Fire Hazard Concerns Cause Major Dryer Recall

A recall of approximately 21,000 LG Electronics and Kenmore Elite Gas Dryers has been issued by the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, LG Electronics, Inc. and Sears. The gas dryer recall concerns a faulty gas valve that can fail to properly shut off once a drying cycle has ended. Such defective dryers continue to experience building heat, both internally and externally— leading to scorched drums, burning of the dryer and its contents and smoke inhalation dangers.

LG and Sears have collectively received over 141 complaints from consumers testifying that clothes dryers have continued to heat post the dryer cycle. Three consumers were burned by the defective gas dryers. Logs show 50 incidents of burnt or scorched clothing.

The recalled clothes gas dryers were manufactured in South Korea. The impacted LG Electronics gas dryers were sold by a variety of appliance stores, including Sears, across the US from November 2009 through August 2010. The recalled Kenmore Elite gas dryers where sold exclusively at Sears stores in the US from November 2009 through August 2010. The gas dryers had a retail price range retailed from approximately $650 – $1,500 depending on the model.

Consumers can determine if their gas clothes dryer is impacted by model number. A listing of model numbers can be found at the following CPSC website, click here. 

Should consumers confirm or suspect that their gas dryer is impacted by this recall, they are advised by the CPSC to IMMEDIATELY turn off the gas supply to the clothes dryer and discontinue further use of the dryer.

Consumers who purchased a recalled LG Electronics or Kenmore Elite dryer from Sears, should contact Sears for a free repair. The remedy is a replacement of the defective gas valve. For consumers who purchased their units from other retailers should contact LG customer service directly for the replacement part.

Here is the customer service contact information:

LG Consumer Contact: For additional information about the recall and to schedule a repair, contact LG toll free at (866) 223-5355 between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m. CT Monday through Friday, and between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. CT on Saturday, or visit the firm’s website at www.lg.com/us and click on Public Notices.

Sears Consumer Contact: For additional information and to schedule a repair, contact Sears toll-free at (888) 375-9741 between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. CT Monday through Friday, and between 7:00 A.M. and 6:00 P.M. Saturday, or visit the firm’s website at www.sears.com and click on Product Recalls under Customer Service.

Additional information relating to impacted model numbers and how to locate a model number can be found on the CPSC website, click here.

 

 

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Dryer Safety Tips – Avoid a Laundry Fire

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  <img src="house fire.jpg" alt="House fire caused by clothes dryer">

US Government statistics show that 2,900 clothes dryer fires occur in the United States every year. Annually, these dryer fires are responsible for deaths, injuries and $35 million in property loss. To keep your family safe from laundry room fires, attention must be made to the proper installation, usage and maintenance of the clothes dryer in your home. Here is a listing of safety laundry tips from the US Fire Administration related to reducing fire hazards in clothes dryers.

Clothes Dryers Dos For Prevention

  • Hire a qualified appliance professional to install your clothes dryer.
  • Mandatory cleaning of the lint filter after each dryer cycle. Routine cleaning of the backside of the dryer where lint and dust can collect. Every 6 months, physically clean the lint filter with a nylon brush —  more often if filter becomes more frequently clogged.
  • Visually inspect the venting system behind the dryer for any signs of damage, crushing or restriction.
  • Observe the outside wall dampers.  External dryer dampers should be equipped with a covering that shields from rain, snow and dirt. Wire screens or cloth should never be used as covering because they can attract and trap lint which will clog the dryer vent.
  • Outdoor dryer vent coverings should open when the clothes dryer is operating.
  • Both the interior of the dryer and the dryer vent system should be periodically cleaned (or repaired) by a professional appliance repair service. A sign of a clog, is a dryer that is taking longer to dry laundry.
  • All coiled-wire foil or plastic dryer venting should be immediately be replaced with rigid non-ribbed metal duct.
  • Gas powered dryers should annually be inspected by a professional. This will insure that gas the gas line and connection are free of leaks.
  • Beware of critters. Routinely check the outside dryer vents for nests of small animals and birds and insects. Promptly remove if found.
  • Verify that you are using the correct electrical plug and outlet as per your clothes dryer instructions. Double-check all connections.
  • Actually read and observe the dryer manufacturers’ instructions and warnings in the use and care manual provided at purchase.
  • Keep the area around the clothes dryer free of items free of items that can burn.
  • When you away from home for a long period of time (such as a vacation or business trip) unplug or disconnect the clothes dryer.

