How to Clean a Dryer Duct: A Step-by-Step Guide

Are your clothes still coming out damp after you do your laundry? It may be time to clean your dryer duct.

As time goes on, lint can build up in your vents and can cause several issues. Whether it’s inefficient drying, increased electricity, or potential fire hazards, it’s clear you need to do your part when it comes to air duct maintenance.

In this blog, we go over a step-by-step guide on how to clean your dryer duct and keep your daily chores a seamless task. When you’re ready. let’s begin.

6 Steps to Clean Your Dryer Duct

Once you understand the importance of dryer duct maintenance, it’s time to go over the essential steps to clean your vents. Below, we cover the essential steps it takes for you to efficiently clean your dryer duct, and key points to keep in mind.

1. Preparation and Safety

Illustration: A man cleans a dryer while wearing a safety helmet and gloves.

First and foremost, gather any tools you may need to clean your vent.
This can be several different things depending on your vent.
Typically, here is what you will need:

● Vacuum
● Brush
● Screwdriver
● Gloves
● Flashlight
● Mask

This will ensure you are prepared for a seamless workflow and prevent running around gathering tools as the corresponding steps demand a new tool.

After you gather your supplies, unplug your dryer. If it runs on gas, you must turn off the tap. This is a crucial step for your safety, so you should check that no external energy is flowing through your dryer. Usually, the exhaust duct is located behind the dryer. Carefully remove it and start cleaning the surrounding area.


2. Vacuuming the Vent Entrance

Dryer Vent Cleaning West Ashley
Illustration: a vacuum cleaning inside a dryer duct.

Next, you should start by vacuuming the dust yourself. Any remaining lint can easily be sucked up with a vacuum cleaner, provided you have a hose attached.

Reach as far into the vent as your vacuum cleaner hose will allow, but don’t force it, as you don’t want to accidentally push the lint further into the vent.

3. Deep Cleaning the Duct

dryer vent cleaning seabrook island, south carolina dryer vent cleaning
Illustration: Cleaning a Dryer Duct with a Brush

For thorough cleaning in hard-to-reach areas, it may be necessary to purchase a cleaning kit. This contains a range of tools that allow you to reach even the deepest crevices in your duct.
Essentially, the tool works like a snake (similar to toilets).

Note: Depending on the size of your dryer duct, you should do your research to find out if a cleaning kit is best for your situation.

4. Cleaning Up and Reconnecting

Illustration: Reconnecting a Dryer Vent Duct with a Screwdriver

After you have finished your deep clean, wipe up any remaining lint. This will prevent more lint from building up in the future and keep your washroom tidy.


In some cases, the dirt may leave some residue behind. In this case, take some soapy water and carefully wash out the surrounding area. After cleaning, you can reconnect or turn on the gas valve.

5. External Vent Cleaning

Illustration: An external dryer duct image
Illustration: An external dryer duct.

Do you know where your external vent is located? It may be ground level (maybe around the back), in which case, you can clean the vent yourself using the same steps mentioned above.

However, if the external vent is located on the roof or in a hard-to-reach space, it may be best to call in for a professional to execute this job. There can be many accidents and hazards if done incorrectly and is advised to take precautionary measures.

6. Maintenance and Prevention Tips

Maintenance and Prevention Tips

To keep your dryer and air duct running smoothly, here are some key tips to keep in mind.

Cleaning regularly: Don’t wait until lint has piled up again to address the issue. Consistently clean your ducts for maximum efficiency.

Lint trap: Lint traps are a great addition to prevent your air ducts from clogging up. It’s easy to clean up and helps prevent large build-up.

Routine inspections: Visually check to see if your dryer duct is running smoothly. You can identify problem areas with regular checkups.

Correct installation: Sometimes, the valve is installed with unfavorable bends and strapped on too loosely. Make sure that your valve has sufficient airflow and secure bindings.


Why Clean Your Dryer Duct?

So why clean the dryer shaft? If everything works, why bother, right?

It’s not that simple. If you don’t clean your dryer duct, it can cause several problems. Here are some important points to keep in mind:

Fire safety

Dusty lint can catch fire over time if it poses a danger due to overheating.


Clean air ducts ensure better airflow, which dries your clothes faster.

Dryer life

A clean duct helps the dryer work less hard, resulting in fewer breakdowns. – Cost: If you have to dry your laundry several times, your electricity bill will go up. – Mold: A dirty duct can lead to toxic problems in the air if it’s not cleaned.

As you can see, cleaning your dryer duct isn’t a task that should be neglected. Your home or workplace depends on your diligence to maintain a safe and healthy environment.


You don’t want to waste your time and energy cleaning your dryer duct. Especially if that means it can cause many problems down the line.
Therefore, cleaning your dryer duct is an urgent matter that you should tackle immediately.

Don’t have the time or the knowledge to clean your dryer duct? At Air Duct Charleston, we offer you a first-class service for cleaning your air ducts.
Whether it’s a quick inspection or a comprehensive commercial cleaning service, we take pride in our work to eliminate harmful allergens, prevent potential fire hazards, and increase your energy efficiency in your home or workplace.

Contact us today for a free consultation!

This article draws upon typical scenarios and is intended to complement rather than substitute professional consulting services.

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Here at Air Duct Charleston, we’re always ready to assist you for your Air Duct and Dryer Vent Cleaning Service in Charleston, SC. We can help you with any Air Duct and Dryer Vent Cleaning Service, please call us at (843) 608-8042 or get a Free Online FREE Estimate