Why Your Dryer Vent Needs To Be Cleaned Out Regularly

You probably use your clothes dryer without giving it much thought. You may never even think about the dryer vent at all since it is behind the dryer and out of sight. However, the dryer vent accumulates lint over time, and the lint has to be removed just like you remove lint from the dryer itself. Here's a look at residential dryer vent cleaning and why you need to keep up with it for the safety of your home.

Lint In A Dryer Vent Is A Fire Hazard

If lint accumulates in the dryer vent, it becomes a fire hazard, and that puts your home and family in danger. If you have a corrugated vent, the risk of it holding on to lint is even greater than it is with a smooth metal vent, so you may want to learn what type of vent your dryer has.

Dryer Vents Differ In Length

Dryer vents differ due to the location of your dryer and how close it is to an outside wall. If your dryer is in your garage and vents directly outside, you may have a short, straight vent. If your dryer is in the interior of your home or on the second level, the vent may wind behind your wall to reach an opening on an outside wall. The longer your vent, the higher the risk of it holding onto lint and the harder it is to clean.

You might clean a short, straight vent yourself. However, you may need a residential dryer vent cleaning service to clean a long vent behind the walls or to clean a second-story vent from a ladder.

Feel The Dryer Exhaust To Check For Lint

You may not know when your dryer vent needs to be cleaned. It's a good practice to schedule cleaning for once each year. However, if you don't use your dryer very often, you might go longer than that, and if you use your dryer daily, once a year might not be often enough. You can feel the dryer exhaust when it comes out of the vent outdoors. If the airflow is strong and you don't see lint blowing out, lint probably isn't a problem yet. However, keep track of how often you need to clean lint out of the lint trap. If you're cleaning out lint more often than usual, lint might be accumulating in the dryer vent faster than you expect.

Residential Dryer Vent Cleaning Requires Tools

The usual tools for cleaning a dryer vent include a vacuum cleaner and a brush on the end of a long cable. The brush knocks lint loose and the vacuum cleaner pulls it out of the vent. This can be a time-consuming process for a long corrugated vent, especially if it hasn't been cleaned in years. The dryer vent cleaning service might use a camera to look inside the vent to verify all the lint is gone when they finish.