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Did you know failure to properly clean and maintain a clothes dryer is the leading cause of a dryer fire? Here are some precautions to help prevent these fires:
- Have your dryer installed and serviced by a professional, and make sure it’s properly grounded
- Don’t use the dryer without a lint filter, and make sure to clean the lint filter before or after each load of laundry
- Remove lint that has collected around the drum and wash the filter screen to remove chemical residue every six months. Vacuum the motor area to remove dust and lint. (You may have to remove a panel.)
- Use rigid or flexible metal venting material to vent outside. Vacuum out accumulated lint twice a year.
- Make sure that the outdoor vent flap isn’t blocked or covered and will open when the dryer is operating, especially when snow starts to pile up.
- Clean commercial dryer vents regularly—they get a lot of use and have a common venting system.
- Don’t overload your dryer.
- Turn off the dryer if you’re going out and when you are going to bed.
These tips are courtesy of the Office of the State Fire Marshall, Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the National Fire Protection Association. To find more detailed information, view these NFPA dryer-safety tips.