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This archived content is from Mary Wilkins’ sewing and quilting message board “Sew What’s New,” which was retired in August 2007. It is being provided by “Sew What’s Up,” which serves as the new home for many members of “Sew What’s New.”
From: MaryW
Date: 06-06-2006, 12:39 PM (1 of 12)
I received this from another list this morning. Good advice.

I received the following from a friend recently. I think every one should have this information.

The heating unit went out of my dryer! Called the repairman. The repairman went in to the dryer and pulled out the lint filter. It was clean. We always clean the lint from the filter after every load of clothes. He told us that he wanted to show us something.

He took the filter over to the sink and ran hot water over it. Now, this thing is like a mesh-I'm sure you know what your dryer's lint filter looks like - WELL......the hot water just lay on top of the mesh!!! It didn't go through it at all!!!

He told us that dryer sheets cause a film over that mesh and that's what burns out the heating unit. You can't SEE the film, but it's there. He said the best way to keep your dryer working for a very long time (and to keep your electric bill lower) is to take that filter out and wash it with hot soapy water and an old toothbrush (or other brush) at least every six months. He said that makes the life of the dryer at least twice as long! How about that???!!!! Learn something new everyday!

I certainly didn't know dryer sheets would do that. So, thought I'd share!
Note: I went to dryer and tested my screen by running water on it. The water collected a little but ran though the screen. I dried it off and was ready to put it back in the dryer since the water ran through it but, I thought, 'What the heck, it won't hurt to wash it while I had it out.'

Warm soap water and a nylon brush and I had it done in 30 seconds. I then ran the water over the screen and what a difference! The water just gushed through it with no puddling at all and this time I was running the water at a faster rate. That repairman knew what he was talking about.

Don't leave that dryer running when you leave the house, & don't leave the dryer running when you go to bed. Ask any firefighter!
owner/editor of Sew Whats New
User: MaryW
Member since: 06-23-2005
Total posts: 2542
From: mozeyrn
Date: 06-06-2006, 01:24 PM (2 of 12)
Once a long time ago my mom had left the dryer running and went to bed. It seems the dryer got too hot and burned all of our clothes that were in it! Of course my favorite shirt was in that washload. I thank God everytime I think of it that it was only our clothes that got burned.
I tell my dh (who is a firefighter) to turn the dryer off when we leave the house and he never does (he says there's no reason to - :shock: ). We have a huge fight everytime I go running back into the house to shut it off. I mentioned this one time to one of the REALLY experienced firefighters my dh works with (& respects) in front of my dh - his friend said, "Are you crazy???! You know better! I never leave my house with the dryer on!". It seems they've answered a few fire calls due to such a reason.
Taking less than two minutes to run back into the house is nothing compared to coming home and realize you house is fully engulfed in flames. I took care of a woman in the ER who had just run out for some groceries and came back to see house entire house blazing. They lost everything (including their two pets - it seems their first instinct is to hide and end up getting consumed by the smoke) - luckily their daughter was in school at the time.
- Maureen.
Learning something new with every stitch!!
Kenmore 16231000
User: mozeyrn
Member since: 11-29-2005
Total posts: 349
From: esrun3
Date: 06-06-2006, 09:52 PM (3 of 12)
Well, I haven't heard that one before but you can bet I'm going to go wash my filter when I get off the computer!
User: esrun3
Member since: 12-02-2004
Total posts: 2345
From: SummersEchos
Date: 06-06-2006, 10:33 PM (4 of 12)
Interesting to say the least. I do not myself use these sheets, really use very little fabric softner at all. But to me if this is what it leaves on your lint filter, doesn't it also make sense it would leave it on your clothes?

User: SummersEchos
Member since: 09-29-2004
Total posts: 884
From: Chrysantha
Date: 06-06-2006, 11:14 PM (5 of 12)
Thats why you buy the unscented ones. They don't leave a residue like the scented ones do...

Also...when you've moved into your new home....make sure the idiots who WIRED the home, wired all the switches and outlets CORRECTLY. I've nearly burned my house down 4 times in the (almost) 11 yrs I've been in it, because quite a few ,dryer, GFI garage, GFI house, 4 of the double switches and a couple of the outlets have all been wired, BACKWARDS. (yes folks....they WERE professionals...or so I've been told...)
The dryer outlet, and the 2 GFI's melted.....
I've been very lucky so far, since I'm home so much, I catch a LOT Of these things before they get out of hand.

