Dryer Vent Cleaning | Is Your Dryer a Fire Hazard? The Short Answer is Yes.
The dryer is an appliance that is found in almost every household. However, many people are unaware of the serious fire risks they pose if they are not maintained properly. The dryer fire risk is due to the environment in which the machine performs in, and the lint and influx in the heat it creates while doing so.
Causes of Fire Eruption
Overheating and lint buildup are two of the major causes of a dryer fire. Dryers, if not maintained properly, can result in blockage of airflow. When the water is removed during the process of drying clothes, lint is produced in the dryer and its vent. If said lint builds up for too long it can cause reduced airflow in the vent, creating a drastic increase in heat, which then turns the lint into the perfect material to start a fire.
If you’re using aluminum foil, plastic or vinyl as venting material, there is a greater risk of any dryer catching fire as well. This is due to the actual material itself, but also its inability to keep shape properly which enhances the likelihood of lint build up. In addition, try to keep foam backed rugs out from underneath or behind the dryer, and refrain from washing clothes that have been exposed to volatile chemicals like gasoline and oils.
Improper installation of the exhaust vent is also another major reason for a dryer caught fire. This goes back to my previous point, if the venting does not go outside, or is pinched closed, it can cause extreme heat build-up within the walls of your home, within the dryer, and within the vent. Use these tips to avoid a dryer fire.
Statistics Supporting Fire Hazards of Dryer
As per statistics by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, on an average of 15,000 such incidents occurs annually where the dryer catches fire (In USA/Canada). As an estimate, 15 people lose their lives and 400 people get injuries due to fire hazard.
Prevention & Safety Tips to a Prevent Dryer Fire
There are certain prevention and safety tips that must be followed in order to decrease the chances of fire eruption from the dryers. Some are listed below:
- If you are purchasing a new dryer, make sure you are hiring the services of the professional for its installation.
- Make sure there is a lint filter installed with the dryer. It will help to filter out the lint and maintain a proper airflow.
- Thoroughly clean the dryer and the lint filter on a timely basis.
- Do not overload the dryer.
- Thoroughly check the outdoor vent. Many times it is blocked by snow or any other material and using the dryer in such a situation enhances the risk of fire eruption.
- Choose the right plug and outlet in order to connect the dryer properly. An improper connection can also result in fire eruption.
- If your dryer is not working properly, opt for professional services for its maintenance and repair rather than relying on ‘do it yourself’ methods.
- Hire dryer lint removal services at least once a year. They will clean the vent pipe and wipe out all the lint in it.
- If the clothes or other items are soaked in those substances that are flammable i.e. alcohol, cooking oil, certain chemicals etc., do not make this mistake of drying them in your dryer.
All in all, a harmless looking clothes dryer can result in a great loss if not taken care of properly. Make sure you are following all the prevention tips for not only the safety of your property but also for the inmates of your home.
If you think your dryer is in need of maintenance or cleaning reach out to us at 604-341-3337 or [email protected]. We offer our dryer vent cleaning services to Vancouver and all of the Lower Mainland.
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