Your home's dryer vent should be routinely cleaned and maintained in order to avoid hazardous situations, such as fires, and to ensure that your dryer works as efficiently as possible. By inspecting your vent and cleaning it when necessary, you can prevent these issues from becoming a serious problem. These tips from First Coast Home Pros can help you to identify and correct any issues that may arise with your home's dryer unit.
Signs That your Dryer Vent May Be Clogged
To ensure that your dryer is running properly, you'll want to keep an eye out for any tell-tale signs that are often caused by a blocked vent. Before calling in the professionals, such as First Coast Home Pros, you should be aware of the following signs that your vent is clogged. An excessive accumulation of dust and lint often leads to issues that typically include:
Increased Drying Time
When your vent is clogged it may take longer than usual for your clothes to dry completely. Typically, one load of laundry takes 30-40 minutes to dry in the dryer; a drying time of 40 minutes or more is a sign that your vent is clogged. A clogged vent can double or even triple the length of an average drying cycle, since hot air and moisture becomes trapped inside the dryer. Signs to look for include the presence of damp clothing even after the drying cycle is complete.
Excessive Heat Output
Clothing as well as the dryer itself may become hot to the touch when its vent is blocked. This blockage causes the dryer's heating element, as well as its blower, to wear out which leads to malfunction and other damages that are associated with overheating. This can also cause a significant waste in energy, since the dryer is forced to over compensate and often lose its efficiency.
Since dryer lint is highly flammable, a clogged vent can quickly become a serious fire hazard. A build-up of lint clogs not only the vent, but the dryer's drum casing as well. The lint may catch on fire due to heat build-up inside of the unit. A burning smell may indicate this issue, so you'll want to have your unit inspected to determine if a repair will suffice or whether or not the dryer needs to be replaced.
If your clothes smell like mold or mildew after they've been dried then there's likely a block in your dryer vent. This blockage is often due to lint which causes moisture to become trapped inside the unit. Since moisture cannot leave the unit as its designed to, it can cause a build-up of mildew that leaves a terrible, tell-tale odor on your clothing.
Maintaining Your Dryer
It's crucial to perform routine maintenance on your dryer unit in order to enhance its performance, reduce energy use, and to ensure its integrity. If over a year has passed since your dryer was last inspected, you should consider contacting a professional to do the job. They can clean your dryer vent carefully to be sure that any debris is completely removed. A cleaning specialist can perform maintenance that will reduce the risk of fire and carbon monoxide poisoning in your home.
Do It Yourself Kits
Do-it-yourself kits are also an option for homeowners looking to clean their dryer vents. Although the kits may be cheaper than hiring a professional, the results are often lacking in comparison. Since there are many dryer makes and models out there it can be difficult to find the proper brushes for your unit's design.
Hiring A Professional
You should search for a professional company, like First Coast Home Pros. Knowing that your technician is certified ensures that the job will be done right and by someone you can trust.
Enhancing Your Dryer's Effectiveness
By following these tips you can lengthen the lifespan and effectiveness of your dryer. Whether you choose to hire a professional or to perform your own maintenance, you can be on the lookout for signs of lint build-up and other issues that could arise.