Dirty Vents Need Certified Dryer Exhaust Technician

Protect your family and your home with regular dryer vent inspections and cleanings by a CSIA Certified Dryer Exhaust Technician.

How do you know the professional you call to clean your dryer vents will do a good job? With the many companies to choose from you may be overwhelmed deciphering between seemingly very similar companies. But one way to distinguish the best company from the others is to look and see which companies hold the correct certifications for their industry.

The Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) is the primary educational and certification institution of the chimney and venting industry. The institute offers the CSIA Certified Dryer Exhaust Technician (C-DET) certification for the technicians who pass the rigorous test covering all areas of dryer vent servicing.

With a CSIA Certified Dryer Exhaust Technician you can be confident that the job will be completed correctly by a knowledgeable professional. The certification process includes testing the technician’s understanding of every aspect of dryer vent cleaning. The exam includes questions on the correct building codes and fire safety standards, along with questions concerning the cleaning process. From ensuring the proper material is used in the ducts joining the dryer with the wall to checking the mechanical and electrical elements, our technicians thoroughly examine each dryer vent system.

At Dr. Lint, our dryer vent technicians are all CSIA Certified Dryer Exhaust Technicians because our company values continuous learning and makes it a priority for each of our service technicians to stay current on codes and regulations within the industry. Our technicians make sure that they have done all that they can to provide the best dryer vent service to your home and to ensure that your family and home stay safe from dryer vent fires and carbon monoxide poisoning.

We understand the dangers homeowners face when their gas appliances are neglected. For this reason, we take special care to stay current on every detail of the industry because our clients’ safety is our highest priority.

Dryer Vent Birds Nest

Carbon monoxide poisoning and a dryer vent fire are just two of the problems this nest could have caused before it was removed.

While lint is the primary culprit for obstructing the air flow in the dryer vent, bird nests and debris left behind by other animals are often also prime suspects. The warm air from the dryer creates a pleasant spot for a nest of small rodents or birds, but this cozy hideout for small creatures is a dangerous situation for homeowners.

When birds and other wildlife build nests inside the dryer vents, this creates a very serious problem for the homeowner. A blockage in the vent will cause lint and exhaust to build up throughout the duct. This backlog can reach all the way to the dryer and will lead to longer drying times, more stress on the dryer and also the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning and a dryer vent fire.

The best way to stop birds and critters from building a home in your dryer vent is to block off the opening. There are a few different “No Nest” vent covers that you can purchase. When choosing a vent cover to keep out unwanted creatures, consider purchasing a product with the following features:

  • A door designed so that birds cannot open it
  • A door that will open without resistance so that the fixture will allow for proper venting
  • Detachable hood for simple cleaning
  • No screens — these get clogged up easily with lint and can start a problem of its own
  • Products that have proved to be 100 percent successful in bird infested areas

The simple installation of one of these “No Nest” vent covers works as a one time preventative measure that will ensure that your dryer vent system is safe from intrusive animals. One small nest can become a major safety hazard. Don’t wait for these tiny house guests to make their presence known — keep the critters out with an appropriate dryer vent cover.

Be aware of dryer vent carbon monoxide poisoning sign.

Annual dryer vent cleanings will eliminate the risk of dryer vent carbon monoxide poisoning in your household.

Carbon monoxide poisoning is often referred to as the “silent killer” and any gas appliance could cause this deadly poisoning in your home if it is not vented properly.

What is carbon monoxide poisoning?

Carbon monoxide (CO) is very dangerous because while it is colorless, tasteless, and odorless, it has the power to do great harm without you ever even realizing it is there. Carbon monoxide can cause brain damage and even death and is often difficult to detect. The gas comes from common household appliances that are not properly vented.

One of the reasons that carbon monoxide often goes undetected is that the symptoms caused by the poisoning can be easily blamed on other factors. Common symptoms include headaches, nausea, and disorientation. If you have any of the symptoms of carbon monoxide, open a window to allow the gases to escape and then make sure you also have a professional come out and find out where the gas is coming from to fix the problem.

Problems occur when gas appliances, such as your clothes dryer, are not properly vented. With homes becoming more energy efficient and therefore more air tight, these trapped fumes have very few options of where to go. This is why it is increasingly more important to have all gas appliances checked regularly to ensure they are venting properly and thus eliminating the risk of you or your family getting carbon monoxide poisoning.

How can I prevent against dryer vent carbon monoxide poisoning?

With a dryer vent, all the exhaust must be vented into the outdoors to make sure that all harmful gases are sent out of the house. But if the exhaust vents become clogged with lint or bird nests, these exhaust fumes get backed up into the home. For this reason, it is important that dryer vents get professionally cleaned out at least once a year so that the vents remain clear to avoid serious health problems.

