Where is the thermal fuse on a dryer?


Written by Jordana Weiss

A dryer is a critical household appliance. Regardless of the size of your home or family unit, your dryer probably gets a lot of use and will occasionally require repairs.

Your dryer also requires many parts to stay in good working order. The thermal fuse, found around most dryers' exhaust ducts, exists to ensure that the dryer doesn’t overheat. 

Here's an overview of how to identify the dryer's thermal fuse location, reset it and replace it.

Dryer thermal fuse location.

So, where exactly is the thermal fuse on a dryer? The dryer thermal fuse is typically located on the blower housing, near the exhaust vent or duct. However, on some dryers, you can only access the fuse by disassembling and removing internal parts.

The location may vary depending on your make and model number. But looking around the duct is usually a good place to start. When in doubt, refer to your owner’s manual.

How do I know if my dryer's thermal fuse is blown?

Two common symptoms indicate your dryer's fuse is blown:

  1. The dryer will not turn on at all.
  2. The drum will spin, but the heating element will not activate. This means you can use settings like "air dry," but the dryer won’t heat up.

If you open your dryer and see wet clothes, your thermal fuse is probably blown. The clothes have been moving around during the cycle, but they are still damp.

Once a dryer thermal fuse blows, you'll need to buy a new one. Fortunately, you can probably buy a replacement part for less than $20 online. But unless you have electrical expertise, installing it is a job best left to a professional. 

Find the best appliance service specialist in your neighborhood.

How to replace the thermal fuse.

You may be able to search online for "dryer thermal fuse replacement parts," order a new part and install it yourself. However, this job is typically best left to the pros — especially if you're a DIY novice.

Here's why this is typically not a DIY project:

  • You may accidentally void your dryer's warranty, especially if you make a mistake when replacing a thermal fuse.
  • Mistakes can also cause even more damage to your machine. A professional has more expertise and is better equipped to handle this repair.
  • There may be other issues that caused your thermal fuse to fail. Having a pro address those issues can help prevent the need for future repairs.

Still determined to DIY this repair? Check out this thermal fuse replacement video by the Repair Clinic. Here are some step-by-step instructions on how to replace a thermal fuse on a dryer:

  1. Unplug the power cord and shut off the supply.
  2. Uninstall the rear panel to access the fuse. Note that for some models, you may need to fully disassemble your dryer by removing the top and front panels, front bulkhead and the drum.
  3. Detach the fuse's wires from the terminals and remove the screws.
  4. Remove and discard the blown thermal fuse.
  5. Attach the new thermal fuse with screws.
  6. Connect the wires to the terminals.
  7. Reassemble your dryer and turn it back on.

Related: How to replace the heating element in a dryer.

Find a dryer repair professional on Thumbtack.

While we’re big believers in being hands-on at home, replacing your thermal fuse is a job best left to the pros. A trained appliance repair specialist can evaluate whether the thermal fuse replacement is the only issue that needs to be addressed and quickly swap it out for a new one.

Download Thumbtack today and reach out to a dryer repair specialist in your area for a free estimate.


Do all dryers have a thermal fuse?

Yes, all dryers have a thermal fuse.

How many thermal fuses does a dryer have? 

Regardless of size or model number, your dryer should only have one thermal fuse.

Will the dryer run if the thermal fuse is blown?

Depending on the type of dryer you have, it may still perform some cycles with a blown thermal fuse.

However, many models will not turn on at all. And some will run the drum without heating the machine, so you may be able to run an "air dry" cycle.

For safety purposes, don't operate your dryer if you think your thermal fuse is blown.

Will the thermal fuse cause the dryer to not turn on?

In some cases, your dryer will not turn on if you need to replace a thermal fuse. With other dryer models, it may turn on but not activate the heating element.


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