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October 28, 2018

Keep Those Dryer Vents Clean

A roof-mounted dryer vent is blocked by a build-up of lint. Lint is a fire hazard. Also a lint issue can cause other problems.

Why was there a wet spot on my ceiling during my home inspection?

During this home inspection, we noticed a water spot on the ceiling of the laundry room.  Going into the attic, we found the insulation was wet under the dryer vent elbow.  All the junctions in the dryer vents were taped. Also, the length of the dryer vent was only 10 feet.  With a short vent length, hot moist exhaust should be able to exit the building before much condensation occurs.

A roof-mounted dryer vent is blocked by a build-up of lint. Lint is a fire hazard. Also a lint issue can cause other problems.

Roof mount dryer vent blocked by lint build up.

Are your dryer vents blocked by lint?

During all our home inspections, Powerworks Inspections will get on the roof or use our 4K drone is the roof surface is to steep. Inspecting on the roof we found the dryer vent was blocked by lint preventing its proper function.

Blocked vents trap moisture in the vent pipe.

So why the water spot on the ceiling.  Even though the vent connections were taped, and the vent pipe length was short, the blockage at the vent cap was preventing the dryer vent gases from escaping quickly.  As a result of the blockage, hot, moist dryer vent air was condensing in the vent pipe.  This condensed water was able to find it’s way past the taped joints and drip onto the insulation below.  Eventually, the water reached the drywall ceiling below creating the wet spot on the laundry room ceiling.

A roof-mounted dryer vent is blocked by a build-up of lint. Lint is a fire hazard. Also a lint issue can cause other problems.

A roof-mounted dryer vent is blocked by a build-up of lint. Lint is a fire hazard. Also, a lint issue can cause other problems.

During a home inspection a roof-mounted dryer vent is found to be blocked by a build-up of lint. Lint is a fire hazard. Also a lint issue can cause other problems.

Water Dripping from dryer vent is creating a water spot on the ceiling.

A little maintenance can prevent problems.

So in this case, a little maintenance could have prevented any water damage to the ceiling.  Also keeping your dryer vent clean, eliminates a potential fire hazard from your home.  In addition, some vents are held open by lint build-ups. Open dryer vent flaps provide and access for moisture and insects into the line.