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How Dryer Thermostats Work

The temperature of the air inside the drum is regulated using different thermostats. Thermostats open and close an internal switch when subjected to the temperature of their environment.

dryer thermostat 1

There are two different thermostats in your dryer, the operating thermostat(s) and the high limit ( safety ) thermostat(s). The only difference in these thermostats is their opening and closing temperatures.

Some common area's to find the thermostats. The operating thermostats are often found on the fan housing on Maytag, Whirlpool and Kenmore dryers. Operating thermostats for an older GE dryer are just under the lint filter area, the newer GE dryers have them on the fan blower at the front.

Safety thermostats are usually always found on the heating element housing or cage assembly.

3 wire thermostat

Some dryer thermostats are an single pole, double throw style and can usually be identified by a third wire terminal ( often smaller ) mounted towards the top of the thermostat housing (see picture above). On this style when one set of contacts opens, another set closes. This second contact ( terminal 3 ) is used to provide power to the allow the timer to advance when in a permanent press or automatic mode.

Some common "how to Identify" the thermostat for replacement. Part # identification.

Example: LS3-135

"L" Limit - opens on the rise in temp

"S" Switch

"3" Number of terminals

"135" Opening temperature

How to take apart information for GE style dryers

How to take apart information for Inglis - Whirlpool - Kenmore dryers

How to take apart information for Maytag dryers

How to take apart information for Frigidaire and White Westinghouse

How to take apart information for Admiral, Norge, Magic Chef and Crosley

Some information on the new operating multi-terminal thermostats...

Like these....

multi-terminal thermostats

Click here for some information on how these work


Dryer Parts