Clothes Dryer Dont’s For Fire Prevention

  • Never operate a clothes dryer without a lint filter or operate with a lint filter that is damaged, loose or clogged.
  • Never dry rubber, foam or plastic in the clothes dryer. This includes bathroom rugs lined with such backing.
  • Never dry any article with explicit care instructions that state “Dry away from heat”.
  • Never dry glass fiber materials.
  • Never dry in a clothes dryer items that have come into contact with flammable items such as: alcohol, cooking oils, gasoline and the like. Such items should be dried outdoors or in a well-ventilated room away from any heat source.
  • Never leave a clothes dryer running when the home will not be occupied.
  • Never leave a clothes dryer on when you are sleeping.

Establishing the above dryer safety guidelines will help keep your family and home safe from the hazards of clothes dryer fires. These safe laundry tips are easy to implement. Don’t delay, start making your laundry safer starting today.


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Dryer Fire Facts

The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA), a division of the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Association has just released a report titled Clothes Dryer Fires in Residential Buildings (2008-2010). The findings showcase data collected by the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS).  Contained data highlights the truth behind the fiery headline news of many home fires: the laundry room, if not maintained, could harm your home and family. Preventive maintenance of the clothes dryer is key to lowering your risk of a fire in the home.

Home Dryer Fire Facts

  • 2,900 clothes dryer fires occur each year (on average).
  • 5 deaths a year are caused by residential clothes dryer fires.
  • 100 Injuries a year are caused by clothes dryer fires.
  • 35 Million in property is caused by residential dryer fires.
  • Dryer fires peak, usually, in January. A higher incidence of these fires occur in the fall and winter.
  • Failure to clean the dryer was the cause of 34% of clothes dryer fires.
  • Lint, fiber and dust were attributed as the ignition source in 28% of home dryer fires.
  • Clothing ranked second as a source contributor of ignition at 27%.
  • In 54% of the clothes dryer fire incidents, the fire was contained to the dryer.

Spare your family, home and wallet the disaster of a home fire caused by a dryer.  Safe Laundry Tip: read more about how to maintain your clothes dryer and dryer vent to maximize your energy savings. Home dryer fires are preventable.

 

 

 

 

 

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Dryer Fires Caused by Dryer Sheet Residue

WFMY News2 reporter, Liz Crawford, in Greensboro, North Carolina conducted an interview with Fire Captain Mike Simmons of the Greensboro Fire Department about dryer fires.
img src="fire safety.jpg" alt="Dryer sheet residue dangers in the laundry cause fires ">

Captain Simmons presented viewers with a powerful safe laundry tip concerning usage of dryer sheets. In his words:

“They release by heat and it becomes like a glue to the filter screen when it cools back off and it can clog your screen without you really being able to see it”

So if you are a fan of dryer sheets you need to routinely not just empty the lint screen after each load —-But, also wash the lint screen in soap and water. Washing will remove the buildup of residue that is clogging the screen and allow air to circulate. Without air circulation the dryer can overheat and cause a fire.

An economic and safe alternative to dryer sheets are dryer balls. Dryer balls allow you to soften your laundry naturally by allowing air to freely circulate within the dryer. This means dryer time is decreased and energy savings are realized. Dryer balls also reduce static cling and wrinkling —-which means less time ironing. They are a safe laundry tip because they lessen the formation of lint. Excessive lint buildup in your dryer is a ca cause of fires and an energy waster as it prohibits proper air circulation. Ditching dryer sheets is also a plus, because your family can be spared from harsh chemicals contained in traditional dryer sheets. And, we bet that Fire Captains everywhere would approve of them since they do cause a sticky buildup in your dryer —which is also a cause of dryer fires.


Read more about preventing dryer fires:

How to Fully Clean Your Dryer of Lint

What You Need to Know About Dryer Vent Hoses

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Dryer Fires – An Ounce of Lint Prevention is Key

Lint dryer fires and other causes of dryer fires caused an estimated 7,000 household fires in the years between 2006 -2008, per recent CPSC data. Now, the CPSC is participating in the creation of voluntary standards within the appliance industry to reduce the occurrence of household clothes dryer fires. But prior to manufacturers building safer and smarter dryers, consumers need to take safety into their own hands to protect their family and property. Routine dryer cleaning is mandatory….dryer lint removal a must. Knowing how to properly clean a dryer is a necessary safe laundry tip.

Lint From Dryer

Lint happens. Any act of abrasion, such as the rubbing of clothing across the skin, can cause fibers to loosen and form lint. Lint can be a combination of fabric fibers, skin, and hair and other materials. Fibers and debris gravitate towards one in another in clumps or clusters forming lint.

During the laundry lint is generated as clothing fibers become loosened and separated in the washing and drying process. Natural fabrics, such as wool and cotton, are more apt to produce lint versus synthetic materials—such as spandex.  Newer clothing will shed more lint than older clothing. Quality linen and garments with longer,stronger and better woven threads are less likely to thin and separate.

