How to Fix a Dryer that Clicks but Won't Start -
Appliance Troubleshooting

Dryer Clicks but Won’t Start: Simply Swider’s Complete Troubleshooting Manual

Written by

Jason Carter

Dryer Clicks but Won’t Start: Simply Swider’s Complete Troubleshooting Manual


Above all other dryer mishaps, a dryer that won’t start is probably the most exasperating. Even more frustrating is the clicking noise it typically leaves in the wake of its inability to start.


After repairing several dryers with similar issues, I’ve identified the most likely causes and their respective troubleshooting steps.

To further demystify this concept, I’ve solicited the expert opinion of Alan Bailey, an experienced appliance technician from Dayton, Ohio.

Here’s what we know.

Dryer Clicks But Won't Start

Why Your Dryer Clicks but Won’t Start

Thermal fuse$4 – $15
Door Switch$4 – $30
Start Switch$10 – $45
Dryer Belt$5 – $20

Your dryer could be making a clicking noise while having trouble starting for various reasons. First, be certain the power supply is unhindered. If that doesn’t work, you could be dealing with a blown thermal fuse, defective door switch, damaged start switch, or broken dryer belt.


You will gain insight into the nature of the clicking noise.

Moreover, I will highlight each possible cause of this defect, along with clear troubleshooting instructions and methods for identifying them.

Understanding the Clicking Noise

Before we begin:

Although people generally assume the noise is a malfunction itself, Alan asserts that it merely points towards a defect in the dryer. So, to completely deconstruct this error, we must understand the nature of the clicking noise.

Here’s the thing:

Depending on the dryer and the specific defect, the frequency and rhythm of this clicking noise varies. It could present as rapid, consistent patterned clicking or become slower and more sporadic.


Though pinpointing the definitive source of the problem can be challenging, it usually boils down to the components involved in the starting mechanism.

As such, examining these components and troubleshooting the underlying issue is your best bet to eliminating the clicking noise.

Common Causes and Troubleshooting Steps for a Dryer that Clicks but Won’t Start

1. Power Supply Issue

Dryer Power Supply Issue


When it comes to challenges with starting appliances, the first likely cause that comes to mind is a power supply or reception issue.

More often than not, if you know where to check, you’d discover a frayed cord, tripped circuit breaker, or even low voltage.

For this reason:

When my client complained that his Maytag Series 2000 dryer refused to start but just clicked, I suggested a power supply problem.

You see, like this Reddit user, even after getting a replacement dryer, the issue persisted.

That told me all I needed to know.

I realized the problem was not from the dryer itself but from the voltage level in the power outlet.

Alan notes, “Most electric dryers require up to 240 volts to function properly, while most gas dryers can run with a minimum of 120 volts.”

As such:

You must measure the voltage in your dryer’s power outlet with a multimeter to ensure it meets this requirement. If it falls below the required voltage, call an electrician to replace it.


The circuit breaker could have tripped off, or the power cord might have become worn. In this case, you’d need to reset the circuit breaker and replace the frayed cord.

Dryer Power Supply Issue

Pro Tip:

Simply restarting your washer might be the kick it needs.

2. Blown Thermal Fuse

Dryer Blown Thermal Fuse
PartThermal fuse
LocationIt is located close to the blower housing or exhaust duct.
Ease of troubleshootingModerate
Cost$4 – $15

Get this:

The thermal fuse is responsible for regulating the dryer’s temperature. It is designed to trip if the dryer temperature exceeds the safe limit.

Here’s what I mean:

A Simply Swider reader, Dylan, contacted me concerning his GE DBVH520EJ4WW dryer that refused to start but instead made a clicking noise.

According to him, some minutes after loading his dryer with soaking clothes, he noticed it was hot to the touch with a burning smell.


He powered it off to let it cool. However, when he tried to turn it back on, he claimed it just made a clicking noise without starting.


The heat and burning smell of the dryer were core indicators that this was an issue with the dryer’s thermal fuse. So, I advised him to check if the dryer had a blown thermal fuse.

Here’s how Alan suggests you go about it:

“Unplug your dryer from the outlet, detach the rear panel, and locate the fuse using your dryer manual. Then, test the thermal fuse for electrical continuity with a multimeter.”

Of course:

If it lacks continuity, then you must replace it. If you own a GE dryer like Dylan, the GE online parts store is the best place to get authentic parts.

3. Defective Door Switch

PartDoor switch
LocationIt is situated near the door frame.
Ease of troubleshootingEasy
Cost$4 – $30
RepairableYes – If the connection is loose No – If it lacks electrical continuity


The door switch is a safety mechanism that prevents the dryer from operating while open. When it malfunctions, the dryer will not start and often emits a clicking noise instead.

