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Can You Clean a Dryer Vent with a Leaf Blower?

A person uses a vacuum to clean a dryer vent.
Benjamin Clapp/Shutterstock.com

If it has been a while since you’ve cleaned your dryer vent or had it professionally cleaned, now is a good time. The job is a necessary step in home maintenance since all that lint could lead to a fire hazard. But if you’ve go a leaf blower, do you already have what you need to clean it out yourself?

As it turns out, you can clean a dryer vent with a leaf blower. But just because you can, that doesn’t make it the best method.

The whole purpose of cleaning out your dryer vent is to prevent lint and fluff from building up inside. If a buildup happens, it can lead to a fire, but even if that doesn’t happen, excess lint can reduce how well your dryer works, shorten its lifespan, and cause mold and mildew buildup in the dryer. None of those sounds very fun, right?

Typically, you’d use a dryer vent cleaning kit or a vacuum to clean the duct and hose. Kits typically include brushes and hoses that are able to reach into the duct and tubing to thoroughly get any lint out. But with a leaf blower, you essentially just, well, blow the lint out.

Once you disconnect your dryer from the power source and open the exterior vent outside, just stick your leaf blower into the opening inside your home and allow it to blow for 30 seconds.

However, there are a few things to know. This trick only works if your dryer has no metal screens or exterior walls, the vent is short and doesn’t curve or turn, and has smooth metal inside. Otherwise, lint can get trapped or even compacted.

So should you use a leaf blower? While it’s a quick (and arguably fun) way to clean your dryer vent, professional cleaning or cleaning using dryer vent kits is more effective. Even if you don’t call in the big guns, kits feature brushes and hoses that can better access every bit of your vent for a more thorough clean.

Sure, you can bring your leaf blower indoors and clean your lint trap, but ultimately, your leaf blower might be best kept outside.

Shea Simmons Shea Simmons
Shea Simmons is the Assignments Editor at LifeSavvy. Previously, she worked as a freelance writer with a focus on beauty and lifestyle content. Her work has appeared in Bustle, Allure, and Hello Giggles. Read Full Bio »
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