The agitation of clothing, towels and sheets within the wash cycle contribute to the deterioration of their comprised fabrics. This activity is hastened in the clothes dryer as the air generated by the dryer exhaust “pulls” loose fibers from the fabric. The tumbling of the clothing and other laundry items furthers the friction.

Dryer lint is highly flammable. In fact, it is considered excellent timber for campfires. Routine emptying of the dryer lint trap is a good first step to eliminating dryer lint. But, consumers must also perform additional dryer maintenance to prevent dryer lint from clogging the dryer vents.

What is a a dryer vent?

The dryer vent is the vent that facilitates the outflow of air exhaust and remaining lint. It is connected to the dryer and travels to either a vent cap outside or other outside clearance such as a window.

A dryer vent should be constructed of aluminum. Any vinyl dryer vents, even white vinyl, should promptly be exchanged for an aluminum dryer vent that meets current fire safety standards.

A telltale sign of a clogged dryer vent is a loss of drying capacity. Chris Hall, of Repair Clinic.com, states “If you notice that it’s taking longer for your clothes to dry, it’s likely that lint is clogging the venting system. You should clean it out as soon as possible.” When a dryer vent gets clogged by lint air flow it is compromised. The appliance thus consumes more energy as it takes longer and longer to dry the same amount of laundry. A reduction in air flow also means that the dryer can become overheated. The rise in dryer temperature and the build-up of lint within the dryer vent make for perfect fire conditions.

Cleaning a Dryer Vent

Unfortunately, many consumers assume that they have completed dryer maintenance simply by emptying the dryer lint catch after each load. However, the really hazardous buildup of dryer lint is hidden from view within the walls of the dryer vent.  A true cleaning of the dryer starts from inside of the dryer to the outside vent cap. Cleaning a dryer vent is best done three to four times a year to ensure safety. The amount of laundry you do and the type of garments that you launder can all impact lint levels. It is better to be aggressive in your lint removal efforts than lax.

Consumers no longer have to rely on a professional when cleaning the dryer. Today there are simple to use vent cleaners that can be purchased to help with the task of cleaning your dryer. Our favorite is the Gardus  linteater dryer dryer vent cleaning system rle202.

This dryer vent cleaning tool is an investment in energy savings and laundry room safety. The Gardus linteater has become a popular choice with consumers because it REALLY works to keep your dryer free of lint. This vent cleaning tool is sturdy and comes with easy to follow directions to assist in cleaning the dryer.  The Gardus Linteater can be purchased with for long dryer vents.

You will be amazed at how much faster your laundry drys. Some consumers feel as if they have a brand new clothes dryer. Think of the savings your wallet will realize from home energy savings.

 

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Robert De Niro Apartment Blaze Preventable

The New York Post has confirmed that the fire in actor Robert De Niro’s s multi-level apartment originated in the laundry room. Luckily, the actor and his family were not at home during the fire and no other tenants within the building were harmed. The 5th floor of the building did sustain extensive fire, smoke and water damage. The exact cause of the fire was due to a build-up of lint in a clothes dryer. A firefighter told reporters at the scene “Some of the lint [in the dryer] caught fire.”

This laundry dryer fire could have been avoided with diligent maintenance. Even the rich and famous are not excluded from emptying the laundry lint trap after each and every load of laundry. But, beyond the lint trap the dryer’s venting system also needs scheduled maintenance to avoid the sparking of flames. Read our safe laundry tips on cleaning dryer vent hoses and other clothes dryer maintenance, here, to avoid a fire in your family’s laundry room.

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Energy Saving Tips For Your Laundry Room

The Refrigerator Repair Company has announced the results of a new study designed to help your you lower your families energy costs by making simple changes to your laundry routine.  The main key to decreasing energy usage in the laundry room is make certain that both your washing machine and dryer are operating efficiently. Machines that are not properly maintained or that are incorrectly used are forced to operated under pressure and ultimately utilize more energy resources.

The Refrigerator Repair Company offers these safe laundry room tips to help you save on your energy bill:

Washer

  • When appropriate, wash clothes in cold water. This saves the energy needed to heat the water.
  • Wash full loads. Washing machines use about the same amount of energy for all load sizes, so fill up the load to avoid wasting energy.
  • Use the high-speed spin cycle, to take moisture out of your clothes resulting in less drying time and more energy saved.
  • If you have an older top-loading washing machine, consider converting to a front-loading washer, which uses about 70 percent less water.

Dryer

  • Keep the lint filter clean to maximize air circulation, energy efficiency and to help prevent a potential fire.
  • Dry full loads and use the moisture sensor setting. Not only does this save energy, it also protects your clothes from heat damage.
  • Keep the dryer’s outside exhaust clean to prevent dryer fires and reduce drying time, which saves energy. Keep the dryer at least four inches away from the wall to prevent kinks or tears from forming in the exhaust vent.

