Seattle dryer ventsHere at Chimcare, our services don’t just stop at chimneys!  We also specialize in dryer vent cleaning.  Maintenance of your dryer vent is just as important for the safety of your home and family as taking good care of your chimney. The lint that builds up inside all dryer vents over time can reduce air flow to the dryer.  This can back up the heat exhaust, and cause a fire.

Dryers are a lot more dangerous than people realize.  Our appliances help make our lives easier, but you can’t take them for granted.  Over 16,000 home structure fires are caused by dryer vents every year.  This kills dozens and injures hundreds, and causes over $200 million in property damage. Dryers and washing machines account for one of every 22 home fires reported in the US. It might seem like these commodities are no-maintenance, but you actually need to take care of them.

So what can you do to prevent a dryer vent fire?  Get your vents cleaned out!  It’s a very quick and simple fix that will even wind up paying for itself.  A clogged dryer vent prolongs your drying time, and your dryer has to work much harder, causing your electric bills to spike. On average, a vent cleaning saves homes $18-24 every month. It depends on the length of the vent and the density of the lint, but it usually takes us about an hour to do a cleaning.  It is a quick fix for a common problem.

How do you know you need your vents cleaned?

It’s great if you clean your vents yearly, but you can also just do it when you start to notice the signs of a clogged vent. Here are the telltale signs to keep an eye out for:

1.) Increased dryer time

If your clothes are taking more than one cycle to dry completely, you might have a dryer vent problem. Too often people will assume that the dryer is malfunctioning or getting old.  All it may really need to work like new is a good vent cleaning!

2.) Dryer Hot to the Touch

If the surface of your dryer feels hot after running a load of laundry, you probably have a ventilation blockage and your heat element is overworked. This is also the case if you can feel the heat in the air of the room from the dryer after finishing a load.

3.) Lint or Debris Accumulation

Perhaps you are finding more lint or other debris than usual in your dryer trap. Or maybe lint is accumulating on the floor in front of your dryer or beneath the vent opening.  That means it’s not passing through the vent and outside as it should. Get that vent cleaned out!

4.) Bad Smell

A clogged dryer vent can also make your clothes smell musty. The air doesn’t circulate as well, and your dryer can’t get all of the moisture out, and old stale lint from previous loads that wasn’t successfully removed accumulates.

What variables affect my vent?

There are many things that can affect your dryer vent, and understanding these variables will help you know how often you need to clean it.

How long is your dryer vent? The longer the vent hose, the more likely it is that lint will accumulate because the air is unable to move it all the way out. If your laundry room isn’t adjacent to an exterior wall, and your vent travels through several rooms to reach the outside, you are likely to have problems with this.

Is the path of your vent straight? The most dangerous section of a dryer vent is where it bends.   Any curve of 90 degrees or more means you need to be especially vigilant about your vent cleaning because it is so easy for lint to accumulate in the bend. These bends are also always indoors, meaning that a fire in that space will spread to your home more quickly.

How new is your dryer? If your dryer was manufactured within the last 5 years, you will probably have less lint build up because it’s more able to expel vapor out because the heating element is new. However, as dryers get older, their ability to produce heat and spin at maximum speeds is reduced, and you’ll need to clean their vents more often. Cleaning is especially important for older dryers and neglecting your vent can cause damage to your dryer.

Call Chimcare Seattle today, or fill out our contact form and a representative will contact you.  We will deliver peace of mind in knowing your home and family are safe and your dryer is functioning at its maximum capacity.

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