4 Signs You Need a New Dryer Blower Wheel

A white drying machine.
  • 1 hours
  • Intermediate
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What You'll Need
Blower Fan
What You'll Need
Blower Fan

The blower fan is a vital component in your clothes dryer. In a gas dryer, this component consists of a drum-shaped fan that is connected to the motor by an axle. In an electric dryer, it is usually a plastic wheel that draws air over the heating element into the dryer drum.

The wheel works in synchrony with the motor and creates a powerful air current. It draws air from outside the machine and circulates the air inside the drum to dry clothes.

It then expels the air outside the machine through an exhaust vent. Whether yours is a gas or electric dryer, a bad blower wheel needs to be replaced. Below are four signs that indicate it's time to replace this component.

Blower wheels rarely break by themselves, but they can crack when a motor is replaced. They can also get covered in dust, causing low air volume and some vibration.

1. Squeals or Rattling

You may hear a loud squealing or high-pitched noise from your dryer when you run it. This could potentially relate to a faulty blower wheel.

Blower wheels can also crack, which can cause a rattling sound after your dryer stops, as the drum slows down.

2. Loud Vibrations

A laundry room with a dryer.

Your dryer may vibrate loudly soon after the drum begins to move or right after it stops moving. It may even sound like there’s a pair of shoes inside the dryer. Sometimes the machine may also rumble when in operation.

A likely cause of this noise is a worn out or damaged blower wheel. A damaged wheel spins out of sync with the motor. This may cause the dryer to rumble as it runs. However, sometimes the wheel may just be clogged with lint which can also cause noise when you run the dryer.

Remove all dirt from the wheel and test it to see if the dryer is still noisy. If the noise persists, you’ll have to replace the wheel.

3. Dryer Doesn’t Dry Clothes Properly

An open dryer door.

Poor drying is usually caused by clogged ductwork, so always check this first. You might have a clog at the exterior vent, or built up lint under and around your filter.

If you don't have any clogs and you're still getting damp clothes, your blower wheel may be damaged or worn out, affecting air flow into the exhaust vent.

4. Several Cycles Necessary to Dry a Load

Again, poor airflow is usually caused by clogs, but in rare cases it can indicate a worn-out wheel.

Most blower wheels have a D-shaped hole in the center. With time, this hole can get stripped out. This loosens the tension of the wheel as it spins on its axle. The wheel spins out of sync with the motor which causes poor airflow through the dryer.

Poor airflow lowers the efficiency of the dryer, so it ends up costing you money in energy bills. If you have no clogs but you're still getting damp clothes, consider checking in on your blow wheel to see if it needs replacement.