Monday, September 23, 2013

Hung out to dry

Our dryer is not working right.

It has one of those settings where you can set it for "more dry/normal dry/less dry" and it either buzzes or turns the heat off once a sensor picks up that the clothes are dry. Only....the sensor doesn't work anymore, and neither does the timer. When it reaches the end of that cycle, it automatically kicks over to the timed dry, which runs for an additional hour. And THAT kicks over into air dry, which runs an additional 40 minutes. In all, it's a very long time for a dryer to be running - it's a waste of energy, a waste of money, and it's a fire hazard.

I'm debating how to handle this situation.

One, we could turn the buzzer on, and just run down and turn it off (which entails leaving the door open to make sure it doesn't restart itself) whenever it buzzes. The problem with that is that it's LOUD, and it doesn't stop buzzing like it used to - it just goes and goes and goes until you get there, or it kicks itself over to the next cycle. The volume is enough to wake Baby M up from her nap, which, you know, is usually when I have a moment to do laundry. So, that sucks.

The second option, which I've been doing lately, is to set it to about the 25-minute mark on the timed dry, which then kicks into air dry, giving the clothes just over an hour to tumble, mostly without heat. It works pretty well, but, you know, the dryer's still broken.

Option three is to find someone to repair it. $$$

Option four is to replace it. $$$$$ and not necessary - I think it's still got plenty of life in it.

Option five is to try to repair it myself. The Frugal Girl did this with her dryer (different problem) which is inspiring. I'm nervous because we're pretty sure what's wrong with it (the dryer timer motor is bad, and needs to be replaced) and the part is about $100. What if it doesn't work and we have to go with option three or four anyway? What if I mess it up worse than it already is? What if, what if, what if? (I guess we could always line dry, but it is coming up on winter here in Minnesota....)

Have you ever fixed an appliance and lived to tell the tale? What should we do?


  1. Are you sure the dryer timer is a motor (which is electrical) or not just electronics?? Maybe look for your dryer's service manual.

  2. sorry, it does look the dryer timer has a motor. hopefully it is an easy fix.

  3. Just a little plug for line drying. I have several drying racks that I set up in my basement for clothes so that I rarely use my dryer (it came with the house; I never would have bought one on my own). It's amazing how much longer clothes last and continue to look new if you hang dry rather than use a dryer. So you save money on clothes in the long run and money on the electric bill too. I grew up helping my mom hang dry clothes on a line outside in the summer or in the basement in the winter, so I got used to that young. I was disappointed with how hard the dryer was on my clothes when I was in college, so I got drying racks for my dorm room and kept them as I got older and lived in various small urban apartments. Now I have a house with a whole laundry area in the basement. It's also convenient because you can just let the clothes hang there until you have time to fold and put away, whereas if you don't fold the clothes right as they finish in the dryer, they get wrinkly.

    Good luck if you decide to do the dryer repair yourself!

    1. I do line dry a lot of things - about 90% of my clothes, diaper covers, that sort of thing. But the cold, damp Minnesota winters don't allow for towels, jeans, or diaper inserts to dry before getting mildewy, so the dryer is a must for the next few months!


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