Clothes Dryer Fires are a Growing Problem for Today’s Property Owners

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We know that there are roughly 15,500 dryer fires each year in America. We also know that approximately 20 people are killed or injured each year because of dryer fires. The average dryer fire occurs when people least expect it or while they’re away from home because they started laundry and left to run errands or go to work.

Have you looked at rental properties recently? You may be shocked to know that many apartment complexes do not have laundry facilities in each unit. Their ad will indicate laundry facilities “on site” or “nearby,” but laundry facilities in each unit becomes a serious liability for the property owner if one person starts the dryer while routinely doing laundry and it leads to a dryer fire.

The problem with multi-family housing units and private laundry rooms is the fact that the laundry room is generally placed in a hallway closet or an area that’s in the interior of the housing unit. This means that the dryer vent hose is way too long or has too many bends before the dryer exhaust is actually expelled.

Some multi-family housing units even opt to install small fans, or boosters, inside the dryer vent hose to help push heated air through the hose more efficiently. This does help move air more quickly until the vent hose and the fan become blocked with lint. It doesn’t really address the condensation issue or the fact that lint still builds up regardless of the length of the hose.

The dryer hose should be as short as possible, nonflammable, and vented directly to the exterior of the home. It should never be crushed against the wall or crimped because it will cause the dryer to overheat and begin to malfunction. You’ll likely notice that it takes much longer for the dryer to dry a load of laundry and that the body of the dryer gets very hot while it is running.

The average clothes dryer should take approximately 45 minutes to fully dry a load of laundry. Longer cycles may be required for extra large loads or heavy materials, but we’re talking in averages. The laundry should be very warm to the touch when it comes out of the dryer, but it should never be steaming or cause mild burns on your skin. Overheating can lead to serious problems and even cause a dryer fire.

The chimney sweeps here at Lou Curley’s Chimney Service are CSIA Certified as well as C-DET (Certified Dryer Exhaust Technician) and we have years of experience under our belts. We strive to continue our education as often as possible so we’re always in the position to offer you the best possible chimney and dryer vent cleaning services in Drexel Hill and all along the Main Line. Call us at 610-626-2439 to discuss your chimney needs or to schedule an appointment for a chimney cleaning, chimney inspection, or dryer vent cleaning.

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