Clothes dryers are great, but failure to do a few simple things could cause a fire in your home.
Your clothes dryer is a staple that you take for granted. It makes life so much easier. Just stick the wet clothes in, press a button, and about an hour later, you have clean, dry, fresh-smelling clothes. So it is easy to overlook the fact that the dryer has needs, too. But when something happens to it, it creates a HUGE problem for you because now you must take your clothes to the laundromat or hang them up around your house, which takes more money, time and effort. Be smart, and start implementing these tips to make sure your dryer lasts for years to come. (Photos via Amazon.com)
Some facts about dryer fires from the US Fire Administration:
2,900 home clothes dryer fires are reported each year.
Clothes dryer fires cause an estimated 5 deaths, 100 injuries, and $35 million in property loss.
The leading cause of home clothes dryer fires is failure to clean them (34 percent).
What You Can Do
- Clean the dryer’s lint catcher. This is a very simple thing that you can and should do every time you want to run a load of clothes. Lint buildup is a fire hazard. It only takes one spark and the light, airy lint will catch and burn in seconds, spreading the fire to nearby clothes or even mechanical parts. Every time you go to turn on the dryer, remove the lint so it does not build up and pose a danger. Then clean it after your load is done as well.
- Inspect the hose and vent. The hose should not be crushed or cracked. It should also not be too twisted or kinked, because this decreases efficiency and costs you more money. Make sure the vent cover leading to the outside is open so the warm air can blow through to the outdoors. A blocked vent causes lint to build up in the hose and the inside of the dryer, and can cause a fire.
- Get your dryer serviced. Lint can also build up inside the clothes dryer, so the back needs to be removed and the hose inspected. Then all the stray lint needs to be cleaned out. This is best done by a professional.
- Take care of the dryer’s electrical components. If your dryer is not turning on, or if a load of clothes is still wet after being run in the dryer, there may be a problem with an electrical component. You might not need to get a whole new dryer; it could be possible to swap out a few parts and have it working again like new. You may be able to do this yourself, or find tutorials on Youtube, but for best results call a professional.
Doing these 4 things will ensure your clothes dryer serves you well for a long time. If you’re in the Los Angeles or Orange County areas, consider calling us at California Air Conditioning Systems, Inc. for all your clothes dryer needs, or any other HVAC appliance you need repaired.
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