There are more than 15 thousand dryer fire accidents occur in the United States every year, and the clogged dryer vent is one of the main causes. If you walk outside and take a look of your dryer vent, you probably even can not remember when was your last dryer vent cleaning. To prevent from the dryer vent being clogged or any potential fire accident, you may need a thorough check and dryer vent cleaning.
Let’s see how to clean dryer vent from outside in this article. Meanwhile, you’ll figure out the warning signs of the clogged dryer vent as well.
Before cleaning your dryer vent, you need to prepare:
· towels, newspapers or garbage bags
· work gloves
· brush with an extendable handle
· vacuum cleaner (with a long hose)
Here are the steps of how to clean your dryer vent from outside.
Step 1: Cut the power and unplug the dryer
The first but also an important step is to cut the power source to your dryer, because it’s very dangerous to do the dryer vent cleaning while the dryer is still drawing electricity. Besides, it makes more comfortable and safer to unplug the dryer.
Step 2: Pull the dryer hose from the wall
Pull the dryer hose from the wall. This time, you’d better put some newspapers, towels or garbage bags beneath the dryer.
Step 3: Remove the dryer vent cover
Put on work gloves, and use a screwdriver to unscrew (if it’s necessary) and remove the dryer vent cover from the outside.
Step 4: Clean the dryer vent from outside
Insert a brush with an extendable handle from the dryer vent opening, and clean the inside gently. With this step, you can collect some dust and lint from the tube. While if you want to clean the dryer vent more completely, you’ll need to make use of vacuum cleaner (probably with a long hose).
Step 5: Tidy up everything
Don’t forget to clean the dryer vent cover. Make sure everything is unclogged, and you can put them back: reattach the dryer vent, the hose to the wall and push the dryer machine back into its position. Done!
If you reconnect the power to your dryer and turn it on, you’ll find the vent demonstrates clearly increased air flow.
Generally, we would recommend you to clean the dryer vent at least once a year. But depends on the dryer usage and the size of the household, you can do dryer vent cleaning more frequently, maybe 3 times a year.
Why clean dryer vent? There are 2 major reasons.
· Fire Prevention
The dryer vent is very easy to accumulate lint or other highly flammable fabrics, and a clogged dryer vent leads overheating, and may burn the dryer elements. It’s the main cause of dryer fire accidents. Periodically inspect and clean the dryer vent to greatly reduce fire hazard.
· Efficiency Working
A clogged dryer vent would definitely impact the working efficiency of the machine as well as your drying experience. Usually, a dryer with a dirty vent takes more time and power to work, sometimes, it’s failure to work. However, a clean dryer vent ensures higher efficiency working, and helps you save efforts and money in some ways.
There are some clear warning signs of a clogged dryer vent, and you are supposed to do dryer vent cleaning. Check and see if you are facing any one of them.
· It takes much longer to dry clothes than before. Even worse, it takes longer time while the clothes don’t dry fully.
· A burning smell during the dryer working
· The outside of the dryer gets abnormally hot
· The outside of the dryer vent flapper does not open properly
· It’s more than a year since the last time you inspect or clean the dryer vent
In addition to the dryer vent cleaning, there are some other household cleaning tips that you should know.