Did you know your clothing dryer vents should be cleaned and inspected once per year to lower your home’s risk of fire? If you do more laundry than the average homeowner, you might even need to have your dryer vents cleaned even more frequently. Clogged dryer vents can ignite a fire or cause a buildup of carbon monoxide in your home. So how do you know if your clothing dryer vents need to be cleaned? Chances are, if your dryer vents are clogged, your dryer will be letting you know. Here are the primary signs your clothing dryer vents need to be cleaned.
Clothes take longer than one cycle to dry.
The first sign that your dryer vents are clogged will be in the performance of your clothes dryer. One load of laundry should take 30 to 45 minutes to dry. If you regularly find yourself restarting the dryer at the end of a laundry cycle because clothes are still damp, it’s likely your dryer vents are clogged. This means your clothing dryer is no longer working efficiently.
Lint builds up in and around the dryer.
If dryer ducts are already clogged, newly generated lint has nowhere to go when the dryer is running. In these cases, the excess lint will build up in and around the dryer. When dryer vents are clogged, you might notice lint building up around the lint trap, at the back of the dryer under the vent tube and outside your where the dryer vent exhausts.
The dryer feels hot to the touch.
Clogged dryer vents cause your dryer to work harder, which in turn can cause your dryer’s heating to overwork. When dryer vents are clogged, your dryer might feel hot to the touch when the dryer is running. You also might notice that your laundry room is noticeable warmer when the dryer is running. Another sign would be clothes that are hot to the touch.
Clothes have a funny smell.
Clogged dryer vents also can cause your clothes to smell less fresh when they are coming out of the dryer. Because clothes aren’t drying as quickly as they should, clothes might have a musty smell. The overheating of your dryer might cause your clothes or your laundry room to have a burning smell. Or, because your dryer can’t exhaust properly, the smell of fabric softener might become overwhelming.
Exhaust vent doesn’t work.
One of the easiest ways to tell if your dryer vents are clogged is to check outside, at the vent outlet while the dryer is running. Most dryer vent exhaust feature flaps that will flutter open as the dryer exhausts. If your dryer is running, but the vent flaps remain closed, air isn’t coming out of your dryer vents correctly.
If you notice any of the signs that your dryer vents are clogged, don’t wait for disaster to strike! Call Fluesbrothers Chimney Service to schedule your dryer vent cleaning today.