Clothes Dryer Ventilation System Hazards

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Consider How the Clothes Dryer Works

Safety Tips to Keep Your Dryer Safe and Functional At All Times

Clothes dryers dry clothes with a combination of the clothes dryer drum rotation and the application of heat to the clothes. To function properly, the wet air circulating in the clothes dryer drum must be removed. The clothes dryer ventilation system is designed to take the wet air inside the drum and evacuate it outside the area where the clothes dryer is located. Without an outside ventilation system, the hot and moist air remains inside the home, and the heat has nowhere to go. Just imagine a dangerous, flaming fireplace without a chimney — but on a smaller scale.

Obstructions to a Well-Designed Vent System Create Fire Hazards

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Once the proper ventilation system has been designed and fitted to the correct outside ventilation exit by a competent professional, the homeowner will be assured that he has a functioning clothes dryer ventilation system. Consider for a moment some of the possible problems with a poorly designed clothes dryer ventilation system. A badly connected exhaust hose to the clothes dryer heat outlet will cause a disconnect, and the hot moist air will be released behind the clothes dryer, causing damage to the drywall and wood products in the area. An unattended clothes dryer unleashing red-hot forced air behind the clothes dryer may be sufficient to ignite wallpaper, paint or any clothes that have escaped behind the clothes dryer. Those items become kindling to a potentially catastrophic fire.

Clothes Dryer Ventilation System Hazards

In colder climates this source of heat coming from the exterior duct from the dryer vent to the outdoors may attract some of our furry and feathered friends looking for a warm home to get through the winter. Mice and rats, in particular, use the lint produced by clothes dryers as an important part of their nests. These nests cause obstructions inside the ventilation system and are the perfect material that can turn into a firestorm when they ignite. Two things are needed to produce fire — a heat source and a combustible material — but all campers know that a third important element is moving air. A mouse’s nest (highly combustible) combined with a heat source (the clothes dryer heat engine), added to the moving air created through the ventilation system, creates a scenario for catastrophe.

Summary

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Don’t leave clothes dryer ventilation systems to amateurs; call Dr. Duct at 613-845-0707.