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What Really Happens If You Don't Get Your Dryer Exhaust Vent Cleaned?

Have you ever found yourself in the midst of trying to make some headway through your family’s seemingly never ending flow of dirty laundry and being shocked at the amount of lint that you find in your dryer’s lint trap?  Where does it all come from?  How is possible that you even have any clothing left after the lint trap gets filled after each load of laundry? 

Experts at Underwriters Laboratories (UL) recommend that you clean out your dryer’s lint trap after every load of laundry.  This is important because if you don’t clean it out, it prevents the dryer from being able to exhaust hot air from the dryer, causing the dryer to overheat.  Failure to clean the dryer’s lint trap is the leading cause of home laundry dryer fires.

While you may be amazed at the amount of lint that you find in your dryer’s lint trap, the reality is that much of the lint from your clothes still makes it past the lint trap and into the ductwork that exhausts it to the exterior of your home.  Over time, that ductwork becomes more and more clogged with that lint.  

Here are the top four signs that it is time to have your dryer exhaust vent professionally cleaned:

If any of these four signs are true for you, then it is time to have your dryer exhaust vent professionally cleaned.

  1. Your clothing is taking longer to dry than it once did

  2. You find yourself having to turn the dryer on for another cycle after it has stopped

  3. You find your clothing very hot to touch 

  4. Its been more than one year since you last had it cleaned

How often Does Your Dryer Exhaust Vent Actually Need to be Cleaned?

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends that you have your dryer exhaust vent cleaned at least once per year.

What happens if you skip your dryer vent cleaning?

If you skip your dryer exhaust vent cleaning, there are a few key things that could happen ranging from time consuming and costly to catastrophic.  

  • Your clothes will take longer to dry – wasting your time and consuming more energy, which costs you more money in operating costs

  • The heating element in your dryer can burn out resulting in costly repairs

  • Your dryer and home could catch on fire

When you properly maintain your clothes dryer by cleaning out your lint trap after each load and have your dryer exhaust vent professionally cleaned at least once per year, you will increase the efficiency of your dryer, reduce drying times, and protect your family from a house fire. 

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