Why Wichita Dryer Vent Cleaning Should Be Part of Your Annual Maintenance Plan

Undergoing dryer vent cleaning service for residential home in Wichita KS.
Is your annual home maintenance list growing longer and longer? There's one important task you should never skip: dryer vent cleaning. Wichita home maintenance tasks are usually related to keeping your home in great condition, but cleaning out the ductwork in your home that carries lint is an important safety consideration. Homeowners that complete their annual Wichita dryer vent cleaning have homes that are both in great condition and safer.

Cleaning the air ducts that connect to your clothes dryer is one of many important annual maintenance tasks that should not be overlooked. Not all of them are serious safety issues, but failing to complete each of them does have the potential to cause future complications. Wichita dryer vent cleaning is just one of many important home maintenance tasks that homeowners must complete.

Completing that list of routine home maintenance isn't always easy, but you can always rely on help from a local Wichita handyman. If you don't have the time, tools or expertise to complete dryer vent cleaning and other home maintenance tasks, you can rely on Mr. Handyman of the Wichita Metro Area. Our home repair experts are here to help you keep your property comfortable, secure and safe.

Is Professional Wichita Dryer Vent Cleaning Worth It?

Professional dryer vent cleaning services have several benefits over attempting to do it yourself. The most obvious is that your clogged vent won't be forgotten. By hiring a professional service and maintaining an annual schedule with your chosen team, you'll never have to worry about your Wichita dryer vent cleaning not getting done.

Using a professional service to keep up with that annual cleaning process has an important major benefit: reduced risk of dryer fires. Lint build-up leads to many house fires in Wichita and across the United States. Many of those fires are preventable, and avoiding them is as simple as maintaining an annual schedule for routine Wichita dryer vent cleaning.

Of course, the best benefit of using a professional service is that you don't have to do it yourself. It may seem like a simple task, but there's a surprising amount of work involved. From moving the dryer itself—to access your exhaust vent hookups and disconnect them—to clearing out all the lint, it's not always a quick and easy job. By hiring a professional Wichita dryer vent cleaning service, you can rest easy while that work is done for you—and still have the peace of mind that comes from knowing your home is safe from clothes dryer fires.

Why Is Dryer Vent Cleaning Important?

  • It reduces your risk of house fires
  • It prolongs the life of your clothes dryer
  • It prolongs the life of your clothes and other linens by preventing damage from high heat
  • It keeps energy bills lower by maintaining your unit's efficiency

How Often Should You Get Professional Wichita Dryer Vent Cleaning?

Most home maintenance experts recommend an annual appointment. However, each home is different. If you tend to do a lot of laundry or there are many people living in your home. You may want to schedule an appointment every six months. That could also be the case if your ventilation tends to get clogged with lint more often. Your habits and your home both have a specific unique role to play in your Wichita dryer vent cleaning schedule.

How Do You Tell if Your Dryer Vent is Clogged?

If you have a clogged dryer vent, you'll start to notice several changes with the way your clothes dryer works. The first is that it could start to take much longer than usual to effectively finish a cycle, or your clothes may still be damp or wet at the end of the cycle. Both of those changes are a sign that something is causing your unit to work less effectively and less efficiently. Dirty dryer vents are a common cause of reduced performance from laundry machines in Wichita homes.

Alternatively, you may notice that your clothes are hotter than usual at the end of a cycle, or that they are being damaged because of high heat. The machine itself may also become hot to the touch, or heat the room that it's in. Those are also signs of reduced efficiency as a result of lint clogs in your ventilation.

If your machine or ventilation is severely clogged with lint, you may notice a burning smell while it's running. If you do, turn it off immediately and do not run it again until your lint trap, exhaust hose and ducts have been checked by a professional. That burning smell could be coming from lint build up around the heating element, which is how many clothes dryer fires in Wichita start.

Ultimately, if you notice any changes in dryer performance, that could be a sign that you need professional vent cleaning. That includes any unusual error codes or lights on modern machines too. As long as you respond to those issues and don't ignore them, you'll be able to solve the problem before it gets worse.

Signs That You Need Wichita Dryer Vent Cleaning Service:

  • Your clothes take longer to dry
  • Your clothes are too hot
  • You have to run multiple cycles
  • Your machine gets uncomfortably hot to the touch
  • Your laundry room gets overheated
  • You smell smoke while your machine is running

What Happens if You Don't Clean Your Dryer Vent?

The inevitable outcome of any serious lint build-up is a fire. That's not the only consequence you'll have to deal with, but it is the most serious in the list. There are many potential consequences of failing to get annual Wichita dryer vent cleaning service, and each one increases in severity as your lint build-up grows.

Let's assume that you currently have a perfectly clear dryer exhaust line. As you run your machine, each new load of laundry creates lint that must be sucked out. Normally, that lint is blown into the machine's lint trap by the hot steam leaving through the exhaust hose. However, some lint does get through the trap and into the hose and ducts of Wichita homes from time to time.

With each successive load of laundry, the amount of lint in your trap and your exhaust lines will increase. As it does, your machine will struggle to effectively remove steam, forcing it to run harder and use more energy. That effect is the inefficiency that leads to higher energy bills. Eventually that inefficiency will also lead to higher heat and damaged clothing as more and more lint builds up.

