The Birds and the Bees...

I recently looked back in my records for this March, and found Southern Fried had run a total of ten calls last month featuring dryers where the complaint was simply "no heat". Certainly the most common dryer issue, there are several possible causes, but every one of these calls had one thing in common: The dryer vent was partially or completely blocked. This lack of airflow in turn caused other (more expensive) issues due to overheating, ranging from a blown thermal fuse to the failure of the main heating element. In the very worse cases, it can lead to a fire, and dryer lint burns very quickly. More common than you can imagine, there are over 13,000 residential fires a year in the USA due to dryers, unfortunately resulting in 15 deaths and over 300 injuries.

Now, what does all this have to do with the birds and the bees? Simple. Dryer vents are clogged by dryer lint. Sometimes this lint is wet, and sticks to the dryer innards, vent hose and pipes like plaster of Paris, while some has dried sufficiently and can flow farther down towards the outlet before coming to rest. This lint has made it's way past your lint screen (the screen you hopefully clean out after every load), and this alone can clog your vent system. Worse yet is when nature speeds up this process. Last month we removed two mud wasp nests from vents, and a tiny (inventive) bird's nest who had found a way to keep her eggs warm without having to hang around...

Once there is a partial blockage like this, the lint then fills in the rest, and before you know it, you'll be calling us for a (preventable) repair. The symptoms of vent and dryer clogging usually first appear as the dryer taking longer and longer to dry your clothing. Where before clothes would dry in 45 minutes, it now takes an hour and a half, with the corresponding increase in your electric bill. By this time you are literally "playing with fire"!

What to do? Simply clean, or have your dryer vent cleaned annually. Whether you call Southern Fried, or any other (fully insured and bonded) company, your electric bill savings alone will nearly cover the clean out, and greatly increase your (and my) peace of mind.

Warmest regards, Christian

Christian Van Horn