In the year 2010, approximately 16,800 house fires involving clothes dryers were reported in the United States, and these fires were responsible for 51 deaths, 380 injuries, and $236 million in property damage, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). The leading cause behind these fires is the failure to clean clothes dryer vents. The NFPA, the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA), and other fire prevention safety organizations recommend that you have your dryer vent system professionally cleaned annually by an experienced dryer exhaust technician, such as one of our technicians at Weststar Chimney Sweeps. We would like to share with you some clothes dryer vent safety tips and other information to help you prevent a house fire started by your clothes dryer.
Clothes Dryer Safety Tips
The NFPA released a dryer safety tip brochure to inform the public about what they should do to keep their clothes dryers safe. The tips include the following:
- Always have your clothes dryer professionally installed and serviced.
- Never use your dryer without the lint filter.
- Always clean the lint filter before or after every load you dry. Also, remove any lint that has collected around the dryer’s drum.
- To keep the best air flow and drying time, rigid or flexible metal venting material should be used.
- Be sure the air exhaust vent pipe is not clogged or restricted, and the outdoor vent flap opens when the dryer is in use. The Weststar Chimney Sweeps technician will clean the outdoor vent pipe during the annual cleaning.
- If you have a gas-operated dryer, it should be inspected by a certified professional to ensure the gas line and connection are secure and have no leaks.
- Follow the manufacturer’s operating instructions.
- Never overload your dryer.
- Do not leave your dryer running if you leave your home or when you go to sleep.
- Your dryer should be grounded correctly.
- If it snows, be sure to check the outdoor vent flap to see if it is covered in snow.
- Keep the area around your dryer clear from anything that could burn like boxes,clothes, and cleaning supplies.
Why You Should Have a Professional Cleaning of Your Dryer Venting System Every Year
Our experienced technicians at Weststar Chimney Sweeps will inspect, clean, and verify that your clothes dryer’s venting system is sized and installed correctly. These annual inspections will prolong the life of your clothes dryer as well as increase its efficiency.
If you need to schedule a dryer vent cleaning, contact Weststar Chimney Sweeps today. Our expert technicians will be sure your dryer vents are not a fire hazard.