Replacing the Heat Element In Dryer – Steps on How to Check and Install a New Element

One of the most common problems with a laundry dryer lies with the unit’s heating element. The heating element is basically the resistive coil which is not that different from a home’s electric heater. However, heat elements do come in various shapes and sizes.

The coiled wire is generally made from nickel and chrome alloy. The wire receives as well as resist a controlled electric current which results in the wire heating up. The produced heat is capable of drying your clothes.

There are times that the dryer just won’t heat up or heats too slowly which could indicate a faulty heating element. For today’s guide, we’ll walk you through some pointers about replacing the heating element in the dryer.

How to Check a Dryer’s Heater Element

How to Check a Dryer’s Heater Element

Photo credit to Home Improvement Stack Exchange

As mentioned, if there are issues with how your dryer heats the clothes, there might be a problem with your heating element. Here are the steps to check if the heating element needs to be replaced.



  • Screwdrivers
JEGS 69-pc Magnetic Screwdriver set Awls Torx Square Phillips Slotted Bits 80755
  • 69-Piece
  • (34) Screwdrivers with Magnetic...
  • (30) Assorted...
  • (1) Magnetic Bit...
  • (4)...
  • Continuity tester
AstroAI Digital Multimeter with Ohm Volt Amp and Diode Voltage Tester Meter (Intelligent Anti-burn)
  • Check out our VIDEO on the left side and take a quick tour of multimeter! Accurately measures: voltage, DC current, resistance, diode, continuity and more
  • Troubleshoots: automotive and household electrical problems safely and accurately
  • Ease of use: data hold and large digital display with backlit LCD for visibility in dimly light areas
  • Sampling speed: 2 times per second. Overload protection on all ranges
  • Built-in kickstand for hand free use. Protective rubber corner guards for drop protection
  • Pliers (needle-nose)
Stanley 84-096 5-Inch Needle Nose Plier
  • Long tempered jaws for working in hard to reach areas
  • Excellent for work in tight places
  • Forged steel construction, Rust resistant finish
  • Double-dipped handles provide comfortable use
  • Length: 5 inches; backed by lifetime limited warranty

1. Pull the plug of the dryer from the outlet. Loosen the screw from the vent clamp which will release the vent from the back of the unit. Pull back the dryer from its initial location so you have more space to work on.

2. Locate the unit’s heat element. Now, this depends on the model of the dryer. Generally, the heating element is found either behind the drum or behind the panel located in the back of the unit. Basically, it all depends on the unit’s manufacturer.

If the rear panel appears flat, you might need to disassemble the unit and take out the drum to access the heating element. The best practice is to find out the dryer brand and model number and look for the instructions online or just refer to the user manual.

3. Locate the high-limit thermostat on the side of the heating element housing. It’s basically a black, round-shaped thermostat which has two wires connected to it. Then, pull the wires from the thermostat’s terminals with either your hand or with pliers.

4. Clamp one end of the tester’s alligator clip to one of the heating element’s terminals. Then, touch one end of the tester’s needle to one of the heat element’s terminal. Then, touch the other needle of the tester to the dryer’s other terminal. If the tester doesn’t glow, then the heating element needs to be replaced.

Guide on Replacing the Heat Element In Dryer

Guide on Replacing the Heat Element In Dryer

Photo credit to Whiskeyyourway Deco Insp.

Once it’s determined that the heat element is faulty, you will to replace it. Amazon has a wide variety of dryer heating elements for many different brands. Below are the steps to replace your old, faulty heating element.

Dryer DC47-00019A Heater Element, DC96-00887A & DC47-00016A Thermal Fuse, DC47-00018A Thermostat for Samsung Dryer
  • The parts work with the specific Samsung and Whirlpool Manufactured Dryer Models including Sears/Kenmore, Kitchenaid and Roper Models. ( Non-OEM )
  • DC47-00019A 35001247 Deyer Heating Element has 5/16" male terminals. It is rated 5300 Watts, 240 Volts. Replaces part numbers PS2038533, AP4201899, 35001247.
  • DC47-00018A Thermostat is a Limit Thermostat, 260 degrees F Thermal Fuse. Replaces part numbers PS2038383, AP4201898 and 35001092.
  • DC47-00016A Thermal Fuse has 1/4" male spade terminals. Replaces part numbers PS2038533, AP4201899, 35001087, WP35001087.
  • DC96-00887A Thermal Fuse a High Limit Thermostat Thermal Fuse for the Heater. 320 degrees F Thermal Fuse. Replaces part numbers AP4207819, AP5966894, DC96-00887C, PS2038484, PS4276292, DC96-00887A, WP35001193, 35001193, AP6008689 and PS11741829.

1. Unplug the unit from the outlet.

2. Remove the dryer’s exhaust hose. Unscrew the back panel and take it out. Pull back the dryer from the wall so you will enough working space.

3. Check the back of the dryer. On the right side, you should see a long metal housing (probably colored gray). The element should be inside. Again, the location of the element will differ across different models and brands.

4. Using a screwdriver, unscrew both the black sensor from the top and bottom.

5. Unhook the two wires that are below the sensor. Also, you might also find a heating fuse to the left, under the larger casing. In most cases, either of these parts can be the source of the problem. If you are unsure, you can take all of them to the hardware or appliance store where they can test them.

6. Carefully lift up the whole gray casing. If done right, you should be able to easily take it off. Otherwise, try pulling a little harder. There might be some screws and a small bracket that need to be removed.

7. Flip it upside down and you should see one screw that holds the element in place. Remove the screw and carefully take out the element. Check the coil for potential damage or breaks. From here, you can also test it.

8. If the element is deemed faulty, you can install the new element and following this guide in the reverse order. Make sure that you put everything back in and everything is tight and secure. Once you are done, plug the dryer and turn it on.

Working Heat Element In Dryer

Photo credit to Home and Auto repair

Is It Working Now?

Hopefully, this guide on replacing the heating element in the dryer has helped you fix the problem.

Again, this is a fairly easy fix to perform but you have to make sure that you install everything properly. Also, don’t forget to always unplug the unit before doing any of the steps above.

If in doubt, it certainly won’t hurt to be safe and have your friendly-neighborhood technician check your clothes dryer for any problems.

About The Author