3/18/13

Clean your Dryer Vents

About two weeks ago, I had my hubs go to my mom's house to clean her dryer vents.

Let's back up a wee bit first.

About a month ago, I was helping my mom out and started a load of laundry. Her washing machine is a top loader where you add fabric softener in the center hole of the agitator. It was totally mucked up with residue of thousands of washes, so I decided to take it off to clean it out.
On a side note: My mom was unaware that this piece was removeable, which means it hadn't been cleaned in TEN years.

I pull this thing off and discover the tube down the center and leading to the bottom of the machine was filled with moldy fabric softener residue, along with the piece I pulled off, which can be seperated into two pieces. I spent about 30 minutes cleaning these pieces with scalding hot water. It was disgusting and it probably led to the sour smell of her laundry.

I clean my soap/bleach/fabric softener dispenser on my machine--a front loader--at least 3-4 times a year. My machine tends to get the pink bacteria gunk that can inhabit showers UNDER the piece, so you have to remove it to find the yuck.

After doing this I thought that Mom probably hadn't had her dryer vents cleaned.

On another side note: I have personally known two people who have had fires burn down their houses due to excessive lint build up in their dryer vents. It can happen. This is also why I NEVER leave my dryer running when I leave the house. It's a safety thing.

So hubs brings our handy dandy rotary dryer cleaner tool over to Mom's house. This particular tool is attatched to a hand drill. We bought this product many, many years ago and clean our vents twice a year. We do this with our dryer system because there are FOUR bends in our vents before it actually blows outside.

Mom's dryer vents directly to the roof, so the two bends in the system are easily accessable, relatively speaking as hubs had to climb over the dryer to get to this area--first is the bend directly out of the dryer, and the second, is the bend going to the roof.

He detaches the hose and a PILE of lint falls out. I'd have to say it was about an 8 X 8 X 3 inches. Enough to cause an air blockage while drying clothes . . . and a house fire. She put in the dryer about ten years ago when the washer was installed. Odds are good that the installation techs cleaned the vent, but she can't remember.

So, my friends, take care of your washer and dryer and it will continue to take care of your clothes!

Oh, and since our dryer is also a gas dryer, I have a fire extinguisher right outside the door in the garage. Yes, I check the charge and expiration date periodically.

This is your public service announcement for the week.

Later, Peeps!

6 comments:

Cynthia D'Alba said...

You are so right about those dryer vents. We keep our cleaned out. Luckily, our's vents directly outside...no long tunnel to traverse to get out. But we keep it clear. Now the Florida house? I'm still working that one out.

I need to find out how to take out the center piece of the washer. My sister gave me a washer and I am SURE it needs this.

Margaret Golla said...

Cyndi--that dryer vent cleaner in the picture paid for itself the first time we used it. We bought because it took forever for our jeans to dry. Let's just say the local bunny and bird population benefited from the lint to line their nests!

Cynthia D'Alba said...

I am in the process of removing the agitator in the washer. YUK. I have to wait for hubby to get home to finish. I can't find the right tool to remove that last screw.

Thanks for the reminder to do this

Margaret Golla said...

It's bad enough when it's your own yuck, but when you buy someone else's yuck, it's just gross. Hope you got it taken care of, Cyndi!

Adam said...

I have read your blog, its really informativeand understood easily how clothing dryer work and what are benefits of Dryer vent cleaning services. Thanks to...... Ms. Margaret Golla

Margaret Golla said...

Thank you so much, Adam! I'm glad I could spread the word!