How To Replace A Belt On An Electric Whirlpool Dryer

If you attempt to dry clothes in your electric whirlpool dryer, and they still remain wet, try replacing the belt. When a belt breaks, the drum will no longer turn  to dry clothes properly. You should be able to replace a dryer belt yourself. Here are some tips to replace the belt in an electric whirlpool dryer. 

Prepare to Work

For this project, you need: work gloves

  • screwdriver

  • putty knife

  • utility knife (optional)

  • 5/16 nut driver

  • vacuum

  • plastic cup

  • replacement belt 

Disconnect the power cord to the dryer, which should be behind the dryer. A dryer cord is usually 240 volts, so it will be larger than standard cords. If you can't reach the cord, turn off power to the room from the breaker box. Write down the model number of your dryer to buy a matching belt.

Remove the Old Belt

Detach the lint filter by removing the two screws with the nut driver; ensuring they don't fall into the filter slot, because they could get into the fan blades. Pull the lint trap free, and store the screws in a container.

Slide a putty knife into the gap between the dryer front and dryer top on the right and left sides two inches from the corner to free the dryer housing. Move the top away from the dryer cabinet, swing the front of the panel to the side, then prop the panel against the wall.

Disconnect the two hex head bolts on the front cabinet corners with the nut driver. Support the dryer drum (located on the rim of the front panel) from underneath with a plastic cup, or get an assistant to hold it for you. Raise the front panel up to disconnect it from the base, then set it aside. 

If the belt hasn't snapped, cut it with a utility knife. Otherwise, remove it from the drum. It is an ideal time to vacuum the inside of the dryer.

Install the New Belt

Slide the new belt around the drum; removing the cup to install the belt on the center of the drum. The flat side of the belt should point away from the drum.  

Slide the belt over the idler pulley (tension wheel that turns the drum), then wrap the looped end over the motor pulley ( the part that rotates the belt). If the belt is placed properly, the idler pulley will move up and to the right. Check the felt on the drum to ensure it isn't folded. If the felt has folded, straighten it with a screwdriver.

Reinstall the dryer panels, reinsert the lint trap and restore power. Test a load of clothes to test for proper operation.. If the dryer still doesn't work, or you don't trust your skill, hire an appliance repair service (such as Automatic Appliance).