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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Exhaust Vent Fire Safety

4/23/2018 (Permalink)

You have heard the phrase electricity and water don’t mix. Well lint, dust and hair can be hazardous also when combined with electrical items such as a bath room exhaust fan or dryer vent.  In an earlier blog we told you how an exhaust vent is a good thing to help prevent excessive moisture build up and mold growth in your bathroom. But like anything around your home proper maintenance will keep it in good working order and help prevent fire hazards.

According to NFPA.org (National Fire Protection Association) over 45,000 homes suffered a fire loss between 2010 & 2014 involving electrical failure or malfunction. These fires resulted in $1.4 billion in property damage and more tragically over 1300 injuries and over 400 deaths.  Those numbers are staggering when you consider that some are preventable with proper usage and maintenance of the electrical items around the house.

Exhaust vents can present a potential fire hazard if not cleaned and maintained on a regular basis. Fans over time build up lint which can cause the motor to overheat and ignite the lint, plastic fan blades and the nearby combustible wood structure. How fast lint builds up is dependent on how often it is used and the amount of particulate in the air moving through the exhaust or vent.

Dryer vents and exhaust fans are used in both commercial and residential properties.  The original install of this equipment was not purchased for longevity nor are most of these devices thermally protected. Thermal protection causes the motor to shut off should they seize and overheat. This safety feature has been available since the late 1970’s, but was not widely used until the early 1990’s.  Along with changing batteries in smoke detectors you should clean the exhaust fans in your home or place of work twice a year. If it starts to make noises or smells odd, it’s time to replace it.

If you have Fire, Water or Mold damage in your home or business call us 336-946-1131 SERVPRO of West Forsyth County. “Like it never even happened.”

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