If it’s taking longer than usual for your clothes to dry or the clothes are super hot after a dry cycle, you could have a build-up of lint—even if it’s not visible in the lint screen. “Lint is an extremely flammable material,” says Jason Kapica, president of Dryer Vent Wizard. “Oxygen moves through a dryer and its vent when the machine is running. There is a heating element inside the dryer providing a potential ignition source.” Reduce the risk by removing the lint from the lint screen after each load and get a yearly cleaning of the dryer vent line. Also, make sure to never put any of these 14 items in your dryer!
If you notice some puddles on the floor (and you don’t have a new puppy), it could be a sign of poor ventilation and mold. “Mold is a particularly common problem in bathrooms with inadequate ventilation,” says Yoel Pioraut, managing partner at MyHome Design + Remodeling. “Examine pipes to check for moisture or excessive condensation. If everything checks out, but you have a lack of ventilation, it’s time to call in a contractor to add an exhaust fan,” recommends Pioraut. Allergies and asthma reactions are intensified when mold is present.
The Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) is an electrical safety device that trips electrical circuits when they detect ground faults or leakage currents. “These outlets prevent deadly shock by quickly shutting off power to the circuit when the electricity flowing into the circuit differs from that returning,” says Keith Pinkerton, owner of Mr. Electric of Huntsville, Alabama, a Neighborly company. In some cases, the switches may stay on and trip off when the test button is pressed. That’s a sign a new GFCI should be installed by an electrician. Find out the truth behind deadly electricity myths.