Besides preventing against dryer vent carbon monoxide poisoning, regular dryer vent cleanings will also prevent against dryer vent fires, help save on your energy bill and increase the life of the appliance. Don’t let anyone in your household become a victim of the “silent killer”. Have your professional dryer vent technician service your dryer annually.

dryer vent fire

Once lit, dryer vent fires spread quickly through the vents of unsuspecting homes.

Dryer vent fires cost about $99 million in direct damages and happen in about 15,600 homes each year. With the proper maintenance, these fires are entirely avoidable. Dryer vent fires actually do not typically begin from a problem within the dyer. Instead, the fire breaks out from lint build up and continues to ignite the built up lint throughout the dryer vent.

Clothes dryers are an often overlooked appliance for regular maintenance, but this is a dangerous oversight. While there is a threat of a dryer fire if left unnoticed, there are many ways to prevent a dryer vent fire.

1. Clean the lint out of the lint filter each time you use the dryer. Excess lint is the primary cause of dryer vent fires so it is critical that this material is monitored and cleaned regularly.

2. Do not let the dryer run when you are away from home. A dryer vent may cause more damage if no one is around to catch the fire and call 9-1-1 right away.

3. Have a professional clean out the dryer vents annually to ensure there is not excess lint build up in the vents and also to make sure the appliance is operating most efficiently.

4. Make sure that the appliance is properly connected to the electrical source and outlet and that the area is clean and clutter-free. Failure of the mechanical or electrical parts of the dryer often leads to igniting the lint and starting the fire.

Besides these precautionary measures, there are also signs that you may already be prone to a dryer vent fire. Call a dryer vent cleaning professional immediately if you notice any of the following signs.

  • The dryer is taking longer than 30- 45 minutes to dry a load of laundry and this time is increasing.
  • The dryer top and sides feel hot to the touch and clothing is coming out of the dryer uncomfortably hot.
  • You can spot lint behind the dryer and around the vents.
  • The air coming from the vent on the exterior of your home is very weak when the dryer is turned on.

If you believe there is a fire or you or your family are at risk for any reason, dial 9-1-1. Otherwise, monitor your dryer vent system regularly and have a professional clean it out once a year.

Prevent Dryer Vent Fires with Lint Alert

This small device is all you need to ensure your home is safe from dryer vent fires.

While there are many precautionary steps a homeowner can take to prevent a dryer vent fire from occurring, the most effective method of prevention is installing a small device called the “Lint Alert” into the dryer vent system. This small device monitors the amount of lint in the exhaust system by gauging the air flow conditions. During normal operation, air flows freely into the dryer, but can become blocked from excessive lint build up. Thanks to the air flow sensors in “Lint Alert”, the device is able to notify you as soon as the condition inside the ducts worsens and if a blockage occurs.

The “Lint Alert” uses a series of colored LED lights to progressively show the accumulation of lint within the system until it reaches a point where the lint build up is unsafe and must be cleaned out by a dryer cleaning professional.

When new customers receive an air duct cleaning from Dr. Lint, they will also get a “Lint Alert” device installed as well. Just like your home security alarm and smoke detectors, this monitor will let you know when unsafe conditions exist in your home. With over 15,000 dryer vent fires occurring each year, this device offers security and peace of mind that your home and your family will be safe from dryer vent fires.

Dryer Vent Cleaning Before and After

Dryer vent cleaning improves the performance of the dryer and increases the life of the appliance.

A dryer vent may be one part of your home that stays out of sight and out of mind, but when these signs catch your attention, its time to take action. If you are aware of the conditions to watch out for, you will be able to monitor your system and prolong its life while also saving on energy costs and ensuring the safety of your home.

If you notice any of these signs, it is time to get your dryer vent checked and cleaned.

1. After a load of laundry has gone through the cycle, the clothes are still damp.

If the dryer is no longer working to its full potential, or you have recently noticed a decrease in its efficiency, this is most likely due to a blocked exhaust vent. A typical load of laundry should only take about 30 to 45 minutes for each load. A blocked air duct will result in more energy needed to dry a load, and the excess lint may also contribute to an air duct fire. Lower your energy costs and keep your home safe with a professional dryer vent cleaning.

2. The vent to the outside is not noticeably blowing air 12 inches from the home.

If you cannot feel the air blowing from your dryer vent at a distance of about a foot from the vent, the pathway from your appliance to the outdoors is seriously blocked. Removing the lint and cleaning the interior of the vent will increase the efficiency of the dryer vent.

3. The dryer feels hotter than usual when it is in use.

Have you noticed your laundry room heating up more than usual and the dryer is extremely hot to the touch? This is a sign that the appliance is being over worked and needs some attention. Left unnoticed, this overheating could lead to catching the lint on fire and igniting. Clothing that is extremely hot to touch after being dried is also a sign that the dryer is overheating.

