March 14, 2011

Kenmore Electric Dryer Bearing Replacement

This weekend I decided to replace the bearing in my Kenmore Electric Dryer, model #417.80042990.

The dryer started squeaking sometime last fall. I purchased the part in October to repair the dryer over Thanksgiving or Christmas, but the dry stopped making the noise. Of course, right after the new year it started squeaking again.

The process was pretty easy and only took about 2 hours. It can be accomplished by one person, but it helps to have a second person available to help.

Here is a list of tools you will need:
Several sizes of Phillips head screwdrivers
Flat head screwdriver or other prying tool
Wire Cutters

Turn the the circuit breaker off for the dryer!

Remove the top cover of the dryer. This is done by prying up the front near the tabs. This takes some force. Once the front is off the tabs, the top will lift off the tabs in the back. Remove the ground clip from the dryer.

Remove the front cover of the dryer. There are two screws about 6 inches down from the top on each side. Remove these screws and the front cover will fall forward. Disconnect the control wires on the right side. You may need the wire cutters to cut any plastic ties that hold the wires into place. Lift the cover out of the bottom tabs. This too takes a little force.

Get behind the dryer and remove the access panel/vent in the lower corner. Remove the spring to release the tension on the drive belt. Slide the belt off the drum to the back of the dryer. Lift the drum up out of the plastic cup, about 2-3 inches. This will take some effort, you will know when it is out.

You may need to remove a yellow plastic stopper on the front of the dryer to slide the drum forward. Remove the plastic piece on the back of the dryer. Install the new plastic piece with the ball bearing on the back of the dryer. The jagged corners of the back plate face the back of the dryer.

Remove the three screws holding the metal plate onto the back of the drum. Install the new metal plate.

Vacuum all areas of dust and lint. Lubricate the ball bearing and the metal ball on the plate attached to the drum.

Reinstall the drum into the dryer. Reinstall the belt and spring. Reinstall the front cover by placing the bottom in the tabs then screwing the top into place. Reconnect the wires (they are keyed to only connect one way) and use a cable tie to keep them out of the way of the drum. Reinstall the access panel/vent on the rear of the dryer. Reinstall the top cover by inserting the back tabs into the slots. Also reconnect the ground wire near the back. Then press the front of the top down to secure it.

Turn the circuit breaker back on and test.

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