Many things can reduce your dryer’s efficiency. If your dryer is not performing as it was in the last year, there are higher chances that the lint from the dryer has clogged the vent. Apart from reducing the efficiency of your dryer, a clogged vent increases the risk of fire hazards.
To reduce the rising energy bills, the risk of fire, and to increase your dryer’s performance, you should clean the vent at least once in a year. Luckily, you don’t have to hire a professional dryer vent cleaner if you can reach the vent by moving the dryer. Here are some of the signs that your dryer’s vent needs cleaning:
Signs that your vent needs cleaning
- Excess heat from the dryer
- Hot clothing after a drying cycle
- Clothes not drying with one cycle
- An odor from your dryer’s sheets
- More lint in the lint tray than usual
Steps to clean a dryer vent using a vacuum cleaner
- Empty the lint screen – You should empty the lint screen every time you do laundry. Before cleaning the vent, it is good that you start with the lint screen. Empty any lint that maybe there the same way you do after laundry.
- Unplug the dryer – Unplug the dryer before trying to move it to reach the vent. It is extremely dangerous to start cleaning the vent before unplugging your dryer.
- Move the dryer – Pull the dryer away from the wall to reach its vent. The dryer vent is always at the back of the dryer. If you have limited space in your laundry room or your dryer is too heavy for you to pull it from the wall, you should hire a HVAC specialist to help you clean your dryer’s vent. You can also find someone to help you if the dryer is very heavy, but you have enough space in your laundry room.
- Remove the tube – Use a screwdriver to remove the screws attaching the tube that connecting the dryer and the vent to the wall. Remember to keep the screws in the same place, for you will need them later when reattaching the tube. Pull the tube to remove it from the wall to access the vent.
- Vacuum out the vent – Stick your vacuum cleaner’s nozzle into the vent and then vacuum out the vent that runs into the wall. After that, vacuum out the tube that connects your dryer to the vent. Remember to vacuum out the tube and the vent as far as your vacuum cleaner’s nozzle can reach.
If you don’t have access to a vacuum cleaner, you can use a flexible dust brush with an extendible handle to clean the tube and the vent. You can also use compressed air to blow out the lint that may be clogging your dryer’s duct-work.
- Assemble everything back – After cleaning the vent and the tube, reattach the tubing connecting your dryer to the vent and then attach it to the wall by placing the screws back in place. Slide the dryer back to its position and then plug it in. Now your dryer is ready for use, and you should see some improvement.