How Often Should You Clean Dryer Vent?

How To Clean Your Dryer Vent in 7 Simple Steps | Architectural Digest

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Imagine this: you’ve just washed your go-to sweater and can’t wait to slip into it tomorrow. The garment is tossed into the drier, and you carry on with your day. However, you’ll find a pleasant surprise when you return to check on your garments. Your favorite sweater has shrunk and become deformed, leaving you to ponder what may have gone wrong. Who’s to blame? It’s because of the muck in your dryer’s vent. That’s true; skipping this crucial step in the washing process might destroy your clothing and put you in danger. So, how often you should clean dryer vent? We say we find out.

Hot air and moisture from your dryer must be vented outside via your dryer vent. A buildup of lint and other debris in the vent may reduce its effectiveness and increase the danger of a fire over time. In fact, most dryer fires can be traced back to clogged vents, which occur in almost 17,000 homes annually, said the National Fire Protection Association. But have no worry; with regular maintenance, you can guarantee the continued integrity of your dryer vent and the security of your house. Let’s get ready to clean some vents by rolling up our sleeves.


Signs That Your Dryer Vent Needs Cleaning

There are a few obvious red flags that your dryer vent is dirty and in need of being cleaned. Some of the most typical examples are as follows:


Longer drying times: 

A blocked dryer vent might be the cause of your garments taking longer than normal to dry. If your dryer’s vent is blocked, the dryer will have to work harder and take longer to dry your clothing since less hot air and moisture can pass through.


Clothes that are unusually hot when removed from the dryer: 

This may be an indication that your dryer is exerting more effort than it should throughout the drying process. A blocked vent may be at blame here, preventing the hot air and moisture from escaping correctly.


A burning smell: 

If your dryer is emitting a burning odor, it may be because the vent is blocked by lint and other debris. The dryer’s heating element might overheat and catch fire if the vent is blocked.


Excess lint on the lint screen: 

While it’s usual to see some lint on the lint screen after a cycle, an excessive quantity may indicate that your dryer vent is blocked. If your vent is blocked, lint will accumulate on the lint screen.


Steps for Cleaning Your Dryer Vent

Although it may seem like a huge hassle, cleaning the dryer vent is really rather simple. To help you along, here are some detailed instructions:


  • Get the dryer unplugged: 

Unplug the dryer from its power source before cleaning the dryer vent to avoid any mishaps.


  • Locate your dryer vent: 

Find the metal tube that leads from your dryer to the wall (the dryer vent), which is often situated behind the machine.


  • Disconnect the vent from the wall:  

Pull the vent away from the wall slowly and carefully to detach it. This may require removing a few screws or bolts from the vent, depending on how it was put.


  • Clean the vent from the outside: 

Firstly, unscrew it from the wall and then find the vent hole on the outside of the building. Debris may build within a vent, so use a vent brush or a vacuum with a hose attachment to remove it. Take care to clear the vent of any accumulated lint, dust, or other debris.


  • Clean the vent from the inside:

After cleaning the outside, it’s time to turn your attention to the inside of the vent. To remove any obstructions from the vent, use a vent brush or a vacuum with a long hose attachment. When clearing out the vent, it’s important to go as deep in as you can.


  • Reconnect the vent to the wall:

Once the interior and exterior of the vent have been cleaned, you may reattach it to the wall. Check for loose screws or other openings that might let warm air and moisture out of the vent and make sure it is firmly attached to the wall.


  • Plug in your dryer and test it:

Turn on the dryer and check sure it’s operating correctly by running a test cycle after plugging it in. Make sure the clothes dryer is directing the hot air and moisture outdoors.


Benefits of working with an expert

Maintaining a clean dryer vent will prolong the life of your dryer and protect your house from fire. There are a few good reasons to hire a professional dryer vent cleaning service, even if you can clean your dryer vent on your own:



Dryer vent cleaning is a potentially dangerous job if you don’t have the correct equipment or expertise. A professional dryer vent cleaning service will have the equipment and knowledge to clean your vent without putting you or your family in danger.



