Birmingham Home Inspectors Blog

Dryer Vent Safety
April 25th, 2018 9:48 PM
After doing inspections year after year and decade after decade in Birmingham, we have noticed that people do not give their dryer vents the proper respect. Everyone is afraid of mold and some of my clients even ghosts but hiding in plain sight, the dryer vent can sometimes be a big deal.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission found that during the course of one year, over 15000 fires were caused by the build up of lint. It is imperative that we keep the dryer vent as clean as possible. This not only helps reduce the risk of fire but also increases the efficiency of the dryer. They make brushes that are especially made to clean out the dryer vent and the dryer vent pipe. We have found that in a lot of new construction the vents are discharged vertically through the roof. These need to be cleaned out even more often.

Also, it is wise to clean out your lint trap on your dryer every time you use it. This will cut down on the build up of lint in your dryer vent pipe. As well cleaning the dreaded areas behind and underneath the washer/dryer area.

Another critical component is to use the correct kind of dryer vent pipe. No plastic and no metal foil. No accordion style corrugated cheap vent pipes please. We prefer to use rigid smooth metal ducts for our dryer vent pipes. The plastic ones are flammable and the accordion style more easily trap lint inside of them. The dryer vent pipe run should not be overly long with each bend in the pipe cutting down on the allowable distance.

So the next time you are doing some maintenance to your house add the dryer vent to the list. This often under-maintained area could really use your attention!

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Posted by Edward Griffith on April 25th, 2018 9:48 PMPost a Comment

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