At The Mad Hatter, we realize that many people have no idea that they should have their clothes dryer venting system professionally cleaned every year. Unfortunately, not knowing about this maintenance task can be deadly as clothes dryer fires are annually responsible for injuries, deaths, and property damage. According to the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA), there are, on average, 15,600 structure fires, 400 injuries, 15 deaths, and $100,000 in losses reported each year because of dryer fires. The main reason behind clothes dryer fires? Large accumulations of flammable lint clogging the vents can be easily ignited by even a small spark. Your best defense against this event is to have your dryer vents professionally cleaned by our experienced technicians at The Mad Hatter. We would like to tell you more about how lint can cause a devastating clothes dryer fire by sharing with you some information from Culture of Safety on how you can prevent a dryer fire.
Proper Lint Trap Cleaning and Dryer Maintenance Tips
Of course, scheduling a professional dryer vent cleaning from The Mad Hatter once a year to remove lint accumulations is one of the best preventive measures against a dryer fire, but there are some steps you can take yourself. Here are some tips you can follow at home to prevent a clothes dryer fire:
- Clean and empty lint out of the exhaust pipe and from behind the dryer after each load.
- After cleaning the lint trap, check the filter closely for tears and rips.
- Never put anything made from plastic, rubber, or foam in your dryer. You should also never attempt to dry any cloths that have been used to clean up flammable or combustible liquids, even after they have been washed.
- Your dryer exhaust pipe should be as short in length as possible. It should also be as straight as possible to allow for unrestricted airflow.
- White vinyl hosing should never be used as a dryer vent. The American Household Appliance Manufacturers Association recommends using rigid aluminum, spiral-wound, or steel duct aluminum flex hose.
- Be sure someone is always at home whenever you run your clothes dryer. You should also not let your dryer run while you are sleeping.
- Keep the area around your clothes dryer free from combustible materials, such as boxes, paper, and chemicals.
If you notice that it is taking two cycles to dry one load of clothes, this is a sign your clothes dryer venting system should be professionally cleaned. Contact The Mad Hatter to schedule an appointment with our experienced dryer vent technicians to rid your vents of flammable lint accumulations.