Dryer Vent Cleaning
According to the National Fire Protection Association, almost 17,000 homes are damaged – sometimes severely – due to dryer fires. In fact, more than 50 deaths and 380 injuries take place annually due to dryer vent fires. And losses to the tune of $236 million are directly attributed to these types of fires.
All of this damage can be done away with by taken care of just one thing – dryer vent cleaning. Before we talk about dryer how we clean out the dryer vent, let’s find out why a dryer vent is so important.
Why is the Dryer Vent So Important?
When you use your clothes dryer, the air inside it is pulled in and heated up by electric elements. This air is then circulated through your clothes to remove the moisture and dry them. An exhaust fan pushes out the hot, moist air through your dryer’s vent.
This air travels through the dryer vent and out of your home. If you did not have a dryer vent, then all that hot, moisture-laden air would stay inside your house, and that is dangerous. Hot moist air leads to the growth of mold as well as rot, and makes your air conditioning system work harder (leading to higher electricity bills!).
A Clogged Dryer Vent
The same thing happens if your dryer vent gets clogged. So, the next question you may have is how does a dryer vent get clogged?
There are many ways in which a dryer vent can get clogged, but the most common reason is lint. Every time you tumble dry your clothes in the dryer, they give off lint. Lint are the short, fine fibers that are shed by clothes from friction.
Every dryer has a filter called a dryer lint trap, but there is only so much lint a filter can actually trap. Over a period of time, the lint starts accumulating around the heating element, the dryer vent screen and in the dryer vent, which ends up getting clogged.
And when your dryer vent is clogged, all that hot, moist air will escape to the rest of your house, leading to damage cause by mold, bacteria and rot. Added to that your utility bills will be higher because of both the air conditioning system and the dryer working harder to do their jobs. But most importantly, lint is highly flammable. This material can catch fire with just a tiny spark.
Signs When Your Dryer Vent Needs Cleaning
We can provide you with insights into the signs that indicate your dryer vent is in need of cleaning. By recognizing these indicators, you can take proactive measures to maintain the safety and efficiency of your dryer system:-
Increased Drying Time
If your dryer takes longer than usual to dry a load of laundry, it could be due to a clogged vent. This blockage restricts the airflow, preventing proper ventilation and causing moisture to linger, which prolongs the drying process.
Excessive Heat Buildup
A laundry room that feels unusually hot during dryer operation or if the dryer itself becomes hot to the touch suggests that the vent is not adequately expelling heat. This heat buildup can lead to potential fire hazards if not addressed promptly.
The lint accumulation in the dryer vent obstructs airflow and is a highly flammable fuel source for fires. To prevent this, our dryer vent cleaners near you promptly address any signs of excessive lint around the dryer's lint trap, on clothing following drying, or visible at the vent opening. Hiring a professional air and dryer duct cleaning company becomes crucial in such cases to remove this hazardous material and ensure the safety of your dryer.
When moisture gets trapped due to poor venting, it creates an environment conducive to mold and mildew growth. This can result in a persistent unpleasant smell that lingers even after laundering.
Visible Debris or Blockages
Observing visible debris or blockages in the dryer vent opening clearly indicates the need for cleaning. The presence of birds' nests, leaves, or other foreign objects can hinder airflow, potentially reducing dryer performance and posing a fire hazard.
Why Should You Use a Professional Dryer Vent Cleaning Service?
It is possible to clean your dryer vent by yourself – if you have a dryer vent that is short and its outside opening is easy to reach. However, if you have a long and winding dryer duct that opens out to a difficult to reach section of your house, it is best to call in professional dryer vent cleaning services.
A dryer vent cleaning company like ours has the experience and the expertise to ensure that your dryer vent is cleaned thoroughly, no matter what condition in which it is. We used specialized cleaning equipment that caters to even the most complicated dryer vent installations.
Steps We Take to Clean Your Dryer Vents
Here is what we do to ensure that your dryer vent is cleaned so well that it is as good as new:
Cleaning Out the Dryer Vent Lint Trap
We start with the easiest things first – the dryer vent lint trap. Even though the dryer vent filter should be cleaned after every drying cycle, many people don’t. Cleaning the lint trap regularly can make a huge difference to how much of a lint buildup you have in your dryer and dryer vent. There is also sometimes and outdoor dryer vent lint trap that needs to be cleaned out, which is something many home owners do not know.
Cleaning the Dryer Vent
Cleaning the dryer vent takes a little longer. Here is what we do to ensure that your dryer vent is also cleaned perfectly:
- Unplugging the Dryer Vent
The first step we take is to unplug the dryer vent. The duct that is closest to the dryer is the first to be disconnect. Once this is done, the first part of the duct is pulled away and the opening of the duct inside the wall is exposed.
- Rotary Brush Cleaning
The lint trap housing and the duct segments have to first be cleaned with a rotary brush. Each of the sections of the dryer vent have to be cleaned. The first thing we do is use the rotary brush to gently clean out each of the segments. This is where many DIY efforts fail. A rigorous brushing of the duct segments can end up damaging them. The cleaning has to be done gently and carefully. This is not as easy as it sounds, since the lint will be stuck fast to the walls of the duct segments.
The rotary brushes that you get in hardware stores will work fine if you have a short dryer vent with no curves or turns. However, today, many homes have long vents since their dryers are placed in attics, bathrooms, or other places where a long vent is needed to ensure that the duct expels the hot air outside the house. Which means the small rotary cleaning brush you get off the shelves, even when it has flexible segments to make its handle longer, won’t do the job effectively. Which is why dryer vent hose cleaning is done with customized equipment to deal with these longer vents with bends.
- Vacuum Cleaning
After the lint has been dislodged, we clean the dryer vent duct with a vacuum with a powerful suction capability. The dryer vent lint trap and the dryer vent duct have to be vacuumed thoroughly so that all that lint we loosened using the brushes is removed. If required, we do the brushing and vacuuming repeatedly to ensure that the dryer air vent and lint trap housing are completely clean.
- Bird Guard Replacement
Lint isn’t the only reason why you may end up with a clogged dryer vent. One of the other reasons why a dryer vent could get blocked is because tiny animals such as birds, squirrels, rodents, etc. could decide to take up residence in the exhaust vent of your dryer duct. We don’t want to hurt those little animals, so that best thing to do is ensure that there is a bird guard installed at the outside opening of your dryer vent. This guard needs to be cleaned regularly and replaced in a timely fashion. So, as part of our dryer vent solutions, we also carry out bird guard replacement, if required.
- Sanitizing Dryer Vent
Our dryer duct cleaning service is not complete until we have sanitized the dryer vent. After all, there can also be a build up of bacteria and mold thanks to all that moisture, warm air and lint in the vent. By sanitizing the vent, we ensure that all odor causing bacteria are removed.
Dryer vent cleaning is the most important way to prevent dryer fires in your home. Even if you carry out regular cleaning yourself, it is always best to call in professionals like us to do a thorough job.