Sunday, August 17, 2014

Dryer Vent Cleaning

When was the last time you cleaned your dryer vent? Clogged up vents can cause fires and also cause the dryer to work less efficiently as it takes longer to dry a load of clothes.

While there isn't much I miss about our old house I do miss the ease of cleaning the dryer vent. The dryer there backed up to an exterior wall and was less than a foot long to outside. After several attempts by birds to build nests in it I replaced it with a vent tube with a cage to keep them out but otherwise it was easy to clean. I'd scrap off the lint stuck to the outside off every so often and pulled the dryer away from the wall once a year or so to replace the hose connecting it to the vent. (As it's easier to replace a $10 hose than it is to clean one.)

I noticed a few weeks ago that the flaps on the dryer vent cover on the wall outside weren't closed all the way due to lint build up. I didn't expect it to be clogged up so quickly after moving into the house. With it being roughly 16 feet up through the wall and then across the ceiling to the side of the house 20 feet up from the ground I was expecting I might need to hire someone to clean it out. But it turns out my trusty shop vacuum has more than enough suction power to get the job done. I shoved the hose as far up the vent as possible and even after only three months of use it pulled out a large amount of lint. There's still a little bit stuck on the vent outside so eventually I'm going to have to get an extension ladder to get up there clean that off as well. But the flaps are closing now at least. I also vacuumed inside the dryer as well. And thanks to our dimwitted younger cat I had to replace the vent hose due to him tearing holes in it for whatever reason.

I'll also note here one annoyance I have with the way Ryan Homes builds these houses. The vent pipe going up through the is oval while the hoses are round. There was a considerable amount of frustration involved in getting it on there. Apparently it's an issue with the thickness of the wall or so I was told but it's still irritating. If our cat destroys another hose I'll probably order a round to oval adapter that is available several places online. (But no where locally in-store oddly enough.)

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