Dryer Vent Cleaning – What is C-DET?

If you’ve ever had your dryer vents professionally cleaned, you’ve most likely come across the phrase “C-DET certified.” In this guide, we explore the relationship between C-DET and dryer vents cleaning and explain exactly what C-DET means.

What is C-DET?

C-DET is the only nationally recognized certification for dryer vent cleaning. A C-DET, or Certified Dryer Exhaust Technician, is certified by the CSIA (Chimney Safety Institute of America). So, a C-DET is a specially trained technician that is qualified to recognize safety issues and potential problems with your dryer. C-DET and dryer vent cleaning are essential to ensure dryers in your home operate safely. Otherwise, your dryer poses a risk for house fires and carbon monoxide poisoning.

What Does a C-DET do?

C-DETs do a lot more than simply cleaning out a dryer vent – they have other responsibilities too, such as checking the dyer system and making sure it’s in compliance with all relevant codes and regulations. A C-DET takes into account the age of your dryer, and how frequently it’s used. This information helps to eliminate possible safety hazards.

Why Use a C-DET?

If you choose to hire a technician without a C-DET certification, you could be trusting your dryer vent cleaning and analysis service to someone who is unqualified and inexperienced. When you work with a C-DET, you can have complete confidence that you hired someone with an expansive knowledge of dryers, as well as all the relevant codes and regulations. To become a CSIA C-DET, you must pass an extensive exam that covers everything from dryer maintenance to codes and regulations.

Why is C-DET Dryer Vents Cleaning Important?

• Improve the efficiency of your dryer

A clean dryer vent keeps your dryer functioning properly. When it’s clogged, it causes your appliance to work overtime. Clothes stay damp for longer, and your dryer deteriorates at a much faster rate than usual.

• Fire Safety

If your dryer is taking longer than usual to dry clothes, it may be running at a higher temperature. This can cause the heating element of your dryer to burn out. Not to mention this is one of the most common causes of house fires! Regular dryer maintenance by a C-DET ensures your dryer runs at a safe temperature.

C-DET and Dryer Vents Cleaning for You

Our mission is to educate and bring awareness to our customers regarding home safety. Maintain the optimum performance of your dryer, and secure your peace of mind, with a professional C-DET dryer vent cleaning from The Irish Sweep. Give us a call at (510) 521-4088.

The Danger of Skipping Your Dryer Vent Cleaning

Your dryer is probably not something you ever think about as long as it’s working properly. But dryer vent cleaning is a critical aspect of home maintenance. Read on to learn more about the danger of skipping this annual appointment.

What is a Dryer Vent?

We all know it’s important to clean the lint trap in the dryer door, but there’s a vent connector that leads to an outside vent and it also gets full of clothing fuzz. The problem with this is that heat escapes from your dryer.  Dryer sheets exacerbate the issue because they leave sticky debris.

House Fires

When dryer vents become clogged with debris and lint, it restricts the airflow, and exhaust gases become trapped. Your dryer then has to work harder to create heat. Not only is this a nuisance because clothes stay damp, but it causes thousands of house fires each year.

Vent blockages can also force the deadly gas carbon monoxide to backup. This is especially dangerous because it’s odorless.

Pesky Invaders

A pest invasion isn’t as dramatic as a house fire, but too much lint can prevent your exterior dryer duct’s hood flap from closing all the way. This creates an entry point for birds or rodents looking for warmth and shelter. Cleaning your dryer vent will help keep your home free of critters. You can also consider installing a pest guard.

Your Energy Bill

A dryer that’s burdened with lint simply won’t function as well, which means higher monthly energy costs for you. It might not seem like much, but those extra dollars can add up over time.

Scheduling Your Dryer Vent Cleaning

The Irish Sweep has been in business since 1979. Our top priority remains safety, and we tailor services with our client’s best interest at heart. We hope you found this article informative. To schedule your dryer cleaning appointment today, give us a call at (510) 521-4088.

What Does a Dirty Chimney Look Like?

When wood burns in a fireplace, there are natural byproducts that result. The chimney is the place where it all accumulates. Some of these byproducts are flammable and can ignite to cause a chimney fire if left unswept. So, it’s important to have a dirty chimney cleaned for safety reasons. Here’s what you need to know…

CREOSOTE

Creosote is the most common buildup inside a dirty chimney. It’s a combination of tar and soot that accumulates in layers. Over time, the layers of creosote thicken and need to be removed.

