How Do You Clean a Dryer Lint Trap?

clean-dryer-lint-trap Credit: Nick M. Do/E+/Getty Images

To clean a dryer lint trap, the first step is to remove the lint trap filter from the dryer and remove the lint from the screen using a soft bristled cleaning brush. The next step is to clean out the lint trap housing cavity with a long-handled cleaning brush or vacuum. This helps to ensure the removal of loose lint that has detached from the screen.

For a deeper clean, lint traps can also be thoroughly cleaned with warm, soapy water and a nylon brush. The best way for individuals to detect whether or not their filter screens require a water wash is by running the screen under water. If the water pools on top of the screen instead of rushing through, this means the screen is clogged. Dryer sheets can cause an invisible build-up of film on the lint screen that can lead to extended drying times, as well as burn out the heating unit.

In addition to home remedies, there are also commercial lint removal kits that are specifically designed to remove deep build-up and lint that is trapped in the dryer vent ducts. Lint removal kits typically include special vacuum cleaner attachments and long, flexible brushes. Keeping the lint trap and surrounding housing cavity as clean as possible helps to prolong the life of the appliance, minimize the risk of fire and increases the dryer's overall performance.