Clothes dryers are popular domestic and commercial machines which, when poorly maintained or not used correctly, can increase the risk of fires.
Reduce the potential for fire in the following ways:
- Follow the manufacturer's instructions and ensure the lint filter is cleaned before every load.
- If you use anti-static sheets scrub the lint filter with warm soapy water and then rinse every month. This will remove a waxy build up on the filter.
- Move the dryer and vacuum lint that has collected behind and underneath at least once a year.
- Ensure there is adequate room for ventilation around the dryer.
- Never use the dryer for drying clothes or rags that have been used to absorb flammable liquids or oils. You need to wash clothes worn while using oils or sprays in hot water and detergent to remove such substances before putting them in a dryer.
- Never use the dryer to dry clothes that have not been washed. Unwashed clothes have a greater build-up of contaminants, especially oils and grease. Lint from these clothes will be more combustible and can ignite when hot.
- Never turn the dryer off before the cool down period is over. There have been fires resulting from clothing being left bunched up while still hot inside the dryer. Clothes dryers are designed to allow clothes to cool down before the cycle is finished. See also the Home Fire and Life Safety Fact Sheet - Self Heating and Spontaneous Combustion.
- Do not leave your clothes dryer running unattended.
- Any repairs of your clothes dryer must be carried out by a qualified tradesperson in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions.
For further advice ring the Community Safety & Resilience Department 8204 3611, Country callers 1300 737 637
or call in to 99 Wakefield Street, Adelaide during business hours.