Maybe you keep your laundry room immaculately clean. You are careful to thoroughly clean the lint screen after every dryer run. You have taken all of the steps necessary to prevent a dryer fire, right? Wrong. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, 2,900 dryer fires are reported each year, resulting in an estimated five deaths, 100 injuries, and $35 million in property loss! When you clean your lint screen you are only catching about 25 percent of the lint, and the other 75 percent is going through your ductwork and possibly sticking to the walls. Just cleaning your lint screen will not take care of the whole problem, and you need to look to the venting system in place to make sure you have taken all steps necessary to avoid a home fire.
Your dryer hose should safely conduct air and lint away from the dryer and out of the home. However, if you have an incorrect duct you could be putting yourself at risk of fire and damage. You need to look at several aspects of your venting system:
- Material: The only kind of dryer ducts you should be using are metal. Never use a plastic or foil venting system that can sag or easily fold, and allow lint to collect in pockets. Deep ridges in the duct can also lead to lint trapping. The best material for a duct is a solid or flexible metal duct. In the event that a fire occurs, a metal duct will provide an extra layer of protection and may be able to contain the fire.
- Length: The longer a dryer hose is, the more of a chance for lint building up. The more lint that builds up, the risk of fire increases. Each dryer has specific instructions for how long the hose should be; look to your manual to find the maximum length allowed. There can also be regulations based on the city or town in which you live. Regardless of any rules, the shorter the dryer hose, the less risk of a fire.
- Bends: A straight dryer hose that goes from the dryer right outside is the best. Sometimes this configuration is not possible, but every bend in the hose increases the risk of lint buildup and fire. Each bend is adding the equivalent of 2.5 to 5 feet in length, so be sure to factor this into your total hose length.
If you find that your venting system is not correct, you should take steps to remedy it as soon as possible. There can be other warning signs of a faulty venting system that you should be on the lookout for. If your clothes are suddenly taking much longer to dry, or are still wet at the end of the cycle, can be an indication of a dirty or clogged dryer vent. If you observe where the vent exits your home while your dryer is running and don’t feel any heat, this can also indicate a problem. Another warning sign is your dryer becoming extremely hot during use and even damaging your clothes.
If you are experiencing any of these issues, J and J Air Duct Cleaning is here to help! Our residential air duct cleaning in Las Vegas can make sure that your dryer venting system is clean and free of lint buildup. A dryer fire is a serious issue, so contact us today to ensure your dryer vent is safe!