Is it worth replacing a heating element in a dryer?

As an Amazon affiliate, we earn a commision from qualifying purchases.

So, is it worth replacing a heating element in a dryer?

You have probably been quoted a price that’s very close to a new dryer by your repairman or you have repeatedly replaced the part yourself and you feel that you’re better off buying a new dryer as the replacement bill is fast accumulating..

In this article, I will share with you what I think about replacing a heating element in a dryer starting with whether (and when) it makes economic sense..


Is it worth replacing a heating element in a dryer?

The short answer is YES! It is typically cheaper to replace the heating element in your dryer..

Yeah, that’s a fact…

You see, if you check the price of the component on most repair parts sellers websites, the average cost of a new dryer heating element is between $30 to $100.

Meanwhile, a new dryer can cost you about $300-$350 (the cheapest)- and of course, most premium quality models/brands are way more expensive..

So, if cost is your most important consideration, then it is clear from the above comparison that replacing a dryer heating element is more than worth it..

Okay, I understand that a second-hand clothes dryer (from second-hand shops/websites) could be cheaper than brand new ones but we all know that second hand appliances can disappoint.

Yeah, the truth is there’s always a risk of the appliance not working properly or even failing to work totally a few weeks after buying.

So yes, changing out the heating element could be your best decision moneywise (and it could fix your dryer’s heating fault permanently).

But I also think that it is important you be sure that the reason why your dryer is not heating the air is due to a bad heating element- you surely do not want to spend money only for the dryer to continue acting up.

So, what signs should you look for to be certain that it is the heating element at fault?

And how exactly do you test the heating element in a dryer (testing it is obviously the best way of verifying it is gone).

Well, here are the tell-tale signs that the heating element needs to be replaced..


When to replace a heating element

You want to be certain that you’re seeing the following signs (at least one) before going ahead with your dryer heating element replacement project

  • Your dryer takes longer than usual to dry your clothes.
  • The air in the dryer never heats.
  • Your dryer gets too hot

Also, the heating element is sometimes the cause if:

  • Your dryer keeps tripping the breaker
  • Your dryer won’t stop

Needless to say, you need to do further investigations for the latter two, since there are numerous other potential triggers for the two malfunctions..


How to test dryer heating element

As I had mentioned, if you suspect that the heating element in your dryer has shorted (hence your dryer’s constant heating issues), then your next step is testing it.

That’s because you need to be absolutely sure before paying for the part(and doing the replacement yourself or paying more money for someone to do it for you).

With that in mind, below is how you can test the heating element(in virtually all dryers)…

Dryer heating element test Step-by-step (we test it for continuity so you need a multimeter/ohm meter)

  1. Unplug your dryer
  2. Remove the heating element(from the dryer)- you can also disconnect the wires going to the heating element.
  3. First visually inspect the heating element- in some instances, you’ll easily notice a break in the element coil.

Quick Tip: Gently move each coil(on the element) back and forth- the idea here is to make it easier for you to see where the break is precisely.

  1. If you haven’t seen any breaks in the element coil, grab a multimeter- you’ll want to do a continuity test(or ohm test) to see if your element is bad/good.

Here is what you need to know about dryer heating elements:

There are quite a few most common heating dryer element types: single coil, dual coil, and triple coil.

Now, to verify the type your dryer has, check the number of wire terminals the element has.   

To point you in the right direction:

  • Single coil element= 2 wire terminals
  • Dual coil= 3 wire terminals
  • Triple coil= 4 wire terminals

For the remaining steps, read: how to test heating element in a dryer (step-by-step for each type) –just click on the link and follow the instructions

If you need a new dryer heating element, you can shop for a new one on Amazon – simply search with your dryer’s model number to narrow down to a compatible part.

We recommend Amazon because they sell new OEM heating elements for Maytag, Kenmore, Amana, Whirlpool, Estate, Roper, Frigidaire, Tappan, Westinghouse, Electrolux, Kitchen Aid, Jenn Air, LG, Samsung, Bosch, and more very affordably.


Did you know?

Do you know that the major cause of the heating element shorting out is your dryer overheating?

And that dryers normally overheat due to poor airflow?

Put in another way, if you can take the appropriate preventative measures to ensure perfect airflow in your dryer when it is running, you are likely to save the part (it won’t repeatedly burn out).

So how do you do that?  

Well, always clean your lint trap (after each dryer load) and your dryer vents(yearly).

Remember airflow in a dryer include both intake and exhaust- and you might be aware that there will be airflow issues when the lint trap and vents are full of lint.


Is it worth replacing a heating element in a dryer? – Recap

The short answer is YES! That is because it is typically cheaper to replace the heating element in your dryer than buy a brand new dryer..

Reminder: If your dryer has been having persistent heating issues, you need to clean out the vents and ducts(thoroughly)–it will prevent airflow problems which frequently lead to your dryer overheating(it, in turn, shorts the burning element).



Leave a Comment