Is Dryer Vent Cleaning Really Needed?
- Is your clothes dryer taking too long to dry?
- Do your clothes smell moldy after you dry them?
- Do you have to run your machine more than once to dry your clothes?
- Would you like to save money on your energy bill?
- Do you want to improve the air quality in your house?
Many people assume their clothes dryer is the problem, but the venting could be dirty or plugged.
We professionally inspect and clean dryers and vents in residences and in commercially-owned buildings in the Puget Sound area. We have the equipment to clean the entire length of your venting, measure air-flow, temperature and humidity, and verify that the venting meets current building codes.
Over 17,000 house fires every year are caused by plugged or dirty dryer vents
Unlike the dishwasher or clothes washing machine, the dryer needs a little ongoing maintenance to keep it in safe and in proper working condition. The way your dryer works is pretty simple it spins clothes around in hot air while an exhaust vent sends damp air outside. A round, flexible 4" exhaust tube connects to the back of your dryer and then to a duct in the wall that leads somewhere outside so all the hot, moist air coming out of the dryer ends up outside. As your heated clothes tumble in the hot air, lint comes off the fabric and most of it gets caught in the lint trap as the exhaust air passes through it. The lint trap is usually accessed either inside the dryer door or on top of the dryer and it usually looks like a plastic or wire screen. Whatever gets past the lint trap goes out the exhaust vent and duct and either clings to the sides of the tube if it is wet with condensation and can be sticky or blows out the exhaust vent outside.
Since your dryer has to blow exhaust air out through the ducts, the shorter the duct work the better. The total recommended length is normally less than 30 feet from the back of your dryer to the outside vent cover that's with a straight running exhaust duct. If you have bends and turns, it should be an even shorted distance. The more turns and the further the distance, the harder your dryer must work to move exhaust air and loose lint and the harder your dryer works and the longer it runs, the sooner it will wear out and have to be replaced or repaired.
Save Money and Time!
A lint-clogged dryer can often consume $20 worth of extra electricity every month trying to dry your clothes so it makes good sense to keep your dryer clean.
All dryer ducting must be a minimum of 4" in diameter. Clean ducts encourage air flow efficiency, quickens drying times, adds longevity to clothing's life and reduces utility bills.
- Flexible transition hose between the dryer and the wall outlet should be either the foil type or the aluminum flexible duct. Do not use the white colored plastic or vinyl.
- Venting must be rigid metal duct.
- Venting joints shall be installed so that the male end of the duct points in the direction of the airflow.
- Joints should be secured with metal tape. Do not use screws in the joints or anywhere else in the duct as these will encourage lint collection.
- Length of metal ducting shall not exceed 30 feet.
- Dryer venting shall be independent of any other systems
- Termination of dryer venting must be to the exterior with a proper hood and a backdraft damper. To prevent cold air from entering the home when not in use.
- Look for birds nest or clogged vent dampers. Most importantly, feel for air leaving the vent.
- If you suspect clogged or partially clogged exhaust ducting, it is likely you need to have them cleaned. Dryer vent cleaning improves the safety and efficiency and depending on the venting circumstances, should be cleaned or inspected every year.
- Make sure your flex hose is not kinked or crushed. The space behind your dryer should be sufficient as to provide adequate room for the flex transition hose to make its bends with no restrictions.
- Keep exhaust duct as straight and short as possible. Exhaust systems longer than the manufacturer's recommendations can extend drying times, affect appliance operation and may encourage lint build-up on interior of venting.
- When running the clothes dryer, be careful not to over dry. Running your dryer too long not only wastes energy but can also damage your clothes. Use a automatic setting, such as "less dry" rather than a timed setting.
- Clean lint filters regularly. Cleaning the lint filters on your washer and dryer will save energy, improve performance, and minimize fire hazards.
- Do not attempt to dry rags or fabrics that have been used with flammable solvents.
- Replace lint screens that have been damaged or not filtering well anymore.