Start Dryer Vent Cleaning with a Leaf Blower
Houses these days are built with a dryer located away from the outside wall. Because of this, you will need a dryer vent connecting your dryer to the outside. This is where lint is released to the outside. Because of its continuous exposure to lint and other objects, it will need regular dryer vent cleaning in order to work properly and avoid any emergencies from happening.
Dryer vent cleaning is important
The common causes of clogged dryer vents are lint build-up, objects getting stuck in your dryer’s lint trap, dirty lint trap, or the vent flap not opening.
Dryers are usually located far from the outside wall resulting in a longer vent. Because your dryer is far away, the vent will be longer and there will be more curves to fit your home’s design. These curves create nooks and crannies where lint gets stuck or where animals like birds tend to hide.
Manufacturers designed the dryer with a lint trap to avoid any lint build-up in your vents. However, if your lint trap is dirty, the lint will blow to your vents causing build-up. The main purpose of your lint trap is to trap the lint separated from the clothes and keep them from being blown away to your vent. If your lint trap is dirty or full of dirt, your lint trap won’t be able to do its job.
Your lint trap doesn’t only capture lint but is also effective in trapping other objects like coins. If left unclean, it can also lead to clogging.
Your vent flap, not opening can also lead to clogging. A vent flap is the one that keeps any objects or animals from entering the vent from the outside. It opens when it needs to let air in and debris out. However, if it is malfunctioning, it might remain closed resulting in lint buildup inside the vent.
All these causes of clogging in your dryer vent can be avoided if you do routine checkups and dryer vent cleaning. But if your dryer vent is clogged, it is best to do a dryer vent cleaning soon as possible.
Does my dryer vent cleaning cause the lint to fall outside?
No need to fret. Seeing some lint flying outside around your vent is normal. It just means it is doing its work blowing away the lint coming from your dryer.
When your lint trap captures the lint when it separates from the clothes, it will blow the lint to the vent carrying it outside. This is why there is lint flying around. But it can also mean you need dryer vent cleaning. If unsure, it is best to check the vent yourself.
Use a leaf blower to help with your dryer vent cleaning
Dryer vent cleaning is a must, but it may be hard and tricky to do yourself. If you don’t want to hire cleaners, why not start a dryer vent cleaning with a leaf blower to help you out? Yes, you heard me. You can use this multipurpose and powerful tool not only to do lawn care and maintenance and also for dryer vent cleaning. Here’s how:
Prepare the dryer vent and remove hose
The first thing you need is to gain access to your dryer vent.
Move your clothes dryer away from the wall. Prepare your screwdriver, you might need it but it depends on the design of your dryer vent.
Remove the dryer vent hose connecting your dryer and your air vent.
Remove the cover of the vent
Take your screwdriver, just in case.
Remove the cover in your dryer vent located outside. This is where air passes through. It is very important to remove this cover because it might get damaged because of the air pressure produced by your leaf blower.
Clean the outside area
Take this opportunity to clean the vent cover. You can use a brush or a vacuum to remove all the lint stuck on the cover.
Turn on the leaf blower
Once you are done cleaning the vent cover, let us go back inside. Place the nozzle inside the clothes dryer’s air vent. Before turning it on, you need to seal the vent around your leaf blower. You can use duct tape or a towel to do this. This is to make sure the air pressure is all inside the vent and not leaking around the nozzle.
You can use any type, but backpack leaf blowers are easier to carry and convenient to carry around.
Wear the right protective apparel and equipment when you use this machine. Remember, it produces loud noises, so be sure to wear your protective equipment.
When you are sure your leaf blower and dryer vent are sealed, give it a short blast to test. Repeat this a few times to check if there are no air pressure leaks. If everything is good, let your leaf blower run for 30 seconds to clean dryer vent. Do not go over 30 seconds.
Go back outside and check if it is effective. If it is, there will be lint all over the place. Start cleaning. Clean the external vents again.
When you are done cleaning outside and inside, it is time to reassemble everything.
Remove the leaf blower and reattach the clothes dryer to the vent. Then attach the cover back to the exterior vent.
IMPORTANT reminder: using leaf blowers to clean your dryer vent is not always applicable to all vents. It is not effective when your vent has a lot of curves or has a concertina-style pipe because the lint might get stuck to the curves.
But if your dryer vent is short and straight, you can safely use a leaf blower for dryer vent cleaning.
How to safely operate a clogged dryer
That is why I highly suggest cleaning your dryer vent at least twice a year. You can clean your dryer vents during fall or spring. Don’t do this during winter when everything is freezing.
It is important to remember, that using leaf blowers doesn’t guarantee a 100% cleaned dryer vent. That is why it is important to check the design and structure of your dryer vent first.
If your dryer vent is just a few feet long and straight without any ridges, curves, or twists, you can use leaf blowers. Otherwise, it is best to call a professional. Knowing when you need help is very important, especially in this case.