Tuesday, October 6, 2009

another dryer fire

In July one of my neighbors had a devastating dryer fire. At the time, it was thought that the home was habitable after the fire but sadly that was not the case. The other evening, there was another dryer fire just around the corner from the one in July. 

Thanks to the efficient expert work by the LAFD, there seems to be no major damage.

I am posting this information again as a reminder:

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

To help prevent fires:

Clean the lint screen/filter before or after drying each load of clothes. If clothing is still damp at the end of a typical drying cycle or drying requires longer times than normal, this may 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 make sure exhaust air is escaping. If it is not, the vent or 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. Remember to reconnect the ducting to the dryer and outside vent before using the dryer again.

Clean behind the dryer, where lint can build up. Have a qualified service person clean the interior of the dryer chassis periodically to minimize the amount of lint accumulation. Keep the area around the dryer clean and free of clutter.

Replace plastic or foil, accordion-type ducting material with rigid or corrugated semi-rigid metal duct. Most manufacturers specify the use of a rigid or corrugated semi-rigid metal duct, which provides maximum airflow. The flexible plastic or foil type duct can more easily trap lint and is more susceptible to kinks or crushing, which can greatly reduce the airflow.

Take special care when drying clothes that have 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 amount of volatile chemicals on the clothes and, preferably, hang the clothes to dry. If using a dryer, use 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. (from Consumer Product Safety Commission)


  1. This happened to a friend of mine recently and it made her home unlivable. Thanks for the info.

  2. This happened to my younger sister and her husband many years ago. They weren't home at the time. When the FD got there, they found her cat and dog at the front door. They were able to revive her dog, but not her cat.

    Since then, I NEVER leave the house with my dryer going. And I always make sure the duct is clean.

  3. Sorry for your friend Trea.
    Oh Tina, that is so sad.


So nice to hear from you!

Warm regards,
Lori Lynn