Author Topic: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?  (Read 1311 times)

MyAlterEgoIsTaller

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How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« on: January 01, 2022, 04:25:28 PM »
My 3-year old electric, ventless dryer is broken. 

I can't find anybody to fix it.  The manufacturer's repair hotline says they don't serve this area (too rural).  The retailer from which I purchased it doesn't sell or service large appliances anymore.  Every local repair shop or person has one or more of these issues:  so busy that they don't work on appliances they didn't sell; so busy that they no longer come to my remote and sparsely populated town; or have numerous credible terrible reviews and/or bad word of mouth.

I researched the error code - it means the thermistor is faulty.  I could order a new one for $24. 
But: I looked at a diagram of where this part is located, and it appears I'd have to nearly disassemble the entire dryer. 
I'm reasonably competent with basic tools, can connect wires, and I understand diagrams, and am fairly sure I could take the whole thing apart and install the new part. 
But... having never taken something like this apart before, I'm not as confident in my ability to reassemble it with all its parts fitting back together.

Has anybody done this?  If so, what do you think my chances might be of successfully fixing it myself and getting it back together in one working piece?  Is this a realistic idea, or is it not a project for an amateur?

Morning Glory

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2022, 04:31:49 PM »
I would try it,  if the alternative is replacing the whole thing.  Or you could just get two or three of these:

https://www.lowes.com/pd/41-34-in-x-22-64-in-x-14-57-in-Freestanding-Metal-Laundry-Organizer/1000194023

v8rx7guy

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2022, 04:34:14 PM »
Most likely pretty easy, you should go for it.  I've replaced the heating element in mine, and I'm pretty sure that's where the thermistor is, so it's probably the same or easier.  Check on youtube for your Make/Model and description of the job... you'd be shocked at how many random appliance fixing videos are out there, step by step and super easy.  If it's not, make just search the make of the dryer and the description of the job and it will be probably close enough for you to get an idea of the scope of the job.  Just take your time, have little holders for the screws as you take them out, pay attention to where the wires are supported and you'll do great.

scottish

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2022, 04:42:25 PM »
Yeah I agree with rx7 guy.  Take pictures and notes as you disassemble it.   Keep a couple of containers or zip-loc bags handy to put the fasteners (screws, bolts, annoying plastic thingys) in.   Be systematic.

You can often find a manual online if you haven't done this already.

BlueMR2

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2022, 05:14:38 PM »
Had to have the repair people out for both my washer and dryer this last year.  I noticed how simple they are inside.  If it's an easily diagnosed problem, there really isn't much to them.

sonofsven

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2022, 04:42:48 AM »
It's easy. Dryers are pretty simple, really. Spin and heat.
Just move it to where you have good access and get to it.
Hopefully the installer's instructions are inside the unit.
The internet is your friend here, do a search with your model name and your problem, or more specific searches like "how to remove front of front loader washing machine", things like that.
Order the part you think it is first, hopefully you won't need more parts.

uniwelder

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2022, 06:07:34 AM »
To those saying dryers are simple, I would agree in most cases, but OP states this is a ventless dryer. Ive never worked on one and I would think no one here (except European) has either. Is it a heat pump or condenser type? 

Edited to add it may indeed not be any different to fix, but Id want to see an exploded view diagram or have a rear or top cover removed to be able to get a good look at the innards. Then decide whether to attempt repair.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2022, 06:34:29 AM by uniwelder »

PMG

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2022, 08:18:27 AM »
Ive no experience with ventless, but I have done repairs to a couple electric vented dryers. The hardest part for me when reassembling was getting the belt and drum positioned correctly. I needed a second set of hands to help with that. Id try it! 

YttriumNitrate

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2022, 08:33:55 AM »
Have you watched many YouTube videos demonstrating how to repair the dryer? For repairing appliances, I find videos far more useful than diagrams or manufacturer's instructions.

