How Do You Install a Dryer Vent?


Quick Answer

To install a dryer vent, install the vent cap on the exterior of the building, slide the straight duct into the cap and put the inside frame in place. Connect the ductwork from the back of the dryer to the straight duct before starting the dryer.

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Full Answer

  1. Determine the best exit point for the duct

    Find a spot in the exterior of the home or building that is at least a foot above the ground and a foot away from exterior appliances and requires no more than 25 feet in flexible ductwork from the back of the dryer. MInimize the turns in the ductwork because each 90-degree turn occupies 5 feet of ductwork.

  2. Establish the exit point, and install the vent cap

    Drill a quick pilot hole to see the location of the vent on the outside. Adjust as necessary before using a bimetal hole saw (when dealing with aluminum siding) to make a hole 4 1/4 inches in diameter. Hold the drill with both hands, but do not lock the trigger. Stop cutting frequently to avoid overheating or binding. Push any siding layers out of the way as necessary. Slide the vent cap into the hole, and fasten it into place using the provided hardware. Caulk around it to provide a weatherproof seal. Use a hammer drill with a masonry bit for the pilot hole when dealing with brick or stucco, and then make a series of holes from the outside to frame the circle for the vent. Score between the holes with a chisel, snipping away any pieces of mesh (in stucco). Pull the stucco or brick out, and use a 4 1/4 inch hole saw to drill through the framing and sheathing.

  3. Install the straight duct and interior framing

    Measure the distance between the exterior and interior walls to determine the needed length of the straight duct. Use tin snips to cut the straight duct as needed, and slide the straight duct through to the vent cap. Use foil tape to secure the straight duct to the vent and secure junctions between pieces of ductwork. Slide the plastic frame over the straight duct, and fasten following manufacturer's instructions. Insert the crimped end of the flexible ductwork into the straight duct, securing it with foil tape. Attach the other end of the flexible ductwork to the exhaust from the dryer, securing with foil tape. Test by turning on the dryer and going outside to see if the flap on the vent is opening.

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