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Dryer Vent Cleaning is No Joke

Believe it or not, dryer vents are now considered to be more of a fire hazard than chimneys. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has issued an alert due to the fact that there are 15,500 fires, 10 deaths and 310 injuries from dryer exhaust fires annually. This is due to dryers being clogged with lint, one of the most flammable substances in your home! We are happy to complete this service when we come out for your annual chimney cleaning. Doing the annual chimney system inspection at the same time is a great way to insure everything is off your to-do list for the year!

The Top 3 Reasons you want to have your Dryer Vents Cleaned:

  • Once Cleaned – IT WILL NOT IGNITE AND START A FIRE
  • Once Cleaned – IT WILL EXTEND THE LIFE OF YOUR DRYER
  • Once Cleaned – IT WILL SAVE ENERGY (clothes will not take as long to dry)

Most dryers in homes in the past had short efficient runs out the basement window making maintenance easy for homeowners and renters. However, as more homes, condos and apartment complexes have dryers installed on upper levels, dryers are located in areas with long concealed vent runs that can have several elbows making maintenance something that the homeowner or renter can no longer easily do for themselves. It can also be extremely hard at times to tell if you are having dryer vent problems. Clothes not drying after one cycle are a sign that something might be wrong with your dryer and an indication that something needs to be done immediately.

Recent constructions of modern day homes are done in a way that includes the installation of a dryer. Because of this inclusion, proper operation of the dryer and vent runs becomes critical. Dryers exhaust air from the house while they are in operation. Gas dryers also vent products of combustion (carbon monoxide) in addition to the natural moisture from the clothes making it even more important to make sure they are vented properly to the outside.

Most people don’t realize that the plastic accordion type connector is no longer considered acceptable. Optimally the connector should be rigid metal. The second choice would be a UL Listed metal flex-connector cut to the shortest length possible.

It is interesting to note that in a 4 inch vent it only takes 1/2 inch of lint to reduce the flow of air by almost 50%!  This is extremely hard on a dryer and one more reason for getting the vents cleaned on your dryer.

The dryer runs at a high temperature and has a limit safety switch that insures that the dryer never gets too hot… unless it cycles on and off so often that the switch wears out. Low air flow will cause this to happen.

Dryer Vent -Before Cleaning
BEFORE CLEANING
Dryer Vent -After Cleaning
AFTER CLEANING

How dryer vents are cleaned:

  • The dryer will be moved away from the wall, (we may do a couple more diagnostics at this point)
  • A vacuum that is blowing out will be attached to the vent.
  • From the outside we will use rods that are quite flexible and will navigate several 90 degree turns.  The drill action gives the rotation and spin to really scrub.
  • Debris and lint is blown to the outside of the home
  • Everything is picked up leaving your yard clean

There are several reasons you should clean your gutters along with your dryer vents and ducts.