10 Tips For Dryer Fire Prevention
Did you know? According to the National Fire Prevention Association, from 2010-2014, dryer fires accounted for nearly 16,000 home fires. Annually, these fires resulted in $238 million in property damages and loss. There are several simple tips to keep in mind when using your washer and dryer to help you and your family prevent a dangerous and costly fire in your home. Here are 10 simple tips to start implementing in your own home this year!
1. Clean out the lint tray
The leading cause of home dryer fires is failure to clean them! Be sure to remove lint that has collected in the filter after each load of laundry, ensuring that no lint has collected around the drum. You should also be sure to clean out the vent pipe located behind the dryer to make sure no lint has collected in there, as this could also be a fire hazard. Finally, don't use a dryer without the lint tray in place!
2. Check the outdoor vent
This is especially important in winter: ensure that the outdoor vent is not covered by snow, ice, or other debris. In the spring and summer, ensure that the vent is clear of plants and shrubs.
3. Get it checked out
Have your washing equipment inspected by a professional to make sure it is in working order. Gas dryers should especially be checked by professionals to make sure that the has line and connection are working properly and free of leaks.
4. Don't over-load it
Follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer when loading the dryer. Be sure not to over-load.
5. Never leave the dryer unattended
Be sure someone is home if there is laundry in the dryer -- do not leave drying laundry unattended. Be sure the dryer is off before leaving the house or going to bed.
6. Install your dryer properly
Have your dryer installer by a professional to ensure that it is installed properly.
7. Keep the area clear
Be sure that the areas surrounding the washer and dryer are clear of clothes, baskets, boxes, etc. when the dryer is in use. These things are flammable and can be fire hazards.
8. Remove flammable liquids
Detergent and other cleaning liquids kept in a laundry area are highly flammable and should be stored in a dry place a safe distance from the washer and dryer units to prevent fires.
9. Choose a metal dryer duct
Flexible ducts made of foil and/or plastic can collect lint and start to sag. Metal ducts are sturdier and more likely to contain any fire that did happen to start inside the duct.
10. Exercise caution with stained clothes
If clothes have been stained by flammable chemicals or gasoline, exercise extreme caution before washing and drying them. In most cases, they should be line-dried rather than put in the dryer.
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