Dryer won't start but makes humming sound

by Deb Osmundson
(Creve Coeur, IL)

I have a Maytag Performa dryer. For the past several weeks the dryer had been making a dull rattling noise, something I associated with the rotation of the tub. Now, when I press the Start button, it hums and doesn't start. Any ideas?

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Hi Deb,

There are a few things it can be.

Open the dryer door and press the door switch. Then have someone press the start button. When it starts to buzz try turning the drum by hand.

If when you do this the dryer starts and runs normal your problem will be in the motor. Try cleaning the motor and see if this problem goes away. If you have an air compressor or a compressed air tank blow the motor out and vacuum it out. If not just vacuum it out.

If the drum will not turn or turning the drum doesn’t make the dryer run look for anything hung in the blower wheel. Also look for anything that may hamper the turning of the drum such as a worn drum roller or worn slides. The drum roller will be behind the drum at the back and the slide will be at the front.

Typically neither the rollers nor the slide will wear out to the point that the drum will not turn but it can happen.

If none of this will get your dryer going you have a bad motor.

I hope this helps!

Thank you,

Comments for Dryer won't start but makes humming sound

Click here to add your own comments

fixing dryer troubleshooting
by: Anonymous

tips works thank you!!

by: Anonymous

Right after Christmas, and a divorce that left me pretty broke...
RIGHT in the middle of a weeks worth of laundry this happened... looked this up, followed directions, pulled a hotwheels car, lighter and pair of underwear out... used a leaf blower and blew out the dirt.. and just like new! Thanks so much for the advice! I was not sure what I would have done if it didn't work!

Thanks for this tip
by: Bill

thanks for this tip...so easy to fix my 5 year old helped me. Whew!!!..was really not wanting to buy a new dryer right now.

Dryer making noise ate!
by: Anonymous

I have an admiral model and I am having the same issues so I'm going to try this out. I hope I have to follow the same steps!

by: Anonymous

This REALLY worked for me. I did exactly what you told DEB and it's been running fine since then. I did not vacuum the motor as you suggested because I didn't know how. So I'm concerned that I could experience the same issue in the future. But it's been over a month without any further problems and I do laundry weekly. Thank you.

thought the motor was gone
by: Anonymous

Thank you so much! Did as you said and got the drum to turn and the heating element lit up! You're awesome!

Dryer won't start
by: Anonymous

I have a maytag and when I push the start button it hums then I hear a click and it no longer hums wait about 1 minute I'll hear a click then when I push the button it hums again

leafblower !
by: Anonymous

Love the creative thinking that thought to use a leafblower to blow out the motor !!

by: Richard

Thanks very much for your advice Shawn. It worked for me.

Ge Dryer
by: Antonyonymous

thanks for the tip. I just follow what you said, shawn. I pressed the door switch while pressing the start botton at the same time, the dryer runs normally. Thank you.

It worked!
by: Steph

Thank you so much for your post. I followed the directions exactly as you indicated and it took care of the problem. My husband was thrilled that he didn't have to spend a Saturday afternoon dealing with yet another broken appliance!

Great help!
by: Anonymous

I was sure I was going to have to call a repair person. Your tip to hold the door button and manually turn the drum worked like a charm! Thank you!

by: Betsy

You surely saved me money as well as time waiting for a repair professional. I just wish I had found you before I got out all my tools and climbed behind the dryer.
Thank you so very much. I am one happy grandmama.

Worked for me too
by: Tony Vee

I'm not sure why this worked ... but it did! Thank you very much for the help provided. My G.E. machine would hum when the start button was turned but it would not start and would not turn.

Lo and behold, after checking the door switch and realizing that was not the issue, I then pulled off the back cover revealing the motor and vacuumed it off with a hand vac. I then grabbed a small air compressor that I usually use to blow up airbeds. I turned that onto the motor and watched dust fly everywhere. I vacuumed out the motor area once again ... and voila ... she started spinning again.

Thanks for the info. Hopefully she keeps on running.

Saved me money!
by: Anonymous

I have a Kenmore electric dryer. It worked!!! Thank you so much!

