NEW CANAAN, Conn. ? The Daily Voice accepts signed, original letters from its readers. Send letters to NewCanaan@DailyVoice.com.
To the Editor,
Very few people realize the fire danger that an improperly maintained clothes dryer can pose. However, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, there are an estimated 15,500 fires, 10 deaths and 10 injuries annually due to dryer fires. Several hundred people a year are also subjected to carbon monoxide poisoning from improper dryer vent setups.
The following is a list of tips to keep your dryer fire safe – which will also save you money on your energy bills.
- Clean the lint filter after each and every use. Lint is extremely flammable.
- Make sure the dryer connector hose on the back of the dryer is not kinked.
- The length of the exhaust duct run should not be more than 50 feet (each 90-degree elbow counts as 5 feet) to the exterior. (These lengths may vary by manufacturer. Please check your owner’s manual.)
- Never discharge a dryer to an attic or crawl space.
- Make sure the outlet is free and unobstructed.
- Run a brush through the exhaust duct at least once per year to clear any lint buildup, or hire a professional cleaning service.
- Always follow the manufacturer’s installation and use instructions for best, and safest, performance.
For further questions about this or any other fire safety matters, please call the New Canaan Fire Marshal’s Office at 203-594-3030.