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How Hot Does A Dryer Get: Here's How You Can Check

A dryer uses the movement of air to transport the heat its motor generates throughout the appliance in order to dry off your clothing. At higher operating temperatures, a dryer is hot enough to kill insects and microscopic life, which makes it a desirable addition in the fight against pests. You also need to think about how hot does a dryer get as this knowledge may offer you signs as to whether or not your dryer is damaged and needs repair.

Hot or Not? How to Troubleshoot

If find yourself asking the question "how hot does a dryer get," we can tell you that the exact temperatures it runs at will vary based on the brand, the age, and what the dryer is used for, among other factors. Most dryers will top out around 125 to 135 degrees F., depending on the cycle. It is possible to burn your skin if exposed to 120-degree heat for an extended period, but since your clothes cool quickly once out of the dryer, there isn't much to worry about (outside of hot buttons on jeans and other clothing).

Temperature Extremes

adjusting the dryer temperature

There are dryers that can produce temperatures far higher than 135 degrees. As the dryer compartment is enclosed and does not have oxygen continually flowing in, the clothing will not catch fire. However, that risk under some conditions is one major reason why you need to stay on top of your dryer maintenance. Pockets of air flowing into the dryer due to a leak or other issue contain oxygen and could increase the chance of a fire. It's also why your dryer can't run while open; that requirement is not meant just to prevent the clothes from falling out.

Commercial clothes dryers commonly used in professional settings may reach drying temperatures of around 176 degrees. It is possible to purchase some large dryers for a household that reach this kind of extreme temperature. Most such models are very large dryers, and they are very useful for drying items like heavy full-size comforters.

The air temperature used to dry your clothing is not the same as the temperature the dryer mechanism itself must reach in order to generate this kind of heat. In fact, for a dryer to reach 176 degrees, the heating element must reach 210 degrees. This is just two degrees cooler than water boiling temperature.

Your Home Dryer: How Hot Does a Dryer Get?

washing machines

Chances are, you do not have a dryer that can reach 176 degrees. Your dryer more than likely reaches around 135 degrees or so, depending on the brand and the size of the dryer. In most cases, this is as hot as you'll ever need it to be. If you run a large household and need an extra-powerful dryer, it is possible to find one, but you'll likely need to go out of your way to pick a good one at the right price.

Common Dryer Problems

Common Dryer Problems

Now that we've covered concerns over how hot does a dryer get, let's consider some common dryer problems you are likely to run into. Some of these dryer problems are easy to correct and can be fixed on your own. When some other, more serious problems arise, you must bring a professional in to address the issue. Remember that dryers do present a real risk of house fires when they malfunction. You definitely need to know what the common dryer problems are.

Bad Fuse

Damaged Temperature Switch

Bad Thermostat

Bad Heating Coils

Dryer Getting Too Hot

How Hot Does a Dryer Get: 5 Signs Your Dryer Is Busted

Whenever you're dealing with an appliance that generates heat and uses a large amount of electricity, you need to know when it is damaged and when you need to go about having it repaired (or replaced) by a professional. In this section, we cover five signs your dryer is busted and in need of repair.

Too Hot And Vent is Clear

Turns But Doesn't Heat Up

Not Turning On At All

Clothes Are Burning

Drying Is Randomly Turning Off


Obviously, your dryer must produce heat to dry your clothing. The dryer then circulates that heat throughout the appliance to dry your clothes without burning the clothing or starting a fire. Temperatures vary in dryers, and you need to know that answer to the question, "how hot does a dryer get," as problems with the temperature may be signs your dryer needs to be repaired. There are several potential problems that can cause temperature shifts. Whatever the issue is, though, contact a repair specialist if your dryer is running into serious issues as some malfunctions create risks in your home.