Dryer won't start but makes humming sound
by: Virgilio

Opened and checked and cleaned inside the dryer I found that the motor won't turning when I press start and it works normal if I help to tunn the motor

It worked!!
by: Anonymous

I also tried what you recommended for Deb to try. Mine was humming but nothing else. Works perfectly now. Thank you for this help. Just saved me a lot of money and stress.

It works!
by: Anonymous

Just tried this when our dryer made the humming noise...worked perfect. Thanks for the information

Oh my gosh it worked for me too!!
by: Anonymous

Amazing I cannot believe I learned more than I ever wanted to know about dryers I have taken the entire thing apart meter tested everything it could possibly be cleaned and vacuum vacuum everywhere there's absolutely no lint anywhere now.. was just about to call it quits when I ran across this. I tried it and it worked. I was almost fooled because I could turn the drum manually but I went ahead and I held the dryer door button push the start button held in the dryer button with one hand and turn the drum with the other..and woalla! I could already feel the heat from the dryer before I turned it back off. Thank you thank you thank you!

Dryer Hums
by: Al Atherton

Not sure why either - but it worked great. Thanks for the tip

how do access and clean the motor?
by: Sue

I did what you said and the drum started turning again. Everything seems to be working. But I would like to be able to clean the motor so that this won't happen again. I do not know where to begin to access this motor so I can clean it. This is an old Kenmore but a repair man told me awhile ago that this dryer is better made than the new ones out today. So I want to keep it.
Thank you.

by: shawn

Most Kenmore dryers you remove two screws under the filter on the top (if filter is not on top I need your model number). Once the screws are out you can pull the top forward then up. Once the top is up you can access the screws that hold the front on. Remove the front. Take the belt off and remove the drum. Then you should see the motor. You can stray it with some non-flammable contact cleaner and blow or vacuum the lint off the motor.

This page should help because your dryer was most likely made by Whirlpool.
Whirlpool Dryer Disassembly

Make sure you unplug the dryer before doing anything.

Dryer humming but won't start, this fixed it!
by: Erin

Hold button on open dryer to simulate that the dryer door is closed. Start rotating thr dryer manually counterclockwise. As your rotating dryer wheel and holding door button have someone press the power button. This fixed my dryer

Worked like a charm!!
by: Andrea and Will

WOW!! I was so nervous about the amount of money we were about to spend. With 6 people, we don't do well without a drier!!

The drier is fixed and working like a charm!!

This was awesome advice
by: Brig

Can't begin to thank you enough. My husband is partially disabled, money is tight, and it's just me being the homemaker, caregiver to my husband and my grandbabies and the very last thing I needed tonight was my dryer not working. Worked like a charm!!!

It runs
by: Anonymous jjg

After 12 years it just stopped working.. When I hit the start button it would just hum. I too followed your advise buy cleaning out all the built up lint.. I vacuumed the motor and pushed started it the first time and from there it runs like new..
Thank you for your helpful guidance

My GE portfolio Dryer
by: Sepideh

I have the same problem, I opened the front and top,cleaned everything but how do I get to the motor or the area you mentioned? Should I open the back as well?

Thank You!
by: Anonymous

Drier would not start and made a humming sound when you pressed the start button. Tried the first step and it worked like a charm. Gotta love Google.

Remove the Tub
by: shawn


You have to remove the tub to get to the motor. Unplug the dryer, reach under the tub and disconnect the belt. Once the belt is loose you can pull the tub out the front.

Thank you,

Thank you!!!!!!
by: Pam

Your tip worked perfectly! You are a blessing!! Spinning the drum got it t working again! I couldn't believe it!Thank you for sharing this information!

Thank You
by: Granny in NM

Thank you so much. I awoke this morning to the dryer making a noise but no movement. I followed you-tube video on how to open the dryer up and I checked if the belt was ok and clean the lint trap. This dryer is 25 years old so it really wasn't worth the money folks will want to repair.
I'm by myself but I figured out away to do all three things you suggested at the same time ( surprising how much help your foot can be at times like this.) It worked !!! Your help saved me so much. I hope you are rewarded for the kindness that you do for others.
Granny in New Mexico

Thanks so much
by: Pat

I went to use my dryer this afternoon and the start button didn't seem to work and I got a humming noise. I looked up why and found this site and tried the method Shawn talked about. I was by myself and had to use a small piece of packing tape to hold down the dryer start button in the door. I did this and then turned the start button at the top and turned the drum manually and to my surprise it worked. I was so glad I didn't have to call a repair man. Thank you so much Shawn for your advice you are a godsend.

