You know your clothes dryer has a vent. You can plainly see that crinkly-looking tube on the back of your dryer that runs into an opening and makes its way outside. Even though you know that the vent is right there, you may not have given it much thought.
Your dryer vent is not self-cleaning. Lint, debris and all kind of other grime tends to build up on it over time. Why is this a problem? Understanding how your clothes dryer works, how it gets dirty and why you need a pro to clean it are all part of homeowner safety.
What do you need to know about your dryer and its maintenance?

Start Smart

One of the first steps you need to take when it comes to dryer safety is having a professional install it. Along with gas and electrical issues (depending on which type of dryer you choose), having it properly vented is something that an expert should handle. What seems like a simple bend in the venting material may cause a major kink that traps debris. Trapped debris, such as lint, can pose a fire hazard when it heats up.
A professional appliance installer knows where to put the vent material on and how to position it so that the hot air is forced outside. The pro can also make sure that your dryer vents into an appropriate exterior space. For example, venting the dryer directly into a wall of shrubs will seriously restrict the air flow. This is a major fire risk that you don’t want to take. There are roughly 2,900 clothes dryer fires in homes across America annually, according to the U.S. Fire Administration. These result in approximately $35 million dollars in property losses as well as the loss of life.

Use-Related Issues

Like anything else you use regularly, your clothes dryer gets dirty. Cleaning the lint filter after each cycle is the first line of defense. But, this doesn’t guarantee that your dryer’s vent will remain free from debris or is clean. You can use a nylon brush to periodically clean the filter. This will add to the impact that regular lint removal has.
Beyond cleaning the lint trap, you can also hire a pro to clean the vent pipe. Chances are that you don’t have tools (or the know-how) to completely clean out the vent pipe. The pros can make sure that the pipe is cleared of lingering lint or any other debris that may clog it. This allows the air to flow through unrestricted. Removing the debris from the pipe also helps to reduce the fire hazard that the heated appliance has.

It’s Time to Clean

When should you clean your dryer and dryer vent? That depends on how much you use it. If you have a large family and are constantly running the dryer, you may need to call a pro over every couple of months (or more). But if you live by yourself or would rather air-dry your clothes than put them in the dryer, you probably won’t build up as much debris in the vent. That said, you still should have a pro clean the pipe and vent regularly.
Whether you use your dryer five times a day or five times a month, some problems require immediate attention. If your dryer is taking much longer to dry your clothes than it usually does, you may have a vent issue. As long as there are no other problems, a clogged vent can drastically increase the drying time. This wastes time, energy and your money. A vent cleaning pro can make sure that there are no clogs and will rid the pipe of any and all buildup.
Do you need a professional dryer vent cleaning service? Call The Cinder Box Inc. at 317-442-8440 for an appointment.