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Maytag Centennial Dryer Not Heating? How To Fix It

The Maytag Centennial dryer series has over a dozen models, including electric and gas ones. Although different models have different features (e.g., a control panel), the heating components are pretty similar. So, if your Maytag Centennial dryer isn’t heating, it’s likely due to general issues you can fix. 

Here’s how you can fix a Maytag Centennial dryer not heating:

  • Test the thermal cutoff.
  • Get a new inlet thermistor.
  • Replace the thermal fuse.
  • Fix the exhaust thermistor.
  • Check the heating element.
  • Repair or replace the timer.
  • Inspect the burner igniter.
  • Change the flame sensor.
  • Test the gas valve coils.
  • Replace the control board.
  • Fix electrical or gas issues.
  • Clean the dryer and vent.

Some of these parts are easier to access and inspect than others. So, you should start your troubleshooting process by testing the more accessible components that are likely the problem. Read on to determine the causes of your Maytag Centennial dryer not heating (whether it’s a gas or electric model) and how to fix it. 

Test the Thermal Cutoff

All Maytag Centennial dryers have a thermal cutoff feature. However, the location of this sensor may differ depending on the model. The method of accessing it may also vary. 

If you have a Maytag Centennial electric dryer, you can access this thermal cutoff by taking off the top cover. Alternatively, you can find it after removing the rear panel.

If you have a Maytag Centennial gas dryer, removing the rear panel to access the thermal cutoff is the simplest way to do so. Otherwise, you have to take apart the bulkhead (including the drum) to get to this sensor. 

Also, the gas models have the thermal cutoff below the burner assembly’s high limit thermostat. In electric dryers, the high limit thermostat is close to the wires for the heating element, which is below the thermal cutoff.

In both gas and electric models, a blown thermal cutoff will prevent a Maytag Centennial dryer from heating. Therefore, you have to test the thermal cutoff and replace it if you don’t find continuity.  

How To Fix

Here’s how you can access the thermal cutoff in Maytag Centennial gas dryers:

  1. Unplug the dryer and pull it away from the wall.
  2. Unscrew the rear access panel and remove it.
  3. Check the burner assembly to the right (rearview). The thermal cutoff should be below the high limit thermistor.
  4. Remove the wires and unscrew the thermal cutoff.

Here’s how you can access the thermal cutoff in Maytag Centennial electric dryers:

  1. Unplug the dryer and get a putty knife or paint scraper.
  2. Pull out the lint filter and remove the two screws on the trap. The top cover has a clip for each of the front corners.
  3. Slide the knife or scraper under the front cover’s corners.
  4. Nudge the knife or scraper to release the cover.
  5. Flip the cover backward gently to protect the wirings.
  6. Reach to the back of the drum to find the thermal cutoff. The thermal cutoff is the topmost sensor on the heater.
  7. Remove the wires from the terminals and unscrew the sensor. You can test its continuity after only removing the wires. You may also access this part by removing the rear panel.

Here’s how you can test the thermal cutoff in gas and electric dryers:

  1. Set a multimeter to continuity mode or least resistance. Alternatively, you may use a simpler continuity tester.
  2. Place the probes on the thermal cutoff terminals. If you find continuity, something else is bad in the dryer. If there’s no continuity, replace the thermal cutoff.

Check the part number of the thermal cutoff to get a similar replacement. Although this problem is extremely common, the solution is budget-friendly and straightforward. 

However, a thermal cutoff blowing usually indicates overheating. I’ll discuss the overheating issue in more detail below.

Get a New Inlet Thermistor

Maytag Centennial dryers have an inlet thermistor, which is essentially a high-limit thermostat. This is on the heating element or burner assembly in electric or gas dryers, respectively. A broken inlet thermistor or high limit thermostat is a common reason for a Maytag Centennial dryer not heating. 

You can access this sensor after removing the rear panel of both electric and gas dryers. Make sure the dryer is unplugged before you disassemble anything. This high limit thermostat is next to the thermal cutoff in gas dryers. Electric dryers have the inlet thermistor next to the heating element terminals below the thermal cutoff. 

Either way, the inlet thermistor may be stuck, resulting in an open circuit. Or it may open the circuit prematurely and shut the heating element or burner.   

How To Fix

Test the high-limit thermostat for continuity. You can also test its resistance with a multimeter. These types of thermistors should have close to 0 ohms of resistance at room temperature. If your multimeter reads nothing or displays an open loop, you have a bad high-limit thermostat.

One problem with these thermostats is the sensor possibly failing at low temperatures. So, the thermistor may open the circuit as soon as the heating element or burner comes on. In effect, your dryer won’t heat. 

Therefore, you need to test a high-limit thermostat at different temperatures to know if it fails prematurely.

Watch this YouTube video on how to test a high limit thermostat at varying temperatures:

Another way to know is to check if the heating element or burner works. However, you shouldn’t try this if you aren’t experienced with electrical circuits, wirings, or high voltage appliances like dryers, especially if it’s an electric Centennial.

Use wires of the same gauge as those connected to the inlet thermistor to join the two wirings. Then, plug the dryer into the wall receptacle and turn it on. Check if the dryer heats. 

