Most people are pretty good about remembering to clean out the lint trap on their dryers. But when was the last time you cleaned out your dryer vent or removed renegade lint from inside the machine? These tasks are also vital! In fact, thorough routine cleaning of your dryer vent (and your lint trap) will deliver the following benefits:
1.) Reduced Risk of Fire: Lint is extremely flammable, so lint buildup presents a serious fire hazard. An estimated 15,000 home fires and $201 million in damages could be prevented each year with proper dryer vent cleaning.
2.) Shorter Drying Times: Lint buildup prevents hot, moist air from escaping quickly from the unit. This means clothes take longer to dry. But by cleaning the dryer vents, you can keep your laundry routine on schedule.
3.) Lower Electric Bills: Obviously the longer it takes to dry your clothes, the more energy the dryer will have to use. This means cleaning the dryer vents saves energy, money, and time all at once.
4.) Fewer Repair Needs: Clogged dryer vents that make dryers run longer can increase wear and tear on the system, potentially leading to more frequent repair needs. But with clean vents the dryer can operate exactly as it was designed.
5.) Longer Service Life: Increased wear and tear can also lead to the outright failure of the machine, especially if small problems are not repaired promptly. It’s best to avoid this entire scenario by keeping your dryer lint-free.
If your dryer is located directly beside an exterior wall with a short, straight vent path, you can probably clean your dryer vent on your own. All you have to do is open up the vent cover on the outside of your home, reach in, and pull all that fluffy lint out. However, if your dryer’s ventilation path is long and convoluted, you will want to get professional help with dryer vent cleaning in order to get all the lint out. American Appliance Repair is happy to provide this service for you as part of a dryer maintenance visit. If you have an older dryer, or frequently dry clothes that produce a lot of lint (perhaps in the form of pet hair), some amount of lint is going to escape the lint trap and you may also need to have lint removed from the inside of the dryer periodically. This is definitely a job for a professional well versed in dryer service, as the unit will need to be partially disassembled in order to complete a thorough cleaning.