4. You notice that your utility bill is suddenly higher than before.

Lower your energy bill immediately by cleaning out the dryer vents. If your vents are clogged, it will take longer to dry each load which will increase your energy bill. Some people even have to run the dryer multiple times to fully dry a load. The problem will not get better on its own, so it is best to catch it early and clean out the vent as soon as the problem is spotted.

5. The inside of the dryer vent has a layer of lint that can be seen from the outside opening or the opening at the back of the dryer.

If your laundry is suddenly producing more lint than usual, this is a sign that the dryer vent is clogged. Check to see if there is excess lint on your laundry room floor or around the opening where the dryer connects to the vent. This built up lint will cause the dryer to burn less efficiently and the excess lint puts your home at a higher risk for a dryer vent fire.

There are more than just extra costs associated with an unclean dryer vent. Not only does a clean dryer vent extend the life of the appliance, it also prevents the dryer from becoming a safety hazard. The dryer vent should be cleaned out every year to 18 months depending on how often the appliance is used, but if any of these signs are noticed, it is time to call a dryer vent cleaning professional.

3 Simple Steps to Reduce Energy Costs with your Clothes Dryer

Conserve Energy and Save Money with Dryer Vent Cleaning

Reduce your energy bill by up to 20 percent with a dryer vent cleaning.

Clothing washers and dryers account for a major chunk of a homeowner’s energy bill. While washing by hand and hanging the clothes out to dry on a clothes line is one way to conserve energy (and save money), it’s not the only way. By changing the items you dry regularly, the frequency of your vent cleanings, and the time of day you do laundry, you will instantly conserve energy and your energy bill will see drastic reductions.

First, remember to keep your dryer vents clean. It is important to clear the lint out of the lint trap each time you dry a load of laundry. While this will help keep the system clear, 35% of the lint from each load bypasses the lint trap. For this reason, keeping the entire system of vents clear is also important. Clogged vents reduce the airflow and efficiency of the appliance. This makes the dryer take longer and work harder to dry your clothes, which wastes money and energy. To have your dryer vents checked and cleaned, call a dryer vent professional in your area.

Another way to reduce the cost of each load of laundry is to change the time of day that you dry your clothes. Depending on your electric company, you may be charged a different rate for the energy you use at night versus the heavy usage times during the day. If this is not the case in your area, you may still benefit from drying in the morning or at night during the summer so that the heat from the appliance does not heat up the house and require additional air conditioning.

Additional tips for conserving energy include drying towels less often and updating your appliance. Towels can often be used multiple times before they are put in the wash. If your appliances are older varieties, you may want to consider updating your model. Newer dryers are much more energy efficient than older appliances and many even come with a moisture sensor that shuts off the appliance when the clothing inside is dry.

Minor improvements such as cleaning out your dryer vents and drying laundry that retains a lot of moisture less often (such as towels) can have a large impact on your energy bill. Even considering the large initial investment, an updated appliance will pay for itself in only a few years. By taking these simple steps you will be well on your way to steadily reducing your energy bills.

dryer vent myths peering into dryer

Our professionals will help you clear up the confusion and uncover the dryer vent facts.

There are many myths that we must deal with on a regular basis as dryer vent cleaning professionals. While some hold merit, others have no basis for their claims. Read on to find out what you should be worried about and which myths are full of hot air.

Myth #1: Dryer sheets cause dryer vent fires.

Dryer sheets have been commonly considered one of the causes of dryer vent fires. According to Consumer Reports this is not the case. It has been said that dryer sheets put build up on the lint trap which prevent the lint from being caught as it leaves the dryer. While the sheets may cause a minimal amount of build up on the dryer lint trap, this is not enough to lead to a dryer vent fire.

Myth #2: The vents on newer and more energy efficient dryers do not need to be cleaned.

Many people believe that newer dryers do not require the same maintenance that other dryer vents need. This is not true as there are no dryers that are completely maintenance free. That said though, newer dryers do run more efficiently, therefore decreasing how often the vents need to be cleaned. Another point to consider though is the location of the dryer. Many new homes have dryers installed in the center of the home, far from the exterior walls. Dryers that are built into a home further from the outside walls require a longer dryer duct often containing bends and turns which makes the appliance work harder to expel the lint. This set-up requires more maintenance than a dryer located near an outside wall and has a short vent.

Myth #3: My dryer is taking longer to dry clothes because its old and needs to be replaced.

Another myth is that a longer drying time means that the appliance needs to be replaced. This is a dangerous misconception because the replacement of the dryer will not fix the problem, instead, the dryer ducts will still be clogged and may overheat or start a fire. A longer drying time actually means that the vents are clogged with lint and the appliance will work efficiently once again after the vents are cleaned out.

It is good practice to monitor your appliances and watch out for signs that there may be a problem. It also helps to be able to decipher between real concerns and common misconceptions. If you ever have any doubt about any dryer vent myths, give us a call and we will help you clear up the problem.