If the burner or heater works, you have a bad high-limit thermostat. Match the part number and replace it. If the burner or heater doesn’t work, one of the other critical components is broken.

Replace the Thermal Fuse

Maytag Centennial dryers have a thermal fuse on the blower assembly. This sensor serves the same purpose as the thermal cutoff above. However, unlike the thermal cutoff, this fuse is a safety feature on the exhaust system, which is why it’s on the blower chute. 

Both electric and gas models of the Maytag Centennial series have a blower chute. This chute has two temperature sensors: The thermal fuse and the exhaust thermistor. You have to access these sensors from behind. So, remove the rear panel, as I’ve explained above.

Once you have access to the blower assembly, you’ll find two sensors. The one near you is the exhaust thermistor, which is similar to the high limit thermostat on the heating element or burner assembly. The sensor next to the exhaust thermistor is the thermal fuse. 

If you can’t access the thermal fuse, unscrew and remove the blower assembly and lint chute. Doing this allows you to clean up the dryer if you haven’t done so in a while. At any rate, you must test the thermal fuse for continuity and replace it if it’s bad.

How To Fix

You can remove the wire harnesses and test the continuity of the thermal fuse. Or, you can take it off by removing the screws if that’s more convenient. Use the same continuity test as I have explained for the thermal cutoff. If there’s no continuity, replace the thermal fuse.

Fix the Exhaust Thermistor

Maytag Centennial dryers have an exhaust thermistor on the blower assembly, right next to the thermal cutoff. Although the thermal cutoff and fuse are similar sensors, the exhaust thermistor is like the high limit thermostat on the heating element or burner assembly.

The exhaust thermistor is a safety feature designed to detect the temperature in the lint chute and blower assembly. Also, it plays a role in the dryer’s cycling off and on. A broken exhaust thermistor is a common cause of a Maytag Centennial dryer not heating and ineffective drying.   

How To Fix

Test the exhaust thermistor for continuity at room temperature. Maytag Centennial dryers have four terminals on the cycling thermostat for low and high heat or temperatures, respectively. The inner terminals are for low heat settings, so check for continuity on the outer ones. 

A good cycling thermostat or exhaust thermistor should have close to 0 ohms of resistance at room temperature. If the thermostat fails the continuity test or reads infinite resistance, you need a new one. 

Also, even if there’s continuity, the thermostat can be faulty if it switches off prematurely. So, you have to test it at higher temperatures.   

Here’s a YouTube video to help you test a cycling thermostat or exhaust thermistor at high heat settings: 

Check the Heating Element

If you have a Maytag Centennial electric dryer, the next part to inspect is the heating element.

Here are the common issues with electric dryer heating elements:

  • Low voltage
  • Broken wires
  • Electrical short
  • Structural damage
  • Weak heating element

Low voltage and broken or bad wires aren’t a heating element problem. You need to check the following:

  • Wall receptacle
  • Power cable 
  • Terminal block
  • Wiring connections

An electric Maytag Centennial dryer needs 220V to 240V power for the heating element to work.

If you don’t have any electrical or power issues, inspect the heating element for cracks, blisters, and other signs of damage. A structurally intact heating element may be weak, bad, or shorted. A weak or bad heating element needs replacement, as well as a shorted one.

How To Fix

Test the heating element for continuity and short. Here are the steps:

  1. Unplug the dryer, take off the rear panel, and remove the heating element wires.
  2. Test the terminals with your multimeter for continuity or nominal resistance. No continuity or an open loop means the heating element is broken.
  3. If there’s continuity, test the heating element assembly for an electrical short.
  4. Connect one probe to a terminal and place the other on the metal chassis. If your multimeter detects continuity, the heating element has a short.

Suppose your heating element passes all the tests. In that case, check the timer or the control board.

Repair or Replace the Timer

Maytag Centennial dryers have a timer you control with the dial or knob. The timer’s motor and contacts regulate the connectivity of the heater or burner assembly. If these contacts or the terminal don’t work, the timer won’t turn on the electric heating element or gas burner.

Therefore, you have to test and visually inspect the timer. If the timer is bad and beyond repair, you have to replace it. However, in some cases, you can repair the timer with a bit of elbow grease.  

How To Fix

You can access the timer from under or behind the control panel, based on the Centennial model you have. 

If you have a top cover with clips underneath, you can use a putty knife or paint scraper to access the control panel’s components. Otherwise, you can unscrew the control panel from the rear and take off the console. 

Either way, you’ll find the timer mounted behind the knob or dial. Remove the wire harnesses and unscrew the securing plate. Then, test the terminals for continuity. This process is slightly more complicated than a thermal fuse or other parts with only two terminals.

A Maytag Centennial dryer’s timer has multiple terminals, usually 7. If you’re looking at the back of the timer, 4 terminals are to the left, and 3 are to your right. The 4 terminals on the left are the ones regulating the heating system, whether it’s an electrical element or a gas burner. 

If any terminal doesn’t have continuity with any other, your dryer won’t heat. You can test two terminals at a time for continuity. If any pair fails the test, you can take apart the timer to inspect its internal gear and contacts. Alternatively, you can get a new timer and replace the bad one.

