Dryer vent cleaning is the number one prevention of clothes dryer fires. When dryer vent systems become clogged with lint, air flow is restricted, causing the dryer motor to labor. As a result, clothes take longer to dry and you will experience higher energy bills.
When a clothes dryer isn't functioning properly dryer vent cleaning cures the problem in most cases. There are other things that can go wrong with a clothes dryer, but lack of air flow is the number one problem with malfunctioning dryers.
On a recent job the customer had reported a heating failure. The technician replaced the element which solved the problem, but only for a very short time. The problem recurred after just a couple loads of laundry. Just before the failure, the customer stated that they heard a scratching noise coming from the dryer but the technician failed to find the cause.
Electric dryers are simple in design. They require an element to provide heat and blowers to provide air flow. If the heating element is not functioning properly it can overheat and cause a fire. When a customer complains that their dryer is not getting clothes dry, this is one of the first things an appliance repair specialist will check.
Since I was called to the customer's home soon after they had an appliance repair technician provide service, I told them I was going to check for a venting problem. I assumed a complete dryer vent cleaning was required. Part of dryer vent cleaning service is to clean inside the dryer too.
I took the drum out to check for the source of the scratching noise and noticed the bearings were worn, causing friction due to lack of lubrication. On this model, once the bearing has worn the back of the drum came into contact with the heating element causing arcing and breaking the new element.
The dryer worked fine after installing a new element and bearing kit. I cleaned up the metal shavings and lint, and then put the dryer back together. This took care of the heating problem.
Being in the dryer vent cleaning business, I informed the customer that they were lucky a spark didn't cause the lint inside the dryer to ignite. They were happy to allow me to perform a complete dryer exhaust cleaning to be sure the dryer was getting proper air flow to work efficiently.
This article was written by Carl Hein, owner of Dryer Vent Wizard of St. Paul, Minnesota. DVW specializes in dryer vent cleaning, repair, installation and alterations, while educating consumers on dryer vent maintenance and fire safety. Carl services the Twin City Area of Minnesota. For more tips on dryer fire prevention visit http://dryerventcleaningstpaul.blogspot.com/