Lint buildup in clothes dryers can pose a risk of fire in the home. Here are some safety pointers from Dryer Vent Wizard of Greater Cleveland, a company that cleans, repairs and installs dryer vents:
Be sure dryer-vent systems are up to the codes and standards of the community, state and manufacturer.
To avoid kinking, replace plastic or foil vents with semirigid or solid metal venting.
Clean the lint screen between each load.
Wash lint screens with soap and water every few months to remove fabric-softener residue.
Dont keep combustibles such as cleaning products or chemical-laden rags near dryers.
Dont leave the house or go to bed with the dryer running.
In cold weather, check the outside vent cover to make sure its not blocked or frozen shut.
Warning signs of trouble are clothes that take more than one cycle to dry, a lack of visible lint on the lint screen, repeated stopping of the dryer during a cycle and clothes that smell moldy or are very hot after drying.
The company also recommends having dryer vents professional cleaned and inspected annually.