With more than 16,000 reported home fires caused by clothes dryers and washing machines in 2010, it’s important that you know how to properly maintain your clothes dryer and keep it running efficiently and safely.  Below are three easy tips that will significantly reduce the fire hazard risk posed by your dryer.

Clean Lint Screen with Each Use 

A build-up of lint on your dryer’s lint screen can be an unnecessary fire hazard, as well as cause issues in terms of efficiency and power.

To keep your dryer running smoothly, it’s important to remove the lint from the screen following each load of laundry. Not only will this help to reduce the odds of a dryer-related fire, but it will also ensure your dryer runs at peak efficiency, saving you time and money on your electric bill.

Replace Dryer Ducts

If you’ve moved into a home that contains a dryer, or have owned one yourself for a number of years, it may be time to replace the dryer ducts.

Many dryers use duct materials, such as plastic and foil, that can be inefficient at best and fatal at worst. Plastic is flammable, and along with foil dryer ducts, is more prone to kinks and lint trapping than are approved materials. These obstructions can end up costing you thousands of dollars in fire damage repair costs. Instead, replace your dryer ducts with metal ducts. These can be bought in three “forms:” flexible, solid, and semi-rigid. Whichever one you choose, it’s still important that it’s properly cleared of any obstructions every few months. For more information, contact Wildman Dryer Vent Pro. 

Clear the Surrounding Area of Obstructions and Hazards

One of the easiest things you could do could also be the thing that will save your life and the life of your family. Keeping the immediate area surrounding your dryer free of obstruction and fire hazards can significantly reduce the odds of a dryer fire.

It’s important to allow as much air flow around and under your dryer as possible, as dryers can become very hot while running. Keeping the back of the dryer, as well as underneath, free of lint and other fire hazards can reduce the odds of a fire significantly. This also means keeping vents and ducts free of any obstructions that can get in the way of them working properly.

Fortunately for you, keeping your family safe when it comes to your home’s dryer isn’t hard. Be sure to replace any plastic or foil ducts with the proper materials, and regularly clean the lint trap and surrounding areas of lint and debris build-up. These simple steps can save your home and your family.