How To Properly Clean Out Your Dryer

A dryer that is not properly cared for might shrink your clothing and catch fire.

The average person is always going to clean their washing machine, but the dryer often goes neglected in these instances. How often do you actually take the time to clean it? If you are anything like us and you are being honest, the answer is probably “very rarely.” Unfortunately, those who neglect their dryers are placing themselves in a very difficult position going forward.

A dryer that is not properly cared for will damage and shrink your clothing. Luckily, Consumer Reports is here with a series of tips that you’ll want to start following. The lint screen should be your first point of emphasis as you are going to have to empty it out every time you use the dryer if you want the best possible results. This is non-negotiable because if you skip this task once or twice, the air will stop passing through as it should, causing the clothes to take longer to dry and placing yourself at increased risk for a fire.

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#DidYouKnow each year there are around 3,000 home fires related to clothes dryers, resulting in injury and property damage, according to the U.S. Fire Administration. One of the largest causes of these types of fires is lack of proper dryer maintenance. Follow these easy steps to take care of your dryer and help keep your home and family safe: 1. Check and clean the lint screen before each load of laundry, and replace any filter that is loose or damaged. 2. Install a vent cover on outside vent to protect against debris buildup, and check regularly to make sure the vent cover is not blocked. 3. Only place dryer-safe materials inside dryer. 4. Clean your dryer vent at least once a year. Call a professional vent cleaner if your clothes are taking longer to dry. 5. Make sure the dryer is plugged into the correct electrical outlet according to the user manual, and no other major appliance is sharing that outlet. A Home Health Check Inspection can also be a valuable tool for homeowners and home buyers. Trained and certified inspectors assess the home, including major appliances, and can provide maintenance tips and advice. #homemaintenance #dryermaintenance #firesafety #homeinspection

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The dryer vent is another part of the dryer that needs to be cleaned up regularly. Even if you are emptying out the lint screen, the dryer vent needs to be handled as well.

To correctly clean the vent, take a moment to move the dryer away from the wall. Disconnect the dryer from its power source and make sure to enlist a professional gas fitter if you have a gas dryer. Electric dryers can be disconnected without the help of a professional. Head to the back of the machine, remove the vent pipe, and clean out all of the residue that has had a chance to build up.

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Home inspections are not just about finding problems with the house. Good home inspectors will inspect your home for potentially dangerous problems that could happen. This home had many concerns with the dryer venting. Clogged lint traps, vinyl flex venting which dryer manufacturers do not permit, lint build up all the way to the exterior. This is a fire hazard waiting to happen. #dryerventcleaning #dryermaintenance #linttrap #dryerfire #homesafety #homemaintenance #realestate #realtor #realestateagent #homeinspections

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Dryers also have motion sensors that need to be taken care of expeditiously. When the clothing is dry, these are the sensors that shut the machine down and keep you from wasting energy. If these sensors aren’t cleaned, they become covered in unwanted film, resulting in the clothes being dried for too long or they won’t dry at all.

By taking the time to follow these simple steps, you can have a much more effective drying experience.