While you may know us as a chimney company, we can do much more than just clean your fireplace – we can also take care of your dryer vents! Having your dryer vents cleaned is an important part of home maintenance and can significantly help reduce the risk of dryer fires.
The dangers of clogged dryer vents
Lint is extremely flammable; it is what makes it a great tool for fire starting as well as why it must be removed from the lint trap after every dryer cycle. However, the same lint that accumulates in the lint trap is also slowly accumulating in the dryer vents.
Accumulation of lint in the dryer vents can cause problems with dryer performance as well as increase your risk of dryer fire. As the air flow in the dryer vents becomes restricted due to lint buildup, the dryer has to work harder and harder to produce enough heat to dry the clothes. The more clogged the vents are, the harder the dryer has to work and the hotter the air it creates is. This supercharged air can eventually cause the lint in the dryer vents to ignite.
According to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, there are more than 15,000 house fires caused by clogged dryer vents each year. Thankfully, these kind of fires can be prevented with regular dryer vent cleaning and maintenance.
Why trust Lords Chimney with your dryer vents
At Lords Chimney, we can care for your chimney as well as your dryer vents. Our professional technicians are trained on how to correctly clean dryer vents and have a number of specialty tools at their disposal.
Our technicians begin by checking your dryer vents and connecting hoses to make sure they are correctly installed. One tool that is used to evaluate dryer vents is small video cameras. These cameras are used to look inside the vents to check for lint accumulation or kinks and knots in the vents. Likewise, our technicians also have gauges that can evaluate air flow before and after the dryer vent cleaning; most homeowners are amazed at how much removing the lint positively affects air flow and dryer performance!
Four signs your dryer vents need to be cleaned
The dryer is one of the most-used appliances in many homes; despite this, most homeowners do not know when to have their dryer vents cleaned. The following are four signs your dryer vents may need to be cleaned.
Clothes are still damp after a full dry cycle
Clothes over time begin to take progressively longer and longer to dry
Clothes or the inside of the dryer smell moldy or musty
Clothes are too hot to touch after being dried; the dryer or laundry room may also be excessively hot
Having your dryer vent cleaned can increase the efficiency of your dryer and, more importantly, prevent house fires. You should have a dryer vent cleaning performed by professionals at least once a year to avoid an excessive build up of lint, but checking your dryer hose a few times over the course of a year can help you to detect and remove dangerous blockages. According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, 72 percent of all dryer fires result from unclean drier venting systems. Lords Chimney specializes in dryer vent cleaning services and will clean and repair your dryer vent system in order to prevent house fires and carbon monoxide leaks and so that you have a more efficient dryer.
Because lint build-up blocks dryer exhaust from escaping through the hose and out of your house, your dryer will run less efficiently. You will notice that your clothing takes longer to dry and that the room with the dryer in it becomes more humid when the dryer is running. The dryer as well as your clothing may become hotter, and you may even notice the smell of something burning. Outside your home, the vent flap or flaps may not open all the way when the dryer is on, indicating that the exhaust is exiting the dryer slowly. All of these occurrences are signs that it is time to have your dryer vent system cleaned, although it is better to have these things cleaned before such signs of dryer inefficiency are evident.
Professionals at Lords Chimney will clean the parts of the venting system that you can’t get to. They are trained to thoroughly clean the drier vents as well as to detect any problems that need to be addressed. They even have special cameras to take a closer look at the insides of your vents. Not only that, but they have the technology to measure the air flow in the venting system so they can be sure that your home is safe and that your dryer is working efficiently.
Professionals at Lords Chimney will also make sure that your venting system is set up in a safe and efficient way. Many times driers are not set up along the exterior of the house, meaning that the venting ducts between the drier and the outside of the house are long. This not only makes the venting system more difficult to clean, but it can also mean that your drier runs inefficiently. Professionals at Lords Chimney can analyze your venting system based on the angles of the ducts, their lengths, and the number of curves and then use this information to make suggestions for a system if possible that will allow for greater efficiency and less build up of lint. Furthermore, they will check to make sure that your system is installed correctly, checking that the ducts are connected correctly.
Once Lords Chimney has fully serviced your venting systems, your home will feel safer and cleaner!
That work all has some common ground, though: We’re caring for venting systems to help our clients enjoy safer and more efficient venting, better appliance performance and cleaner air.
Your Chimney isn’t the Only System Affecting Your Air Quality
Without regular dryer vent cleaning, lint can build up in your vents and begin to constrict the airflow, allowing heat to build up to dangerous levels, and creating the potential for a dangerous dryer fire.
We talk a lot about the negative effects of deferred maintenance on a chimney system, because it’s important to know what your chimney needs to function at its highest levels of efficiency and safety. A chimney that isn’t regularly swept and regularly inspected can result in improper venting, an increased chance of a fire hazard, even toxic carbon monoxide leaking into your living area.
Like your fireplace or stove, your dryer is a heating appliance. And like your chimney, your dryer vent system is working to vent the dangerous byproducts coming from that appliance.
Over time, your chimney develops creosote deposits that can hinder its ability to vent properly. In your dryer vents, lint creates a similar potential for blockage.
Without regular dryer vent cleaning, lint can build up in your vents and begin to constrict the airflow, allowing heat to build up to dangerous levels, and creating the potential for a carbon monoxide leak. Since carbon monoxide is colorless and odorless, it can be an invisible cause of illness — even death. (Which is why we also stress the importance of having a properly functioning carbon monoxide detector installed in your home.)
Lords Chimney technicians use state-of-the-art tools to properly clean your dryer vents and ensure complete and thorough results — we use video cameras to make sure those vents are cleared of lint, and gauges to check for proper air flow. And proper airflow means that dangerous byproducts like carbon monoxide are moving through the vent and out of your home, not into your living space.
If you have any concerns about the air quality in your home — related to your chimney or dryer vents — Lords Chimney can help. Give us a call to make an appointment with our CSIA-certified technicians!