Top 10 Reasons Your Clothes Dryer Takes FOREVER to Finish
Does your dryer run, and run, and run, and run – and your clothes still aren’t dry? That can be a very aggravating problem. It can cause your stress level to rise, and your patience to wear thin.
It can even make you choose between being late for work or wearing a clammy piece of semi-dry clothing!
So what’s the cause of this highly irritating problem?
Here’s a list of the 10 most common causes of a slothfully performing dryer. Some will require the aid of a repairman to diagnose and fix. And some might be your fault.
#1: Air Flow Restriction
To work properly, your dryer must continuously cycle moist air out, and fresh air in. Any restrictions in the venting system or ductwork can impact the amount of time the dryer takes to complete a load.
Your dryer’s ductwork should be thoroughly cleaned at least once per year.
#2: Clogged Lint Screen
People sometimes forget – accidentally or on purpose – to clean out the lint screen. And the more clogged the screen, the longer the dryer will take to finish.
But many people don’t realize that they need to do more than just remove lint from the screen. That’s because fabric softeners and dryer sheets can leave a residue on the screen that will build up over time. Occasionally washing the screen with warm, soapy water will prevent the residue from accumulating sufficiently to impact the drying time.
#3: Fuses and Circuit Breakers
Everybody knows that a tripped circuit breaker can prevent the dryer from running. But did you know that most dryers use two circuit breakers (or fuses)? It’s true. And it’s possible for one breaker to trip, and not the other. When that happens, the dryer may run, but it won’t heat up.
#4: Overloaded Dryer
Most people know that overloading a dryer will slow the drying time. But given our hectic schedules, it’s still tempting to pile a lot in the dryer with every load. In the long run, though, reducing the size of each load will probably save you time and aggravation.
#5: Under-loaded Dryer
Did you know that running with a very small load might also reduce drying time? That’s because the clothes won’t tumble properly with too few items. And that can prevent even and efficient drying.
If you just have one or two items to dry, consider adding a few more pieces to the load – even if they’re already dry – to assure proper tumbling.
#6: Improperly Leveled Dryer
If your dryer isn’t level – and particularly if it tilts front to back – the uneven distribution of the load in the drum can increase drying time.
#7: Washer Misuse
Are you sure that you used the proper settings when you washed that load of clothes? If not, the load may have come out of your washer wetter than normal. And that will obviously increase the drying time.
If you use a gentle setting, for example, for clothes that would tolerate a normal setting, the spin cycle will not remove as much water as possible.
#8: Washer Failure
A mechanical problem with your washer may be reducing the effectiveness of the spin cycle. That will leave clothing wetter than normal when you load it in the dryer, and extend the drying time.
#9: Improper Sorting
Just as it’s best not to wash dissimilar types of clothing together, it’s also best not to dry them together. Your dryer will perform best if you don’t mix light and delicate items with heavier, slower-to-dry items.
#10: Wrong Power
If your dryer needs 240-volt power (most do), but it’s plugged into a 120-volt circuit, it will likely run. But it will underperform. Drying may take up to 3 times as long as it would when plugged into the proper outlet.