Tips and Procedures
Learn how to restore appliances to the appearance and function they had when new.

Restoring the Drum

The paint will wear off the inside of the drum after several years of use. Several other manufacturers use porcelain to avoid this problem. Whirlpool has attempted to deal with this deficiency in their later dryers by using coatings other than enamel paint but all of the older machines have paint.

The concern with metal showing through the paint is that it can rust and put stains on your clothes. You have two options: (1) Use fabric softener sheets containing silicone that you throw in with your clothes while drying or (2) attempt to repaint the dryer drum. The fabric softener leaves a thin film that prevents rust from forming between loads. Rust is encouraged when wet or damp clothes are left in the dryer for several hours.

Removing the Drum

  2. If you have a lower access panel, remove it by pulling the top towards you and lifting it off the two lower support brackets.
  3. Remove the lint filter and the two screws that were under it.
  4. Pull the dryer away from the wall.
  5. (Figure 1) Get a putty knife and slide it in between the top and the cabinet about 2.5" in from each corner to release the clips holding the top down. Push in and pull up on the knife to release the clips. Don't use a screwdriver for this step or you will damage the dryer finish.
  6. Get a 5/16" nutdriver and lift the top up. You can rest the top on your head for this step. Reach in and remove the wires from the door switch. Mark them if there a three wires. Remove the clip holding the door switch wires. Replace the clip after removing the wires. Remove the two 5/16" sheet metal screws inside and near the top on both sides of the front panel.
  7. Now pull the top of the front panel towards you until the drum drops out of the front bearing. Lift the front panel clear of the two screws at the two lower corners. You don't have to loosen these screws. Lower the top.
  8. (Figure 2) Lay down on the floor in front of the dryer and grasp the idler pulley in your left hand. Push the idler pulley back to the right and slip the belt off the motor pulley with your right hand. Remove the idler pulley by lifting it out of its mounting slot ( you may have to move it slightly to the right).
  9. Leave the belt on the drum. Grasp the drum and work it out of the cabinet. Slide it through the rounded cutouts in cabinet side panels. You may want to put on a pair of gloves for this step to keep from cutting up your hands on the sharp edges. Set the drum aside.

Repainting the Drum

  1. Remove the plastic baffles from the inside of the drum.
  2. Thoroughly sand the inside of the drum with 100 or 120 grit sandpaper. Special care is needed to remove all films and residues that will prevent the new paint from sticking to the drum
  3. Clean the inside of the drum with a paint thinner such as toluene that won't leave a residue.
  4. Buy an aerosol can of gray paint (part number 350938) and apply one good coat of paint to the inside of the drum. Do not paint the outside of the drum. Put the drum out in the sun to dry. The paint needs to dry to a hard finish before you reassemble the dryer. Another option may to assemble the dryer and run it with no clothes in it to thoroughly dry the paint. That should only be done on an electric dryer, not gas.

Reassemble the Dryer

  1. (Figure 2) Position the drum back onto the rear rollers. Slide the foot of the idler pulley spring into its slot and push it to the left to secure it. Loop the belt through under the idler pulley, swing the pulley to the right and loop the belt around the motor pulley. Release the idler pulley. Check to see if the belt is lined up perpendicular to the shaft so that the belt won't jump off the pulley when you start the dryer.
  2. Lift the top (hold it on your head again), position the front panel on the two lower 5/16" screws, replace the door switch wires and retainer clip, lift the front of the drum onto the front bearings and replace the two 5/16" screws securing the front panel to the cabinet. Lower the cabinet top and lock it down. Replace the lower access panel if you had one. Replace the lint filter chute screws and slide the filter back in. Plug the dryer in and check for proper operation.

Figure 1 (Return)

Clip Location

Figure 2 (Return)