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Electric dryer tripping breaker but not all the time.

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Electric dryer tripping breaker but not all the time.

Old 05-26-2019, 08:25 PM
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Default Electric dryer tripping breaker but not all the time.

Well I did go about 2 weeks before anything else broke!! . Our electric clothes dryer has tripped the breaker twice but has gone through 6 cycles of drying clothes without tripping. I ordered a new heater element after it tripped the first time but now it's working fine again.

I read online that it could be a bad thermistor or a bad heating element. I would think if it why is the heating element it would trip every time the element turned on.

Any ideas what the problem could be? Run it till it won't run anymore, don't fix it if it's not broken theory?
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Old 05-26-2019, 08:48 PM
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check for loose wiring at the breaker? just a thought.
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Old 05-26-2019, 09:25 PM
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Are you cleaning out the filter before or after each cycle? The heating element will get hotter if there is limited airflow and that can cause excessive current to flow. Check the outlet duct and vent for obstructions.This can vary according to the dryer load or the ambient temperature.
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Old 05-26-2019, 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by GaryDoug View Post
Are you cleaning out the filter before or after each cycle? The heating element will get hotter if there is limited airflow and that can cause excessive current to flow. Check the outlet duct and vent for obstructions.This can vary according to the dryer load or the ambient temperature.
Filter gets cleaned after every cycle according to my wife. Nothing blocking the dryer vent either.

I didn't check the breaker but I will, thanks for the suggestion.
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Old 05-26-2019, 09:41 PM
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Yes, the breakers are expendable and not meant to be tripped repeatedly without limits. It could be a worn out breaker. This from a guy who used to work for Square D Company ;-)
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Old 05-27-2019, 04:52 AM
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does it trip on starting? or after running a while
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Old 05-27-2019, 04:57 AM
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I would replace breaker and check connections before throwing random parts.

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Old 05-27-2019, 05:16 AM
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Had a bad breaker on a hot water tank, changed breaker and problem solved!
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Old 05-27-2019, 06:16 AM
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Take a amp draw reading with the dryer running. Check to see if it's under or over the breaker rating.
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Old 05-27-2019, 06:22 AM
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Originally Posted by GaryDoug View Post
Yes, the breakers are expendable and not meant to be tripped repeatedly without limits. It could be a worn out breaker. This from a guy who used to work for Square D Company ;-)
This. I was told Square D made their 2 lines of breakers, homeowner and commercial, because the homeowner line was light duty and not made to trip/turn off circuits frequently.

I've always felt my breakers for heat. Heavily loaded breakers get hot.
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Old 05-27-2019, 09:00 AM
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Originally Posted by edwardh1 View Post
does it trip on starting? or after running a while
After it's been running for a while.

Originally Posted by billinstuart View Post
This. I was told Square D made their 2 lines of breakers, homeowner and commercial, because the homeowner line was light duty and not made to trip/turn off circuits frequently.

I've always felt my breakers for heat. Heavily loaded breakers get hot.
I am in the electrical business and the guy that sells fuses told me that a breaker looses capacity every time it trips and should be replaced. Of course he would say that, he sells fuses that HAVE to be replaced after they blow.

I have a laser thermometer so I will check the breaker for heat, I should have thought of that.

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Old 05-27-2019, 09:16 AM
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My vote is for the breaker. In simple terms, the heating element in a clothes dryer does not consume more or less amperage when running for a while. The amperage should be the same the entire time the element is being powered, it's not an electric motor that typically has a large inrush of current.
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Old 05-27-2019, 09:20 AM
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Check for loose wires at breaker and plug. Mine did same and burned up heat element. Ended up being loose wire at outlet.
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Old 05-27-2019, 09:22 AM
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measure current to make sure it is in spec for the appliance and the breaker.
also measure the ground in case some current is going to ground.

being the type of guy I am I would probably open the drier up and inspect the heating element and other wiring for anything that might look wrong, just to be on the safe side
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Old 05-27-2019, 09:32 AM
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What Tuna Man said. Resistive heat is a fixed load and hard on breakers. It is almost always loose Luggs at the breaker, or a weak breaker.
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Old 05-27-2019, 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by RussH View Post
I am in the electrical business and the guy that sells fuses told me that a breaker looses capacity every time it trips and should be replaced. Of course he would say that, he sells fuses that HAVE to be replaced after they blow.
.
Yep a few electrons escape out of the case each time it trips. Once they all leave the breaker is shot

Check the connection at the receptacle and where the cord attaches to the dryer along with the breaker. Make sure the plug and receptacle fit is tight (plug may be damaged)


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Old 05-27-2019, 03:17 PM
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It's that crappy cable you ran to the garage.
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Old 05-27-2019, 03:21 PM
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All solutions being addressed, put a 50 amp breaker in,, that won’t trip, just check you insurance policy.
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Old 05-27-2019, 03:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Gullpt View Post
All solutions being addressed, put a 50 amp breaker in,, that won’t trip, just check you insurance policy.
Is that the same as a penny under a fuse???
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Old 05-27-2019, 03:36 PM
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my 1977 ge is on the same breaker for 40 years but have had them fail
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