When was the last time you cleaned out your dryer vent? If it's been a while, then you could have a serious fire hazard in your home. We want you to understand this risk and what you need to do to keep your family safe.
Dryer Vent Fires Are a Huge Safety Risk
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that over 5,000 house fires per year occur because of clothes dryers and poorly cleaned dryer vents. Over the normal use of your dryer, lint and other debris can build up in the vent. If the vent is not properly cleaned, then airflow to the dryer cannot escape as it was designed to. This causes the gases to build up in the dryer, which can lead to a fire.
Do You Have a Problem?
How can you tell if you have a problem? Do you know if your dyer vents need to be cleaned? Here are a few signs you may need dryer vent cleaning.
Dryer is Not Working Properly
One of the first signs of a dryer vent that's clogged is a dryer that is no longer drying the clothing in one cycle. If you have to run more than one cycle to get your clothing dry, then that means something is preventing the heat and moisture from exhausting as it should. Check your vent immediately, and take action to have your dryer vents cleaned as soon as possible.
Another sign is a musty odor on the clothing after drying. If the clothing seems unusually hot to the touch after drying you may have a problem.
Noticeable Debris Outside the Dryer Vent
Finally, a dryer vent flap that is not opening and debris that is building up on the outside driver vent opening are signs of a problem. This means the vents have not been cleaned in quite some time, and running the dryer could pose a threat to your family’s wellbeing.
Accordion-Style Vent Hose
If your dryer has accordion-style vent hose material, instead of duct metal piping, you could also be at a have a higher risk for a fire. Swap out the existing pipe for one made from duct pipe to increase your safety.
If you have these problems and are concerned about your family's safety, the answer to the problem is to have a professional inspect your unit. For most of these problems, you can remedy them by having your dryer vent cleaned. Regular cleaning and maintenance of the dryer vent can help limit your fire risk.
If you know you are in need of a dyer vent cleaning and you are located in Washington, DC, Maryland, or Northern Virginia, contact Atlantic Duct Cleaning today!