Dryer Vent Maintenance Tips

The weather is warm, summer is almost here, and you think your need for services from a chimney and fireplace company is over until next fall, right? At The Fireplace Doctor, our services don’t stop as soon as the cold weather goes away. The months between burning seasons are the perfect time to think about other appliances in your home that need routine maintenance. Dryer vents especially require proper care to work efficiently and safely.  Here are a few warning signs to look out for when you think it’s time for a dryer vent check-up:

  • Extended drying time. A regular load of clothes shouldn’t take more than 45 minutes to dry completely. If you’re having to run one load through several cycles, there is most likely an issue with your dryer vent.
  • Overheated clothing. At the end of a normal cycle, clothes should be warm. If they are scorching hot, however, the dryer vents could be overheating.
  • Closed vent hood flapper. When the dryer is in operation, the vent hood flapper should be open. If it doesn’t open automatically, it needs to be inspected for damages.
Most homeowners don’t think about cleaning out their dryer vents until it’s too late. Lint buildups in dryer exhaust systems are known causes of dryer vent fires in homes across America. Recent statistics show that more than 15,000 clothes dryer fires break out each year, costing homeowners millions of dollars in damages. Regular cleanings are the best way to prevent a fire from breaking out in your laundry room.
The technicians at The Fireplace Doctor are certified dryer vent professionals. They follow a thorough checklist to ensure your dryer remains in the best condition throughout the year. When one of our technicians comes to your home to clean and inspect your dryer event, these are some of the things he is looking for:
  • Dryer duct is at least 4″ in diameter.
  • Concealed ducts are made from rigid metal materials.
  • Metal tape secures all duct joints.
  • Pipe connections point in the same direction as the airflow.
  • Dryer vents terminate outdoors.
  • Flexible metal is used to connect the dryer and the duct.
  • Outside hood includes a back draft damper.