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Clothes Dryer

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EBEBRATT-Ed
EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,835
We have an electric dryer that is at least 15 years old, it was here when I got here so don't know the age. Every 2 years or so I pull the vent pipe off and clean the pipe out. We both also clean the lint screen every time we dry clothes.

Lately the clothes haven't been drying so good and since I haven't cleaned the vent pipe in a year or two, I pulled it off and it had some lint but not plugged enough to cause a problem. So, I decided to look deeper. The electric heater ohmed out at 10 ohms (mfg says 7.8-11) and the amps were ok and the blower fan runs and is moving air.

So I dug deeper again and pulled the thing apart and found the blower housing and duct plugged with lint.

So the moral of the story somehow after an extended time lint can get past the screen so clean you dryer out before it starts a fire
kcoppDJD775ethicalpaulPC7060STEVEusaPAErin Holohan HaskellCLambMikeAmannJakeCKSolid_Fuel_ManreggiZman

Comments

  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,472
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    A good troubleshoot! And fire prevention step
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
  • Larry Weingarten
    Larry Weingarten Member Posts: 3,388
    edited June 2023
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    Hi, Should that dryer ever give up the ghost, and should the washer go south at the same time, the combo units that use a heat pump for drying might be worth considering. They have no need for a vent pipe, so no lint worries. ( I do know that you didn't ask) o:) ... And nice troubleshooting!

    Yours, Larry
    ethicalpaul
  • FStephenMasek
    FStephenMasek Member Posts: 88
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    The heat pump dryers are also great for condominium units in high rise buildings. We have one in out flat in Vilnius, Lithuania. The water can be piped to a drain, or just empty the tank every load, or twice for big loads. They are slower than gas dryers.
    Author of Illustrated Practical Asbestos: For Consultants, Contractors, Property Managers & Regulators
    STEVEusaPA
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,949
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    I was thinking grounded element half way through that.

    The design whirlpool has been making since the 60's is pretty bulletproof.
    MikeAmann
  • EdTheHeaterMan
    EdTheHeaterMan Member Posts: 8,166
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    Or... you could just wear wet clothes

    Edward Young Retired

    After you make that expensive repair and you still have the same problem, What will you check next?

    CLambSolid_Fuel_Man
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,105
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    There were energy free solar clothes driers advertised in the seventies....I am sure they are still available. ;)
    kcoppSolid_Fuel_Man
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,915
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    JUGHNE said:

    There were energy free solar clothes driers advertised in the seventies....I am sure they are still available. ;)

    I think there's still tons of solar clothes dryers out there and they were used for a whole long time before the 70s.

    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    JUGHNE
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,105
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    That was a real ad in some magazines then. People were surprised that they got a length of rope and little else. One born every minute then and still now.
    ChrisJSolid_Fuel_Manreggi
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,835
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    @mattmia2

    Don't know how you knew but it is a Whirlpool!!
  • fentonc
    fentonc Member Posts: 241
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    My drying line is faster than my brand new electric dryer on a sunny day!
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,949
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    @mattmia2

    Don't know how you knew but it is a Whirlpool!!

    I opened mine up about 10 years in to clean out the accumulated lint inside and there was none. I think the effective line length and the type of damper make a huge difference with how much lint accumulates in the vent and the blower.
  • SlamDunk
    SlamDunk Member Posts: 1,600
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    Drier screens are next to worthless. My drier duct is four inches long and the side of the house under the vent is covered with lint. However, most driers have fusible links to kill power to the drier if it gets hot enough.
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,949
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    The problem isn't as much getting hot enough as a thick enough blanket of lint forming then finding a bridge of lint to the heater or burner and setting the whole blanket on fire.
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,835
    edited June 2023
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    The driers have a high limit as well as the operating thermostat that cycles the heater. (this one has 3 safeties I think) Obviously if plugged with lint the thermostat will cycle the heater but will use more electricity when it's plugged with lint.

    the vent is 4" galvanized with 8' of pipe and 2 90s. It's all put together with 4" hose (gear) clamps. no screws protruding into vent which is illegal and traps lint. Strange that that much lint would go through the screen butt how many loads that thing has dried in over 15 years.

    Say 3x/week (and I am sure it's more than that. 3x 52 weeks x 15 years=2340 loads of wash. It wouldn't have to pass much lint from each load to get plugged up in that time.

    In total I probably got enough lint out of this thing to almost fill a small plastic shopping bag like you get at the store
  • HomerJSmith
    HomerJSmith Member Posts: 2,511
    edited June 2023
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    Drier screens are next to worthless.
    Au contraire, my screen collects a lot, did I say a lot of lint which would otherwise have collected in the exhaust of the dryer and could present a fire hazard.
    ChrisJSolid_Fuel_Man
  • SlamDunk
    SlamDunk Member Posts: 1,600
    edited June 2023
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    Drier screens are next to worthless.
    Au contraire, my screen collects a lot, did I say a lot of lint which would otherwise have collected in the exhaust of the dryer and could present a fire hazard.

