Dryer Vent Cleaning Prevents Potential Fire Hazard

Believe it or not, dryer vents are now considered to be more of a fire hazard than chimneys. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has issued an alert due to the fact that there are 15,500 fires, 10 deaths and 310 injuries from dryer exhaust fires annually. To further protect you and your family, we offer a Dryer Duct Cleaning Service completed by a CSIA-Certified Dryer Exhaust Technicians® (C-DET).

Lint Boulder - Nashville TN - Ashbusters Chimney Service

Chris Adair holding a “lint boulder”

The Main Reasons to Clean Dryer Vents:

  • THEY WILL NOT IGNITE AND START A FIRE
  • THEY WILL EXTEND THE LIFE OF YOUR DRYER
  • THEY WILL SAVE ENERGY (clothes will not take as long to dry)

The Truth About Long Concealed Vent Runs

As more homes have dryers installed on upper levels of the home with long concealed vent runs with several elbows, as opposed to short efficient runs out the basement window, maintenance is no longer something that the homeowner can easily do for themselves. In many cases, it’s also hard to tell if you are having dryer vent problems.

Recently constructed homes are built of tighter construction and expect to have a dryer installed. This means that proper operation of the dryer and vent runs becomes critical.  Dryers are exhausting air from the house while they are in operation.  Gas dryers are also venting products of combustion (carbon monoxide) in addition to the natural moisture from the clothes.

Best Practices for Vent Exhaust & Connectors

The exhaust must always be expelled to the outside atmosphere. This is of particular importance with gas dryers.  Most people don’t realize the plastic accordion type connector is no longer considered acceptable.  Optimally the connector would be rigid metal and the second choice would be a UL Listed metal flex-connector cut to the shortest length possible.

It is interesting to note that in a 4-inch vent, 1/2 inch of lint reduces the flow by almost 50%!  This is very hard on the dryer and just another reason for cleaning a dryer vent.  The dryer runs at a high temperature and has a limit safety switch that insures that the dryer never gets too hot… unless it cycles on and off so often that the switch wears out.  Low air flow will cause this to happen.

If you have a Boy Scout in the house, have them look up what lint is recommended for in the Boy Scout Manual. You will find that dryer lint is the perfect material to use to start a fire along with animal nests. Two things you don’t want in or around your home to ignite!

The 4 Steps to a Clean Dryer Vent

  1. The dryer will be moved away from the wall, (we may do a couple more diagnostics at this point)
  2. A vacuum that is blowing out will be attached to the vent.
  3. From the outside a set-up such as this one in the picture will be used. The rods are quite flexible and will navigate several 90 degree turns.  The drill action gives the rotation and spin to really scrub.
  4. The technician will move the drill/rod/brush in and out repeatedly while the vacuum is blowing from the inside.  All in all, this has proven to be an extremely effective method for dryer duct cleaning, also known as dryer exhaust cleaning.

Dryer vent cleaning service prices will vary depending on accessibility, length of the dryer vent and possible blockages or breakage in the piping.

When needing dryer vent cleaning, remember to check out our appointment tips so we can better assist you after you schedule an appointment.

 

Annual chimney sweeping should not be put off. Call us for more information on this and other chimney and dryer vent safety services.