All dryers come equipped with a lint trap and screen to keep the ductwork and exhaust free from debris. Poor airflow can hurt system efficiency, possibly leading to longer dry times and higher energy usage. Along with heat, dryers require good airflow to efficiently dry laundry. Proper venting will reduce drying times and improve your energy savings.While every dryer is different, there are a few universal signs of poor airflow. Here’s how to tell if there’s a clog in your dryer’s ventilation or it’s damaged.
Why Airflow and Ventilation Are Important
How to Tell if Your Dryer Vent Is Blocked or Restricted
Symptoms of a Blocked Ventilation System
- Long dry times: The first and most common indicator of a blocked ventilation system is longer drying times. Because the hot and wet air is unable to vent adequately, it gets trapped in the dryer, and your laundry may remain damp at the end of the cycle.
Dryer overheating: As steam isn’t venting properly, your dryer is likely to get hotter than usual. The dryer’s exterior, especially the sides and near the bottom, could feel warm to the touch.
Steam/Moisture in the dryer: If the vent is restricted, you may also notice condensation building up on the door and front window (if you have a glass door) as a result of steam building in the drum.
- Lack of lint on the lint screen/dryer not catching lint: A blocked vent system leads to reduced airflow and exhaust. Lint from the clothing won’t be removed and collected on the inside of the lint trap. Instead, you may notice lint building up in unusual places, such as on the clothes themselves and the dryer door.
- No air movement: If your lint screen is located on the top of your dryer, you can perform an easy check. Pull out the lint screen and run the dryer on “Air Dry” or “Air Fluff.” Place your hand near the lint trap. If you don’t feel airflow, that’s a good indicator your ventilation is restricted.