The thermal fuse on the dryer at the Clifton house failed. The probable cause: Our tenants used Dryer sheets to prevent static cling, soften clothes, improve wrinkle resistance and make their clothes smell good. Wax on the dryer sheets fouled the lint filter with a clear coating. The repairman demonstrated how water would not pass through the filter. If water can’t get through very little air does. Lint bypassed the filter and heat buildup from the restricted airflow caused the thermal fuse to heat up repeatedly and fail. UNBALANCED heat and pressure were the primary cause of the fuse failure. Thankfully the fuse did its’ job of preventing a fire. The same basic principles hold true for your heating and cooling system: fouled filters cost money and are a safety concern.
How to correct the problem? Regularly scrub your lint filter vigorously with hot, soapy water, stop using dryer sheets or hang your laundry outside. And don’t forget to check your furnace filter while you’re at it.