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How to Inspect the Baffles

As the dryer drum turns, the clothing inside roll around over and over. That tumbling tends to bunch up the laundry. If the laundry bunches up, it dries very slowly. To prevent bunching, baffles are added to the drum. The baffles are ridge-like devices that protrude toward the center of the drum. The baffles reduce bunching by breaking up the ball of laundry. That results in better airflow contact with each piece of laundry and reduces the drying time.

Caution: Please read our safety information before attempting any testing, maintenance or repairs.

Before inspecting the baffles, unplug the clothes dryer or shut off the power at the fuse box or breaker panel to avoid an electrical shock hazard.

The baffles are often made from molded plastic, although metal is still used too. Plastic baffles can crack or break and snag laundry as it tumbles. Metal baffles can also become damaged or rust and damage the laundry.

Another problem that can occur is for small items, such as coins, to slip inside the baffles. When that happens the dryer can make a noisy racket as the objects rattle about in the rotating drum.

Visually inspect the baffles and then reach inside the dryer and feel for cracks or damage on each one. Turn the drum by hand and listen for debris tumbling inside the baffles.

If any of the baffles are damaged or missing, they should be replaced. If you hear debris inside the baffles, remove the baffle and empty out the debris.

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