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Thread: Why does a GE dryer coil keep failing?

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    Why does a GE dryer coil keep failing?

    I have a GE dryer DCL333. First, the dryer would not start, so we replaced the thermo-limiter. Then it started, heated, ran a short time, and stopped, blowing the circuit breaker. After checking the breaker, and the plug, we restarted. Then it started and ran, but would not get hot enough. We realized the coil on the heating element had a break in it. We replaced the coil, and it started and ran hot. The only problem now was the timer control did not advance. We checked all the timer control connections, and the thermostat, and the vent. When we looked at the heating element again, the coil had been touching the element pan ever so slightly, so we readjusted it, and one wire connector to the thermostat seemed loose, so we tightened that. When we started the dryer again, it blew the circuit breaker again. This time, the coil had burned through again in the same spot, where it had been touching the pan slightly. Why does the coil keep burning out? Is it indicative of something else that is wrong? I do not want to keep buying an expensive part that keeps failing.

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    the new heating element is supplied as a tight nichrome wire coil. it is installed from one terminal through porcelain stand offs to the other terminal. you must be very careful with the element not to overly stretch it when you are threading it through the supports. as the coil heats up IT WILL SAG. Any contact with the shell will blow the breaker.

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    We were told this coil was the exact length it needed to be so we did not stretch it at all. Thought it was spaced evenly. Somehow it sagged and hit the element ( the first time it stopped) and after readjustment, the wire coil split in the same place as it was touching before and separated. The heat must have weakened it. The heat was still working at temp. We bent it up so it's not touching the element now. Should I replace it again?

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    Should I change out the thermostat on the element pan (assembly)?

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    if you think the thermostat is partly no good, it can't hurt. get a new coil and be very careful installing it. be VERY SURE of the part number when you seek the replacement. ask the supplier if there are any technical upgrades to this particular dryer.
    please go to this site:
    www dot repairclinic dot com and type in your model. look for heating element. what comes up is the whole assemby including the housing. evidently others have had problems so they supply the housing with the element because of obvious reasons.
    Last edited by HayZee518; 03-14-2011 at 11:15 PM.

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    I was told by the part supplier that I needed this particular coil. I will confirm that this is indeed correct with General Electric this morning. It is made by Electrolux, part #5300622034. I paid $47 for this coil, (but $15 less than what Sears wanted for it!) which is considerably more than all the other coils I was looking at online that were in the $10 range. It is disappointing that an expensive part like this would fail immediately, but it was user error.

    The thermostat on the pan seems to check out fine with my multimeter. What should be the correct range for that? I hate to keep buying parts if I end up frying the whole thing and have to buy new!

    Thanks for your response, it is much appreciated, as I am a novice! But I am learning. It is a great thing!

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    Exclamation

    GE wants $178. for an entire heating housing assembly- they do not want to sell just the coil to fit the pan, so I could not get a part number for the coil. Maybe there have been problems with replacing just the coil on their system? The thermostat is not included in that price, that they are selling for an additional $49. What a rip off.

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    GE dryer DCL333
    That model number is incomplete. There should be another 4-5 letters and numbers after that.

    We replaced the coil... When we looked at the heating element again, the coil had been touching the element pan ever so slightly
    The element being metal will expand as it heats. It needs to be taught in the housing insulators or when it expends it can sag and could come into contact with the housing, creating a short circuit.

    The problem now was the timer control did not advance.
    Some 'auto' or 'permanent press' settings run power for the timer through the heater circuit. A problem with the heater could affect advancing of the timer on those settings but not on a 'timed' setting.

    one wire connector to the thermostat seemed loose, so we tightened that.
    Was there any signs of discoloration, arcing or burning on the terminal the connector was attached to or on the wire terminal itself? If so, the component with the terminal and the wire connector might need to be replaced not just tightened.

    GE wants $178. for an entire heating housing assembly
    I looked up a model DCL333EA0AA dryer. It was made for GE by Frigidaire (aka Electrolux). You can see the GE and Frigidaire equivalents for that heater assembly at the following links:

    LINK > GE DCL333EA0AA Dryer Heater Housing Adm.

    LINK > Frigidaire equivalent Heater Housing Adm.

    If the replacement coil can't be installed properly so it doesn't sag, the whole heater assembly might need to be replaced.

    JMO

    Dan O.
    www.Appliance411.com
    The Appliance Information Site

    =D~~~~~~

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    Hello Dan,

    The total GE dryer model # is DCL333EAOWW.

    I will double check the thermostat connectors but did not see anything discolored before. The thermostat tested ok with the multimeter, at R200 is in the 5 range. Does that reading sound right?

    QUestion- can the coil be fixed by sottering? Do I need to spend another $47?

    I purchased the Electrolux through a local supplier, thought the price sounded good, but will look at your suggestions!

    Thanks!

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    Scrap This Dryer

    I have repaired a Kenmore with a similar heating coil setup - this is a hazardous setup since this type of coil can easily make contact with the cabinet, short out, and produce tremendous heat - the constant motion and vibration quickly leads to this. If I were you I would scrap it. If you are short on money, you can get another dryer on Craig's list for as little as $50. Even better deals are possible at some home stores - our Menard's will sell used traded in appliances for only $9 with a 10-day period to return if not usable or repairable. Get a dryer with a heating unit in a housing on the back. For tips on how to repair a dryer, see Repair My Dryer - Free Tutorials To Help You Fix Your Dryer!
    Drywall Taping & Finishing For Beginners
    http://drywallinfo.com

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