According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), about 2,900 home dryer fires occur every year. These result in injuries, even death, and property loss amounting to $35 million. The most common reasons for these fires is a poorly maintained dryer. With this in mind, below are some practical tips for proper maintenance of your dryer.
Make Certain That it’s Properly Installed
Ensure that your dryer is installed and regularly serviced by professionals. Read the operating manual to make sure that its plug is appropriate for your electrical outlet. If your dryer runs on gas, Best Home Appliance and other experienced dryer repair and maintenance professionals suggest having it checked regularly to ensure that the gas line is free of leaks and is functioning properly.
Check the Vent
This is situated outside your home, and you need to inspect it regularly to ensure that sufficient air is going out while the dryer dries your clothes. If you see that the vent isn’t releasing any air, check the vent to see if there’s blockage, such as lint buildup, a bird’s nest, or tiny animals.
Clean the Filter
Make certain that the lint filter is clean and free of buildup before you use it. If you’re drying clothes that produce a ton of lint like mats or towels, dry them for half a drying cycle and then stop to remove the lint before completing the full cycle. Check your dryer’s drum regularly for lint buildup as well.
Inspect the Exhaust Duct
Ensure that the exhaust duct and the dryer vent outside is free of lint or any debris. If you suspect a blockage, you might need to remove it and clean it if you’re 100% certain that you know how. Otherwise, get a pro to do the job.
When Using Your Dryer
For safe operation, observe the following tips:
- Never overload.
- Read and follow the operating manual for operating and maintaining the dryer.
- Never run your dryer when you’re sleeping or when you’re going out even for a little while.
- Don’t store anything inside or on top of your dryer.
Lastly, when you think that there’s something wrong with your dryer, it’s best that get it inspected by a professional instead of tinkering with it yourself. Otherwise, you risk further damaging it and endangering your home.