At Duct Heroes, we know the importance of maintaining your dryer vent regularly. Neglecting this essential task can lead to decreased efficiency, higher energy bills, and even potential fire hazards. In this article, we’ll cover how often you should clean your dryer vent to keep it functioning correctly.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, dryer vents should be cleaned at least once a year. However, this is a general recommendation, and the frequency of cleaning your dryer vent can vary depending on your usage patterns and other factors.
If you have a large family and frequently use your dryer, you may need to clean your vent more often than someone who lives alone and only uses the machine occasionally. Generally, the more often you use your dryer, the more frequently you should clean the vent.
Signs You Need to Clean Your Dryer Vent
Aside from the general recommendation, some signs indicate that your dryer vent needs cleaning. These include:
- Clothes take longer than usual to dry
- Clothes are hot to the touch after a drying cycle
- Excessive lint build-up around the lint filter
- Burning smell when using the dryer
- Dryer feels hot to the touch on the outside
- Increased energy bills
- Dryer shuts off before the cycle is complete
- No lint on the lint filter after a drying cycle
If you notice any of these signs, it’s essential to clean your dryer vent as soon as possible to prevent further damage.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that clothes dryers are associated with approximately 15,600 fires annually, causing 15 deaths and over 100 million dollars in damages. Lint built up is the most common cause; and it’s not just in the lint filter. Dangerous amounts of lint can build up behind the dryer and inside the vent system, clogging the vent hose.
Fires can occur when lint builds up in the dryer or in the exhaust duct. Lint can block the flow of air, cause excessive heat build-up, and result in a fire in some dryers. Because lint is easily combustible, fires can start quickly. Flexible plastic hosing is the next thing to catch on fire and then it spreads quickly.
Safety is the main reason to have your dryer vent professionally cleaned at least once a year.
According to recent industry studies, an excessively clogged dryer vent may add an additional $18-$24 to your home’s energy bill. That translates to almost $300 a year in unnecessary fees. Most dryer vent cleaning bills come well below this $300 mark. So it only makes sense to follow dryer manufacturer recommendations and have the cleaning performed once a year. Also, clearing the lint build-up will reduce the strain of a clogged vent on your dryer and therefore prolong the life of the appliance.
In addition to fire prevention, saving money on your energy bill as well as prolonging the life of your dryer, is another great reason to clean your dryer vent.
In conclusion, dryer vents should be cleaned at least once a year, but the frequency can vary depending on your usage patterns and other factors. Neglecting this essential task can lead to decreased efficiency, higher energy bills, and even potential fire hazards. Contact the professionals at Duct Heroes for assistance with dryer vent cleaning or other duct services to ensure the safety and efficiency of your home.
Clothes dryers may pose a hazard in your home. If you don’t properly maintain it, your dryer can overheat and cause a devastating fire. In fact, dryers cause thousands of fires each year, but they can be prevented. Having your dyer cleaned once a year to clear lint build-up will not only help prevent fires, but will also save on energy costs.
Dryer Vent Research/Reference
The dryer vent cleaning research process is pretty straight-forward. Because it is a service that is recommended yearly, there are many authorities that weigh in on the matter. The following links reflect their comments:
Consumer Product Safety Commission
National Fire Protection Association
Underwriters Laboratories, Inc.