Leonard's comment in "The Big Bang Theory," although posed in a jovial setting, cannot be overstated enough. FEMA and the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) estimated 16,800 fires in 2010 involving clothes dryers-including combination washer/dryers. Dryer fires result in an average of 51 deaths, 380 injuries, and $236 million in direct property damage annually.
According to Bob Formisano, an expert on home repair and the creator of home-cost.com, the single most common cause of a dryer fire is the lack of dryer vent cleaning and not with the dryer itself. The United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) released a survey in 2010 revealing that in most instances when a consumer believed their dryer to be faulty the real cause was actually a clogged dryer vent.
The cost of a certified dryer vent cleaning depends on the length of the vent and how accessible it is. The main thing to remember is investing in routine dryer vent cleanings will out weigh the energy costs of running the dryer multiple times per load, the safety risk, and the cost of property damage in the event of a fire.
Put these two things into practice to prevent a dryer fire in your home!
- Clean out the dryer lint trap after every load of laundry.
- Schedule regular dryer vent cleanings with a certified professional.
Contact a certified professional for dryer vent cleaning. The National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA) trains and certifies technicians to perform air duct and dryer vent cleanings. NADCA endorses the use of high powered air pressure and air powered tools knows as "air whips" or "skipper balls" attached to air-tubing to properly and safely clean a dryer vent. Air Powered tools are not abrasive and are able to clean the entire length of the dryer duct. This is crucial in preventing dangerous build-up inside the vent which causes dryer fires.
What to do with all that lint? How about wallet friendly fire starters! Check out this post (and many more) and put that lint to use.