Are your clothes taking longer to dry than normal in your clothes dryer? Do they come out hot and smelling strongly of dryer sheets? Does your laundry room heat up noticeably when the dryer is running? Do you notice an excess of dryer lint around your lint trap or dryer’s other connection, or outside underneath your dryer exhaust?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, and it has been awhile since your last cleaning, your dryer vents could be in desperate need of a cleaning and inspection. In fact, the National Fire Protection Association recommends at least annual dryer vent cleanings to reduce the risk of home fires and carbon monoxide poisoning.
Clothing dryers are a leading cause of home fires. According to the U.S. Fire Administration’s National Fire Data Center, clothing dryers ignite more than 15,000 home fires every year, resulting in 15 deaths. In an estimated 80 percent of cases, those fires were the result of dirty, clogged dryer vents. Additionally, clogged dryer vents of gas heated dryers prevent gas byproducts, including carbon monoxide, from leaving your home. That can allow a buildup of deadly carbon monoxide in your home, putting your family and your pets at risk.
So how do dryer vents cause fires? While you might clean your lint trap after each load of clothes and assume that your dryer is operating safely, that lint trap catches only a small fraction of the lint your dryer creates. That moist lint sticks together and builds up within your dryer vent, clogging it over time. Dryer vents also can be clogged by small items of clothing, such as socks, or animals, birds or debris that make their way in from the outside. When dryer vents are clogged, they can overheat and ignite.
Benefits of dryer vent cleaning
In addition to reducing your risk of carbon monoxide poisoning and a home fire, dryer vent cleaning carries other benefits. Because clean vents allow your dryer to exhaust properly, clothing dryers with clean vents allow your clothes to dry faster, reducing the amount of time it takes to dry a load of clothes; that means time and energy savings for you! Clogged dryer vents also can tax your dryer because it prevents the dryer from working efficiently — Clean dryer vents can actually extend the life of your dryer.
Professional dryer vent cleaning
The best way to make sure your dryer vents are cleaned and safe is with a professional dryer vent cleaning. When you hire Environmental Chimney Service to clean your dryer vents, we first move your dryer out and detach the dryer vent. With high pressure, we blow air through your dryer vent from the inside, while using flexible, rotating brushes from the outside to fully clear any debris out of your dryer vents. When we’re done, we gather up and dispose of all of the debris and reattach your dryer vent.
If you are overdue for a dryer vent cleaning, or if you notice any of the signs of clogged listed above, don’t put your home and family at risk. Call Environmental Chimney Service to schedule your dryer vent cleaning today!