Cleaning out your dryer vent is an important part of home maintenance. You may not give your dryer vent much thought, but it collects lint just like the inside of your dryer does, and the lint has to be removed so your dryer functions properly and to eliminate a fire hazard.
Since cleaning a dryer vent often requires special tools, you may need to call a vent cleaning service periodically to keep your dryer vent free from lint. This is why cleaning your dryer vent and how it is done is so important.
The Hazards Of A Clogged Dryer Vent
When hot air can't blow out the vent freely, heat can build up inside the vent. This heat can affect how well your dryer works. Your dryer might feel hot or your clothes might take longer to dry. You might even smell a burning odor when you run your dryer.
The risk of a fire is the major reason your dryer vent needs to be free from lint. Since a dryer vent is behind the walls, a fire could break out and spread through your house or blow in your dryer and ruin your appliance.
The Frequency The Vent Needs To Be Cleaned
Different factors affect how fast lint builds up in the dryer vent. If you live alone and do laundry once a week, lint won't build up as fast as it would if you have a large family and run the dryer nearly every day.
Plus, the type of vent you have makes a difference. Metal vents with smooth sides allow lint to blow on through and not settle and cause a clog as easily as flexible vents that can trap lint.
The Method For Cleaning A Dryer Vent
The type and length of your dryer vent depend on where your dryer is located in your house. If your dryer is near an exterior wall, the vent may be straight and short, and easy to clean. If your dryer is upstairs or in a closet, the dryer vent may be several feet long and take a few turns until it exits the house.
The vent cleaning service has the tools needed to clean a dryer vent no matter how long it is. Vent cleaning involves using a long thin rod with brush bristles and a vacuum. The rod bristles capture lint and pull it out of the ridges in a flexible vent.
If there is a clog in the vent, the rod can poke through it to break it up, and the vacuum pulls the lint out of the vent. All the lint that's broken up or scraped off is captured by the vacuum so there is no mess in your house.
The vent cleaning service might recommend a cleaning frequency so lint doesn't build up so bad again. If not, think about the vent every time you clean lint from the lint trap in your dryer so you don't forget the vent will need cleaned again before it becomes a safety hazard.