Homeowners insurance is meant to cover unexpected damage, and nothing is more unexpected than the unfortunate house fire. You take care to avoid leaving lit candles burning, pots cooking on the stove and avoiding portable heaters, but could the most deadly of these dangers be lurking in your common household appliance?

How often do you clean your clothes dryer’s lint trap? If the answer isn’t before every load of clothes, you aren’t cleaning it enough.

When lint builds up in the lint trap, it prevents the proper airflow that helps the dryer work the way it is intended. Without that airflow, parts inside the dryer can heat up and ignite. Causing fire devastation.

  • 2,900 home clothes dryer fires are reported each year and cause an estimated 5 deaths, 100 injuries, and $35 million in property loss.
  • The leading cause of home clothes dryer fires is failure to clean them (34 percent).
  • More home clothes dryer fires occur in the fall and winter months, peaking in January.

Top Three Dryer Fire Preventions

  1. Clean your lint trap with every load. This provides the proper airflow that will allow your dryer to work the way it was intended.
  2. Professionals should clean your dryer pipes at least once a year. This is probably advice you have never heard, but lint builds up in your major dryer lines that lead the hot air outside. Failure to clean these can cause the same problems as the lint traps.
  3. Be careful what you put in your dryer. Some things just don’t belong in the dryer. Detergents don’t always get everything out of your clothes, and these items can combust with the added heat.
    • Garage rags stained with motor oil or gasoline
    • Aprons, dish towels or napkins stained with cooking oil• Anything made of rubber or plastic, such as bath mats or even foam-padded bras.

So, if your machine isn’t doing a good job drying your clothes, it should be a clue that your lint trap or exhaust pipes are getting clogged with lint. Clean them immediately.

And never leave your house or go to sleep with the dryer running.

But, should the unbelievable ever become a reality, make sure you family is protected with Henry Insurance Service and the best selection of Homeowners Insurance.