DIY Dryer Vent Cleaning: Why It’s Better to Pay a Professional

clogged dryer vent
Image Credit: woodleywonderworks via Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

One of the easiest ways to prevent fire in your home is to keep dryer vents cleaned and clear. We hear this advice given so many time and yet the leading cause of fire in most homes is still clogged dryer vents. Knowing this information might make you check and triple check your dryer’s lint catcher and vent before you add in your next load of wet clothes, but is that enough to stop a fire from occurring?

Just keeping the lint trap cleared and emptying the vent cover from time to time, while a great way to keep the dryer functioning, isn’t the only thing that’s needed to keep your vents cleaned  – especially if the duct work is long and there is far more space that can hold and catch lint and dust and create potential for a fire.

Rethink DIY

Consider yourself lucky if your dryer vent is short and leads to the outdoors easily—in these cases you might be able to get away with cleaning your dryer vent on your own using a brush kit and following careful instructions. But for most of us, going the DIY route for dryer vent cleaning is a big mistake. Can you afford to make that kind of a mistake with your home at stake?

The National Fire Protection Association reported that in 2010, almost 17,000 fires were caused by washers or dryers with 51 deaths and $236 million in damage. A main culprit being failure to properly clean the dryer vents.

Leave it to the Professionals

It’s better to pay a professional to come out and get the job done properly to ensure that your dryer vent is clear from possible fire hazards in the future. This service can be included with other routine heating cleanings in your home or done on an as needed basis.

During this dryer vent cleaning, the HVAC professional will be able to work through miles of duct work in the home including turns and bends in the duct work to ensure the passageway is clear. You simply cannot achieve that with a DIY brush kit.

Schedule Routine Maintenance

Doing this regularly is also necessary. Just because you’ve had the service done one time doesn’t put you in the clear. You should remain aware of how much laundry you’re drying and use that as a gauge for how frequently you’ll need to have someone come out and ensure the vents are cleared. (On average, dryer vents should be cleaned every 6 to 24 months depending on how often you do laundry, whether you have pets, and other factors.)

Contact Preferred Hood & Duct for all your air duct and cleaning service needs in Connecticut from residential to commercial and even kitchen duct cleanings.