A dryer may not dry your clothes perfectly every time, despite its promise. That said, if you’re finding yourself with particularly damp clothes even after a full drying cycle, or you’ve noticed that the outside of the dryer becomes very hot while doing its job, it may be time to clean out your dryer vent ducts. Read about Dryer Vent Cleaning below.
These ducts are not only important for your clothes, but also for your time and your sanity. These ducts can become clogged over time, and lint can mix with hot air to ignite. This could lead to a fire hazard. Each year, dryer duct fires result in $35 million in damage, hundreds of injuries, and even death. A burning smell in your laundry area is another sign that you need to get it cleaned up.
Experts recommend that dryer ducts be cleaned at least twice per year. Although it might seem daunting to try this on your own, there are many ways you can do it quickly, inexpensively, and easily.
What should you do first?
It is important to determine whether your clothes dryer uses electric or gas power before you attempt a cleaning.
- An electric dryer will require a grounded, 240-volt electrical outlet. Your standard plug will have three or four prongs. An electric dryer plug will be larger.
- The gas-powered dryer plugs into a standard 110 volt three-prong outlet and can also be connected to a gas valve.
If your dryer is running on gas, turn off the gas supply valve and clean the dryer. Be careful not to damage the flexible gas line when repositioning it. Call a professional if you are unsure of what to do.
How to clean your dryer vent
- You can buy a dryer vent cleaning kit at your local hardware store for around $24.
- Power drill
- Vacuum, broom, and dustpan
How to clean dryer vents in 6 steps
Step 1: Locate your vent
You will need to locate the dryer vent before you can clean it. Dryers are connected to a 4-inch-long exhaust pipe which then connects to the ductwork within a wall. The dryer’s hot air is forced through the pipe and then escapes through a vent in your outside wall.
After you have identified the outdoor dryer exhaust vent, look inside for debris such as lint and dead insects. Clear out any obstructions and clean any screens.
Step 2: Disconnect your dryer carefully
Once you have figured out the ducts, it’s time to unplug the dryer. After that, you can remove the metal tape and clamps that connect your dryer’s vent pipe to its exhaust. To avoid damaging the vent pipe, use gentle pressure to pull it from the wall.
Step 3: Vacuum all lint
You should now be able see the dryer vent from your laundry room. To remove any lint around the hole, you can use the hose attachment on a vacuum cleaner.
You can do the same thing on the outside duct if you have a handheld vacuum. If you don’t have a handheld vacuum, you can clean debris from the outside.
Step 4: Use a brush to get in there
Attach the dryer brush to your power drill. Then insert the rod end into the duct. Keep the brush as far back and gentle as possible, taking into account that the path of your duct may require you to maneuver the hose attachment.
If your brush is not able to pass through your entire duct or your brush doesn’t reach the end of the duct, you can insert the brush head into the outside duct.
Step 5: Clean up, and then reconnect
You’ve probably found a treasure trove full of lint. To sweep your fluffy new friends away, you’ll need a vacuum cleaner, broom, and dustpan.
Next, plug the dryer into an outlet and connect your wall duct.
There is one catch: If your dryer uses a soft-foil-style vent to connect to its wall conduit, you will need to replace it with something stronger. An aluminum elbow that is 90 degrees will work, and it will provide superior airflow. They are available at Home Depot for less than $5
Step 6: Celebrate
It was possible! Although it was not an easy task, cleaning out dryer vents is not difficult. You rose to the occasion and deserve a victory lap. Turn on the dryer and listen to the air flow out of the vent. This is the sweet sound that signifies success. There are no more wet clothes and no more endless cycles. You did it all by yourself.
How to stop future buildup
You can prevent lint particles from affecting your drying process by making sure you remove the lint trap filter from the dryer door’s outer edge and clean out the dryer before each cycle. It is important to vacuum the lint screen every so often, depending on how often your clothes are dried. It’s also a good idea sweep the dryer. Hope you love reading about Dryer Vent Cleaning.