If you’re interested in trying to repair the timer, here are the steps that can help:

  1. Unscrew the timer, detach the motor, and access the internal parts.
  2. Check the gear and contacts for deformation, charring, and corrosion.
  3. Clean the contacts and align them with the gear if you find any arcing.
  4. Scrape off any corrosion and charring with an emery board or nail filer.
  5. Test the terminals for continuity at different alignments by turning the shaft.
  6. If the contacts and gears are alright, you should have continuity at the terminals. Otherwise, matching the part number and buying a new timer is the only option.

Inspect the Burner Igniter

Maytag Centennial gas dryers have a viewing hole in the kickplate. If your model doesn’t have a kickplate, the viewing hole should be on the front cover (usually near the bottom-left corner). This hole has a plastic cap you can gently pry open using a flat-blade screwdriver.

Here’s a quick way to inspect if your gas dryer’s burner igniter is working:

  1. Remove the viewing hole’s plastic cover. 
  2. Keep the gas dryer plugged in and turn it on.
  3. Look through the hole to see if the igniter glows. If the igniter doesn’t glow, it has a problem. If the igniter glows, there’s another issue.

How To Fix

Check the igniter for structural damage. A broken igniter needs to be replaced. Alternatively, clean the igniter if it’s sooty, and ensure the wirings are alright. You can also test the igniter for continuity and resistance. If the igniter has continuity, it may still be weak, so test its resistance. 

A good igniter should have 50 to 400 ohms of resistance. Replace the igniter if it has no or infinite resistance. 

Change the Flame Sensor

The burner assembly in a Maytag Centennial gas dryer is to the bottom-left if you access it from the front. The flame sensor is fastened to the left side of the gas burner. If this sensor is bad, the dryer won’t heat, as the gas supply valve will close due to false detection of a lack of flame. 

How To Fix

Here are the steps to access and inspect the flame sensor:

  1. Unplug the dryer and remove the front cover.
  2. You need a socket wrench or a 1/4-inch (6.35 mm) nut driver.
  3. Take off the screws inside and below the front cover to remove it.
  4. Remove the wire harnesses from the flame sensor and unscrew it.
  5. Test its continuity and inspect if the component has a short.
  6. Replace a shorted flame sensor, or if it doesn’t have continuity.

Test the Gas Valve Coils

If both the igniter and flame sensor are fine, you should check the gas valve coils or solenoids. Use the same steps as above to access the gas burner assembly in your Maytag Centennial dryer. You’ll find the gas valve coils upfront when you inspect the assembly after removing the front cover.

Failing or stuck valve coils shut off the gas supply. Therefore, the dryer’s burner won’t work, even if the igniter glows. 

How To Fix

You can test the continuity of the gas valve coils or solenoids. If they fail the continuity test, get a new set. Maytag Centennial dryers have two gas valve coils. You may need to replace only one or both. However, if none of the gas burner assembly parts are faulty, inspect the control board next.

Replace the Control Board

Suppose all the parts discussed until now are working. In that case, you may have a bad control board, or there are electrical and gas supply issues. A Maytag Centennial dryer control board doesn’t go bad easily, but it won’t last forever, and it can be vulnerable to overheating.  

How To Fix

Check if the control board is charred or burnt. Also, inspect the wires and harnesses. If you find anything broken, you need to replace that part or the entire board. Relays are replaceable. However, if there are circuit-related issues with the control board, you need a new one.

Fix Electrical or Gas Issues

Serious electrical problems can prevent your Maytag Centennial dryer from heating, like a power surge or low voltage. Likewise, improper gas pressure or no gas can cause a Maytag Centennial dryer not heating. Therefore, you must inspect the entire installation.

How To Fix

Here are the typical electrical and gas issues you need to check for and fix:

  • Blown fuse or tripped breaker due to a power surge or incompatible circuit.
  • Voltage problems, especially for electric dryers that require 220V to 240V.
  • Use of adapters for power cables or plugs and standard extension cords.
  • Inadvertently shut supply valve for gas dryers or low pressure at the regulator.
  • Improper propane pressure for Maytag Centennial dryers configured for natural gas.
  • Long or winding gas piping with a narrow diameter, which contributes to unusually low pressure.

Clean the Dryer and Vent

Poor airflow or an obstructed exhaust system is the most common cause of dryers overheating. A new thermal fuse, cutoff, or high limit switch can blow if you don’t have a clean lint filter, blower chute, and vent. So, your Maytag Centennial dryer may stop heating sooner or later. 

How To Fix

To prevent your dryer from overheating and malfunctioning:

  • Clean the lint screen or filter and trap after every substantial load.
  • Vacuum the lint chute and blower assembly to eliminate all debris.
  • Use a vent cleaning brush to clear the entire duct or exhaust system.
  • Don’t use excessive fabric softeners that can block the dryer’s grille. 


  • Chris Hewitt

    Chris is a Texas-based freelance writer who loves the outdoors and working in his garage. When he's not enjoying the Texas sun, he can be found tinkering with all sorts of things in his workshop.

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