Can I Replace a Dryer Belt Myself

  • Replacing a dryer belt is possible to do yourself, but it requires some mechanical knowledge and experience.
  • The first step is to unplug the dryer and remove the top and front panels to access the drum and belt.
  • Inspect the belt for any signs of wear or damage before removing it, as this could indicate a larger issue with the dryer.
  • Take note of how the old belt was positioned before removing it, as this will help when installing the new one.
  • Clean any debris or lint from the drum and surrounding areas before installing the new belt.
  • Install the new belt by following the same path as the old one, making sure it is properly tensioned and aligned with any pulleys or rollers.
  • Reattach the front and top panels, plug in the dryer, and test it to ensure proper function.
  • If you are unsure about your ability to replace a dryer belt yourself, it may be best to consult a professional technician for assistance.

Is your dryer making strange noises? Is it not drying your clothes properly? You may need to replace the dryer belt.

It’s a common issue that can be a real pain point for homeowners, especially if you’re on a tight budget. A broken dryer belt means you can’t use your appliance until it’s fixed, and calling a repairman can cost you hundreds of dollars.

But what if we told you that replacing a dryer belt yourself is a doable task, even for those who aren’t handy? With some basic tools and a little know-how, you could save yourself time and money by tackling this repair on your own. In this article, we’ll guide you through the steps to replace a dryer belt and get your appliance running smoothly again.

The Quick Answer:

Is your dryer making loud thumping noises or emitting a burning smell? These could be signs that your dryer belt needs to be replaced. Without a functioning belt, the drum won’t turn correctly, causing problems with operation. Follow these steps to determine which type of belt is required for your specific model before replacing it.

Signs Your Dryer Belt Needs to be Replaced

The dryer belt is an essential part of your dryer, as it helps to turn the drum that holds your clothes. Without a functioning belt, your dryer won’t be able to operate correctly. Here are some signs that may indicate you need to replace the dryer belt:

Loud Noises

If your dryer is making loud, thumping noises during operation, it could be due to a worn-out or broken belt. The sound is caused by the drum hitting against the sides of the dryer as it rotates unevenly without proper support from the damaged belt.

Burning Smell

Another sign that indicates a faulty dryer belt is a burning smell emanating from your machine. This smell typically arises when the motor pulley becomes stuck and starts rubbing against the broken belt.

Inability to Start

If you press start on your dryer but nothing happens, it could point towards a broken drive motor or a snapped dryer belt. In such cases, you may need to replace either one or both components.

If you notice any of these signs in your machine, then it’s time to replace your dryer belt.

Determining the Type of Belt Required for Your Specific Dryer Model

Before replacing your dryer’s belt, ensure that you have purchased the correct replacement part for your specific model. Follow these steps to determine which type of belt is required for your machine:

1. Find Your Dryer’s Model Number

Locate your appliance’s model number by checking either inside on the door frame or outside on its back panel.

2. Research Your Dryer’s Belt Type

Use this information along with some online research on various home repair websites and manufacturers’ sites like Whirlpool and Kenmore to determine the type of belt required for your model.

3. Check the Belt Size and Length

Once you know the type of belt required, ensure that you have the correct length and size. This information is often listed in the manufacturer’s manual or on a sticker located inside the dryer near the door frame.

Tools and Materials Needed to Replace a Dryer Belt Yourself

Here are some tools and materials you will need to replace your dryer belt:

Tools:

  • Flathead screwdriver
  • Phillips head screwdriver
  • Pliers
  • Socket wrench set with extension bar
  • Vise grip pliers (optional)

Materials:

  • New dryer belt that matches your specific model number
  • A vacuum or soft cloth to clean out any accumulated lint or debris while replacing the belt.

Step-by-Step Guide or Tutorial for Replacing a Dryer Belt Yourself

Here are step-by-step instructions on how to replace your dryer’s broken belt:

1. Unplug Your Machine from Its Power Source

Before starting, unplug your machine from its power source to avoid any electrical hazards during repairs.

2. Remove the Top Panel of Your Dryer

Locate and remove screws holding down the top panel of your dryer with either a flathead or Phillips screwdriver.

3. Remove Front Panel Screws

Remove screws that hold down your front panel using either a flathead, Phillips head screwdriver, or socket wrench set with an extension bar.

4. Lift and Remove Your Dryer’s Front Panel

Carefully lift and remove your dryer’s front panel from its hinges to gain access to the drum and belt.

5. Loosen the Tensioner

Use a flathead screwdriver or pliers to loosen the tensioner located near the motor pulley. This action will release the tension of the broken belt, making it easy to remove.

6. Remove Your Old Belt

Carefully slide your old belt off of your dryer’s drum and motor pulley.

7. Install Your New Belt

Slowly and carefully position your new belt over your machine’s drum, making sure that it is aligned correctly with any markings or grooves on the drum surface. Then thread it through the idler pulley and motor pulley, ensuring that it is tightened properly.

8. Reassemble Your Dryer

Reattach your dryer’s front panel, secure its screws in place, then replace its top panel by screwing it back in place.

Safety Precautions to Take Before Attempting to Replace a Dryer Belt on Your Own

Here are some safety precautions you should take before attempting DIY repairs on your dryer:

  • Unplug your machine from its power source before starting any repair work.
  • Avoid wearing loose clothing or jewelry while working around moving parts.
  • Wear protective gloves and eye goggles to avoid contact with sharp edges while removing covers or panels.
  • If you’re unsure about any step of this process, do not proceed further and call a professional technician instead.

In conclusion, replacing a dryer belt is a task that can be done by oneself with the right tools and knowledge. However, it is important to exercise caution and follow proper safety procedures when working on any electrical appliance.

Frequently Asked Questions about Can I Replace a Dryer Belt Myself

Are dryer belts easy to replace?
If the belt in your dryer breaks, the drum won’t be able to spin. The good news is that it’s a simple fix and can be easily replaced.

Is it expensive to replace a dryer belt?
If your dryer needs a repair, the cost of a new dryer belt is relatively low compared to other parts. The price of a new belt will depend on the brand and model of your dryer, with costs ranging from $10 to $40. If you prefer, you can also hire a professional to install the new belt for an additional cost.

Are most dryer belts universal?
Dryer drum belts differ based on the brand and model. Some of the common brands are Maytag, Kenmore, Whirlpool, and GE. It’s important to find the exact replacement dryer drum belt for your specific model.

Will a dryer drum turn if the belt is broken?
The dryer drive belt is a lengthy and narrow belt that loops around the entire drum, a tension pulley, and the motor pulley. With regular use, the belt can become worn and eventually break. When this happens, the dryer will no longer rotate.

Will dryer shut off if belt breaks?
If the belt in your dryer breaks, the drum will stop spinning because the belt is connected to a motor that powers it. The belt must be properly positioned and tensioned in order for the drum to turn. If the belt is not functioning, the dryer will not start when turned on.

Is it worth fixing a 10 year old dryer?
As a general guideline, it is suggested that if your dryer is around 10 years old, it’s more beneficial to replace it completely, particularly if the cost of repairs is significant.

Charlie Thomson is Appliance Mastery's expert on laundry appliances. With a degree in mechanical engineering and over 8 years of experience in the appliance repair industry, Charlie is a go-to resource for homeowners who want to tackle common issues with their washing machines, dryers, and dishwashers.

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