In this blog entry, the Charleston dryer vent cleaning service team here at Air Duct Charleston will detail the potential danger of dryer vents clogged up with lint.
Dryer Lint Dangers
Dryer fires can be avoided if dryer owners would proactively investigate the cause of long drying times. When dryers have blocked vents, lint won’t get moved outside, and will build up inside the dryer or the dryer vent. As it builds up, it will create its own blockage, causing a great deal of heat to build up inside the dryer. Dryer lint is highly flammable, rapidly igniting due to the airflow within the dryer. This flame will move through the path of the dryer vent, and can cause devastating fires. The majority of contractors route dryer vents inside walls and ceilings – and lint fires can burn through any kind of non-metal vent, and rapidly set walls and ceilings on fire – uch less seriously damage the dryer system itself.
Preventing Dryer Fires
Dryer lint build up is highly dangerous, and it’s necessary to regularly dispose of it in order to lower the risk of dryer fires. Just to illustrate the danger of dryer lint – keep in mind that many camping guides advise using lint balls as fire starters due to its ability to rapidly ignite with a single spark. Make sure dryer vents are regularly professionally cleaned. Make sure that you replace older or nonmetal dryer vents with a rigid or flexible (ideally rigid) metal dryer vent, as it will do a better job of containing potential fires within the vent itself. Vent length has an effect on vent efficiency – and improperly installed dryer vents can cause blockages in airflow which can also risk fires. If you have a plastic or foil dryer vent, replace it once a year, as these materials burn with heat and increase the risk of dryer fires.
Dryer Vent Length and Dryer Vent Efficiency
Most installers of dryer vents don’t understand the impact of length on dryer vent safety. The International Residential Code (IRC) Section M1502 says that metallic dryer vent length shouldn’t be any longer than 25 feet. If there’s any bend or 90 degree angle in your dryer vent, there’s a rule that states that every bend or turn should subtract 5 feet from the 25 foot maximum in order to determine a NEW maximum length. Dryer vent efficiency lowers as the length of the vent increases – and dryer efficiency will then be based on your dryer blower motor strength. We recommend using the shortest length of a metal vent possible – and keep it as straight as possible to increase good airflow. Contact Air Duct Charleston today for high quality Charleston dryer vent cleaning services.