Safety is something we take for granted in the appliances we use daily in our homes. That’s why you maybe shocked to learn that clothes dryers are a fire hazard and they’re responsible for 2,900 fires in homes across the country every year, which result in 100 injuries and five deaths.
Understanding Why Dryer Fires Occur
Lint buildup and inadequate airflow are the two main causes of dryer fires. Lint is a highly-combustible material and it tends to build up easier in a long vent with sharp turns and bends, where airflow gets restricted.
How to Reduce the Danger of Clothes Dryer Fires in Your Home
Having your clothes dryer professionally installed is one important way to lessen the risk of a fire. A professional installer knows what type of plug and outlet are needed, and to use the shortest, straightest vent route and rigid piping instead of a plastic or coiled-wire vent. You can also lessen the likelihood of a fire in your home by following these tips for dryer use, cleaning and maintenance:
- Get into the habit of cleaning out your dryer’s lint filter after every laundry load, and clean the vent pipe to remove built-up lint every three months.
- If the dryer’s lint filter doesn’t fit in snugly, or it’s broken or missing altogether, don’t use your dryer without replacing it.
- Have a professional clean and inspect your dryer and its venting system annually. If you have a gas dryer, make sure the gas line and connection are inspected too.
- Remove any lint buildup from the dryer’s outdoor vent cover regularly, check that it’s not blocked by any obstructions, and make sure the cover louvers open up when the dryer is running.
- Don’t overload the dryer, and never leave it running if you’re leaving home or going to bed.
- Never put items made from foam, rubber or fiberglass into the dryer, or any item that’s come in contact with flammables like alcohol, oil or gasoline.
Contact us at Beyer Boys to learn more about the fire hazard posed by the clothes dryer in your San Antonio home.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater San Antonio, Texas area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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