What to Do if Your Dryer Catches Fire?

dryer fire

An appliance fire is a dangerous scenario, one to which you must respond quickly. What do you do if your clothes dryer catches fire? Should you try to put it out? How would you do that? Find out what to do should the dryer erupt in flames.

The Dryer Catches Fire: What Do I Do?

First, let’s talk about what NOT to do. While your natural inclination might be to open the dryer door, please DON’T. If a fire has started or you see smoke, the handle may be hot; so it could burn your hand. Opening the door could also send smoke rushing to your face. Smoke carries residue from the burning plastic inside the dryer and contains toxic fumes. 

If you only see smoke but no fire, unplug the appliance. Cautiously open the door using a towel and keep as much distance between the opening and yourself. If a fire has started, use a dry chemical fire extinguisher, which we recommend you keep in the laundry room. We also recommend having a fire blanket nearby, which you can use to smother fires.

When to Evacuate

If the fire has engulfed the entire appliance, then alert other home occupants and flee the home immediately. Once everyone is safely outside, call 911. Resist the urge to grab any valuable possessions. Your bodily safety comes first. Call 911 even if you manage to put out the fire. Some smoldering may still be going on inside the dryer and can cause the fire to return abruptly.

Prevent Dryer Vent Fires

To reduce the risk of dryer vent fires, schedule a dryer vent cleaning every year. Most of our clients do this as part of a more inclusive cleaning effort that also involves air duct cleaning and furnace cleaning. Call Aurora Edmonds Furnace Cleaning for maintenance. This drastically reduces the chances of the dryer catching fire.

Dryer Vent Cleaning and Maintenance

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