The Dryer Safety Tips

(Jupiter, FL - November 2004) It’s time to air some of your home’s dirty laundry. Even the best-kept house may have a dirty little secret. Lint. It’s more than a matter of cleanliness, but actually a serious fire hazard that may be lurking right under your roof. The lint build-up from your dryer may actually be putting you, your family and your home at serious risk.

Odds are that behind your dryer lives a snake-like coil of ventilation tubing. What most people don’t give much thought to is that the bends and crimps in this ductwork creates a trap for all the lint that makes its way past your dryer’s internal lint screen.

This lint accumulation reduces air flow from the dryer, causing overheating of the exhaust system. Consider the fact that this lint is highly combustible and you can see that these conditions are ripe for fire.

While the first victim of this lint accumulation problem may be your dryer (which may be become burnt out from the strain and eventually fail), the more serious issue is that the accumulation of lint will cause a smoldering fire in the exhaust line before homeowners have even become aware of the hazard. More than $65 million in property damages and 10 deaths each year can be linked to dryer fires. This is a serious (and avoidable) risk that consumers need to address. Through simple preventative maintenance and an inexpensive new product now on the market, homeowners can make their homes significantly safer for their families. Bends in dryer ducts pose hidden fire danger.

Clothes dryer is a leading cause of house fires, did you know?

  •  According to the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA), clothes dryers are the number three cause of house fires after stoves and heaters.
  • The Consumer Product Safety Commission reports that lint accumulated in dryer ventilation systems cause 15,500 fires annually.
  • The National Association of State Fire Marshals reports that lint is highly combustible. It accumulates easily and ignites quickly, causing fires that can spread from the dryer to your home in seconds.
  • The NFPA also reports that four out of seven home fires occur between December and February.
  • Check for lint clogs in the exhaust tubing and vacuum behind your dryer regularly.
  • Don’t allow lint to pile up on the lint screen — clean after every load.
  • If you realize your dryer is taking longer to dry your clothes or if the exterior feels very hot, it could be a sign that it is working too hard because of significant lint build-up.
  • Avoid running your dryer when you are sleeping or are away from home in case a fire should start.
  • Consider installing a Dryerbox recessed vent box to eliminate lint-collecting bends in the exhaust tubing behind your dryer .
The Dryerbox presents a simple, inexpensive solution. By reducing the accumulation of combustible lint is key to avoiding dryer fire hazards. One solution is a new building product called The Dryerbox, developed by In-O-Vate Technologies Inc. This recessed dryer vent box houses and collects the flex duct-work inside the wall, eliminating the restrictive bends typically found in the snake of ductwork behind the dryer. Increased efficiency is achieved by removing this “bottleneck.” As an added benefit, the dryer can be pushed back against the wall, allowing for a more attractive appearance, more usable work space in the laundry area and a more energy-efficient and faster dryer appliance. Retail prices start at just $19 for new home construction and $21 for retrofits in existing homes, plus the cost of professional installation, if needed.
Contact Information:

Rick Harpenau
In-O-Vate Technologies, Inc.
810 Saturn Street, Suite 20 • Jupiter, FL 33477
Phone: (561) 743-8696 • Fax: (561) 745-9723