If your Whirlpool clothes dryer is producing screeching noises, it not only can be irritating, but it can also mean there's a problem with your clothes dryer. Don't let the noise persist without troubleshooting its cause. Although a faulty component is usually what's creating the noise, not addressing it right away can make the problem worse.
Defective Rear Drum Bearing
Certain Whirlpool clothes dryers have a rear drum bearing. It props up the drum from the back with a center spindle insert. Depending on your model, the component is either a ball-and-socket support, or it's a shaft within a sleeve. As it wears, the rear drum bearing might screech when the drum turns. Since it can't be repaired, the only option is to replace it. Once swapped out, the screeching noise stops.
If your Whirlpool clothes dryer doesn't have a rear drum bearing, it probably has rollers. Rollers are small wheels that perform essentially the same function as the rear drum bearing; they support the drum and help it turn in a circular motion. If even one of a drum's rollers becomes damaged, it can cause the drum to squeal and screech as it rotates. Switch out all of the rollers at one time to stop the noise. They're usually sold as a set, and replacing all of them rather than only the one that has failed ensures consistent wear.
Gliders protect the drum's edges so they don't scrape the cabinet's sides. They're nylon or plastic seals that form a barrier between the drum and cabinet. Gliders wear the more you use your dryer until they eventually start to thin and deteriorate. Once this occurs, the drum's spinning can cause them to screech as the worn-down gliders rub the cabinet. Change out gliders that no longer function properly to quiet your dryer.
Congested Blower Wheel
A Whirlpool clothes dryer has a blower wheel that circulates air in the dryer. It blows air over the heating element, into the drum and out the exhaust. If the plastic wheel becomes clogged with lint, it can screech and shriek. Review your dryer's user manual for aid in locating the blower wheel. Once found, clean it with a dry, soft cloth to rid it of lint. If after cleaning the noise doesn't end, the component might be malfunctioning. Contact a dryer repair technician to evaluate the wheel's condition, and replace it if needed.
Loose Drum Belt
The drum belt goes around the drum's center and steadies it as it turns. The belt is made of rubber that can stretch and expand over time. When this happens, it can slip from its location. A loose belt might screech as it attempts to stabilize a rotating drum. Consult a dryer repair technician to inspect the belt. If it's outstretched, it needs replacing.
Christie Gross has been writing since 1998. Her work writing public policy platforms for elected officials nationwide has been featured in national and local newspapers under various client pen names. Gross has a Bachelor of Arts in English and political science, as well as a Master of Public Administration from the University of Delaware.