MyAlterEgoIsTaller

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2022, 09:23:17 AM »
Thanks all, for the reassurance!

It's true that I have little to lose, since I can't find anybody who knows what they're doing to fix it, so the alternatives are get a new one (seems drastic, since this one is only 3 years old) or let somebody who doesn't know what they're doing fix it - which might as well be me.

It's been broken for awhile, and I've just been using drying racks by my wood stove, which works fine and is more frugal, but I do want it to get fixed eventually.

It is a ventless condensing dryer.  I don't think this will make it more complicated to disassemble or repair - it does mean that it needs to be disconnected from the washer's drain pipe (that's how the condenser drains the removed moisture), but that's very simple. 

I did find the exploded-view and wiring diagrams online, but no directly-relevant youtube videos for this particular dryer. 
I'll get the part and report back on the I-hope-successful mission.



sonofsven

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #10 on: January 02, 2022, 10:08:09 AM »
To those saying dryers are simple, I would agree in most cases, but OP states this is a ventless dryer. Ive never worked on one and I would think no one here (except European) has either. Is it a heat pump or condenser type? 

Edited to add it may indeed not be any different to fix, but Id want to see an exploded view diagram or have a rear or top cover removed to be able to get a good look at the innards. Then decide whether to attempt repair.

I've never let a lack of knowledge, skill, and experience keep me from attempting repairs!

affordablehousing

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #11 on: January 02, 2022, 11:06:16 AM »
Just a thought but to make sure that's the issue, and so the dryer works in the meantime you might just try jumping the bad switch. This happened to me recently and you can double check that's the issue by using a multimeter and checking for continuity on the thermistor. If you don't get any, it popped and you need a new one. You can jump it to make sure that's the only issue. I went nuts trying to find the right replacement fuse, only to find it had a tiny button on the back to reset it. voila, it works again!

BudgetSlasher

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #12 on: January 02, 2022, 11:18:02 AM »
I have a Whirlpool "Hybridcare" ventless heat pump dryer that's probably 4-5 years old.

Due to poor lint filtering and design, I have to to take it nearly completely apart (removing casing, controls, drum, and belts) to gain access to the coils which were suffering from a buildup of lint. I am about to have to due it again.

With my skill set I found it relatively simple, but time consuming. I will echo the tips you've already gotten ... take pictures of how everything is before you start disassembling it (better to take too many that too few and be sure to include wire routing and wiring connections) and have a way to organize screws/fasteners as you remove them. (I use jam jars and like to organize them by step/location and how they are oriented to each other).

If you have diagnosed the problem and found the replacement part, it should be relatively simple to address.

If at any point you are stumped on how to proceed with disassembly refer to youtube. Even if there isn't one for you specific dryer most manufacturers have so many parts and layouts in common between model that a dryer from the same era and maker should give you a pretty good clue of how to proceed. 

SunnyDays

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #13 on: January 02, 2022, 06:24:30 PM »
Pictures are a good idea, but a video with running commentary as you take it apart might be better.  Good luck.

BudgetSlasher

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #14 on: January 03, 2022, 08:04:14 AM »
2 additional thoughts.

There are often wiring diagrams inside on most appliance (I've seen them mostly as papers somewhere no consumer would have access, but on occasion it is a larger sticker) that can help with figuring out connections.

Also when ordering parts there is often an exploded parts diagram which can help figure out how things go together are or come apart. Some replacement part website have picture of at least a few of the parts depicted on the diagram which could help further.

Watchmaker

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #15 on: January 03, 2022, 08:47:57 AM »
Last year I disassembled and reassembled a ventless dryer successfully. I would say it was only fractionally more complicated than a vented one. Take lots of pictures and have containers for screw labeled by what part they go to.

