The belt in your Hotpoint dryer connects the motor to the drum, allowing the drum to tumble your clothes dry. The belt has a limited lifespan and will wear out over time. Although you should replace the belt before it breaks, most people won't notice the belt until it breaks completely. Replacing the belt is a straightforward task that can be done by anyone comfortable with a screwdriver.
Disconnect your Hotpoint dryer from the electrical socket. Disconnect the dryer vent from the back of the dryer. Slide the dryer out from the wall to give yourself plenty of space to work.
Remove the screws holding the dryer's lower access panel in place and remove the panel. Reach inside the dryer and push in on the idler arm to release the belt from the motor pulley and idler pulley. If the belt has already broken you can pull the belt out through the access panel, or pull it out after you remove the drum.
Open the dryer's door and remove the screws along the inside of the door holding the top panel of the dryer in place. Slide the top panel toward you and lift it up and off of the dryer. On older Hotpoint models the top panel is hinged in the back and does not get removed. Simply lift it up and tilt it back against the dryer's control panel.
Remove the screws along the inside edges of the front panel. Pull the top of the front panel toward you and lift it up of the lower retaining clips. Slide the front panel to the left side of the dryer, keeping in mind the door switch wires are still connected. Lean the front panel against the side of the dryer.
Slide a new belt over the drum. Let it hang down by the motor and idler pulley. Replace the front panel and top panel.
Move around to the back of the dryer and reach through the access hole in the rear panel to restring the belt. The belt should run from the left side of the drum, cross over the idler pulley, loop around the motor pulley and run up the right side of the drum. Refer to the Resources for a diagram of the belt configuration. Replace the access panel and reconnect the dryer vent. Plug the dryer back into the outlet.
Never disassemble your dryer without unplugging it first.