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This one simple task can help prevent a home fire!

April 21, 2015

Laundry is a fact of life, some people love it and some find it a dreaded, but necessary chore. You know to wash your whites in hot and your colors in cold and when you put the wet clothes in the dryer you always make sure to clean the lint trap before turning it on. Good to go, right?

Not quite.  You need to clean out the vent from the dryer to the outside of your home one to two times a year. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, obstructed airflow due to lint buildup causes 15,500 fires a year. These fires result in approximately 30 deaths and over 400 injuries making dryer fires the number two source of fire in the home.  Perhaps just as dangerous, a gas dryer that’s improperly vented or has an exhaust clogged by lint can cause carbon monoxide to fill the laundry room – a very lethal oops!

Warning Signs of a Clogged Vent

  • Clothes take longer to dry
  • Clothes don’t fully dry
  • Clothes are hotter than normal at the end of the drying cycle
  • Outside of dryer gets very hot
  • Outside of exhaust vent flap doesn’t open very much indicating low exhaust velocityiStock_000028464056_XXXLarge
  • Laundry room becomes more humid than usual
  • Burnt smell is evident in laundry room

Benefits to Cleaning the Vent

  • Improves the efficiency of your dryer thus reducing your energy costs
  • Dryer will last longer with less repairs
  • Clothes have less lint left on them
  • Makes you safer from fire in your home

Experts recommend cleaning your dryer vent at least once a year. If you have a large family or a lot of furry pets and do many loads of laundry a week, you should clean the vents at least twice a year.

Regardless if you choose to clean the vent yourself or hire someone to do it for you, for the safety of you and your family, it’s time to add this task to the annual spring cleaning chores.  It’s almost as fun as washing all the windows!

Happy Spring Cleaning!

Cherie Pare

Personal Lines Account Manager


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