Indoor Air Quality

August 25th, 2012

Indoor Air Quality – and what you can do to improve it.  You see, common harmful airborne particulate found in our homes and offices include fine dust, dust mites, pet dander, mold spores, and pollen. We hope to show you what measures you can take to reduce these particulate contaminants in your home and office so you can live a healthier life.

In addition to helping you clean your air, I hope to warn you about another threat to your home- dryer vent fires.  Believe it or not, there over 15,000 home fires every year caused by dryer vents.  These are fires that start in your dryer vents, but when left unattended, will rapidly engulf some or all of your precious home.  Dryer manufacturers recommend you clean your dryer vent every year. By doing so you prolong the life of your dryer and protect your family.

Please take a couple minutes of your day, review some invaluable tips that I have put together for you and take the steps you can to make YOUR home a healthier, safer home for you and your whole family.

Here are some ways to help prevent dryer vent 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.