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  • Clothes dryer breaker tripping

    OK, you smart guys helped me with my dryer issue a couple or three months ago. Now I have another issue. Seems that sometimes, the breaker feeding my dryer trips. The breaker is a Wesco mini breaker with a joiner between the two halves of the breaker. Seems that one side is tripping. I can send a picture, but I am not home right now. There is no smell coming from the dryer, no sounds of sparks, nothing.

    What should I look at to see if I can see an issue.

    Many thanks for reading this post.

    Steve
    Steve from Chester NS
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  • #2

    Re: Clothes dryer breaker tripping

    How about replacing the breaker? If that doesn't work check to see if the vent outside is blocked with fuzz. Next, call the repair guy.
    I'm not getting older, I'm getting worse.
    Bob
    Member Valley Woodturners

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    • #3

      Re: Clothes dryer breaker tripping

      Checking amperage draw, if possible, may be a starting point.
      iamtooler likes this.
      Egon
      from
      The South Shore, Nova Scotia

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      • #4

        Re: Clothes dryer breaker tripping

        I'd say its a mimi breaker single pole sharing, it should be a double pole breaker 40 amp if dryer is electric, if it's gas it would be ok to be single pole but would change breaker.

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        • #5

          Re: Clothes dryer breaker tripping

          Mini breakers are not really designed for motor loads. But… This motor is likely less than half horsepower.
          The more the breaker trips, the weaker it gets.

          Do you have a four prong plug or a three prong plug? Sometimes the four prong plugs draw more apps on one of the hot legs. This could weaken one of the two breakers tied together.

          first check all ducting for any clogging.
          next check the amp load on the two hot lines to be close.

          probably a new breaker will fix the situation. But troubleshooting shouldn’t be overlooked.
          Last edited by Matt Matt; 11-09-2018, 12:24 AM.
          For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.
          Sir Isaac Newton.

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          • #6

            Re: Clothes dryer breaker tripping

            Originally posted by staker View Post
            I'd say its a mimi breaker single pole sharing, it should be a double pole breaker 40 amp if dryer is electric, if it's gas it would be ok to be single pole but would change breaker.
            Most often it is a 30 amp 240 V breaker. Sure there may be exceptions to the rule, but most household dryer‘s are 30 A.
            For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.
            Sir Isaac Newton.

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            • #7

              Re: Clothes dryer breaker tripping

              The first thing I would check for is loose connections at the breaker, either it's not properly connected to the bus, or the load side connections are loose.

              Does it trip instantly or take awhile to trip?

              Regards, Rod.
              Work is the curse of the riding class.

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              • #8

                Re: Clothes dryer breaker tripping

                Your breaker description indicates it is an electric dryer . Most of the load is the heating element and one side of the breaker is also going to be supplying the motor. That is probably the side that is tripping. Probably 30 amp? IF you are comfortable with it: Turn the breaker off (The main breaker as well if you are not qualified) remove the panel cover, check the wire connections on the dryer breaker for tightness Interchange the two hot wires on the breaker in case the side carrying the motor is a bit weaker from age., Check the neutral connection as well. IF OK , pull the breaker and check for possible overheating (due to looseness) of the contacts that mate to the buss. If discolored, replace the breaker. Replace the panel cover and turn the main breaker on but leave the dryer breaker OFF.
                Remove the receptacle from its box and check all connections for tightness. Remove the back panel from the dryer and check all connections for evidence of overheating.
                Vacuum the motor or use comp. air to blow it out. Dust in the motor is one of the main causes of a dryer not heating.There is a centrifugal sw. in there that prevents the element from turning on unless the motor is running .Vacuum or blow out dust around the element, You might need to lift the top for this, and see if the element might be intermittently touching the frame (not likely but???).
                Ideally an ammeter could be of use to determine load. If nothing obvious is found and the problem persists, try replacing the breaker.

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                • #9

                  Re: Clothes dryer breaker tripping

                  I once fixed a drier that had wires that rubbed on the drum. Probably the door switch wires IIRC, and eventually wore the insulation down occasionally causing a short when an unbalanced load was turning.
                  Rob

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                  • #10

                    Re: Clothes dryer breaker tripping

                    Thanks for all the comments guys. I will begin with checking all of the connections. The breaker is definitely a 30 amp two pole. I will also re check the vent on the outside again as I checked it last weekend and it was fine. The motor will also get a BJ with the leaf blower so I know it will be well cleaned out. Fan in the outside window as it could get dusty.

                    If I remember right, the plug is four prongs, neutral, two hots and a ground. I cannot say if it trips right a way when it starts or after a while. I will have to check with the women folks on that question.

                    Many thanks for all the comments. I knew I could count on all of you for answers. I will likely get at this over the long weekend.

                    Hve a great weekend all.

                    Steve from Chester NS

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                    • #11

                      Re: Clothes dryer breaker tripping

                      One more thing to check. Make sure the drum turns freely. If the drum is jammed the motor could trip the breaker on overload. Not sure how a plugged vent would trip the breaker. Fan motors draw fewer amps when the flow is reduced. If the vent is plugged the dryer might overheat and shut down but I don't think that it would trip the breaker. I could be wrong and I welcome an explanation.
                      iamtooler likes this.

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                      • #12

                        Re: Clothes dryer breaker tripping

                        Originally posted by Doug G View Post
                        One more thing to check. Make sure the drum turns freely. If the drum is jammed the motor could trip the breaker on overload. Not sure how a plugged vent would trip the breaker. Fan motors draw fewer amps when the flow is reduced. If the vent is plugged the dryer might overheat and shut down but I don't think that it would trip the breaker. I could be wrong and I welcome an explanation.
                        What is the vent was so backed up, it was stopping the drum from turning? All those odd sucks have to go somewhere Lol.
                        For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.
                        Sir Isaac Newton.

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                        • #13

                          Re: Clothes dryer breaker tripping

                          Probably depends somewhat on the make and design of the machine but it is possible to have serious lint build-up around the drum without the actual vent pipe being plugged which is also where fires can start. I've never have had one jammed but have had some strange noises from running against the packed lint. It is amazing how the stuff can collect even with the lint trap being regularly emptied.
                          billh

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