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How to Clean Out Your Home’s Dryer Vents

A close-up look into a dryer vent in Collinsville, IL that needs to be cleaned out to prevent dirt and dust buildup.

Morrison Plumbing, Heating and Air has served the Collinsville, IL area for over 30 years. One of the common things we find is dirty and clogged dryer vents. This is a preventable problem and making sure that your vents are clean protects your family. Many people don’t realize that when lint accumulates in a dryer vent over time that it becomes a fire hazard. Thankfully, cleaning out your dryer vents isn’t terribly complicated.

Find a Cleaning Kit

You can search online for dryer vent cleaning kits or find them at a local hardware store. They’re relatively inexpensive and once you’ve purchased one, you can use it twice a year to perform a thorough cleaning. Once you’ve got your cleaning kit, you’ll need a power drill and a vacuum to begin.

Turn Off the Power Source to Your Dryer

Determine whether your dryer is powered by gas or electricity by examining it to see if it’s connected to a gas valve. If it’s a gas-powered dryer, you need to cut the gas before cleaning the vent. Regardless of whether it’s an electric or gas dryer, it needs to be unplugged from the wall.

A homeowner In Collinsville, IL unplugging their residential dryer to start a DIY cleaning service to clean out the vents.

Locate the Vent

You’ll want to disconnect the dryer from the exhaust pipe and then locate where the pipe exits your home. Once you find both locations, remove any visible debris that you find and look for obstructions so that you can clean them out.

Vacuum the Lint from Each End

Use a shop vac to pull out all of the loose lint and debris that can be sucked out of the vent. The vacuum will remove most of the easy stuff, but there will be some dirt and grime left over after you complete the vacuuming.

Brush Out the Duct

Your cleaning kit will come with a brush attachment for your power drill. It’s a good idea to hit both ends of the duct with the brush to be certain you’ve pulled everything loose. If you need to, you can follow up with one last vacuuming.

An HVAC technician using a brush attached to a power drill to clean the outdoor dryer vent of a residential home in Collinsville, IL.

Reconnect Your Dryer

Reconnect the pipes to the duct and gas supply, if you have a gas-powered dryer, and plug the dryer back in. You’re good to go for another six months now. You should repeat this at least twice a year to ensure your exhaust vent doesn’t become a fire hazard.

Inspect Your Air Ducts

Your air conditioning HVAC unit moves air through ducts into each room in your home. These ducts can become dirty and gather contaminants like dust, mold and bacteria. Morrison Plumbing, Heating and Air specializes in AC installation, air duct cleaning and AC maintenance. We’ve served Collinsville, IL for over 30 years and are available seven days a week.

Learn why Morrison Plumbing, Heating and Air is the first choice for plumbing, AC repair and drain cleaning in Collinsville, IL. Give us a call at (618) 703-5700.

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