If you continue running a machine with a clogged exhaust, lint will eventually begin building up inside other areas of the machine as it's forced back by the clog. That is how it starts to build up around the heating element, and that's when the smell of smoke will appear. That smell is your final warning.

Lint is highly flammable. If enough of it builds up around a heating element as a result of a clog, it will ignite, starting a fire that races through your exhaust line and up into the rest of your home. For many homes in Wichita, that means a line of flame that blasts through at least two levels as it travels along the path of your ventilation.

Of course, a massive fire is the worst-case outcome for any clogged dryer vent, but it is still a serious potential outcome for failing to get annual cleaning. Since preventing that potential disaster is as simple as getting annual Wichita dryer vent cleaning service, there are few reasons not to make that essential service a priority.

How Do Professionals Clean Dryer Vents?

The exact methods and equipment used by your chosen team of experts will vary slightly, but there is a standard practice that all companies follow. If you have experience with basic home repairs and you're confident that you can get the job done right, it's even something that you may be able to do yourself.

Wichita Dryer Vent Cleaning: Step-by-Step

What You Will Need:

  • Safety goggles, gloves and a mask (to protect yourself against dust, lint and scratches)
  • Screwdriver
  • Shop-vac or vacuum with extendable attachments
  • Cleaning wand or cleaning kit (some kits come with several cleaning attachments for the wand)
  • Replacement vent clamps (optional)
  • Replacement vent hose (optional)

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  • Step 1: Locate the vent at the back of your dryer, and your home's exterior exhaust vent
  • Step 2: Unplug the machine, or turn off the supply valve for a gas-powered unit
  • Step 3: Pull the machine away from the wall
  • Step 4: Disconnect the duct hose from the back of your machine using your screwdriver to loosen and remove the vent clamp. If it's possible to disconnect the hose from the wall, do that as well at this stage.
  • Step 5: Remove any built up lint from the hole at the back of your machine
  • Step 6: Remove any large clumps of lint from your duct hose and wall connection by hand, then use your vacuum to suck out the remaining debris
  • Step 7: If you do not have effective attachments for your vacuum or there is still lint remaining after step 6, use your cleaning wand or cleaning kit to clean out the remaining debris. The best technique for using your wand is to feed it into your duct and gently rotate it while moving it back and forth.
  • Step 8: Remove the cover from your exterior vent and repeat steps 6 and 7
  • Step 9: Inspect your ducts to ensure they are clean and up to code. Replace any broken clamps, hoses or ducts as needed.
  • Step 10: Reattach all covers and hoses, ensuring that clamps are secure.
  • Step 11: Plug your machine back in—or turn on your gas valve—and test it by running it for 15-20 minutes.

If any of the required steps for dryer vent cleaning make you uncomfortable, or if you lack the required tools or time to correctly complete this Wichita home maintenance job, it's best to contact your local professionals.

If dryer vent cleaning is just one of many Wichita property maintenance services that you need, consider calling your local handyman. A local team with a wide range of services, such as Mr. Handyman of the Wichita Metro Area, can be a convenient solution for getting many repairs and maintenance tasks done all at once.

Can You Use a Leaf Blower to Clean Dryer Vents?

Some Wichita homeowners do find it tempting to use a leaf blower for dryer vent cleaning. It seems like it should be able to blast out all the lint and dust by blowing it out of the outer vent through the inside, but that's not the case. Using a leaf blower is a less efficient, less reliable method than the thorough cleaning method used by professionals.

Why Does My Dryer Vent Keep Getting Clogged?

Do you find yourself scheduling frequent appointments for Wichita dryer vent cleaning? There are many reasons why your duct or hose could be getting clogged frequently, depending on the number of people living in your home and the location of your laundry machines.

Frequent use will always be a significant factor in the frequency of cleaning for homes in Wichita with many people. If your machine runs constantly because of higher laundry needs, that will result in greater lint build-up, which will inevitably lead to more frequent clogs. However, if your machine requires frequent cleaning and it isn't being run every day, the issue could be related to your ventilation ducts, especially if your laundry machines are located above or below your home's exhaust.

If your laundry machines are located on a different level from their exhaust, your exhaust ducts will have to snake through your home, across different levels. In many modern Wichita homes, the location of those machines results in systems that have many sharp corners to accommodate the path toward your exhaust, which creates more opportunities for clogs. That situation could also cause your machine's cycle to take longer too.

The most ideal solution would be to relocate your laundry machines, so that they have a direct path to your exhaust. However, if that's not possible—or not your preference— it may be possible to improve efficiency and reduce clogs by installing a booster.

Do You Need Wichita Dryer Vent Cleaning, or Other Home Maintenance Services?

Mr. Handyman of the Wichita Metro Area is here to help with all types of home repairs, maintenance and remodeling services. Our knowledgeable experts can help with routine, annual maintenance and even provide service for more specific projects like window repair or door repairs.

Call us today to schedule an appointment or learn more. We proudly serve Wichita and many nearby communities, including Garden Plain and Newton.