How often should I clean my dryer vent?

We get this question all the time, “How do I know when my dryer vent needs to be cleaned?”. It depends on several things.

1. What is the total length of your dryer vent? Inside to outside… International code is 25 equivalent feet (as of 2022), but Indiana allows up to 35 equivalent feet. This means each elbow (bend) adds 5 feet of restriction. So, if you have 20 feet of straight pipe and 4 elbows, you will be at 40 equivalent feet. This is more than code allows, which puts your dryer vent at the risk of building up sooner than others and causing longer drying times.

2. How often do you do laundry? If you’re like me, we have a family of 5, plus 3 dogs. So, laundry is a daily occurrence for us. Therefore, we need our dryer vent cleaned more often than 1 or 2 people living with no pets.

3. Do you use dryer sheets? Dryer sheets produce a waxy build up in the dryer unit as well as the vent. As this builds up, lint attaches to it and builds up as well.

To answer the question vaguely, the normal recommendation is to have your dryer vent cleaned annually. But, this can vary from home to home depending on the all of the information above.

We have some customers who have 6 family members, 2 dogs, and 4 cats; that do 1 to 3 loads per day. They have their dryer vents cleaned every 3 to 6 months. On the flip side; we have customers that live by themselves that do laundry once a week. They can go upwards of 2 years before having the dryer vent cleaned again.

Most of our commercial clients, which include retirement homes, hospitals, hotels, laundromats, etc. have their dryer exhaust systems clean every 3-4 months.

Call Mite-E-Ducts today at 317-733-1012 for more info!