whirlpool dryer won't start but has power

6 Common Causes for a Whirlpool Dryer Not Starting

A dryer that doesn’t start can leave your spirit just as dampened as your clothes. But a laundry setback doesn’t have to ruin the day or end in a complex repair. Common causes for a Whirlpool dryer not starting range from power issues to incorrect settings and some have simple fixes.

Whirlpool Dryer Not Starting? This Could Be the Problem

Whirlpool dryer troubleshooting can be frustrating if you don’t know where to start. Our list of the 6 most common reasons starts with simple causes that can rule out a repair.

#1. Dryer Not Getting Power

Sometimes a Whirlpool dryer not starting is more of a power issue than a dryer malfunction. To make sure your dryer is receiving adequate electricity here’s how to evaluate your incoming power:

  • Make sure the dryer is correctly plugged into the proper electrical outlet.
  • Check for tripped breakers or blown fuses. If needed, reset any tripped breakers and replace blown fuses.
  • Avoid using an extension cord. Most extension cords can’t safely transmit the electricity required to power a dryer.

whirlpool dryer not starting

#2. Problem with Whirlpool Dryer Settings

If your Whirlpool dryer won’t start but has power, confirm that you’ve selected the right dryer settings. To start drying the dryer control knob should be set to the “Automatic” or “Timed” cycle. If the “Wrinkle Reduction” option on some models is selected, the dryer won’t start immediately.

Some dryers also have a “Control Lock” or “Child Lock” setting that locks the control panel to prevent the dryer from starting. To disable this setting, hold the “Start” button down for 3 seconds.

#3. Dryer Door Not Latching Shut

When attempting to start the dryer, make sure the door is properly closed. As a safety precaution, a Whirlpool dryer doesn’t turn on if the door isn’t closed and latched. Even if the door appears closed, gently push to make sure it’s latched. Confirm that all clothing is in the dryer and that trapped items aren’t preventing the door from closing correctly.

If the door won’t latch, it’s possible that the latching mechanism is broken and requires professional replacement.

whirlpool dryer troubleshooting
Image from WonderHowTo

#4. Blown Whirlpool Dryer Thermal Fuse

If there is a part malfunction when your dryer isn’t drying clothes a blown thermal fuse is often the cause. A dryer’s thermal fuse will trip to prevent the dryer from overheating, cutting power to the dryer. While a thermal fuse can malfunction over time, clogged dryer vents are a common trigger that blows the fuse.

When assessing for a blown thermal fuse, check your dryer vents, cleaning them of any visible debris. If multimeter testing of the thermal fuse reveals a lack of continuity, it needs to be replaced.

#5. Faulty Dryer Start Switch

Are you wondering why my Whirlpool dryer won’t start when I push the start button? It could be because the dryer start switch is faulty. If the dryer doesn’t make any noise or motion when pressing the start button it’s likely the start switch is the problem. If multimeter testing confirms a lack of power to the switch it requires replacement.

my whirlpool dryer won't start when i push the start button
Image from Sears Parts Direct

#6. Defective Whirlpool Dryer Motor

If the above parts are both working properly, it’s possible that a defective dryer motor is responsible for your Whirlpool dryer not starting. Before replacing the motor, first make sure there are no obstructions blocking the motor’s blower wheel.  If the wheel is unobstructed, it’s likely that the blower motor is defective and requires professional replacement.

If your Whirlpool dryer not starting continues to be a problem, it may be time for a professional dryer repair service. Call Oak Valley Appliance to schedule an appointment!

David lange

David Lange

In 1982 David went to work for his mom as a service technician and has been servicing appliances ever since. He is the owner of Oak Valley Appliance, an appliance repair company in Tehachapi, CA, with local techs also serving Lancaster, Ridgecrest, and surrounding areas.