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clean dryer vent

Dryer Maintenance 101: How to Clean Dryer Vents and Lint Traps

You may not have given it much thought before, but cleaning your dryer vents and lint trap is very important. The build-up of lint and hair can lead to various dryer problems and even dryer fires. Learning to clean dryer vents and lint trap thoroughly is more useful than you may initially realize.

Follow These Steps for a Clean Dryer Vent

You may think cleaning a dryer lint trap simply refers to the standard “pull the lint off the screen” method. That’s a start, but you may need to take it a step further. Depending on your wash and dry habits, you may also need to get dryer sheet residue off the lint screen.

One test you can do with your lint trap is to hold it up to the light. You may notice that the trap is no longer transparent against the light. If this is the case, you may have a buildup from dryer sheet residue.

Another tell-tale test of a restricted lint trap is to trickle water onto the trap. The lint trap is clogged if the trap holds the water rather than passing it through the mesh screen. If the screen is clogged, air will also be restricted, which reduces your dryer’s ability to dry clothes efficiently.

Clean a Dryer Lint Trap in 5 Simple Steps:

Step 1 – Remove all surface lint from the dryer lint trap screen.
Step 2 – Second, wet the dryer lint trap screen and apply a small amount of dish soap.
Step 3 – Next, use a soft-bristled brush to gently scrub the lint screen until all the waxy residue is gone. Light and water should flow freely through the screen now.
Step 4 – Rinse the screen thoroughly and let it dry.
Step 5 – Finally, use a vacuum hose attachment to remove excess lint from the dryer lint trap housing. Your particular model may allow you to remove a cover to access more of this housing for a deeper clean.

Note: For very heavy residue buildup, repeat the steps using a detergent such as Clorox CleanUp or Simple Green.

Once you wash a dryer lint trap to perform a deep cleaning, check the transparency using the light and water tests to ensure it is completely clean and dry before returning it to the dryer vent.

clean dryer vent

How to Clean Dryer Vents

Knowing how to clean a dryer lint trap is just the beginning of dryer maintenance. You also need to know how to clean dryer vents, as this is where most of the lint buildup occurs. Here are some quick and easy steps to clean dryer vents.

Step 1 – Unplug the Dryer – always do this when servicing an appliance.
Step 2 – Use an appliance brush to sweep/spin/catch lint from the dryer vent and duct.
Step 3 – Vacuum any loose lint and debris inside the vent and outside the dryer.
Step 4 –  Clean the vent that extends to the exhaust outside the house.
Step 5 – Remove and vacuum all loose and remaining lint.

 

dryer takes too long to dry clothes
Image Source: Appliance Cleaning Brush on Amazon

Can You Clean Dryer Vent Yourself?

Yes, it is possible to clean your dryer vent yourself. However, it is important to take proper safety precautions and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning your specific dryer model. You will need to locate the exterior vent and use a vacuum or brush to remove any visible lint or debris. You may also need a special lint brush to reach inside the dryer and clean the interior vent.

It is important to regularly clean your dryer vent to ensure that it is functioning properly and to prevent fires. If you need help properly cleaning your dryer vent or feel uncomfortable doing it yourself, it is recommended to hire a professional to do the job.

What Is the Easiest Way to Clean Out a Dryer Vent?

The easiest way to clean out a dryer vent is to unplug the dryer and remove the exhaust hose from the back of the dryer. Next, use a vacuum with a hose attachment to remove any lint or debris that is stuck inside the hose or the vent. If the vacuum cannot fully remove all of the lint, you can use a dryer vent brush to gently scrub the inside of the hose and vent to remove any remaining lint.

Once you have cleaned out the hose and vent, reattach the hose to the back of the dryer and plug the dryer back in. It is also a good idea to regularly inspect and clean out the dryer vent to ensure it is functioning correctly and reducing the risk of a dryer fire.

dryer takes forever to dry

How Often Should a Dryer Vent Be Cleaned?

It is generally recommended to clean out the dryer vent every year or so or more frequently if you notice that it is taking longer for your clothes to dry or if you see lint accumulating around the vent’s opening.

Cleaning the dryer vent can help ensure that your dryer is functioning efficiently and safely, as a clogged vent can increase the risk of a dryer fire. If you cannot clean the dryer vent yourself, you can hire a dryer vent cleaning professional to do it for you.

How Do I Know if My Dryer Vent Is Clogged?

There are several signs that your dryer vent may be clogged and in need of cleaning:

  • It takes longer than usual for your clothes to dry
  • The clothes are very hot at the end of the drying cycle
  • The dryer becomes hot to the touch
  • There is a burning smell coming from the dryer
  • The lint screen is not trapping all of the lint
  • You see lint accumulating around the opening of the vent

 

If you notice any of these signs, it is a good idea to clean out the dryer vent to ensure that it is functioning properly and to reduce the risk of a dryer fire. To clean the dryer vent, follow the steps outlined in the previous guide. If you cannot clean the dryer vent yourself, you can hire a professional to do it for you.

Cleaning your dryer vent is an important task that can help to ensure that your dryer is functioning efficiently and safely. Following the steps outlined in this blog, you can easily clean out your dryer vent and remove any lint or debris that may have accumulated inside. 

If you have any dryer issues, contacting a professional is always a good idea. Dependable Appliance Repair is a reliable and experienced company that can help you with your dryer repair needs. Whether you need a simple fix or a complex repair, they have the knowledge and expertise to do the job correctly. Don’t hesitate to reach out to Dependable Appliance Repair for help.

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