Clothes in a dryer

Why does my dryer keep stopping? 8 possible reasons

When you’re in the middle of laundry day, you rely on your dryer to work smoothly. An issue mid-cycle can disrupt your routine and leave you feeling frustrated. However, understanding some of the potential causes behind this problem and knowing how to troubleshoot them can help get your dryer back up and running. Read on to explore some reasons why dryers might stop mid-cycle and learn potential solutions to address each issue.

Can you fix a dryer that keeps stopping?

It is possible to solve some dryer problems by checking for simple things like clogged vents or a blocked vent screen. You may be able to resolve the issue yourself. However, complex issues with specific dryer parts may require professional repair or replacement. It is always a good idea to start by checking your owner’s manual for guidance.

Why your dryer keeps shutting off mid-cycle

Is your dryer shutting off mid-cycle, leaving your laundry damp? There could be various reasons behind this issue. Read on to explore some potential reasons and possible solutions.

Choosing the right cycle is one crucial component. If your clothes aren't as dry as you'd like, consider switching to a different cycle, like "Normal” or “Regular." For optimal results, opt for an automatic cycle. These cycles detect the moisture level inside the dryer drum; once the desired dryness is achieved, the dryer automatically shuts off.

Clothing in a dryer

1. Dryer is overheating

When your dryer is overheating, it may be due to a variety of reasons such as lint buildup in vents or a blocked exhaust hose. This can lead to inefficient drying and may cause the dryer to shut off mid-cycle as a safety measure to prevent overheating.


Possible solution

To troubleshoot an overheating dryer, start by cleaning the lint filter and dryer vent regularly. Lint buildup restricts airflow, potentially causing overheating. Regular maintenance can help reduce the risk of overheating and may improve dryer performance. Follow these steps:

  • Clean the lint filter: Remove lint after every load to help maintain proper airflow.

  • Inspect the dryer vent: Remove lint buildup from the vent using a vent cleaning brush or vacuum.
  • Check for obstructions: Ensure nothing is blocking the vent's exterior exhaust opening.
  • Schedule professional maintenance: If the issue persists, consider hiring a technician to inspect and clean the vent system thoroughly.
Dryer power cord

2. Power or electric issue

An issue with the power to your dryer may cause it to stop mid-cycle. This could be a simple fix that you can do on your own. 


Possible solution

To check for power or electric issues with your dryer, start by ensuring it's securely plugged into the power outlet to prevent intermittent power loss. Next, check the circuit breaker or fuse box for any tripped circuits, and reset the breaker or contact an electrician to replace a fuse if that is necessary. Additionally, unplug the dryer, and then inspect the dryer's power cord for damage or wear. If problems persist, seek assistance from a qualified electrician to inspect connections and diagnose any underlying issues.

Dryer drive belt

3. Damaged or broken drive belt

If your dryer's drive belt is damaged or broken, it can disrupt the drum's rotation, causing the appliance to stop functioning properly.


Possible solution

To resolve this issue, you may need help to replace the broken drive belt. Because this requires you to remove the dryer panel, you will want to schedule service with a professional.

Gas valve solenoid coils

4. Dryer is not heating

If your dryer is experiencing gas valve solenoid coil issues, it can lead to interruptions in the heating process, causing the dryer to stop functioning correctly.


Possible solution

To address this problem, you’ll want to contact a professional, as you'll likely need to get an inspection and potential replacement parts.

Dryer door switch

5. Door switch is broken

If your dryer's door switch is broken, it can lead to interruptions in the drying cycle as the appliance may not recognize when the door is open or closed.


Possible solution

To resolve this issue, you may need to replace the faulty door switch. Start by checking your owner’s manual or contacting your appliance manufacturer.

Dryer motor

6. Dryer motor issues

If your dryer's motor is overheating, it can trigger the thermal overload switch, shutting down the machine to help prevent fire hazards.


Possible solution

To solve a problem with the dryer motor, you may need to hire a professional, as it will require removing the dryer’s panels.

Dryer moisture sensor

7. Defective moisture sensor

If your dryer's moisture sensor is defective, it can incorrectly signal that your clothes are dry, leading to premature shutdowns.


Possible solution

Depending on your model, inspecting and repairing your dryer’s moisture sensor may involve removing the panels and control board, so it is best to schedule professional service if you suspect this issue.

 Dryer door latch

8. Door latch issues

If your dryer's door latch is broken or worn out, it can cause interruptions in the drying cycle as the door may not close properly.


Possible solution

You may want to consult a professional for help with this issue, as it often involves dismantling the door or removing parts. Refer to your owner’s manual for more details.

What to do if your dryer keeps stopping after troubleshooting

If your dryer keeps stopping, and you’ve already checked for issues like clogged vents or faulty sensors, it may be time to consult a comprehensive dryer troubleshooting guide and consider repairs or professional help

Explore Whirlpool® Dryers

If it’s time to shop for a new dryer, Whirlpool brand dryers have the features you need to keep up on laundry day. Select models include features like Intuitive Controls that let your dryer help guide you to the right cycle and Moisture Sensing, which tracks both moisture and temperature to adapt drying times and end the cycle at just the right time.

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