Dryer fires are a severe problem in North America, with thousands occurring yearly. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), clothes dryers were involved in an estimated 17,000 reported home fires in the United States in 2018, resulting in 15 deaths, 309 injuries, and $236 million in property damage. In Canada, there were an estimated 1,000 dryer fires per year between 2011 and 2015, according to the Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs. Various factors, including lint buildup, faulty wiring, and improper dryer use, can cause these fires.
Lint build is a leading cause of dryer fires
One of the leading causes of dryer fires is lint buildup. Lint is the small, fuzzy fabric particles that accumulate in a dryer’s lint trap. While lint is not typically a fire hazard on its own, it can build up over time and create a fire risk if it is not removed correctly. Lint can also accumulate in the dryer vent, leading to reduced airflow and a higher fire risk. To prevent lint buildup, a professional must clean the lint trap after every load of laundry and have the dryer vent inspected and cleaned regularly.
Another common cause of dryer fires is faulty wiring
nother common cause of dryer fires is faulty wiring. Dryers use a significant amount of electricity and can be a source of electrical fires if the wiring is not installed correctly or if it becomes damaged over time. To prevent this type of fire, a professional must install the dryer and have it inspected regularly to ensure that the wiring is in good condition.
What steps can you take to prevent dryer fires?
Improper use of the dryer can also increase the risk of fire. For example, drying materials that are unsafe for the dryer, such as rubber or plastic, can create a fire hazard. It is also essential to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for using the dryer and avoid overloading the dryer or leaving it running when it is not in use.
In addition to the steps mentioned above, there are several other ways to reduce the risk of fires. For example, it is crucial to keep the area around the dryer clean and free of clutter and regularly inspect the dryer for any signs of wear or damage. Investing in a smoke detector and testing it regularly to ensure it is functioning correctly is also a good idea. and finally, having an inspection and dryer vent cleaning yearly
In conclusion, dryer fires are a severe problem in North America, with thousands occurring yearly. Various factors, including lint buildup, faulty wiring, and improper dryer use, can cause these fires. To prevent dryer fires, it is crucial to clean the lint trap regularly, have the dryer installed and inspected by a professional, and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for using the dryer. Additionally, it is important to keep the area around the dryer clean and free of clutter, invest in a smoke detector, and test it regularly. Following these steps can significantly reduce the risk of a dryer fire in your home.