Why aren’t my clothes dry? | What to do when your dryer is taking too long

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Most people buy a dryer to help speed up the laundry process and leave time for more important things than drying clothes.  But, when your dryer starts taking longer than normal it becomes a problem.
So what do you do? The good news is this is usually something you can fix yourself.

Today we have a few simple tips for troubleshooting and maintaining your dryer to ensure it continues running safely and effectively!

Check your lint screen before or after EVERY use.

It’s easy to forget to clean out your lint trap.  But more often than not, lint is the source of your dryer problem.  If there is an excessive build up on the Lint Screen it can restrict airflow in your dryer and prevent it from getting hot enough, leading to your longer drying time issue.

You should clean off your lint screen before or after EVERY cycle.  It may seem unnecessary but it makes a difference and keeps your dryer from becoming a fire hazard, which no one wants.  If it seems like there is fabric softener or any other type of residue on the screen, rinse it off with soapy water before putting it back in your dryer.  Be sure to regularly check for rips or tears.  If you ever find one, it’s time to replace your Lint Screen.

Make sure you’re using the proper venting for you dryer.

Another source of your lengthy dry time issue may be your Dryer Venting.  If you’re currently using Flexible Venting for you dryer, you may want to consider replacing it with solid metal venting.  Flexible venting can potentially increase drying time and is more likely to kink or collapse and trap lint; this can lead to more serious problems such as heater failure. NEVER use flexible vinyl tubing, it doesn’t meet fire safety standards and is more susceptible to issues.

Before doing any maintenance on your dryer, be sure to unplug your dryer to avoid electric shock and if applicable shut off the gas.  Try to clean out your venting at least once a year.  This is relatively simple to do, but will require a Dryer Vent Duct Cleaning Brush. Simply use it to remove any blockages or buildup.  You should also make sure that nothing is blocking off your outside venting and check for damage regularly.

Clean your dryer regularly.

To keep your dryer running right it’s important to do some overall cleaning seasonally. Again, make sure to unplug your dryer first and shut off the gas if applicable. You may need a screwdriver to remove the exterior cabinet panel if it doesn’t have access latches. Clean in and around the dryer’s drum and inside the lint trap shoot using a vacuum and a long crevice cleaning vacuum attachment. Even if you’re good about cleaning off your lint screen, it’s likely that lint has collected inside the dryer itself as well.

If all else fails, call for servicing on your dryer

If you get through all of these steps and are still having a problem with dry time, it may be time to call in the experts.  There is a chance that there could be a more complex internal issue or it may be time for a new dryer.

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