If you’re a homeowner who recently discovered your dryer is taking a much longer time to dry your clothes than usual, it may be time to clean your dryer vent.
While dryer vent cleaning services are available, you can do it yourself with just a few tools and a little extra work!
Dryer vents are notorious for having lint build up in them over time, which blocks the airflow needed for your dryer to efficiently dry your clothes and can quickly become a fire hazard if left to accumulate.
If you’re up for the challenge, keep reading. Here is everything you need to know to easily recognize if your dryer vent needs to be cleaned and how you can clean it yourself step by step!
Signs It’s Time to Clean Your Dryer Vent
Dryer vents are often forgotten about, and when they become blocked, they can leave you with rising energy bills, extensive drying times and a higher risk of a fire.
Some common signs of a blocked dryer vent include:
- Excess lint in your home
- Longer than normal drying times
- Moisture buildup in your laundry room
- Musty or moldy-smelling clothes
- The top of your dryer being hot to the touch
- The smell of burning when your dryer is running
If you’ve noticed any of these things happening with your dryer, it’s time to clean the vent.
What Do You Need to Clean Your Dryer Vent?
If you’ve decided to DIY your dryer vent cleaning, there are a few items you’ll need to have on hand.
The easiest option is to simply purchase a dryer vent cleaning kit from your local home improvement store. These kits will have the necessary brushes for your dryer vents and make the cleaning process a bit easier.
Whether you choose to invest in a cleaning kit or want to use materials you already have at home, here are a few of the essentials you’ll need to properly clean your dryer vent.
- A vacuum
- A screwdriver
- A flexible dryer vent brush
- A power drill (optional)
- A broom and dustpan
6 Easy Steps to Clean Your Dryer Vent
Once you have your materials, it’s time to get started on cleaning your vent and getting your dryer running like new again!
1. Locate Where Your Dryer Duct Exits Your House
Before anything else, you’ll want to check the outside of your house to find the dryer vent. This is usually located close to where your dryer is in your home, so it shouldn’t be too difficult to find.
For some houses, this may look like a round pipe exiting the house, while for others, it may have a small hooded cover overtop of the vent’s exit from your home.
If your vent has a cover, remove it so you can easily access the opening. You should have a clear visual of the pip leading into the house.
2. Prepare Your Dryer
After exposing the outside of your vent, you can start getting your dryer ready.
Before moving your dryer, unplug it from its power source. If you have a gas dryer, ensure you turn off the gas during this step as well.
Then, gently pull the dryer away from the wall so you can easily access the vent. After putting on your gloves, disconnect the dryer duct at the back of the dryer. Your duct may be connected to the vent with screws, so you may need to unscrew the connecting bracket before you can separate the duct from your dryer’s vent.
For most, this duct should be fairly short, and you should be able to see through the entire vent to the exit you uncovered previously.
If you have a gas dryer, be careful not to cause any damage to your gas line while you move your dryer. If you’re uneasy about working around your gas connection, call in the professionals to clean your dryer vent for you!
3. Vacuum Out The Vent
Once you have access to the inside of the dryer exhaust duct that leads outside, you can use your vacuum to clear out the lint that’s built up inside. Use a small, angled hose attachment to make this easier.
You’ll also want to vacuum any lint and debris that’s on your dryer’s vent where the duck attaches. This will ensure that when you replace the duct to the vent, there is no lint that’s being left behind.
4. Brush Out The Vent
Using the lint brush from your dryer vent cleaning kit, you’re going to clean the entire length of the duct.
Many of these brushes will come with long flexible rods, giving you an extended reach to push all the lint out of the duct. Additionally, these rods may even be able to attach to a power drill, making it easy to spin them around the duck to brush off the most debris possible!
5. Sweep Up The Lint and Dust
After you’ve pushed out all the lint that had built up in your dryer duct, you can use the vacuum or a broom and dustpan to clean it up.
If you pushed the lint to the outside of the house, a vacuum would be your best option, making cleanup easy.
6. Reconnect The Dryer
After you’re confident your vent and duct have been fully cleaned and you’ve swept up all the lint you removed, you’re ready to reconnect your dryer and get back to drying your laundry as efficiently as possible.
Reconnect the exhaust duct to your dryer’s vent. If there was a bracket that secured your duct to the vent, reattach it using the screws you removed in step two.
Then, simply push your dryer back into place, and reconnect it to its power source. If you have a gas dryer, turn the gas on at this time.
Dryer Vent Cleaning Service in Cambridge
Congratulations! You’ve just cleaned your dryer’s vent, making it more efficient and safe!
If you’re concerned your dryer’s vent is blocked but don’t have the tools or simply would prefer a professional service technician to assess and manage the build-up, Service 1st Heating & Cooling is here to serve you.
We offer quality professional dryer vent cleaning services to Cambridge and the surrounding areas. Our highly trained experts can clean your dryer vents quickly and efficiently, ensuring it’s safe to use and in top working condition!
We even offer a 30-day satisfaction guarantee, giving you peace of mind that you’ve received quality service that every member of our team stands behind!