All fixed
by: Anonymous

Great tip thanks. Worked like a charm

Hummus but won't spin
by: Bob

After reading the comments about this subject I was able to get my GE dryer going again by simply spinning it a couple times and trying again! Thanks for the info it saved me a service call!

by: Anonymous

Thank you! Great advice, it did the trick :)

It worked
by: Anonymous

Thank you so much, it worked!

Thanks a million
by: Charles L.

After reading your blog I tried the instructions you gave and the dryer is running like new. Save me a bundle thanks.

Maytag Fas Dryer Help!!!!
by: Anonymous

Just found this site through simple Google search. The trick worked for me. Although difficult to turn the drum of my Maytag gas dryer, when I was able to do all three things, it started moving. That said, it's only a temporary fix. The next time I turn on the dryer, the same humming happens. Any ideas/suggestions? I haven't yet taken the dryer apart and cleaned out motor FYI.

dryer fix
by: Anonymous

Thanks for the great advice. Works great.

You just saved me a lot of money!!!
by: Marsha

Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! I pressed the two buttons and it started. I would have had to call a repairman and he would have hated to work on my dryer because it's in such a cramped space. I'm sure he thanks you, too!!

by: Anonymous

Thanks giving Evening. Oh No! Read your suggestions and WOW is all I am say. It Worked. Thanks!!!!!!!!

Wonderful How-To Article
by: George

Come home after a long day at work on Black Friday of all days and the wife tells you the dryer has gone bad and is 6-800 bucks is a good budget to spend on a new dryer. Decided to look online seeing as how I heard the hum but no response from the drum. Found this article and I must say it literally helped save Christmas thank you very much!!!! My dryer has a front accessible lower panel that exposed entire assembly which had plenty of years of build-up which I was able to easily vacuum out clean up polish up and it worked like a charm thank you so very much again

Woot woot
by: Another Deb lol

Thank God for this forum. Hubby was getting pretty angry about how much he hates our washer and dryer lol.
Your trick worked, and he's going to pop the top tomorrow and use the air compressor to blow out the inside.
Now I'm hoping he doesn't suggest moving the dryer back in the house. I like it out in the garage lol

Dryer starts again
by: Anonymous

All the suggestion were right on. I checked my blower wheel and lo and behold, some and I mean very little lint was hung in the wheel. Removed this and now dryer starts up fine.

It worked!
by: Anonymous

We vacuumed the motor and it started back up normally! I just hope this fix lasts! Thanks so much!

Keeping my sanity
by: Monvette

OMG!! THANK YOU THANK YOU!!☺☺☺ Your advice saved my sanity! My boyfriend's an over the road trucker and I volunteered to wash his bedding for him at my pace in order to spend time with him and give him some time to relax before leaving out again. My dryer conked out on me,and your tips saved the night.You have made one truckers girlfriend very happy. Thank you again👍👍☺☺

Dryer humming
by: Anonymous

I did what you said to do and it started right up. Waiting to see if it happens again. Thanks.

Internal frame support
by: Anonymous

Just had the same problem.
Pulled the dryer top off and noticed the internal metal rod that holds the motor on was not attached to the frame.
So I screwed it back in place and it works!

It Worked!
by: Anonymous

Thank you! This just happened to me with a GE Profile and I try the suggestion and it started right up! I have no fix it guy so it would've been a new dryer for me!

This works!!
by: Head clothes washer

Just did this with my 6 year old Kenmore. I was home alone, so I taped the button, got it rolling for a bit, and low and behold, it's working again!!

Not a fake commemt
by: Notafakename

No way it really worked

by: Anonymous

I was so upset that I might have to bring in a repair person, (at an average cost of $150.00), but this worked on the first try! Can't say thank you enough!

