Your dryer is an appliance that you probably don’t think about that much until it stops working. Dryer vents accumulate lint, which prevents your dryer from working properly and can be a serious fire hazard. Your dryer vent needs to be regularly cleaned to keep your dryer working safely and efficiently.
When to Clean
Your dryer vent should be professionally cleaned at least once per year. Depending on how many people live in your home and how much use your dryer sees, your vent may need to be cleaned more often.
Signs It’s Time to Have Your Dryer Vent Cleaned
Dryer is Hot
If your dryer is hot to the touch while it’s operating, this is a red flag that the vent should be cleaned. In addition, if your clothes are hotter than normal when you take them out or you notice excess heat in any way, proceed with caution and schedule a professional cleaning.
Clothes Need to Be Dried Twice
On the other hand, if you notice that your dryer isn’t getting hot enough and your clothes need a second dry cycle, this could also indicate a dirty dryer vent. Dirty vents prevent your dryer from functioning properly. This can cause it to either overheat or underheat. Either way, it’s important to take action to correct the problem and prevent further complications.
Any burning smell that come from your dryer may be a sign that your dryer vent is dirty and should result in immediate action. Lint is highly flammable. If you smell something burning in your dryer, immediately stop the cycle and call a technician. Don’t risk the safety of your family and home.
Why Clean Your Dryer Vent?
The number one reason to have your dryer vents regularly cleaned is to prevent a fire. Four percent of home fires start in the dryer. Failure to clean causes approximately 1/3 of dryer fires, which typically start when dust, lint, or fibers ignite.
Keeping your dryer vent clean also makes your home more energy efficient. A dirty vent hinders your dryer's ability to function, causing it to require more energy to dry your laundry. Dirty dryer vents could be causing your dryer to work twice as hard, wasting energy and needlessly pushing your utility bills higher. If it’s time to have your dryer vent cleaned, contact a trusted technician to clean your vent professionally and safely. For more tips on how to care for your home, subscribe to the Dream Steam blog!