I went to repair clinic and selected dryer, whirlpool, blower wheel and fan blade,
I couldn't get a handle on the problem from their stocked parts. I'm guessing if your dryer is older, they want the squirrel cage not to seize and burn up the motor. So they made a weak "break-away" shaft coupling. Or they really did built-in obsolesence to you. Dual shaft driving the belt turning the drum as well? Probably Whirlpool has long changed their designs and what you have you should keep smartly overhauled until there's little left but smoldering elements and a rusty hulk of housing. The monkeys are on a beach somewhere staring into space thru cataracts and no longer playing in the barrel.
Yes, better quality does cost more. In this case, though, the higher quality appears to be a necessity, unless the users are not planning on having lint. This is a great example of the importance of an institutional approach to quality.
If there's one appliance in the house that shouldn't be design carelessly, it is the dryer. We have aquaintances whose house burned down about 2 years ago due because the dryer failed and overheated. They were lucky to escape..
I'd say "higher quality" is a necessity for several types of consumer products, in fact any of them that use electricity. What we're now calling "higher quality" used to be the standard, and the standard is now sub-par.
Charles, you are correct that "this is a great example of the importance of an institutional approach to quality". I suspect that a company that big, that's been around that long, that's done better in the past, probably knows what they are doing. Of course, that doesn't mean that they are doing what's best for the consumer: since the dryer was fixed by the consumer, it probably had outlived its warrantee, which probably meets the companies quality policy. Large corporations metric only what higher management wants them to, and customer satisfaction is harder to metric than per-unit profit (both based on manufacturing cost + warrantee-repair cost).
When it was time to replace our washer, my wife and I declined to replace our gas dryer (still new-ish at 25-30 years old) because of the recent decline in quality. Not long after, I had to replace a few parts in the dryer (much less than the cost of a new unit) but luckily I can.
Our dryer was about 5 years old the first time this happened, the other dryer was a few years older, I think. They worked fine for over a year, and when the airflow stopped the thermal fuse prevented any fire. But we, and out friend, empty the lint collector completely after every load.That does make a big difference.
These are both gas dryers, which are quite different from the electrical ones. Which was yours, and what area caught fire?
Ann, on quite a few occasions I have had a sales person tell me that "features ARE quality." When I explain that I see quality as lasting a long time they instantly start talking about the service contracts. So someplace somebody has worked to corrupt the standard meaning of words.
The one-piece squirrle cage blower slides onto the end of the motor shaft twards the front of the dryer. The pulley engaging the drum drive belt is on the shaft exteding from the rear of the motor. That part of the design is pretty good. The flaw is in the way that the blower wheelm is connected to the motor shaft. The non-rigid spring allows motion. A solid compression ring clamp would not allow any motion, and so there would be no wear, at least I don't think that there would be any wear. But making it any different would indeed cost a bit more, I suppose. And so the very cheapest means that will outlast the warranty is the one that gets used.
Mine too was a Gas (natural). It was fixed under warranty and the technician did not share much with me. I saw it all opened up and other than the damaged load of cloths, saw no real internal damage. Some plastice parts of the drum are slightly warped but these were not replaced. I too needed a thermal switch replaced and they also replaced the entire burner unit and the main timer?? I have no idea what in the burner may have been bad. It was a major component. I had to wait a week for ne to be delivered.
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