Thank you!
by: Anonymous

My dryer was just humming, I turned the drum by hand as you suggested, then it worked! yahoo! Thank you so much!

by: Maggie

Thanks! Was reading all of the comments to my husband and decided to try it... He couldn't believe it... it worked! We just made an appointment for 10 days from today. We're going to wait a few days before we cancel! Soooo thrilled!

If the dryer works after rotating the drum and pressing the button, should I still clean out by the motor? It's only a couple of years old...

Thanks again! 👍

Your a lifesaver
by: Shawna

Thank You Shawn, I was about to pout like a baby and purchase a new dryer, but thanks to you, my dryer is working all I have to do follow your directions on cleaning the motor

It works
by: Anonymous

As soon I followed the steps its works in a second ...but I went further to clean it up a little

Holy #$@&!!!!!! Thank you!!!
by: Dee

This was an ingenious idea and it worked. We own our own small business and times have been tough, when my dryer wouldn't start my heart sank.... Thinking $600..$800... Where will I find the money. But thanks to you all is good. Thanks again!

Thank you!
by: Bailey

This worked like a charm! Thank you!

Old model GE Dryer
by: Becca

It would hum but not rotate, I tried your suggestion to hold the button and rotate counter clock wise by hand, it made a bump sound and now nothing. Is it Done?


Well it could be the belt is broken. If so the motor will still run (hence humming sound). On the older GE models (if old enough) there will be a bumping sound when the belt breaks. This sound comes from the way the idler pulley is designed it causes this bump when the belt breaks.

Thank you,

Thanks for the help
by: Anonymous

I tried google one last time and found your post. I tried it. With my toe on the door button. Flipped the switch and I rotated the drum it’s now working, but is this the start of the end to the dryer? Will it keep working?


Maybe it will work but it might be the motor. If the motor is failing its just a matter of time. However it could have been lint in the motor switch. In this case its fixed.


Trouble shooting for dryer
by: Anonymous

Thank you so much! My husband got home, took the dryer apart and it is working now. It wasn;t very dirty, but it seemed to do the trick. Do you think we should still consider getting a new one, or could this possibly do the trick for awhile? Thanks!

up and running!
by: Anonymous

Thought I'd have to replace the motor which meant getting a new dryer, but after following these instructions, it works!
Used my air compressor to blow out the dust from the motor, then vacuumed out the dust in the housing, works as good as new. Thanks for saving me several hundred dollars!

Thank you!!
by: Anonymous

Husband worked testing continuity in the dryer, cleaned vents and spent an hour and a half on it and I saw this post and BAM dryer fixed!! Thank you!!!

It worked but burning smell
by: Shonda L

So the technique worked but it has an awful burning smell stil. Also is this something you will have to do each time you want to use the dryer or does it return to normal? My husband pulled everything apart and vacuumed it all out but we still had to do the steps indicated after that and that’s when we smelled the burning smell. We will have to pull apart again on a different day and try again. Any thoughts or advice?


You need a new motor.


Dyer repair
by: Anonymous

I can't fix anything...but this worked. What a relief!!!
Thank you!

Thank you it worked
by: Anonymous

Did what you suggested, started right up! I can't believe I fixed my own dryer.

by: Emmy

I seriously am in shock that it worked! Held the button, hit the start button and gave it a whirl! She's running like a charm! Thanks so much!! If I knew you, I'd hug you lol

I know I'm like, super late, but...
by: C.H. Davis

...thanks soo much!!! Just saved me a fortune on not needing to go to the laundromat!

Thank you!!
by: Mandy

Can't thank you enough...instead of having to call an expensive repair guy this did the trick!! Much appreciated from a single mom income point of view!

by: Anonymous

Hi tried the dryer trick. No luck. Cleaned out motor and inside. Everything I could see
I get an electrical burn smell and then humming does not continue. So I'm assuming it's a bad motor. Do you think it is worth fixing or time for a new one? It's a Frigidaire Galaxy about 10 years old. Any idea what a motor cost? Thanks


If you can do it yourself then it is probably worth fixing.

Thank you,

Dryer won't start
by: Anonymous

I tried your first solution and the dryer started. I will clean motor. Thanks for saving me hundreds od dollars.

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