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Dryer Not Catching Lint

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

Air circulation and exhaust are essential for your dryer to run efficiently. In a vented dryer, as the wet load of laundry tumbles in the dryer, the hot air produces moisture (steam), which needs to be pushed out through the exhaust vent. A screen between the drum and exhaust vent captures lint, fibres, and debris to keep them from clogging the system or expelling the waste outdoors.
Ventless dryers work a little differently, more like a dehumidifier. They circulate air repeatedly through the drum, drawing more moisture from the clothing with each circulation. The moisture is then condensed and drained. While with a ventless dryer there’s no ductwork or exterior vents to worry about, lint can still lead to system clogs.
No matter what type of dryer you have, it’s important to clean this lint screen between every load and clean and inspect the ductwork or drain pump filter if applicable at least twice a year to keep your dryer running efficiently and safely.
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How to Tell if Your Dryer Vent Is Blocked or Restricted

Symptoms of a Blocked Ventilation System

A blocked ventilation system can present in a number of ways and you should take action as soon as you notice a difference in your dryer’s performance. If you don’t fix a blocked vent, it can lead to significant problems and possible damage to the dryer and your home.
At the very least, poor air circulation will dramatically affect drying times and energy consumption. If you notice any of the following warning signs, work to resolve the issue as soon as possible or contact your manufacturer directly for advice.
  • 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.
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