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dryer takes forever to dry

6 Reasons Why Your Dryer Takes Forever to Dry


Doing the laundry is already a chore in and of itself, but when your dryer takes too long to dry a load of laundry, it can really try your patience. There can be several reasons why your dryer takes forever to dry a load of clothes. Let’s review the top six reasons why your dryer doesn’t dry clothes properly.

Steps to Check When Your Dryer Takes Forever to Dry

#1 – Problem with Incoming Power

Your dryer is a major appliance that draws major power. Its power supply is crucial to its performance. Generally, for ideal performance and drying power, your dryer should be connected to a 240-volt circuit. Having it connected to a 120-volt circuit can make its drying time three times longer, in comparison to a 240-volt circuit.

Also, an important reminder: Never plug your dryer into an extension cord. Extension cords are not meant for high-voltage appliances and can be dangerous to use.

#2 – Dryer is Overloaded

We know it’s tempting to cut corners when trying to get laundry done in the fastest way possible. We’ve all tried to add just a few more garments to a wash load to “save time”. However, is your dryer leaving clothes damp? When your dryer takes two cycles to dry a single load due to being overloaded, it does not save time at all. Large loads of laundry also take longer to dry, wasting energy.

If your dryer is taking forever to dry, you’ll need to review its maximum capacity in its owner’s manual. If you’ve misplaced your manual, most brands have copies online, now. When your dryer takes too long to dry a load, ensure it is not overloaded.

#3 – Washer Leaves Clothes Too Wet

If your dryer takes forever to dry, it could very well be that it isn’t a malfunction in your dryer, but rather your clothes washer. If excess water is left in your load of clothes after the washer has completed its cycle, it will take your dryer longer to dry the load. Please refer to your clothes washer owner’s manual to verifiy that you have the settings correct.

#4 – Dryer Lint Screen Needs Cleaning

As your dryer removes moisture from your clothes, bits of fibers can dislodge from the cloth, forming lint. The tumbling-action and warm air of the dryer helps blow these bits of lint into the dryer lint-trap. Within the lint-trap is a lint screen, or a removeable type of metal filter, that catches and accumulates these bits of fibers.

dryer takes too long

The lint screen can become compacted with lint over time, and can cause longer than usual drying times. When your dryer leaving clothes damp becomes a problem, cleaning the lint screen is a quick and important step in dryer maintenance. To maximize the air flow of your dryer, it is best-practice to clean the dryer lint screen between every load of laundry.

#5 – Clogged Dryer Vents

When a dryer doesn’t dry clothes properly, it can be quite the damper on laundry day. Bits of pesky lint that make it past the lint screen can accumulate and clog your dryer vent, further restricting air movement. Lint is also extremely flammable, and built up lint within the dryer vent can become a fire hazard.

To ensure your dryer vent is safe and has adequate air flow, you should clean it once a year. To clean a dryer vent, you will need to locate the vent hose, remove it from the unit and external vent hood, and use a vacumme to suck out debris from the entire length the hose. When you reinstall the vent hose, make sure it is not kinked nor pinched, which will also limit adequate air flow.

dryer takes two cycles
Image Source: Maytag/Whirlpool

#6 – Part Malfunction

If after reviewing the above, you still find your dryer takes forever to dry your clothes properly, it may be due to a part malfunction. You should consult a professional appliance repair techician. Dependable Appliance Repair specializes in washer and dryer repairs, and will diagnose and fix your appliance fast.

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