How to Clean a Tumble Dryer

If you live in a country where good weather isn’t guaranteed – even in summer – tumble dryers are one of the most useful and time saving appliances on the market.

As with most electrical items in the home, tumble dryers are becoming increasingly advanced, better at what they do, and more energy efficient. Like any other kitchen appliance or big home purchase you’ll want to keep it clean and in good condition, so it lasts as long as possible.

This guide will look at how to clean a tumble dryer properly, both inside and out.

Why Buy a Tumble Dryer?

Before we talk about cleaning a tumble dryer, we thought we’d look at a few of the reasons why people even buy tumble dryers. If you can dry your clothes outside for free, why spend money on a tumble dryer?

As we mentioned, having a tumble dryer is wonderful if you can’t rely on the weather, but there are plenty of other things that make them a great purchase, too.

Time Saving

Tumble drying gets your laundry dry far faster than air drying. Exactly how long this will take depends on your dryer, the setting you choose, and how much laundry you’re trying to dry, but on average it takes about an hour.

Wash More

A tumble dryer is particularly useful if you do a lot of washing – say, if you have a large family or small children that get through a lot of clothes.

Convenience

Another benefit of owning a tumble dryer is that it makes doing laundry easier. Rather than hanging your clothes on a line, you can use the time you save for something you actually enjoy.

How to Clean a Tumble Dryer

Cleaning the exterior of a tumble dryer is very simple – just wipe it down with a damp cloth. Use a small amount of soap if you need to remove stubborn stains.

How often should I Clean the Tumble Dryer Filter?

All tumble dryers have a filter located at the front of the drum in the door. This is essential for catching lint, dust and other debris such as coins and other small items left in pockets. It’s recommended by many manufacturers that the lint filter is cleaned after every cycle.

To clean the lint filter of your tumble dryer:

  1. Make sure the tumble dryer has cooled down before removing the filter.
  2. Remove it from its compartment and wipe the dust and lint away.
  3. Use a cloth and wipe any lint that is still in the filter holder.
  4. Once the filter and the compartment are both clean, replace the filter so it’s fully back in its position.

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How to Clean a Tumble Dryer Sensor

If your tumble dryer has a heat or moisture sensor, it is recommended that this is cleaned several times a year. How often you use the dryer will affect how often you should clean it, but it is important to keep it clean.

The sensor detects when your clothes are dry and then stops the dryer automatically. This means if it’s not working properly or is dirty, your clothes might end up being over or under-dried.

To clean the sensor, purchase some stainless steel cleaner and wipe the inside of the drum. If you can’t get hold of any stainless steel cleaner, you can use white vinegar.

Use a dry cloth (a regular dust cloth will work) and wipe the sensor itself, clearing it of dust and dirt that has accumulated over time.

Cleaning the Inside of your Tumble Dryer

If your tumble dryer isn’t performing as it should then you might think some dirt or dust has escaped the filter and entered the internal mechanism of the tumble dryer. Some guides would advise cleaning inside the tumble dryer by removing the back panel and exposing the interior.

We strongly advise against this.

If you clean the filter regularly it’s unlikely the problem is dirt. You will also invalidate your manufacturer’s warranty if you open the tumble dryer, leaving you unprotected if any faults occur.

If your tumble dryer isn’t performing as it should, contact either the retailer or manufacturer of the appliance to seek expert advice.