This article will explain how to diagnose a heat-related issues for Whirpool Duet Gas Dryer (model GGW9250SU0) that had problems with low or no heat.
You can go here to see how I replaced fixed my Whirlpool gas dryer by replacing the thermal fuse and gas valve coils.
|As is the case with most DIY projects, this task may involve handling electricity and/or natural gas which are dangerous and if improperly handled, can cause serious injury or death. If you are unsure, please STOP and seek professional help.|
- Small and medium sized Phillips and Flat screw drivers
- 1/4″ socket + mini ratchet (Don’t have one? Pick up one of these (SATA 25-Piece Ratcheting Stubby Screwdriver Set – ST09342SJ);
- Phillips drill bit
- Digital Multimeter (DMM) – I don’t recommend using cheap $10 multimeters from Radioshack because more often than not, these will give you erroneous readouts. Although I did use one such cheapo analog unit in the beginning, I have since upgraded to a DMM. If you do not have one, you can buy a decent one for around $25 like this one (Mastech MS8268 Digital AC/DC Auto/Manual Range Digital Multimeter Meter). Not as good as a Fluke units ($150+) but as a home DIYer, I simply did not need all those bells and whistles found in a Fluke unit. If you want to see more options, read my post How to Buy a Multimeter
- Test Lead Kit – Why do you need it? Though most multimeters come with a standard set of probes, I found that certain in-place component testings inside appliances require contortionist acts. This is where alligator clips come in handy (if you don’t already own one, I recommend this (Extech TL809 Electronic Test Lead Kit)
- Disposable baby wipes – Don’t laugh; you can clean some amazingly tight spaces with baby wipes and a stick!
During one week in cold November, my wife complained that our dryer was taking too much time in drying clothes. She said the drying time was so slow, it would sometimes require 3 to 4 cycles to dry a small load with clothes staying relatively cool.
To investigate, I removed the toe kick panel (Fig. 1) and observed while trying different drying cycles. The only thing that stood out was that a glow stick (i.e. lighting match) would repeatedly come on for about 4 times without being able to light the gas.
So basically at this point, I had a very expensive gas dryer, air drying my clothes, wasting lots of electricity and time.
STEP 0 – Check lint screen and exhaust pipe for excessive lint / debris / obstructions;
STEP 1 – Activate the diagnostic test mode (note: ironically, diagnostic test cannot detect faults with certain components like thermal fuse, gas valve coils, etc. These components need to be tested directly with a multimeter).
- Dryer is plugged in and all indicators are off;
- Press the following button sequence within 5 seconds: More Time –> Less Time –> More Time –> Less Time
- At this point, all indicator on the coles are illuminated with “88” showing in the “Estimated Time Remaining” display. This confirms that the test mode has been entered successfully.
- Display Fault / Error Codes:
- Code PF – Power Failure has occurred while the dryer was runninng. Press START to continue the cycle or press PAUSE/CANCEL to clear the display;
- Code E1 – Thermistor Open; Execute Test #3a;
- Code E2 – Thermistor Shorted; Execute test #3a;
- Code E3 – User Interface or Software Mismatch; Execute Test #5;
- Moisture Sensor Test – Locate two metal strips on teh face of the lint screen housing; Bridge these strips with wet cloth; If a beep is heard and a software revision number is displayed on the console, the sensor is OK (confirmed with my dryer);
STEP 2 – Diagnostic tests in STEP 1 did not indicate any fault so I moved on to the next troubleshooting steps;
STEP 3 – Verified that natural gas was present;
STEP 4 – Proceed to checking wiring harness:
- Unplug the dryer from the power source;
- Shutoff natural gas;
- Remove the toe kick panel to access various sensors (Use a 1/4″ socket + ratchet to remove two small sheetmetal screws);
- Visually identify thermal fuse, thermistor, and heater assembly (high limit thermostat, flame sensor and gas valve coils) locations
- Check all connections for broken or loose wires, failed terminals (corrosion or black heat marks), or wires not pressed into connector far enough;
- Check for corrosion on connectors by disconnecting and reconnecting wires
- Look at top of connectors to check for broken or loose wires
- If corroded terminals are found, use emery or fine sandpaper to carefully remove it without damaging the wire sheathing;
STEP 5 – No issues with visual inspections fro STEP 4; proceeding to resistance check (power cord must be unplugged from outlet);
STEP 6 – Mark the thermal fuse wiring harness (so we know which wires go into which terminals) then remove thermal fuse, using 1/4″ socket. My multimeter reading came in at infinite resistance (a.k.a. open circuit) so this part NEEDS TO BE REPLACED;
STEP 7 – To test the gas valve coils (there are two coils; one nearest to the toe kick panel has 3 prongs; the other has 2 prongs), I marked and removed all wiring harness and measured the resistance across terminals. Although the resistance readings fell in the normal (but higher) range, but I decided to replace them because they actually have moving parts inside;
STEP 8 – At this point, I was fairly confident that thermal fuse and gas valve coils were causing my dryer to not heat properly, so I placed an order with AppliancePartsPros.com
Depending on your situation, you may need to purchase some parts listed here.
Although these parts are available in multiple places, I highly recommend AppliancePartsPros.com because they provide 365 day unconditional refund policy where you can return unused parts for a 100% full refund (you are still responsible for return shipping).
I have had no trouble returning “just in case” extra parts and receiving prompt refunds.
- Wire Harness, Gas Valve, Part # 3401850
- Door Switch, Part # 8519323
- Wire and Door Switch Assembly, Part # 8283288
- Thermal Fuse, Part # 3392519
- Gas Burner Assembly, Part # 8318276
- High Limit Thermostat, Part # 3403140
- Thermistor – NTC 10k Ohms, Part # 3976615
- Wire Harness, Moisture Sensor, Part # 3406653
- Gas Valve Coils, Part # 279834
My next article, How to Replace Thermal Fuse and Gas Valve Coils will show how I was able to fix my Whirlpool Gas Dryer with no heat problem.
I hope you found this article to be useful and I would love your comments. If you are interested in more DIY articles, I invite you to sign up for my newsletter. Just look for a signup form on the upper right hand side of your screen. Thanks!