Professional dryer vent cleaners have access to specific tools and equipment that will allow them to clean your vent more completely than you could on your own. Doing so may increase your dryer’s efficiency and decrease the likelihood of a fire.



Dryer vent cleaning might take a lot of time if you have a very lengthy and complex duct system. Time is money, and hiring a service may free up your schedule so you can get more done.



A professional dryer vent cleaning service will have worked with many different dryer models and vent designs, allowing them to quickly and accurately diagnose any issues with your system.



Hiring a professional dryer vent cleaning service may be a time- and labor-saving choice since they come to your home, clean the vent, and haul away the resulting debris at your convenience.


Factors To Consider While Deciding Whether or not to Hire a Professional Cleaner


There are a few things to keep in mind while selecting a dryer vent cleaning service:



This is the key, so make sure you use a provider that has been doing this for a while and has a good reputation for cleaning dryer vents.



The National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA) certifies its members as industry leaders, so look for a service that has this seal of approval. With certification, you know you’re getting a service that upholds the highest standards in the dryer vent cleaning business.



In case any damage is done while they are cleaning, you want to be sure they are covered by insurance.


Reviews and References: 

Verify the service’s credibility and quality by reading reviews online and contacting some of its prior clients for references.



Although cost should play a role in your final selection, it shouldn’t be your single factor. Consider the service’s cost in light of the quality of their work.


Frequently Asked Questions: FAQs


Why is it important to clean my dryer vent?

The dryer vent should be cleaned for a number of reasons. First, it keeps your dryer running smoothly, which means your clothes dry quicker with less wasted energy. Second, it prevents the building of flammable lint in the vent, which may occur otherwise. Maintaining a clean dryer vent will save you money on repairs and help your dryer last longer.


How frequently should I clean the lint filter in my dryer?

Several variables determine how often you should clean your dryer vent, including the length of your vent, the kind of dryer you have, and the frequency with which you use your dryer. Dryer vents should be cleaned at least once a year as a rule of thumb. However, you may need to clean it more often if you have prolonged drying times, overheating, or a burning odor.


How difficult is it to clean a dryer vent?

Dryer vent cleaning brushes, vacuum cleaner attachments, and other specialized gear make it possible to do the job yourself. However, take care to prevent harming your vent or creating any mishaps by using the correct safety measures and methods. If you don’t feel comfortable doing it yourself, or if your dryer vent is particularly complicated or inconveniently located, it’s in your best interest to call a professional dryer vent cleaning service.


What causes a dryer vent to get clogged?

Longer drying periods, clothing that are still moist after a drying cycle, an overheated dryer, a burning smell, extra lint surrounding the dryer, or a vent hood that doesn’t open correctly are all signs of a blocked dryer vent. If you see any of them, you need to clean your dryer vent immediately to avoid any more problems.


When should you clean your dryer’s vent?

The length and intricacy of the dryer vent, the quantity of lint accumulation, and the instruments and procedures employed all affect how long it takes to clean the vent. It may take a professional dryer vent cleaning service between one and two hours to completely clean a dryer vent. Cleaning on your own might take longer if you don’t have the right equipment or knowledge.


Final Words

Maintaining a clean dryer vent is crucial for the appliance’s long life and safe use. To avoid a buildup of lint in the vent, you may use the principles described in this article to figure out how often you should clean it depending on your individual conditions. 

If you care about the safety of your family and home, as well as the longevity of your dryer, you should make cleaning the dryer vent a top priority, whether you do it yourself or hire a professional. Don’t put off ensuring the security of your dryer and house any longer.

Here are some links to more articles you may find interesting: 

Why is my Air Vent Leaking Water? 

how to keep vent pipe from freezing

How To Do Air Duct for Dryer?


Written By: Trisha Mae Raymundo 


Clean Dryer Vent
Mikalya Smith
Mikalya Smith

Cleaning expert and the head of content in cleanz. She has tremendous experience with cleaning methods and techniques.