    Mon Frere, It just prolongs the inevitable chore of pulling out the drier to clean duct. Most people,me included- hence the reason I know about the thermal fuses, wait until the drier doesnt dry like it used to, or the drier stops altogether, to clean what the screen should have cleaned.
    I rate it 50% effective.
  • JakeCK
    JakeCK Member Posts: 1,416
    edited June 2023
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    That reminds me, I should clean my vent out.


    And I hate drying my clothes on a line. HAD to do it for a little while during a particularly impoverished time in my life. Have you ever tried to dry clothes on a rack in a house you can see your breath in during the middle of January? Oh they'll dry, eventually, but not before the mold sets in. And yes mold will grow even when it's cold enough to see your breath...

    And in the summer when it's nice n' warm you get all the pollution and pollen in the fabric.
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,949
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    @mattmia2

    Don't know how you knew but it is a Whirlpool!!

    I'd oil the rollers under the drum and the idler while I was in there...
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 15,835
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    @mattmia2

    Now you tell me!! LOL Too late for that now :):)
    mattmia2
  • Dave Carpentier
    Dave Carpentier Member Posts: 604
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    I used a cheap leafblower to clean out our 30ft solid pipe vent.
    Blocked off the intake a fair bit so that it couldnt blow full force.
    I didnt get to see the output end, but my son said it was a pretty impressive lint show.
    I could see most of the run with a flashlight from the outside grill, it was nice and clean after.
    Not long after that, I changed out the lint screen. The furry gasket around the perimeter of it was fairly worn down. I doubt it leaks lint as much nowadays.
    30+ yrs in telecom outside plant.
    Currently in building maintenance.
    CLamb
  • reggi
    reggi Member Posts: 522
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    I used a cheap leafblower to clean out our 30ft solid pipe vent. Blocked off the intake a fair bit so that it couldnt blow full force. I didnt get to see the output end, but my son said it was a pretty impressive lint show. I could see most of the run with a flashlight from the outside grill, it was nice and clean after. Not long after that, I changed out the lint screen. The furry gasket around the perimeter of it was fairly worn down. I doubt it leaks lint as much nowadays.
    I had to take a look. .  30' is long.. -5' @ each 90 fitting, -2.5' @ each 45 fitting.......
    Probably out of code .... Even if the Mfg. allows ... that's a long run 😯
    One way to get familiar something you know nothing about is to ask a really smart person a really stupid question
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,915
    edited June 2023
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    reggi said:



    I used a cheap leafblower to clean out our 30ft solid pipe vent.
    Blocked off the intake a fair bit so that it couldnt blow full force.
    I didnt get to see the output end, but my son said it was a pretty impressive lint show.
    I could see most of the run with a flashlight from the outside grill, it was nice and clean after.
    Not long after that, I changed out the lint screen. The furry gasket around the perimeter of it was fairly worn down. I doubt it leaks lint as much nowadays.

    I had to take a look. .  30' is long.. -5' @ each 90 fitting, -2.5' @ each 45 fitting.......
    Probably out of code .... Even if the Mfg. allows ... that's a long run 😯


    Depends on the size duct and how many turns.

    A fairly straight run of galv duct at 30' would likely be less of an issue than 6 feet of the white vinyl flex duct everyone used to use on dryers.

    The apartment I was in for a few years had all of the dryers on each floor tied into the same pipe for each section which went to the roof. There was 3 floors, so 3 dryers each and they all fed into the same. So, besides taking forever to dry clothes, if your machine was off and one of the other two people dried clothes it soaked the inside of the dryer and blew moist air into your space. The dryers were connected into the wall with white vinyl flex which was jammed against the wall and kinked unless you knew to fix it.

    It was great.
    Same with the kitchen exhaust fans. They had 3 tied into the same duct etc. So, you got to smell other peoples food cooking all of the time and blowing in thru your exhaust which was built into the microwave oven.



    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • mattmia2
    mattmia2 Member Posts: 9,949
    edited June 2023
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    ChrisJ said:


    The apartment I was in for a few years had all of the dryers on each floor tied into the same pipe for each section which went to the roof. There was 3 floors, so 3 dryers each and they all fed into the same. So, besides taking forever to dry clothes, if your machine was off and one of the other two people dried clothes it soaked the inside of the dryer and blew moist air into your space. The dryers were connected into the wall with white vinyl flex which was jammed against the wall and kinked unless you knew to fix it.





    Whirlpool has a document on how to do this correctly. I suspect most of the problem was that it was never serviced and was filled with lint and the dampers were stuck open.
  • Dave Carpentier
    Dave Carpentier Member Posts: 604
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    Its galvanized solid pipe; a sweep using short flex line at the dryer, then up 8ft into a 90, then the long run out.
    That was mybad when designing the house, i put the laundry room there without thinking about how I cant put the vent there (entry walk/step and doorway into attached garage).
    It blows the flappers on the outlet nice and fully, so far so good.
    30+ yrs in telecom outside plant.
    Currently in building maintenance.