Did you know that dryer fires are very common in the United States? They occur because lint gets trapped in the vent when it is not cleaned out on a regular basis. Unfortunately, lint is highly flammable. It catches on fire when the dryer vent clogs and sets off a chain reaction that leads to limited airflow. This makes the dryer have to work harder, and it gets hotter than usual. As a result, it eventually overheats and can catch on fire.
The best way to avoid dryer fires is to perform frequent dryer vent cleaning. Clean the dryer vent after every cycle. This includes washing down the lint screen every couple of cycles. Also, make sure that the dryer vent system is up to par. Inspect the exterior vent as well. Be certain that it can easily open and close during dryer use.
Annual Dryer Vent Cleaning is a necessity for many good reasons. It is something that all homeowners should invest in annually to save money, time and prevent fire hazards. If you noticed lately that it takes two or three cycles to dry one load of clothes, this is a sign that your dryer needs vent cleaning.
Proper dryer venting is much more important than most homeowners realize. Considering the stakes involved and the frequency of residential dryer fires, the topic of dryer venting deserves more attention than it gets.
In addition to the danger of fire, clogged dryer vents prolong drying time. This wastes energy and helps contribute to even more lint buildup.
A quick look behind just about any dryer can be illuminating. In most cases, the flexible duct (transition hose) is going to have multiple bends. In situations that can be very dangerous, the exhaust hose can be crushed against the wall. Add lost socks, an empty fabric softener box and a considerable accumulation of lint dust and this very real fire hazard becomes obvious.
All this is before looking inside the wall or at the exhaust system’s outside termination. Inside the wall, long duct runs with many elbows increase the rate of lint accumulation in the duct and in the dryer itself. Inefficient dryer vent terminations that are all too common also contribute to the problem.
While we strongly recommend that the lint screen be cleaned before every load, the fact is that lint still makes it past the filter. There are many reasons lint builds up in every dryer system. Some you can see. Some you can’t.