It’s visible to both chimney technicians and the average homeowner. Using a flashlight, peek inside your chimney. If you see an accumulation of black material, it’s likely creosote. A service professional can remove this buildup to restore your chimney to a state of cleanliness and improved function.

DIRTY CHIMNEY?

How dirty the inside of your chimney is will depend on when it was last cleaned. According to industry standards, a fireplace and chimney are required to be cleaned at least once a year to remove the buildup of creosote and other debris. However, fireplaces and chimneys that are used more frequently require additional maintenance. Your technician will evaluate the inside of your chimney to determine the best method of cleaning.

A DIRTY CHIMNEY IS DANGEROUS

Having a large accumulation of creosote inside your chimney might also mean the spark arrestor mesh in the flue cap is clogged, creating a downdraft of smoke into your home and cause fires to burn less efficiently and effectively, creating less warmth and greater particulate matter into the environment. These are all inconveniences of a dirty chimney.

But it’s not just an inconvenience. It’s unsafe. The creosote that accumulates on the inner walls of the chimney is a flammable substance and, if not removed periodically, can ignite to cause a chimney fire that could spread to other areas of your home.

SERVICE APPOINTMENT FOR YOUR CHIMNEY OR DRYER EXHAUST VENT

For safety, efficiency, and convenience, make sure your chimney isn’t dirty. Call us at (510) 521-4088 or email our Office Manager, Sarah, at staff@theirishsweep.com to schedule an appointment today.  Once we are deemed to be an essential business, our expertly trained crew will be so happy to be back at work and address all of your service concerns.

HEAT REFLECTORS AND FIREBACKS

Did you know that there are products that actually maximize useful heat from gas and wood fires, while reducing the amount of fuel needed to heat your home with fire? Many don’t know about heat reflectors for the fireplace, so they accept the efficiency they’re accustomed to. Yet fireplace heat reflectors are a great investment! They not only maximize heat reflected into the home, but they also protect your firebox from any potential heat damage.

If you have a brick and mortar fireplace, it’s susceptible due to the constant cooling and heating from fires. Because of this, fireplaces will crack and shrink over time. Using a fireplace heat reflector or “fireback” will decrease how much heat is absorbed by the back wall of the fireplace, translating to less damage in the long run.

HOW TO INSTALL A HEAT REFLECTOR

Installing a heat reflector is fairly easy, and many chimney care companies will do it for you. You’ll want to first measure the back of the wall of the fireplace in inches, and measure the grate where logs rest. A heat reflector is made using a non-combustible metal and features feet that allow it to stand. Measuring your wall will ensure that the grate will either fit in front of or slightly under the reflector.

Once you have the measurements, you know what size heat reflector to get. At home, remove the fire grate and place the reflector at the back of the clean firebox. Do make sure to read the directions that came with the reflector. You’ll want to make sure that the reflector is upright and that it’s stable. When that looks right, replace the fireplace grate and then use your fireplace as normal. You’ll find yourself with a noticeably cozier fire.

Sometimes low tech solutions reap great benefits. If you haven’t invested in a heat reflecting fireback yet, ask us about them at the Irish Sweep.0

THE TRUTH ABOUT THE INSTALLATION OF ARTIFICIAL GAS LOGS

The commitment to purchase a gas fireplace insert is expensive.  Mind you, you will receive true heat value for years to come once you make that monetary investment.  But some people feel they cannot bare that expense and want an alternative choice and many folks would like just to install a set of artificial gas logs.

The manufacturers of artificial gas log sets state clearly in their installation directions that a chimney must be suitable for wood burning.

In order for us to determine if your fireplace and chimney are safe for this use, we must clean and inspect the interior surfaces of your chimney with our remote vision system (a chimney camera).  With this tool, we can check the condition of the clay liners and their related mortar joints.  If the clay liners in the chimney are fractured or damaged in some way and if the mortar joints are missing or deteriorated the chimney is not suitable for wood burning and in turn not safe for use with a set of artificial gas logs.

If we discover any of these defects our typical recommendations are to line the chimney with stainless steel or recommend the installation of a gas burning or wood burning fireplace insert.

The codes, standards and installation directions clearly state that anytime there is a change in the fuel source in a fireplace and chimney, the chimney must be cleaned prior to the installation of any new product.

WHAT OPTIONS DO I HAVE FOR FIREPLACE CONVERSION?

Wood burning fireplaces offer a certain charm and ambience to your home, but when it comes to heating and environmental efficiency they are far from the best choice. If you have a fireplace at home, you may want to keep it, while also making it safer, more efficient, and more environmentally friendly. That’s where fireplace conversion can be the ideal way to

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