Your dryer doesn't happen to be a Bosch, does it? My recent problem was with the water drain pump, but the heating element was broken when it first showed up.

lthenderson

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #16 on: January 03, 2022, 10:48:22 AM »
I used to design clothes washers and dryers. For the most part, no special skills or tools are needed to take them apart or put them together. One thing I will mention that most people overlook for some reason, it is much easier to work on if you turn them over gently on their side and work from underneath. It is amazing what you can access that way without having to remove all the panels to get to the same area.

Like mentioned above, there isn't much to lose if you mess up and don't get it functioning again. I look at these sorts of things as invaluable training for something similar in the future where a mess up might be more consequential.

Jon Bon

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #17 on: January 03, 2022, 11:19:34 AM »
I completely took apart my front loading washing machine. Exact same type of problem. $20 part, but $700 in labor.

I had a great video (but most machines are built the same) So I was able to do it. Also the inside of every washing machine is F*^*ing gross!

It is still plugging away downstairs, took me maybe 6 hours? Probably 1/2 of that was cleaning it out. So if you can find a good video I would for sure try it. Even without one your no worse off with a non working disassembled dryer.....

ChpBstrd

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #18 on: January 03, 2022, 11:29:07 AM »
Yeah I agree with rx7 guy.  Take pictures and notes as you disassemble it.   Keep a couple of containers or zip-loc bags handy to put the fasteners (screws, bolts, annoying plastic thingys) in.   Be systematic.

You can often find a manual online if you haven't done this already.

^This is the correct way to do it. Here's how to use zip lock bags: Create a new bag for the screws / small parts that go with each assembly. Label them with a sharpie. E.g. "Back cover", "motor mounts" to avoid having a big confusing pile.

The insides of dryers have very sharp sheet metal pieces. Wear gloves.

Morning Glory

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #19 on: January 04, 2022, 10:23:17 PM »

I had a great video (but most machines are built the same) So I was able to do it. Also the inside of every washing machine is F*^*ing gross!


How do they get gross? Now I want to take apart my washing machine and clean it, but I'm in a rental so it's not mine.  I had no idea that this was a thing that needed to be done. 

BDWW

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #20 on: January 04, 2022, 10:43:48 PM »

The insides of dryers have very sharp sheet metal pieces. Wear gloves.

This^,  I still bear the scars from my last dryer battle.

v8rx7guy

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #21 on: January 05, 2022, 08:15:49 AM »

I had a great video (but most machines are built the same) So I was able to do it. Also the inside of every washing machine is F*^*ing gross!


How do they get gross? Now I want to take apart my washing machine and clean it, but I'm in a rental so it's not mine.  I had no idea that this was a thing that needed to be done.

Washers do get a little gross.  Lots of slime / mildewy stuff inside, stinky water, etc.  The OP is talking about a dryer, however, FYI.

Jon Bon

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #22 on: January 06, 2022, 07:40:58 PM »

I had a great video (but most machines are built the same) So I was able to do it. Also the inside of every washing machine is F*^*ing gross!


How do they get gross? Now I want to take apart my washing machine and clean it, but I'm in a rental so it's not mine.  I had no idea that this was a thing that needed to be done.

Oh that stainless steel drum is so pretty and clean right? Oh it just hides the horrors underneath!

The drum sits in a tub that never really dries out. Also think about what is in your dirty clothes....

I don't think its a thing that needs done, but I was doing a repair, and it was nasty so I just cleaned it because I could.


BDWW

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Re: How difficult is it to reassemble a dryer?
« Reply #23 on: January 07, 2022, 02:46:19 PM »

I don't think its a thing that needs done, but I was doing a repair, and it was nasty so I just cleaned it because I could.

It's often not an issue on older washers, but new high efficiency washers tend to invite build-up of crud. They do often need periodic cleaning, and some even have a clean cycle.  Generally, it's just a long empty cycle with hot water and bleach.

If we don't clean ours regularly, the crud will build up and eventually come out all at once and release into the drum making for a disgusting load of clothes with crud all over them. We thought something was wrong with the drain or pumps, but no, it just happens in newer washers if they aren't cleaned.