used to hang my Dad's jeans out so they could freeze, she used to stand them in the corner of the room, as kids we thought it was hilarious!! It doesn't get that cold here now though.

    1. Thanks Pam, I figured I couldn't hurt it if it wasn't repaired when I put it back together then I'd get rid of it and buy a used one. The frozen pants thing is funny back when I was married, I froze my husband's pants and he brought them in to thaw so he could wear them the next day but when they thawed they were soaking wet..LoL, he was so surprised.

  4. A great job Sondra. As you say they are relative simple machines with only a few basic components. Ours is an old too but keeps going, one thing that helps to prolong their life is to make sure the filter is always clean and clear as it stops them overheating. I always take pictures of any wiring and You tube is a great source. Council dumps are a good source for spares, thats if they will let you. I've had a replacement washing machine door once. Doesn't DIY give you a tremendous sense of satisfaction, apart from having cracked it yourself you've not been ripped off.

    1. You hit the nail on the head...I did not get ripped off, and I learned so much! My dad gave me the inquiring mind to jump in and do things without wondering if I could, just do it was his attitude...too bad he died so young we would have been some team. My Mom on the other hand is the exact opposite so she chose the right man to share her nest! The dumps here won't allow one to scavenge, and this is a long response but I must share. Someone picked up a n old TV at the dump...took it home plugged it in and that night their house burned they SUED the County and WON on the basis that the county did not protect them and due to that the faulty TV burned down their home! SO immediately the County changed the law "no more scavenging". SO that is the answer to our lax in Gun Laws...if I get shot I will sue the County for not protecting me with a gun law!


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