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Dryer Fire Damage Safety for Areas Next to the Sea

Published by Allegra on October 13, 2021 in category: Uncategorized

fire damage safetyDryer fire damage safety happens to be an important prevention measure around the country. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), dryers and washing machines are the sources of 15,970 fires per year. 92% of these incidents occur due to dryers causing severe injuries and million-dollar-worth property loss.

The risks increase for residents near the sea as they experience fluctuating weather, power surges during storms, and relatively higher humidity.

911 Restoration of Santa Barbara works beyond providing fire damage restoration services.  We’d like to spread awareness of the potential fire hazards associated with dryers to ensure your family and home stays protected. This article covers the basis by outlining the primary causes of dryer fires and ways to minimize risks.

Here’s what you need to know:

What Are the Main Causes of Dryer Fire?

Dryer fires occur due to electrical malfunctioning, improper usage, clogged ducts, and dirty vents.  It’s why maintaining a routine cleaning schedule for dryers and similar electrical appliances becomes necessary. Efficient cleaning cycles can limit the dangers of dryer fires.

Here’s a closer look at the reasons why dryer fires occur:

Mechanical Issues/Electrical Failures

Faulty wiring and worn-out machinery are the primary reason behind dryer fires. Their presence can cause the appliance to overheat or create a short circuit in the outlet. One spark can lead to severe damage with the presence of flammable objects in the laundry room.

We strongly advise you to inspect your appliance regularly to fix electrical issues and replace damaged mechanical parts.

Misguided Usage

Many homeowners are guilty of overloading their dryers with extra clothes to get done more quickly. Alternatively, you might add plastic objects, items with rubber components, or foam into the drying machine.

Ignoring manufacturer’s guidelines in these instances can lead to irreversible consequences. The overstuffed dryers can disrupt the regular operation, causing the machine to work in overdrive. As a consequence, it generates heat and accelerates the wear and tear of mechanical parts.

The frequency of these actions can cause the appliance to malfunction and ignite a dryer fire.

Excessive Buildup inside the Dryer

Loose fibers (called lint) often break away from clothes and accumulate in different spaces inside a dryer. They manage to clog vents, collect in filters, and obstruct duct lining.  In turn, they block the airflow within the system and cause heat buildup.

A similar thing occurs when grass, dirt particles, and other residue linger on the clothes or collect in the filtration system. Besides this, reasons for blockage can include a pest invasion.

Tiny insects, small birds, and rodents may use dirty vents and build nests inside the dryer. Their presence becomes another reason why your appliance doesn’t function properly.

As a result, the hazardous conditions can ignite an unexpected house fire.

Dryer Fire Damage Safety: Prevention Methods

Dryer fire damage safety tips to follow:

Choose a Safe Location for Installation

Residents near the sea are prone to receive more rain and harsh environmental conditions than homeowners from the inland. Hence, you need to select or create a laundry area that isn’t as wet and humid as the weather outside. That’s because prolonged exposure can accelerate wear and tear, inevitably leading to a house fire.

Besides this, avoid placing combustible objects and flammable fabrics near the dryer. This setup prevents flames from spreading in case a dryer fire occurs.

Proper Installation and Usage  

Plug your dryer into a 240-volt outlet to prevent power supply fluctuations. Read the user guide for further instructions. For instance, attach the ventilation duct to your dryer and external exhaust to prevent heat buildup.

Besides this, you should avoid:

  • Adding an extra load to the dryer
  • Using the same outlet for multiple machines
  • Drying items that aren’t machine-friendly
  • Unplug the device after the cycle
  • Never leave your dryer unattended

In other words, follow the rules to prevent costly fire damage.

Clean the Lint Filter Before/After Every Load

Lint filters collect stray cloths and fibers from the items you put in the dryer.  It prevents fiber and dirt particles from interrupting the cycle. Over time, this filter fills up and creates a flammable bundle of fabric within your machine.

Any form of obstruction to the airflow, heat buildup, and electrical fault can cause it to ignite.

Therefore, you should empty the filter each time you use the dryer.

Regular Inspection and Maintenance 

The lint filter isn’t always reliable for keeping dust and unwanted particles away from other parts of the dryers. Frequent usage might lead to excessive accumulation inside the duct that connects your machine to the exterior vent. Any form of blockage in this area prevents hot air from passing out of the machine, leading to inevitable heat and pressure buildup inside.

Likewise, open vents often cause external elements (like dirt, insects, soil, etc.) to enter your dryer. These particles can damage the machine if you don’t examine the duct and vent area regularly.

  • You can minimize the risk with our dryer fire damage safety tips:
  • Clean the duct after every three months
  • Replace broken/worn out ducts
  • Prevent pests from sneaking inside the dryer by installing a screen to cover the exterior vent
  • Look for water damage caused by rain and weather conditions within your laundry area to limit electrical problems

Moreover, you should call a professional to check your dryer every six months. They can use their expertise to detect potential fire risks and resolve mechanical issues.

Parting Words

Our dryer fire damage safety tips can minimize the risk of accidents at your home. If a fire occurs in your house, we recommend calling in emergency respondents as soon as possible. Once they have extinguished the fire, our fire damage restoration services can come into play.

We shall use our specialized equipment and IICRC-training to eliminate all traces of soot, lingering smoky smell, and fire-damaged structures from your home. After which, the team works on repairing your laundry area and replacing non-salvageable items.

Want to know more? Contact 911 Restoration of Santa Barbara for further details.

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