Cleaning the dryer hose and vent sounds like an easy enough job; and it is. But why do so many people hire someone else to clean it for them? Cleaning the dryer vent is messy business. A seriously messy job! Consider this, for example: you clean the lint filter inside the dryer every time you dry a load of laundry. The lint filter only traps about 70% of the lint that is produced during the average drying cycle. Now imagine how much more lint is allowed to escape through the hose and into the vent every time. That’s a lot of fuzz!
But the mess isn’t the real reason people hire a chimney sweep to clean the dryer vent. Certified Chimney Sweeps must pass extensive exams on the proper inspection and maintenance practices of dryer vents by the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA). Remember the highly flammable lint I just talked about? A special brush is the recommended tool to remove that lint because it is fairly easy to create static electricity inside the dryer hose.
What happens when static electricity comes into contact with highly flammable materials? You got it… fire. So hiring a certified chimney sweep is not just a way to pass the buck to someone else, it’s the safest alternative for cleaning your dryer hose and vent.
Why Clean the Dryer Hose and Vent?
Lint buildup in the dryer vent reduces the efficiency of the dryer, increases the possibility of dryer fires, and creates potential carbon monoxide dangers with gas powered dryers. Did you know that more than 15,000 fires are started by the dryer every year? That’s a pretty startling statistic. That’s more house fires than Fourth of July fireworks and Christmas trees combined. Dryer lint is very dry and extremely flammable.
If your dryer is taking longer than 30 to 45 minutes to dry an average load of laundry, the hose and vent probably need to be cleaned. Restarting the dryer a second time to dry a single load of laundry uses double the electricity, and if the hose is almost blocked with lint, your dryer is already having to work extra hard to dry laundry.
The CSIA recommends that the average dryer hose and vent should be professionally cleaned at least once per year. Add it to your yearly maintenance schedule along with having your chimney inspected and cleaned. Most homeowners have a regular homeowner maintenance schedule they stick to year after year which includes:
- Changing batteries in the smoke alarm
- Changing batteries in the carbon monoxide detector
- Checking all household appliances for signs of inefficiency
- Caulking in bathrooms, kitchens, and windows if needed
- Chimney inspection and cleaning
… And several other maintenance activities that must be taken care of once per year.
I am the owner and operator of Lou Curley’s Chimney Service in Delaware County, Pennsylvania. Call 610-626-2439 to schedule a consultation or request a quote.