Take it from this Reddit user:

He complained that his Whirlpool Cabrio YWED5500XL0 dryer was not starting. He says, “…powers up fine, just doesn’t work when I press start.”


All he gets is a beep and a small click from his dryer. Another user suggested a problem with the door switch, and I totally agree.

In line with this:

You must check for a faulty door switch by listening for a latching sound when you close the dryer door. If you can hear it click shut, it is most likely functional.

However, Alan points out:

“Sometimes the wiring connections in the door switch mechanism could come loose, causing the dryer to act as though the door were open.”

So, it would serve you to test the door switch for electrical continuity.

Do this:

Disconnect your dryer, detach the relevant access panel on the dryer door, and locate the door switch. Next, use a multimeter to test it for electrical continuity and replace it if it lacks continuity.


If you use a Whirlpool dryer, you will find authentic replacement parts in the Whirlpool online parts store.

Plus, you get free replacement parts if the one-year warranty covers your device.

4. Malfunctioning Start Switch

PartStart switch
LocationIt can be found at the back of the control panel.
Ease of troubleshootingModerate
Cost$10 – $45


The rotary or push start switch sends the necessary impulse to activate the drive motor. Essentially, if it is compromised, your dryer will not start.

You see:

Our Facebook group member recently complained about his Kenmore 110.78832700 gas dryer that wouldn’t start. He noticed he could hear a click and nothing else when he pushed the start button.


Alan asserts that when the start switch is pushed, it typically beeps in response, but his switch merely clicks. So, I advised him to test the start switch for electrical continuity.

Here’s what he did:

He unplugged his dryer, removed the control panel, and found the start switch. Then he pushed the switch and tested for electrical continuity with a multimeter.


True to my assumption, it failed the test, and when he replaced the start switch assembly, his dryer became operational.

If your dryer is exhibiting similar symptoms, I suggest you follow suit. 

5. Worn or Broken Dryer Belt

PartDryer belt
LocationIt is located around the dryer drum and connects the motor pulley to the idler pulley.
Ease of troubleshootingEasy
Cost$5 – $20
RepairableYes – If the belt has slipped out of place. No – If the belt is worn or broken.

Here’s the thing:

The dryer belt is another common component that could stop your dryer from starting. This belt connects the motor pulley to the idler pulley and is designed to rotate the dryer drum.

As such:

The dryer won’t start or spin if the belt is misaligned or broken. At most, after pushing the start button, you’d hear a relay click, and that’s about it.

For example:

This Reddit user’s LG DLE1101W dryer refused to start but only clicked. After attempting a series of fixes, he found that the dryer belt had been knocked out of place.


Another Reddit user complained that his Samsung dryer powers on but wouldn’t start. Furthermore, he claimed to hear a faint clicking after pushing the start button.


As predicted by another user, he found that the dryer belt had become loose. So, if you’re in a similar bind, replacing or repairing a defective drive belt is pretty straightforward.

Alan suggests you do this:

Try spinning the drum manually; if it turns freely, you can be sure the belt is loose or broken. To replace the dryer belt, unplug the dryer from the outlet, and detach the access panel.


Once you’ve located the belt beneath the dryer drum, inspect it for damage and replace it if broken. If the belt came undone, realign it by threading it through the idler and motor pulley.


In a nutshell:

The rapid or intermittent clicking sound you hear from your dryer indicates that there is an underlying problem. In the same vein, your dryer won’t start if this underlying problem persists.

To this end:

I have outlined the possible problems and their accompanying repair guides. These include:

  • Power supply issue
  • Blown thermal fuse
  • Defective door switch
  • Malfunctioning start switch
  • Worn or broken dryer belt

You see:

These defects are mostly easy to rectify; however, a few may pose a challenge. In this case, be sure to use our Ask the Expert feature for tailor-made assistance from a professional.


Alan emphasizes the importance of consistent dryer maintenance to improve your dryer’s health and ensure optimal functioning.

Finally, feel free to share your experience, questions, and additions in the comment section below.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Is My Dryer Making a Clicking Sound?

If your dryer clicks but won’t start, you potentially have a faulty start switch, door switch, or dryer belt. However, if it still starts, check your appliance for detached clothing hardware, such as buttons and zippers.

Why Won’t My Dryer Start When I Push the Start Button?

The start switch could be faulty if your dryer doesn’t start after interacting with the start button. Other culprits include a frayed power cord, faulty timer, or defective motor relay.

What Is the Normal Dryer Noise?

The normal operating sound for a dryer is a subtle, barely-discernible humming sound. Keep in mind that a loud humming noise indicates that the dryer’s motor is giving out.

2 thoughts on “Dryer Clicks but Won’t Start: Simply Swider’s Complete Troubleshooting Manual”

  1. Great tips! I had the same issue with my dryer and following these steps helped me fix it quickly and easily. Thanks for sharing this informative post!


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