How to Clean Your Dryer Vent and Keep Your Home Safe

Cleaning your dryer vent is an essential task that should not be overlooked. It can help protect your home from fire hazards, save you money, and make your clothes look better. To start, leave the house and remove the outside vent cover. Use a hose attachment to turn on the vacuum and suck up any debris around the vent inlet.

Then, slide a long, narrow hose into the ventilation grille as far as possible to pick up any loose debris from the dryer. Use a screwdriver to remove the vent cover and vacuum up any remaining debris. Place the vent cap in hot soapy water and use a microfiber cloth to clean it. Dry the cover with an additional microfiber cloth or let it air dry before putting it back in the dryer. Next, unplug the dryer and close the gas supply valve, if applicable.

Slide the dryer out about a foot or two from the wall so that you can access the interior ventilation end. Connect a workshop vacuum on the inner end and run a dry hose from the outside to push the brush. If the build-up is too large for you to get through, hire a professional or try a dryer rack cleaning kit. It's important to note that venting a gas dryer to the garage can cause toxic fumes to accumulate in the enclosed space, posing a significant danger to anyone in the garage. Additionally, if your dryer heats up to the touch, if your clothes come out hotter than normal, or if your laundry heats up and gets damp during the drying cycle, take the time to clean your dryer's ventilation grille. To do this, use a screwdriver to loosen and unscrew the clamps that keep your dryer's vent hose attached to the wall.

The indoor vent end is usually located directly behind or above the dryer, while the outdoor vent end is usually on the outside of your house near your laundry location. It should be held in place with one or more circular brackets that are placed over the top of your 4-inch vent hose and tightened around the transition vent tube that leads to the outside. Plug in your workshop vacuum and use its long hose attachment, which can be extended a significant distance to reach your dryer vent. If its brush can't be connected to a drill, you'll have to move it from one side to another as you turn it to brush out your dryer's ventilation grille. When you're finished cleaning your dryer vent and surrounding indoor and outdoor areas, reconnect your dryer to its vent. Before you go back inside, use a microfiber cloth and warm water and soap to clean your outer vent cover. Knowing how to clean your dryer vent can protect your home, save some money, and make your clothes look better.

If you don't clean it regularly, lint can accumulate in your vent, increasing fire risk and reducing efficiency of your dryer. If you're unable to get through all of the lint build-up yourself, hire a professional or try a dryer rack cleaning kit.

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