The National Fire Data Center has determined that annually almost 3,000 residential fires are caused by clothes dryers. “Failure to clean” was the root cause of 34 percent of these fires. This is a hazard that easily can be avoided by having your dryer vent professionally cleaned on a regular basis.
All clothes dryers have lint filters that have to be cleaned; in fact, some of the newer models have sensors that alert you when the filter is full. So, that leads to the obvious question, if you keep your lint filter clean, don’t dry materials that are flammable, and don’t have any electrical problems, how does a dryer catch on fire?
Even with a state-of-the-art lint filter, lint does travel into the dryer venting system, and over time this material builds up. Also, occasionally, the dryer exhaust vent gets blocked, and any lint that would normally be harmlessly blown outside becomes trapped. All these materials accumulate in the venting and get blown into other areas of the dryer, potentially causing a fire.
To lessen the chances of a dryer fire occurring in your home, you’ll obviously want to clean your lint filter on a regular basis. Don’t store items on top of the dryer, and never leave the dryer running when you’re away from home or going to bed. And most importantly, have your dryer venting system professionally cleaned on a regular basis.
Having your vents professionally cleaned ensures all built-up lint is removed. The temperature and force of the air running through the dryer vent is measured to make sure you have the proper airflow for your system. The interior of the dryer cabinet is also checked and cleaned since this is where the majority of dryer fires begin. The entire length of the venting will be checked for kinks and and bends.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater Fresno, California area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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