Why Is Kenmore Dryer Not Heating?

Kenmore is one of the most trusted home appliances brands working since 1927. Kenmore dryers are consumers’ favorite due to their reliability. But sometimes, these dryers stop heating and as a result, your clothes won’t dry. In this guide, you will be provided with the basic reasons why Kenmore dryer is not heating and their solutions.

Causes and Fixing Guide for Not Heating Kenmore Dryer

If your dryer is not heating properly, your clothes will not dry. This could be frustrating, especially in winters. If you are here reading this guide, it means you are facing this problem. So, look at the given reasons to find the cause of your problem and its solution as well. The reason behind stopped heating of your Kenmore dryer could be any one of the following.

1. Blocked Vent

The dryer vent work to remove the extra heat produced during the dryer cycle. It removes excess heat to prevent the dryer from catching fire. If there is any blockage in the dryer vent, it will affect the overall heating ability of the dryer. Clogging in the dryer vent will stop the dryer to heat.

Kenmore Dryer Vent


  • You can check the vent by running a dryer cycle.
  • Place your hand near the exhaust pipe and check if the air is coming out warm.
  • If you feel that the air is not as warm as it should be, then it shows that vent is cloggy.
  • Turn off the dryer and remove the back cover to access the vent.
  • Check if there is any blockage, remove it manually.
  • Also, inspect exhaust pipe for clogs.
  • If you find any obstacle in the way of airflow, then immediately remove it with your hands.

Clogging in the vent can cause severe damage, including fire. Thus, be very careful with your dryer vent and make sure it will remain block-free.

2. Clogged Lint Screen

If the lint screen of your Kenmore dryer is clogged, it will not allow the dyer to heat effectively. As a result, your clothes will not dry, or it may take longer than usual.

Lint screen


  • Turn off the dryer.
  • Remove the lint screen by accessing it through the user manual.
  • Inspect the lint screen thoroughly.
  • If the lint screen is dirty, you need to remove the excess lint with the help of a clean cloth.
  • Take a cloth that should be soaked in hot water having dish-soap in it.
  • Clear the lint screen with the help of this cloth.
  • You can also use a toothbrush for cleaning the lint screen.

If your lint screen is not cloggy, then you should move to another possible reason for not heating the Kenmore dryer.

3. Damaged or Blown Thermal Fuse

If the thermal fuse of your Kenmore dryer is blown up, then the dryer will not heat efficiently. The fuse basically protects the dryer from overheating. It could be located on both blower housings or at any one of them. The thermal fuse should be closed for proper continuity inside the dryer.


To check the thermal fuse, you will have to follow the given easy steps.

  • Please turn off the power supply to the dryer first.
  • Access the thermal fuse through the manual.
  • Take a multimeter and touch its terminals with the connecting points of the thermal fuses.
  • If it shows a zero reading, then it means the fuses are fine.
  • But if a faulty reading appears on the multimeter, then it means there is a problem with the continuity.
  • Replace the blown thermal fuses with the new ones to start your dryer’s heating.

If the thermal fuses are fine, it could be another reason for not heating the Kenmore dryer.

4. Uneven Load in the Dryer

The most common cause of distorted heating in the dryer is uneven load present inside it. If clothes are unevenly distributed in your dryer, they won’t dry. The dryer’s heat cannot reach to the each cloth and disturbs the drying process.


Load clothes evenly in the dryer and keep them as close to each other as possible. And make sure that you are rotating the clothes 180 degrees halfway during the drying time. It will expose both sides of the clothes to the heat, and the dryer will work better.

5. The problem in the Heating Element

The heating element or a heater of a Kenmore dryer warms the air before it enters the dryer. With time, this heating element damages or burns out. As a result, the burnt heating element causes the dryer not to heat.


If you have to determine whether the heating element is burnt out or not; you can use a multimeter. The heating element in the Kenmore dryer is located at the front section of the dryer in the bottom right corner.

  • Turn off the power supply to the dryer.
  • Remove the bottom panel with a screwdriver.
  • Access the heating element present in the right corner.
  • Take a multimeter and check its continuity.
  • If it shows a faulty reading, it’s better to replace the heating element.
  • You can take professional help in replacing your Kenmore heating element.

6. Malfunctioning of High Limit Thermostat

The purpose of a high limit thermostat in the dryer is to monitor its temperature. If the dryer overheats, then the high limit thermostat shuts off the burner. If it is faulty, it will shut off the burner even if your dryer is not overheating. This is a rare case, but you should also check it.


The high limit thermostat is located under the dryer vent at the backside of the Kenmore dryer. You have to check its continuity. Test its continuity with a multimeter. It is recommended to check the continuity at room temperature.

  • Turn off the dryer and access the high limit thermostat at the back of the dryer.
  • Take a multimeter and touch its terminals to the attaching points of the thermostat.
  • If the thermostat isn’t showing any continuity, you will have to replace it.

Thermostat continuity check

7. The problem of Incoming Power 

If your Kenmore dryer is not heating efficiently, it could be due to incoming power issues. A dryer usually needs two legs of 120 volts, equivalent to 240 volts. If the incoming power is not according to the needs of the dryer or is higher than the desired voltage, then the fuse may trip. As a result, the dryer won’t be heating anymore.


Check the fuse box and main circuit breaker. If you find any burnt-out switch or wire there, you should replace it immediately. Also, check the voltage on the fuse box and circuit breaker with the help of a multimeter. If there is a problem in the continuity of the fuse box or main power supply, then contact your electrician to fix this issue.

8. Faulty Main Control Board

If your Kenmore dryer is not heating, then there could be a possibility that the main control board is faulty. Although it’s a rare case, it could be one of the reasons why your dryer is not heating if everything else is fine.


It’s hard to test the main control board. You can at least try to inspect it. Check carefully if you find any burning signs in control board components. If yes, then you will have to replace the control board. Call a professional to replace the main control board of your Kenmore dryer.

Final Words…

This guide provides you with the common causes behind the not heating Kenmore dryer. But if, after all these solutions, your dryer is not heating, then you must seek professional help from a technician.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why is the Kenmore dryer not drying the clothes anymore?

The blocked or clogged vent is the leading cause that doesn’t allow the Kenmore dryer to dry your clothes. The blockage in the vent will hinder the warm airflow through the dryer. It would help to clean your Kenmore dryer vent 1-2 times a year for its proper functioning.

2. How to reset the Kenmore dryer if it is not heating?

If your Kenmore dryer is not heating, it could have various reasons. But if you want to reset it, you have to reach the circuit breaker. Flip the circuit breaker on and off 2-3 times to reset your dryer. There is no resetting button directly present on the dryer.

3. What happens when the Kenmore dryer’s thermostat goes out of order?

A thermostat in the dryer is responsible for monitoring the dryer’s temperature. If the thermostat goes out of order or is damaged, it causes an imbalance of temperature inside the dryer. A minor defect in the thermostat will result in less heating of dryer. But if the thermostat is completely damaged, then the dryer will not heat anymore.

4. How do you know if your dryer’s heating element is bad?

You will have to check the metal wire coil of your heating element. If you find the wire solid and without any damage, your heating element is fine. But if the wire is worn out or damaged, then it means your heating element is bad or faulty. It will help if you replace the heating element to resume the normal heating of your dyer.


  • Stephen Powers

    Appliance repair guy from Washington. I am majorly experienced in dishwashers, water filters and refrigerators, AMA on my twitter account.

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