At Mr. Appliance of North Las Vegas, we recommend that your dryer vents are cleaned at least once per year, potentially more than that if you run loads of laundry very frequently. Not only do these regular cleanings keep things safer, but they also save energy (lowering your bills) and help your dryer work faster, and longer.
The lint trap should be cleared with every use to help slow the process down, but eventually, lint will make its way into the dryer vent. It builds up with time, and the most significant issue with this is the fire hazard it presents. Those vents get hot as the dryer runs, and lint building up is flammable. So beyond risking the appliance malfunctioning altogether, not staying ahead of vent cleaning can put your home at risk.
How Do You Know if Your Dryer Vent Needs Cleaning?
Though vents should be tended to routinely for safety, there are signs that you can look for which will indicate that you’re coming due for a cleaning.
Some of the common signs that you should schedule vent cleaning include:
- Clothing takes more than 45 minutes to become consistently dry
- Clothing coming out of the dryer is too hot
- The laundry room is far too warm while the dryer runs
- There are burning smells somewhere within the laundry room
- The dryer has a warning light feature that shows
- The dryer automatically shuts off unexpectedly
- The outside vent has lint around it
- The outside hood flap doesn’t open when the dryer runs
Can You DIY Dryer Vent Cleaning?
With a few tools and the proper steps, it is possible to clean dryer vents yourself, although you will want to ensure that you thoroughly clean everything and work carefully to not cause accidental damage. DIY cleaning can save money upfront, but the last thing you want is to need repair services that cost more than the original cleaning would.
- Find where the duct begins and ends, and then safely disconnect your dryer from the power source
- Pull the vent pipe away from the wall duct, removing the duct cover from the exit point outside
- Using vent brushes with flexible segments that connect, carefully insert the brush into the ductwork and spin it counterclockwise while pushing down the dryer duct
- Vacuum all the lint that comes out of both ends, and repeat the process until there is no more lint bits
- Put everything back together, turn the power on, and give the dryer a test run