Investing hundreds of dollars for a top of the line dryer won’t improve drying performance if your dryer exhaust vent is full of lint, crushed or kinked. The reason is regardless if the dryer is a brand new pristine dryer full of the latest technology, or an old rusted dryer that’s barely hanging on, a blocked or restricted vent will prevent any kind of satisfactory performance, period.
Air flow is everything
Typical dryers are designed to accept a 4″ diameter exhaust vent made of metal or at least a high quality foil vent (not recommended). A dryer simply won’t function as designed without proper venting and will cost you more to run the machine than it should. This is only one part of the puzzle, however. The most important part is the vent should be as short as possible, parallel to the floor (highly recommended) and kept clean at all times.
A clean dryer is a happy dryer
This sounds a little corny, but the silly thing about this saying is, it’s true! Just like any machine, if the working components are kept clean they run better, longer and more efficiently. Isn’t that what you want? Imagine drying a full load of towels in twenty minutes flat. A full load of towels completely dry in twenty quick minutes is darn good. This means the dryer is vented properly and is running at peak efficiency. Of course, this time depends on several factors. Here are the most important ones you can control.
- Keep the length as short as possible. A short vent is a dryer’s best friend. The least amount of travel for the hot exhaust air, the better. The shorter vent creates less back pressure which means less hot air trapped inside the dryer, which in turns creates better temperature regulation. A long vent creates a longer path for the hot air to travel through and depending on how long it is, can cause longer than normal drying times.
- Shorter vent means less lint buildup. Here’s a critical reason to shorten that vent. Dryer fires! As much as a short vent is your dryer’s best friend, lint is its worst enemy. A buildup of lint inside the dryer caused by poor venting and lack of maintenance is an invitation for a lint fire. This is not something to take lightly. Regular, annual vent and machine cleanings is a must to keep your dryer clean and free from the possibility of a lint fire.
- Always clean the lint screen. The lint screen in your dryer serves two purposes. First, it filters out lint from the air inside your dryer so your clothes don’t end up full of lint. Secondly, it helps keep the dryer vent cleaner than without it by trapping lint before it gets a chance to enter your vent system. If you notice the screen is getting hard to see through, take come dishwashing liquid and a brush with water and clean it up until you see through all the tiny holes in the screen. Your dryer will love you for it!