(like in Jan. when the ac/furnace tried to kill us...the auto shut-off for the gas didn't work when the furnace ignitor burned out. I caught it because I was on the computer playing, smelled gas and went hunting. If I'd have gone to bed earlier, we probably would have asphyxiated. As it was I got my husband up, we turned off the gas, unplugged the furnace and he got a portable electric heater for the ferrets. (it was actually cold that night). 3 days later we bought a new furnace, a/c. It was time anyway...10 yrs on a builders cheap model was actually good...or so we like to tell ourselves...) :nervous:
User: Chrysantha
Member since: 09-06-2002
Total posts: 2414
From: DorothyL
Date: 06-07-2006, 07:22 AM (6 of 12)
My husband had a beagle. It was the most useless dog ever. Lovable and cute at first, but useless. It was useless for the year or two we had him before this incident and useless for too many years after.
But as they say, every dog has his day and Wacky had his. One day I put in a load of laundry and went to the other end of the house to do my exercises.
So there I was dancing around the room when the stupid little dog starts acting even more stupid than usual. I followed him back to the laundry room to find a smoking dryer.
It took a week to get the smell out and I had to be nice to the dog for months after.
I would never leave the house with the dryer running and I would NEVER go to sleep.
User: DorothyL
Member since: 12-09-2002
Total posts: 3883
From: bluebirdie
Date: 06-07-2006, 01:07 PM (7 of 12)
I don't think I can commit to "NEVER go to sleep" like Dorothy, but I do learn something new again!

We've been doing lots of line-drying since the famous California power blackouts costed our companies millions and sent California and America to resession (thanks to Enron, so I believe anyways). But from now on, I would not chance any unattended dryer session. And YES, I will clean the dryer vent tonite.
- Robin
User: bluebirdie
Member since: 03-12-2006
Total posts: 139
From: DorothyL
Date: 06-07-2006, 01:19 PM (8 of 12)
Well, I meant never go to sleep with the dryer running -- not never go to sleep. Sorry.
User: DorothyL
Member since: 12-09-2002
Total posts: 3883
From: bluebirdie
Date: 06-07-2006, 01:48 PM (9 of 12)
I was just kidding, Dorothy ;-)

I must agree that all the dogs adopted me were quite useless too. But they so devoted their attention to me, this minor flaw is simply forgotten. Isn't that also true with kids too.
- Robin
User: bluebirdie
Member since: 03-12-2006
Total posts: 139
From: Mom of Six
Date: 06-07-2006, 02:09 PM (10 of 12)
Another place to check is your outside vent. My dryer wasn't working right & when I checked outside I found a birds nest. They had broken off the vents & got inside & built a nest. Now I check that often. My cheap (store brand) dryer sheets must not leave a residue I checked mine & there was no difference before & after cleaning. I do about 3 loads a day of laundry 5 days a week.
Happiness is having time to sew!!
User: Mom of Six
Member since: 11-03-2001
Total posts: 1115
From: LeapFrog Libby
Date: 06-07-2006, 06:31 PM (11 of 12)
My son checked mine, and said same thing Barb, cheap dryer sheets... Hey, they do what they are supposed to.. Keep down the static cling and they do NOT clog the dryer filter.. So we are ahead of the game..
Sew With Love
User: LeapFrog Libby
Member since: 05-01-2002
Total posts: 2022
From: HeyJudee
Date: 06-07-2006, 07:30 PM (12 of 12)
Well I checked mine after reading Mary's post. The water sprayed out through the filter - just like the sprayers that you have on your faucet. So I thought no need to clean mine. Then I did the same as Mary...cleaned anyways. Well, after the cleaning the water went through the filter just like it came out of the tap -- No spraying at all. So I'll be doing this more frequently in the future.

One thing I do fairly frequently is to vacumn the lint out of my dryer. There is a deep hole under the lint filter. I'm supposed to clean in there every month. I use the vacumn attachment that I bought for cleaning my sewing machine to get down in there. Works great.
TTFN from
User: HeyJudee
Member since: 01-25-2005
Total posts: 1366
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