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Dryer Fire

Fires can occur when lint builds up in the dryer or the exhaust duct. The fiber can block the flow of air and cause excessive heat to build-up, which can result in a fire in some dryers.

The following is a list of things you and your family can do to help prevent fires caused by home dryers:

-Clean the lint screen/filter before and after drying each load of laundry. If the clothing is still damp at the end of a typical drying cycle or drying requires longer times than average, this can be a sign that the lint screen or the exhaust duct is blocked.

-Clean the dryer vent and exhaust duct periodically. Check the outside dryer vent while the dryer is operating to ensure exhaust air is indeed escaping If it isn’t the exhaust duct may be blocked. To remove a blockage in the exhaust path, it may be necessary to disconnect the exhaust duct from the dryer. Be sure to remember to reconnect the ducting to the dryer and outside vent before using the dryer again.

-Clean behind the dryer. Lint can build up behind your dryer, without you ever noticing. Have a qualified service technician clean the interior of the dryer chassis periodically to minimize the amount of lint accumulation. Keeping the area around your dryer clean and free of clutter will also prevent the spread of fire should a clothes dryer fire occur in your home.

-Replacing plastic or foil, accordion type ducting materials with rigid or corrugated semi-ridged metal ducts. Most dryer manufactures specify the use of rigid or corrugated semi-rigid metal ducting, to ensure the maximum airflow is provided. The flexible plastic or foil type of duct can easily trap lint and is more susceptible to kinks or crushing, which can significantly reduce the air flow.

-Take time and special care when drying clothing that has been soiled with volatile chemicals such as gasoline, cooking oils, cleaning agents, or finishing oils, and stains. If possible, wash the clothing more than once to minimize the number of volatile chemicals on the clothes and preferably, hang the clothes to dry. If you are using the dryer, be sure to use the dryer setting that is the lowest heat setting and a drying cycle that has a cool-down period at the end of the cycle. To prevent clothes from igniting after drying, do not leave the dried clothes in the dryer or piled in a laundry basket to attend to later.

We are all especially busy this time of year, and it’s easy to forget or skip some of the steps listed above. However, taking the additional care and time could save you and your family’s life should a dryer fire begin in your home and cause a home fire emergency.

From our families here at Fire Fighter Sales & Service to yours, Happy Holidays!

Stay tuned for more fire and life safety tips or visit our website @ www.firefighter-pgh.com

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