Why should you clean your electric dryer? The U.S. Fire Administration reports that out of the 2,900 dryer fires a year, 34% are caused by dirty and unkept dryers. Electric dryers are safer, more energy-efficient, and more durable when they receive regular cleanings.
If you have an electric dryer that could use some sprucing up, let the appliance professionals at Top Shelf Services help. Call us at (253) 486-9072 or complete our online contact form. We will schedule a service appointment and get your dryer up and running again in no time.
Step #1: Turn Off Your Dryer and Gather Your Supplies
The first thing you need to do when cleaning your electric dryer is to shut down the appliance.
To clean your dryer machine, you will need:
- Multi-surface cleaner (whichever brand you prefer)
- Microfiber or cotton cloth (at least one, possibly two)
- Baking soda and vinegar
- Vacuum cleaner (the smaller, the better)
- Automotive wax (optional)
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Step #2: Start with the Exterior
Start from the top of your electric dryer and work your way down. Grab your microfiber cloth and cleaning solution, then spray a few squirts onto your dryer’s surface. Gently wipe away dust, dirt, and grime.
Warning: do not clean a washing machine or dryer with abrasive scrubbing pads or petroleum-based agents. These materials leave behind scratches and chip paint. We recommend cotton or microfiber cloths.
After wiping down the exterior, you can apply automotive wax. The wax gives the appliance a polished appearance and makes it easier to keep your dryer clean. But this step is entirely optional.
Soak Dryer Knobs
When polishing your electric dryer, be careful around the control panel. Do not overuse your cleaner, and make sure the buttons are dry before turning your machine on.
Dryer knobs pick up a hefty amount of dust. If your knobs are sticky or coated in grime, gently pull them off and place them in a small bucket with hot water. Add a dash of baking soda and white vinegar. Let the knobs soak for a few hours.
While the knobs are off, gently wipe the areas where the dials typically sit. Rinse the control knobs with warm water before reattaching.
Step #3: Clean the Inside of Your Electric Dryer
Open your laundry dryer door and examine the tumbler. Clothes often leave behind unwanted debris. Use your vacuum to suck out any miscellaneous particles lingering in your dryer drum.
Crayons, lipstick, gum, pens, and other objects create stains when we forget to remove them from our clothing. Take your cloth and cleaner, and wipe down your machine’s interior to eliminate any markings. When finished, leave the dryer door open to dry.
Step #4: Focus on the Dryer Vent and Lint Screens
Most types of electric dryers contain dryer vents and lint screens. Both of these areas need to be clean to prevent a dryer fire.
First, find the dryer vent. It should be somewhere in the back of your appliance. If your vacuum fits in the vent, use it to suck away excess lint and debris. If not, use your hand or cloth towel to wipe the area clean.
Next, locate and remove the lint screen. This piece is usually on the top of your dryer or inside the door. Run your fingers or a soft-bristled brush over the screen to dislodge lint buildup. Ideally, you should be cleaning your lint screen after every load of laundry.
The Importance of Dryer Vent Cleaning
Why is vent cleaning so important? Dryer lint is comparable to kindling. It is made up of fine and dry materials that can easily ignite a spark.
Clean dryer vents do not only prevent fires. They also increase efficiency, saving you energy and money. Blocked ducts can force your dryer to use up to 30% more power and raises your risk of carbon monoxide poisoning,
The bottom line: if nothing else, keep your dryer vent and lint filters clean. Your safety depends on it.
Step #5: Prevent Future Dryer Damage
Now your dryer is looking good-as-new, so let’s keep it that way. The Day states homeowners should perform a deep clean on their dryers at least once a year and clean their vents every three months.
In between cleanings, take preventive measures to keep your drying running efficiently. Try to avoid:
- Overloading your dryer with clothes. Check your dryer’s weight capacity (found in the dryer manual) to prevent overloading.
- Using too much detergent and fabric softener. These products stick to lint filters and cause clogs.
- Cramming large appliances in one area of the house. Overloading your laundry room’s electrical units decreases washer and dryer efficiency and doubles your chance of a fire.
Dirty vs. Broken Dryer: Know the Difference
Are your home appliances dirty or do they need professional repair? If your dryer is making odd noises, producing unfamiliar smells, or not getting your clothes dry on the first tumble, then your appliance may be more than dirty.
If you have dryer problems, perform a deep clean. If the issues continue to persist, call an expert dryer repair service to take a closer look. There may be a defective part that needs replacing, or your system may require professional cleaning.
Is Your Electric Dryer Broken? Call Us Now
You need your electric dryer in tip-top shape. That’s where your local washer and dryer repair experts can help.
Call (253) 486-9072 or fill out our service request form. The Top Shelf Services squad will process your inquiry and get in touch to discuss your appliance. Whatever electric dryer repairs you need, we got you covered.
Click to contact Top Shelf Appliance Repair Services today