To replace the drum bearing, you will have to remove the back, front, or both panels depending on the model and type of your dryer. Next, find the drum and unscrew the bearing assembly from the back by removing the felt seal. Remove the old bearing and clean the area before the replacement.
Finally, apply some grease to the new bearing and reinstall everything back together by reversing the steps.
- Drum bearings are among the important components in a dryer that supports the smoother movement of the drum.
- Although they are durable pieces of metal balls they can wear out over time due to aging or heavy usage and will need a replacement.
- A faulty bearing can cause a lot of problems, especially with the movement of the dryer’s drum. Moreover, your dryer will become noisy every time you attempt to run the dryer.
- For replacement, using a pair of screwdrivers and a nut driver should do the trick.
- Do not forget to get hold of the user manual of your dryer’s model before you begin to troubleshoot.
What is a drum bearing in a dryer?
The drum bearing is a small, round, metal ball that helps support the rotary drum base in your dryer.
It helps to rotate the dryer drum smoothly and quietly.
Bearings are usually installed at the center of the dryer’s drum.
Over time, the bearing can wear out and may need to be replaced.
A worn-out drum bearing will lead to a squeaking dryer and, at times, it may even produce a grinding noise.
Where is the drum bearing located in a dryer?
It is usually located at the back of the dryer, close to where the Drum Belt connects to the Drum.
Its typical location is at the center of the dryer’s drum.
So, when you look at the drum assembly, you will find that there is a drum shaft located at the back of the drum, on the exterior. This shaft passes through to the back panel of the appliance and rests on a bearing; this permits the entire drum to rotate.
Over time, this bearing can wear out, causing the drum to make noise or not spin correctly.
Beneath them are the screws that hold the drum bearing assembly in place.
They can be unscrewed from the inside or from the back of the drum depending on your dryer model and type.
How does the drum bearing wear out?
The dryer’s drum bearings can deteriorate over time due to regular wear and tear or aging.
With that said, premature failures can be caused by a lack of maintenance, infrequent servicing, or greasing of the drum bearings.
Furthermore, overloading the drum can cause damage to the bearings and other parts of the drum that support its motion.
So, regular maintenance and avoiding overloading are two key ways to prevent premature bearing failure.
Symptoms of worn-out drum bearings
Running the dryer with a faulty drum bearing can lead to irreparable damage to the other components and to the overall dryer.
Here are some common symptoms of a worn-out drum bearing.
One of the first signs that the drum bearing is wearing out is when you hear a squeaky noise coming from the dryer every time you run it.
This is caused by the metal-on-metal contact between the bearing and the shaft.
The noise will become more pronounced as the bearing wears down.
Another symptom of a worn-out drum bearing is a grinding noise.
This usually happens when the bearing has completely worn out and struggling to keep the drum moving smoothly.
If you hear this noise, it is important to stop using the dryer and have it checked by a qualified technician as soon as possible.
Drum does not rotate smoothly
The dryer’s drum will not be able to rotate smoothly if the bearing is already worn out.
If you notice that your dryer is not drying clothes as efficiently as it used to, have the bearing checked.
Dryer vibrates excessively
If the dryer is vibrating excessively, this could be a sign that the drum bearing is already worn out.
When the bearing is not working properly, the dryer will vibrate more than usual. This is because the drum is not being supported properly and is wobbling around.
How to replace the drum bearing in a dryer?
Although this is a relatively easy repair, you will need to be very cautious during the entire process.
Let us see how it can be done at home with a few tools.
Step 1: Unplug the dryer
Unplug the dryer from power and disconnect other supplies such as the vent hose.
Step 2: Move the dryer away
Gently shift the dryer away from the back wall to gain better access to the access panels.
Step 3: Detach the access panels
In most cases, you will need to remove the back panel of the dryer.
However, depending on your dryer type and model, you may have to remove the front and top panels too.
This is exactly why you should look at the dryer’s user manual to find out which access panel to remove.
Accordingly, start unscrewing the required access panels and keep them aside.
Disconnect the electrical wires that come in the way and tuck them away so that they don’t get damaged.
Step 4: Locate the drum bearing
With the front panel removed, you should be able to see the dryer’s drum and its supporting bearings.
The bearings are located at the center of the back side of the drum, where it attaches to the dryer’s rear wall.
Look for a dryer cabinet that supports the bearing and bracket.
Step 5: Remove the old bearing
To remove the old bearings, first, use a putty knife to pry off the plastic retainer ring that holds them in place.
With the retainer ring removed, you should be able to pull out the old bearings.
If they’re stubborn, tap them lightly with a hammer until they come loose.
In some dryer types, you will have to unscrew to remove the drum bearing after prying off the seal.
With a putty knife or other flat tool, gently pry off the felt seal that encircles the drum’s edge.
With the seal removed, you should be able to see three screws holding the bearing in place. Remove these screws and set them aside.
Gently pull the drum until it comes free from the bearing assembly.
Caution: Be careful not to damage the wires or other components as you do this.
Step 6: Inspect and replace
Once you have removed the old bearings, clean up any debris or dirt from around the bearing opening before proceeding to install the new bearings.
Take a close look at the old bearing and compare it to your new replacement part to ensure that you have the right size of bearing.
If everything looks good, go ahead and install the replacement bearing.
To install new bearings, you just have to do the opposite of what you did to take them off.
Start by gently pressing the new bearings into their dedicated slot.
You’ll know they’re seated properly when you hear a clicking sound.
Next, put the plastic retainer ring back in place by pressing it firmly into place until it snaps into place.
Step 7: Reassemble the dryer
With the new bearings in place, reassemble your dryer by reversing the above steps.
Finally, test it out to make sure everything is working properly before putting it back into use.
Also Read: Washing Machine Bearings: 6 Answers you must know
The bearing is the hardest working component in a dryer’s drum movement.
To avoid more damage, you shouldn’t run a dryer with a damaged drum bearing.
The process of replacing a drum bearing can be lengthy, but with the proper tools and parts, it’s a job you can do yourself.
If you aren’t sure about something, then it is better that you take professional guidance or let the professional do it.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the cost of the dryer drum bearing?
Depending on the model and type of your dryer, the cost of drum bearings will vary. You can find the exact cost online by using the model number of your dryer. However, on average, you can expect to pay anywhere between $60 and $200.
Do all dryers use the same drum bearing?
Absolutely not. It differs according to the type and model of your clothes dryer.
Can you change the bearings in a tumble dryer?
Yes, you can change the bearings by getting a drum shaft kit. A drum shaft kit contains the shaft, bearings, bearing pads, screws, and seals. You can get one by checking the model number of your tumble dryer online.
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