Dryers are one of the most expensive and power-hungry appliances in your home. They usually last for a decade and high-end dryers from reputed brands last even longer. If your dryer breaks down, you can search for “dryer repair near me” and hire a reputed professional to fix it for you. However, if you do regular maintenance, you may not have to repair your dryer frequently. Let’s check out a few maintenance and general use tips that can make your dryer last longer:
- Use liquid fabric softener – Liquid softeners aren’t necessary while washing your clothes. You throw your clothes with regular detergent in the washer and get them cleaned perfectly. However, adding a liquid fabric softener helps to get rid of most of the lint from your clothes. When there’s less lint on your clothes, a smaller amount of lint clogs the lint trap.
Moreover, fabric softener also helps to reduce the amount of static and wrinkles from your clothes. Yes, most people use dryer sheets to solve that issue since they are cheaper. However, dryer sheets leave a lot of residues that attract grease, lint, and all kinds of debris to clog the filters. When the filters are blocked, your dryer becomes less efficient, uses more power and the components heat up unnecessarily. This reduces their life and takes away a few years from your dryer’s life.
- Don’t overload – It’s tempting to add in a few more articles of clothing inside the dryer. Yes, the dryer seems full, but an extra pair of pants and a t-shirt can’t possibly do any harm, right? It couldn’t be further from the truth. Every time you overload your dryer even by a small amount, you pay the consequences.
Your clothes need enough room for proper circulation of hot air. When you stuff the dryer and overload it, air can’t circulate properly, and your clothes don’t get dried quickly enough. This defeats the purpose of overloading your dryer. You end up wasting time instead of saving it. Moreover, this also puts the dryer into overdrive and puts a lot of stress on its components.
- Clean the outside of the dryer – Cleaning is a big part of dryer maintenance. Most people tend to put it off or ignore it since they come in contact with their washer and dryer just once a week. However, you should always keep your dryer clean. Start with the outside.
Unplug it from the wall and if it’s a gas dryer, turn off the gas supply. Get a clean piece of microfiber cloth and start from the back of the dryer. When you make your way around the gas supply line and the housing, be gentle and very careful. After you clean the outside of the dryer, make sure there’s a sufficient gap between the dryer and the wall for air circulation.
After you clean outside of the dryer, check the space around the dryer and remove any dust, lint, and debris accumulated around it.
- Clean lint filter – Lint is the mortal enemy of dryers and that’s why there are filters to block them. Lint filters catch an absurd amount of lint while the dryer works its magic on your clothes. While the filters work well to catch most of the lint coming off the clothes, it doesn’t block all of it. That’s why you need to keep the lint filter as clean as possible and keep the dryer running smoothly.
While some people recommend cleaning the lint filter once every few months, it’s best to clean the lint filter every time you dry your clothes. The filters are usually easy to access and can be removed within seconds. After your clothes are dried, remove the filters and wash them in a mild soapy cleaning solution. Make sure that they are completely dry before you insert them back into the dryer.
Apart from regularly cleaning the lint filter, you should also get your dryer deep cleaned and checked by a professional at least once a year. When you ignore lint and it builds upon the filter, the dryer gets hot enough to burn out electronic components and even catch on fire. Lint is highly flammable and if it gets hot enough or gets a small electrical spark, it can easily catch on fire.
- Clean the exhaust system – Your dryer has a venting system to remove water vapor and even lethal gasses like carbon monoxide. Apart from those gasses, the ventilation tube and cap can also accumulate a lot of dirt, lint, and debris. This reduces the efficiency of your dryer, increases both drying times and risks of fire, and also your repair and power bill.
That’s why you need to keep the venting system clean. If you have a gas dryer, you should get the venting system cleaned by a professional. Gas dryers release lethal gasses that are both colorless and odorless. If you aren’t professionally trained, you shouldn’t mess with the venting system of a gas dryer.
- Keep the dryer balanced – Due to prolonged use and vibrations, your dryer can become unbalanced. Use a spirit level or a level checking app on your phone to check if your dryer is balanced on the floor. You can also apply a minimal amount of force on one side and check if the dryer is rocking back or forth. If it does, then your dryer isn’t balanced.
If your dryer isn’t balanced, twist and adjust the leveling feet under the dryer to balance it on the floor. Check several times with the spirit level as you make minor adjustments till the dryer is perfectly level.
All the above-mentioned tips don’t just help you save money on repair, but also prolong the life of several important components in your dryer. Make sure that you do routine maintenance on your dryer so that you can make it last longer. If the dryer gets damaged, you can always search for “dryer repair near me” and let the pros fix it.