Implementing these simple steps will both lower your energy costs and keep your laundry appliances operating safe and smoothly. A reduced energy bill and repair savings are the huge rewards for making minor changes to your laundry habits.

Refrigerator Repair Authorized Service has been providing reliable, professional and fast appliance Authorized Service since 1994.

 

 

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Iron Safely With The Oliso Smart Iron

 

Okay, so I have a crush on a small appliance.

My funny valentine is the Oliso TG1050 1600 Watts Smart Iron.   This iron puts the romance (well, we can pretend) back into ironing.

Award Winning, Brawn and Brains

Seriously, the entire line of Oliso Irons are truly stellar appliances noted for their smart designs which allow you to safely iron your laundry.They have received a bounty of accolades and awards. Most notably, they were the recipient of the The Home Safety Council’s Commendation Award for Product innovation. The council recognizes products that are innovated with a focus on consumer safety.  The Oliso Iron also was an Iparenting Media award winner in a nod that shows that families with children appreciate the safe laundry benefits.

Oliso Smart Irons feature a patent-protected technology known as iTouch. The inventors of this new technology realized that the standard iron needed to be reinvented with a revived focus on ease of use and most importantly, safety. One of the problems with traditional irons are their inherent instability. Their wobbliness can cause accidental burns to the user or the fabric being ironed. The product engineers at Oliso solved the traditional iron design flaws and designed an iron that has both brawn and brains. The ergonomically designed Oliso Smart Irons actually know when you are ready to start or end the ironing process.

They key to the Oliso Smart Iron ITouch technology is in the handle. When not in use, the handle activates the lowering of the scorchguards. The scorchguards lift (like a push-up) the iron away from the surface area of the fabric or ironing surface. Thus the iron can safely rest in a horizontal position vs the mandatory vertical position of other irons. Such freedom prevents accidental overheating of fabrics, burns to skin, repetitive hand motions and the annoying falling iron occurrence.

But how does it iron?

Fabulously! The grill plate allows for smooth gliding over fabrics. It affords a vigorous steam action. You can safely steam fabrics in either an upright or vertical position giving you the flexibility you need to achieve professional laundered results. A unique fill tray design prevents water from dripping onto fabrics.

Watch this sexy steamer in action: Oliso Smart Iron Demonstration

Safety Matters

So our Safe Laundry Tip, is that the Oliso Smart Iron will greatly reduce laundry room hazards via:

  1.  Reducing Painful Accidental Skin Burns
  2.  Preventing Household Fires With Automatic Timed Shut-off
  3.  Defending Your Fabrics From Ruin By Accidental Scorching
  4.  Averting Dangerous And Damaging Iron Falls

Excuse me, please, I have to get ready for my date now. Umm….I mean go iron my clothes.

 

 

 

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Safety Check: Your Dryer Vent Hose

In most households the dryer vent hose gets little care and respect. That is unfortunate, because neglecting this piece of laundry equipment could be costing you money and jeopardizing the safety of your family.

If you are still utilizing white plastic venting it should immediately be replaced with UL listed metal vent piping. The white plastic vents feature prominent interior ribbed surfaces that allow for pockets of lint to accumulate. This results in a restricted air flow which causes the dryer to run less efficiently. Eventually, such blockages could result in combustion wherein the plastic hose will quickly burn.

Metallic vent piping also requires periodic maintenance to clear the interior of lint debris.  A good rule of thumb is inspect and conduct cleaning a least twice a year at daylight savings time, when you are also checking smoke detector batteries. The piping should be held securely in place with solid metal elbows at the dryer appliance and the vent cap.  Avoid crushing the pipe. Also, be certain that the exterior flap opens while the dryer is in use.

And always, always empty your machines lint trap after each use to avoid clogging the vent and machine. Routine lint and dust abatement should be performed in the basin, exterior sides, tops and bottoms of the dryer. A gentle alcohol wipe of the dryer sensors with a soft cloth should also be part of the maintenance schedule.

A great product to assist in clearing dryer vent piping is the popular “lint eater” officially known as Gardus RLE202 LintEater 10-Piece Rotary Dryer Vent Cleaning System. Designed by a commercial duct cleaning company for the homeowner, the “lint eater”:

  • Helps prevent dryer fires by removing lint buildup in clothes dryers which is one of the leading causes of home fires
  • Reduces drying times to save money on utility bills and wear and tear on dryer and clothing
  • Professional design with advanced cleaning technology has been field tested and used by professional service technicians for over 15 years
  • Effectively cleans all types of dryer vents including metal or foil or white vinyl
  • Easy to use and works with your cordless drill

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A well cleaned machine will reward you with lower electricity costs, reduced repair bills and extended running life. Be certain to consult the manufacturer’s instruction manual for appropriate operating and maintenance procedures unique to your appliance.

 

 

 

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