A dryer booster fan has many benefits. It improves the drying process of your clothes by 50% as it boosts airflow through your dryer duct. Moreover, it results in less lint back up and does not allow the blockage to build up in the dryer hose.
But specifically, the main question is when should a dryer booster fan be installed? When the dryer duct length exceeds 25 feet with no bends, or is shorter but has bends or twists, installing a dryer booster fan becomes necessary. Also, apartments that have centrally located laundry facilities should install dryer booster fans as they do not have direct venting.
There are also some other essential things essential to know about dryer booster fans, such as their types and benefits. Keep on reading the article to get in-depth information about dryer booster fans.
Reasons for Dryer Duct Inefficiency
You might observe that your clothes take forever to dry but do not know the exact reason behind it. Or maybe they come out cold and wrinkly even though the setting was a high heat.
But before rushing out and installing a booster fan for your dryer, it’s important to first understand why dryers become less efficient over time. Only after you’ve checked for a few basic issues and troubleshot them should you consider buying and installing a booster fan.
The following are some common reasons why you can experience problems with your dryer.
The slow drying process can be due to a clogged dryer hose. When the air gets mixed with the moisture in the dryer hose, it causes the laundry lint to get stuck inside. This buildup of lint creates a blockage in the hose and slows the drying process of clothes.
This lint becomes a problem for you as you might not clean the blockage yourself and hire someone to do it. Moreover, this problem of clogging might happen again after some time.
So first, you should make it a habit to start cleaning your lint out regularly or hiring someone every once in a while to do a thorough check-up and cleaning in case there is more clogging in the duct and vent. Sometimes just this alone solves the problem.
Risks of Clogged Dryer
Never ignore clogging in a dryer. Dryer fires are the most common fires inside a home, especially in the fall and winter when the air is dry. In fact, according to the National Fire Protection Association, about 16,000 homes in the US catch on fire every year from a neglected and clogged dryer.
Besides fire, there are many risks associated with clogged dryers, like the growth of mold and mildew.
If there is not enough space for the moisture to make its way through the entire vent line, it might go back into the laundry area and settle in the vent. This moisture can promote fungal growth in the duct and can become hazardous for human health.
Length of the Dryer Duct
The length of the dryer duct to the vent can also be a reason affecting the drying process. Dryer ducts that are too long can reduce airflow, resulting in reduced drying efficiency. Similarly, the slow drying process will make the dryer work longer and increase the cost of electricity.
Turns and Twists in the Duct
The twists and turns in the duct can also cause the back pressure to be high, resulting in less air sucked out of the dryer. The longer the dryer duct is, the more likely a bend in the duct is to occur as well.
Typically, every bend in the duct is equivalent to an airflow loss similar to an extra 5 feet of ductwork. In other words, a straight line of duct that’s 15 feet long is considered to have the same airflow as a duct that’s 10 feet long and has one bend in it. These kinds of ducts are prime candidates for needing a booster fan.
You Need a Dryer Booster Fan: Now What?
If after proper cleaning, troubleshooting, and maintenance, your dryer is still not working properly, then you may consider a dryer booster fan.
The Benefits of Installing a Dryer Booster Fan
When the dryer becomes clogged for various reasons during the drying process, the air mixed with moisture does not find a way out. However, with the help of a dryer booster fan, the dryer ducts do not get clogged, and the ventilation process goes smoothly.
Moreover, lint building up in the dryer is less likely while using the dryer booster fan, reducing the fire hazard.
Reduces the Drying Time
As the dryer booster fan increases the flow of air, it is an efficient piece of equipment that speeds up the drying process.
Reduces Energy Consumption
As the dryer booster fan increases the efficiency of the dryer, the clothes dry soon.
Typically, a professional will place these dryer booster fans inside the ducts about 15 feet away from the dryer. The fans have built-in controllers; therefore, they switch on automatically after sensing the dryer is on. It is the reason why they are energy efficient as they only run when there is a need.
The dryers usually get clogged due to lint buildup and become a reason for the slow drying process. Moreover, you can not clean the dryers yourself and might hire someone to perform the job.
Similarly, you might experience the buildup again after some time. Therefore, installing frying booster fans can help you save the cleaning cost of the dryers as they do not allow the lint to build up. Not to mention saving on energy consumption, as mentioned before.
Types of Dryer Booster Fans
There are different kinds of dryer booster fans. They might have different cycles, but they all perform the same job.
Most manufacturers recommend that it is necessary to have the booster if the dryer duct length exceeds 25 feet in length. However, if there are bends in the duct, you should count each bend as adding an additional 5 feet. It will allow you to assess the need. Depending on the duct size and how your ducts are set up, you’ll have to figure out which type of booster fan is best for you.
The following are the some of the different types of dryer booster fans that can help you select the one according to your needs.
Dryer Booster Fans with a Sensor Switch or Pressure Switch
Most booster fans either have a current sensor switch or a pressure sensor switch. Essentially, this just explains the trigger that turns the booster fan on as a result of the dryer being turned on.
The booster fan can either can turn on by sensing an expansion of air in the ducts, or by sensing a flow of electricity in the dryer.
After completing the drying process, the current sensor causes the dryer booster fan to shut off.
The DVK100B-P Booster Fan for 4″ Ducts
A popular dryer booster fan to enhance the drying efficiency of industrial, commercial, and residential cloth dryers is the DVK dryer booster fan.
These dryer booster fans contain backward curved impellers that are quiet and efficient. These impellers overcome the long duct runs and consist of an in-line configuration that simplifies its installation procedure.
For example, the DVK100B-P dryer booster fan kit consists of a PST120V pressure switch and a DVK100B fan.
This pressure switch turns on the booster fan when it senses air pressure in the duct from the operating dryer. This pressure switch contains an integral timer having 10 minutes and 15 seconds OFF cycle. It enables the fan to restart again and again while the dryer is operating.
The Tjernlund M-49504351 Fan for 4″ Ducts
This fan is popular because it universally fits most residential dryers and is typically considered low noise by most customers. It has a current sensor switch to follow your dryers on/off cycles and an enhanced airflow to keep lint away from sticking in the system.
Where Should I install a Dryer Booster Fan?
Most dryer booster fans are installed in-line with your duct. The best way to install a dryer booster fan is to place it at least 15 linear feet away from the dryer outlet (check your manual first to verify). If the professionals mistakenly install the fan closer to the dryer rather than the vent, the fan’s results could be excessive lint buildup through its impellers. Another tip is to also have a lint trap installed in case the booster fan is installed closer to the dryer.
What Should I Be Mindful of When Installing a Dryer Booster Fan?
It’s important to understand that you’re dealing with dryers, which operate at high heat and produce lint (fire hazard). For that reason, it’s important to install the dryer booster fan using specialty aluminum tubing. A flexible, ribbed duct will just cause more lint build-up. Choose metal tubing, not PVC pipes. You’ll also have to consult with a professional to make sure you’re buying the right kind. Dryer booster fans much match the right size duct diameter,
What kind of Maintenance is Required for a Dryer Booster Fans?
With time, the impellers of the fan can start accumulating lint and, therefore, might require periodic inspection. This inspection should ensure that there is no backup of lint on the fan impellers.