Improper dryer vents are a common safety problem. Here are some dryer vent safety tips:
- Use metal dryer ducts or semi-rigid material to help rather than flexible dryer ducts made of foil or plastic because they can become crushed and let lint build up at low points. Ridges can also trap lint.
- All dryer vents should be cleaned regularly and the lint screen should be cleaned after each load of laundry. This reduces the risk of a fire and helps the dryer to run more efficiently so clothes dry faster and your dryer will use less energy. It is also a good idea to clean the lint screen every few months with warm soapy water.
- Clean inside, behind, and underneath the dryer, where lint can build up.
- If you have a dryer with an automatic sensor, clean the sensor with a soft cloth and rubbing alcohol to keep it functioning accurately. Sensors are metallic strips, usually located on the inside of the dryer, just below the door opening.
- Be extra careful with clothes or rags soaked with combustibles like cleaning chemicals or gasoline. If these items must go into the dryer, put them through 2 - 3 wash cycles first, to minimize the amount of these chemicals on the laundry. Better yet, line dry instead of using a clothes dryer.
- Avoid storing combustible materials around any gas appliance
Besides maintaining the dryer vent yourself, you should have a qualified professional clean and inspect your dryer vent system at least once a year.
These tips are provided by The Dryer Vent Wizard, who wants all consumers to be aware of how important dryer vent maintenance is. The Wizard provides more fire safety tips and easy, preventative measures for preventing a clothes dryer fire at http://www.dryerventwizard.com
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