Safety Tips to Prevent a Dryer Fire
Dryers are essential and effective household machines. However, to avoid fire hazards caused by dryers and for the safety of families and homes, it is important to keep dryers in proper working condition. Below are things to do to avoid a dryer fire.
- Proper Installation
Hire a professional technician to ensure the proper and careful installation of your dryer. There are different kinds of dryer units – gas dryers, electric dryers, and washer/dryer combos. Professional technicians are familiar with the different kinds of dryers and various installation techniques of the vent pipe.
Having a professional install and service your dryer unit for you can help ensure that any potential hazard is handled properly.
- Regular Servicing
According to a source, "Experts suggest that the primary cause of clothes dryer fires is the failure to clean and maintain them." It is advised that dryers are serviced annually which involves cleaning, inspecting of the hose, and vent for any blockages. Inspect gas lines as well.
- Keep the Surrounding Area Free of Flammables
Do not keep boxes, clothes, and cleaning products around the dryer because they may cause a fire outbreak which could spread quickly. Clean the dryer and flammable material should be disposed of properly.
- Clean the Lint Filter Before and After Each Load of Laundry
Household dust and lint are the most common sources of ignition in dryer fires. Before and after every laundry, ensure you clean the lint filter and screen.
- Use Only Rigid or Flexible Metal Venting Material
Flexible or rigid metal venting materials are great for sustaining proper drying time and airflow. However, accordion-type duct work can increase blockage by trapping lint and creating clogs. If you use plastic or coiled wire foil dryer venting consider replacing it with rigid non-ribbed metal ducts.
- Ensure Air Exhaust Vent Pipe is Unrestricted
One of the causes of a dryer fire is blocked dryer vents. Some people are completely unaware that the vents require regular cleaning. When blocked, the vent restricts airflow, which may cause overheating and fire. Endeavor to clean exhaust vents regularly.
- Do Not Overload
When a dryer is overloaded, this can cause its mechanism like a drum belt, spindle bearings, and pulleys to work overtime, producing higher than average temperatures. As a result of this, the friction can ignite a spark and cause a fire.
- Never Run the Dryer When You Leave Home or Are Sleeping
Consider running the dryer only when you are home and awake. Keep a fire extinguisher in your laundry room in case of an emergency.