How to replace a dryer door latch?

To replace a loose or damaged door latch on a dryer, simply unplug the dryer from power. Open the door and remove the 2 retaining screws to release the old door latch. Install the new door latch and secure the 2 screws.

In some dryer models, you may need to use a putty knife and pry it off the edges to remove the old door latch.

Key Takeaways

  • Door latches secure the door to its frame in a clothes dryer.
  • You will usually find a door latch located on the door’s edge and to the back.
  • Over time the door latch can wear out and lose its ability to hold the door, thus requiring a replacement.
  • A worn-out door can be quite hazardous especially when the dryer is in use, so make sure to replace it as soon as possible.
  • Check if the dryer is still under warranty before attempting any repairs.
  • If you are not comfortable with performing the repair yourself, contact a professional for assistance.

What is a dryer’s door latch?

A dryer’s door latch is an important component that locks the door to its frame when you close the door.

Moreover, it helps to keep the doors latched during the drying cycle.

The door latch is usually found on the door’s edge and towards the back.

What are the signs that indicate the dryer’s door latch needs replacing?

A tell-tale sign that your dryer’s door latch needs replacing is when it can no longer keep the door properly closed or the door won’t open.

In fact, at times, the dryer may not start at all due to an inbuilt safety mechanism that requires the door to be properly shut before the dryer can start.

Furthermore, if the door latch is visibly damaged or worn out, it needs to be replaced as soon as possible.

Another sign that the door latch needs replacing is when the dryer is not functioning properly i.e. leakage of hot air, clothes not getting dry, etc.

What is a dryer door latch kit?

A dryer door latch kit is a set of parts that help you replace a damaged or worn-out door latch.

It usually contains the following items:

Usually, this kit includes a catch and a strike, which are installed on the door and frame, respectively.

The catch is usually spring-loaded so that it can engage and disengage with the strike as the door is opened and closed. 

The kit also includes a screw and a nut, which are used to secure the catch to the door.

Most kits also come with instructions for installation.

If your dryer’s door is not staying closed during the drying cycle, or if it is not closing at all, then you may need to replace the door latch kit.

Instructions to replace a dryer’s door latch

Step 1: Disconnect the supplies to the dryer

First, disconnect the power to your dryer by unplugging it from the wall outlet (power socket).

You may not need to remove or disconnect any other supplies from the dryer, it can be done without moving the dryer away.

Step 2: Locate the door latch to remove

Next, locate the door latch behind the door and at its edge and remove the screws that hold it in place.

You may need a Phillips screwdriver to unscrew the screws in your dryer’s door.

Some dryers may not require unscrewing because they are clipped into the designated slot.

So, use a putty knife to pry it out of its bracket carefully.

Then, clean the area around the bracket from any debris or lint build-ups.

Step 3: Install the replacement door latch

Take out the old door latch and insert the new one in its place.

In some cases, dryer door latch kits come with everything you need to replace your dryer’s door latch.

The kit includes a new door catch, strike plate, and screws.

Depending on the installation type, screw the new door latch into its place.

Now, restore power to your dryer by plugging it back into the power outlet.

Step 4: Inspect the door latch

Close the door and check if it is closing properly or not.

Next, run a test cycle and check if there isn’t any error code displayed due to a faulty door lock.

If the installation is properly done, your dryer’s door should close and latch correctly.

And if the door is not closing or the issue still persists, you may seek professional help.

Final Thoughts

A door latch is an essential component of a dryer as it helps to keep the door shut during the drying cycle.

Moreover, it also prevents hot air from leaking out, thus making your dryer efficient.

Running a dryer with a faulty door latch can cause damage to the machine and can also be hazardous for people around you (especially if you are using gas dryers).

You can easily replace the door latch at home as it does not require pro-level expertise.

However, if you are not confident or if you are unable to do it yourself, it’s best to call a professional.

Manish Singh is an expert in electrical engineering with a Diploma in the field. With over 12 years of experience, he specializes in repairing music systems, washing machines, dryers, and other laundry-related appliances. His in-depth knowledge in electrical repairs and decent knowledge about garment care makes him a trusted authority in the field of appliance repair and laundry related topics. If you have any questions or need assistance with your appliances, you can reach out to Manish through email: manish.singh (at)