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Most people don’t realize how dangerous their clothes dryers can be. A single spark can ignite lint or other debris inside the dryer, and the resulting fire can spread quickly, damaging your home and putting your family at risk.

Read on to understand more about how lint can cause a house fire.

What Is a Dryer Lint?

Dryer lint is the small pieces of fabric, hair, and debris that accumulate in your dryer as it runs. This lint can come from your clothes, towels, or sheets. Over time, it can build up and results in problems.

Sometimes you cannot see the lint because it gets stuck in the dryer’s filter. This can lead to your dryer overheating and potentially catching fire.

How Does Lint Cause a Fire?

Lint is highly combustible. Even a single spark from your dryer’s heating element can ignite the lint, and the resulting fire can spread quickly.

In addition, lint can block the airflow in your dryer, making it harder for the appliance to cool down. This can cause the overheating of the heating element and start a fire. If worse comes to worst, this may require you to hire a restoration company, such as this fire damage restoration in Scottsdale, AZ, to help with the aftermath.

How to Prevent a Dryer Fire

Here are a number of ways how you can prevent a dryer fire:

  • The best way to prevent a dryer fire is to clean your lint screen after every load of laundry.
  • Vacuum around your dryer to get rid of any lint that may have accumulated there.
  • Have your dryer cleaned by a professional at least once a year. This helps remove any lint that has become stuck in places you can’t see or reach.
  • If you observe that your clothes are taking longer to dry or your dryer is getting hotter than usual, unplug it and call a repairman before using it again. These could be signs that your dryer is overheating and at risk of starting a fire.

What Happens if a Fire Occurs?

If a fire occurs in your dryer, it is important to act quickly. Here are tips to consider:

  • If you can, turn off the power to your dryer.
  • If the fire is minor, you can use a fire extinguisher to put out the fire. Make sure that it is designed for use on electrical fires.
  • If the fire is large or you are unsure how to use a fire extinguisher, evacuate your home and call 911. Avoid trying to fight the fire yourself.
  • Once the fire is out, assess the damage to your home and dryer.
  • If the fire was small and confined to the dryer, you may be able to repair the damage yourself. However, if the fire caused extensive damage, you need to hire a professional restoration company to help you repair and restore your home (why not follow this link to see how it works).


Dryer fires are a danger in any home. You can protect your family and home from this hidden hazard by taking some simple precautions. Also, cleaning your dryer regularly is vital to remove any lint buildup. If a fire occurs, act quickly and call for help if necessary.

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