Manage My Life

What would cause the thermal cut-off to open again after replacing it?

by Manage My Life Last activity date:
January 22nd, 2010

My electric Kenmore dryer model 110.63912100 was not heating but still ran. A technician on this sight recommended testing the cut thermal cut-off for continuity and I did and found one that was open. I replaced both from the replacement set and turned the machine on to find that it was heating. I tested it twice for about 30 seconds. Opened the door and there was hot air both times. We loaded it with we clothes and it ran for an hour an the clothes were still cold and wet. The same Cutoff-tml Number: 3977394 is showing open or no continuity. What else should I look for. I don't want to start buying parts I don't need. The heating element is still getting a continuity reading. Please help.

Dryers , Kenmore , Washers
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Answers (1)
Joey S
First, locate both house circuit breakers dedicated for the dryer and reset both breakers by flipping them both OFF and ON 2-3 times and then check the dryer for heat.

Since it was heating for a short time and then the thermal cut-off opened again would lead me to assume that the dryer element could be shorted to ground or the venting system is restricted.

Disconnect the power cord from the power source

and remove both wires from the heating element and check each terminal of the heating element to the heater housing with your ohm meter. If it shows continuity between either of the two terminals and the housing, the heating element is shorted and it needs to be removed and replaced. A heating element shorted to ground will not cycle off. The heating element will always have 120 applied to it as long as the timer is turned on which will eventually cause the thermal cut-off to open. A restricted venting system will also cause the thermal cut-off to open. Check the venting system for any blockages or restrictions. Also do not run the dryer with the door open or it can also cause the thermal cut-off to open.

The heating element must have 220-240 volts applied to it or it will not heat. I added the wiring diagram below so that you can see the heating circuit. The element needs line one (L1) and line two (L2) voltage in order to heat.
Answered in 21 hours
by Joey S
January 22nd, 2010
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