5 Dryer Tips You Need to Know

We take our dryers for granted. The wet clothes go in, you select the proper setting, hit start, and 45 minutes later, your clothes are fresh and dry. (If only our dryers could also fold our clothes.) Because drying our clothes is a routine, everyday task, it’s easy to forget that dryers need regular maintenance like many other appliances. Dryers that aren’t maintained are less efficient and, in worst-case scenarios, may cause a fire. Here are five simple things you can do to ensure that your dryer is functioning properly.

All featured products and deals are selected independently and objectively by the author. Better Report may receive a share of sales via affiliate links in content.

Credit: supersizer/ iStock

Don’t Overload the Machine

Trying to cram too much clothing into a single load does more harm than good. Doing this prevents air from adequately circulating, which means your clothing will end up wrinkled and damp. Too much clothing in a single load can also damage the dryer’s drum and bearings, which may cause the appliance to break down over time. Check the owner’s manual to learn more about your dryer’s weight limits so you don’t make this common mistake.

Credit: gerenme/ iStock

Clean the Lint Trap After Every Load

Cleaning the lint trap isn’t just a courtesy for the next person to use your machine — it’s also a safety necessity and should be done after every load. Built-up dust and dirt could cause your dryer to catch fire, a shockingly common scenario.

Credit: Detry26/ iStock

Deep Clean Your Lint Trap Every Six Months

Lint traps can also develop a sticky residue from excess detergent and fabric softener, so they should be deep-cleaned twice a year. It only takes a few minutes and will make a world of difference.

  1. Remove the lint trap and scrub with a nylon brush dipped in a cleaning solution of equal parts hot water and dish soap
  2. Rinse the trap in hot water and pat dry with a clean towel
  3. Use a vacuum with a narrow crevice attachment to suck up excess lint from the trap opening before returning the lint trap

Credit: Bill Oxford/ iStock

Clean the Dryer Vent Every Year

Keeping the dryer vent clean is as important as keeping the lint trap clean, though it should be cleaned less frequently — once yearly. To clean the vent, hire a professional or follow these simple steps yourself.

  1. Detach the vent from the back of the dryer
  2. Insert an extendable nylon laundry brush deep into the vent and slowly pull the brush toward you to remove the built-up lint
  3. Repeat until you no longer see any lint, then reaffix the vent to the dryer

Credit: UnitedPhotoStudio1/ iStock

Don’t Use Too Many Dryer Sheets

Using a single dryer sheet with each load won’t cause any problems, but an excessive amount can actually damage the appliance. Too many dryer sheets can cause waxy residue to build up on the drum and the lint tray. This wax may also cover the internal sensor that tells the dryer when it’s time for a cycle to end. If that sensor is covered, the machine will keep running longer than expected, wasting energy and potentially damaging your clothes. You can purchase reusable, environmentally-friendly wool dryer balls instead to eliminate the need for dryer sheets.

Featured Image Credit: UnitedPhotoStudio1/ iStock

170 total views, 6 views today

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.