Clothing dryers cause 15,600 fires in the United States each year, according to the U.S. Fire Administration’s National Fire Data Center. Those fires cause 400 injuries and 15 deaths, and they were largely preventable. In 80 percent of cases, those fires were completely preventable. They were caused by dirty, clogged dryer vents.

Know the dangers of dirty dryer vents.

You know that loads of laundry tumbling in the dryer result in lint. Before you dry each load of clothes, you likely make sure that your lint trap is clean as a safety precaution. But that trap doesn’t collect all of the lint generated by your dryer. A portion of that lint makes its way into the dryer vent. The damp, sticky lint sticks to the walls of the dryer vents and then to itself, causing a partial or complete blockage of the dryer vent. When the dryer can’t vent the heat it creates, the dryer overheats, and a fire can result. Or, if you have a gas dryer, the carbon monoxide that’s exhausted through the vent can be pushed back into your home and build to dangerous levels.

Keep your home and family safe with dryer vent cleaning.

Professional dryer vent cleaning is the best way to keep your home and family safe from the dangers of clogged dryer vents. During a professional dryer vent cleaning, a technician will use high-powered rotating brushes. It will also use a vacuum system to safely remove the lint from your vent without damaging your ductwork. The technician also will examine your vents and ducts for signs of damage. The will look for improper hookups to be sure that the system is safe for use as well. To protect your home from a fire, it’s recommended that you have your dryer vents cleaned by a professional at least once a year.

Look for the signs of clogged dryer vents.

The recommendation is to have vents cleaned once per year. However, you might require more frequent cleanings if you put a lot of laundry through your dryer. That’s why, in between cleanings, you should be on the lookout for signs that your dryer vents have become clogged. The first sign of dirty dryer vents is an increase of time it takes to dry a load of clothes. You also might notice that the dryer or the clothes become hot to the touch. Also, the laundry room might be noticeably warmer while the dryer is running. Clogged vent also can result in a musty smell, a burning smell or an unusually strong smell of fabric softener while the dryer is running. You also should check the dryer vent at the exterior of your home periodically. Do this is to make sure that it is free from obstructions and that air is being exhausted from the vent while the dryer is running.

Keep your home and family safe by having your dryer vents professionally cleaned. Call Total Chimney Care to schedule your dryer vent cleaning today!