Dryer Vent Cleaning

Fire Risk From Delayed Dryer Vent Cleaning

2,900 home clothes dryer fires are reported each year and cause an estimated 5 deaths, 100 injuries, and $35 million in property loss according to FEMA. Because of this, FEMA recommends cleaning your dryer vent every 3 months. Now for most people, that would entail pulling your dryer away from the wall, disconnecting the flexible vent pipe and reaching in to clean it and the vent through the wall. If your dryer is on the outside wall and you have a short pipe out to the termination, count your blessings. This is the best case scenario and in such cases, homeowners can thoroughly clean the dryer vent of lint without any special equipment. But if your dryer vent goes down into the floor or has an elbow and goes up the wall to places unknown, you need a professional dryer vent cleaning with proper equipment in order to get all of the lint out of your dryer vent. Just check out this video of a house here in Chattanooga that was experiencing extremely long run time from the dryer. The vent was over 35′ long and has 4 elbows in it. Each elbow is equivalent to 25′ of straight pipe. This dryer vent design would not pass code requirements today which restrict it to 25′ and 2 elbows.

How much does dryer vent cleaning cost?

A lot less than a fire….

The cost of dryer vent cleaning will depend on the complexity of the job and whether other work (like duct cleaning) will be performed during the same trip. If no other work is being done, you could pay as much as $200 to have your ducts cleaned. If you are adding it on to a routine maintenance of your HVAC or duct cleaning service you should expect to pay around $125 for a thorough dryer vent cleaning.

What is included in dryer vent cleaning service?

Typically the technician will:

  • Pull dryer away from wall and disconnect dryer vent hose
  • Clean lint from dryer as much as possible without disassembling
  • Replace or clean flexible dryer vent hose
  • Clean dryer vent all the way to the exterior termination
  • Confirm entire length is clean via video camera scope
  • Remove any stray lint from around dryer in laundry area
  • Reconnect dryer vent and confirm air flow at exterior termination

Are there dryer vent cleaning tasks I can perform?


  • Clean the lint filter before and after each load of laundry. Don’t forget to clean the back of the dryer where lint can build up. In addition, clean the lint filter with a nylon brush at least every six months or more often if it becomes clogged. If you can’t see through the dryer lint filter even after removing the lint, let it soak in dish detergent for 30 minutes and then rinse thoroughly. (Bosch dryers especially need this done regularly as their screen mesh size is so small that wax from dryer sheets seals them up and no air gets through.)
  • Clean dryer vent pipes every three months. If you have a short vent pipe with no elbows, you may be able to do this yourself. If not, call a professional such as Scenic City Heating and AC for your dryer vent pipe cleaning.

Dryer Vent Maintenance

  • Inspect the venting system behind the dryer to ensure it is not damaged or restricted.
  • Put a covering on outside wall dampers to keep out rain, snow and dirt.
  • Make sure the outdoor vent covering opens when the dryer is on.
  • Replace coiled-wire foil or plastic venting with rigid, non-ribbed metal duct.
  • Have gas-powered dryers inspected every year by a professional to ensure that the gas line and connection are together and free of leaks.
  • Check regularly to make sure nests of small animals and insects are not blocking the outside vent.
  • Keep the area around the clothes dryer free of items that can burn.
  • If you will be away from home for an extended time, unplug or disconnect the dryer.
Scenic City Heating & Air

Here at Scenic City Heating & Air we have a dedicated team of professionals ready to serve you 24/7. All of our techs are NATE certified and have been drug-tested. Scenic City H&A uses no sub-contractors. All of our techs and installation crews are employed directly by us and have years of experience in HVAC systems.