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Old 02-07-2011, 07:20 PM
 
36,533 posts, read 56,076,262 times
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Had someone come out today to do mine and he said the outside vent cap--square brown aluminum cover--needs to be replaced--
that this one--original to house far as we know--had a screen that blockes the lint from flowing outside freely--
that you can't take off the cap w/o taking up roof shingles and he did not have enough room in attic space (it is pretty constricted back there because of the roof's slope) to pull the vent stack and clean it out in attic

I don't want to spend 150 bucks to replace this if it can be cleaned from the inside...

any people used someone in FTW area or had someone tell you YOUR cap had to be replaced
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Old 02-07-2011, 07:43 PM
 
Location: Beautiful Niagara Falls ON.
10,018 posts, read 12,071,449 times
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I would get the cap off one way or another and vacuum out the pipe all the way down to the dryer. If you can't get the cap back on???? Duct tape anyone. You could always buy a sheet metal elbow for a couple of dollars and attach that. If you don't want to go up on the roof then vacuum it out from where it attaches to the dryer. I sure wouldn't be paying anyone for that.
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Old 02-07-2011, 07:48 PM
 
Location: DFW - Coppell / Las Colinas
40,147 posts, read 45,842,438 times
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The last 2 houses I've had had flaps & not screens. I turn on the dryer, get a rod or clothes hanger, go outside & clean it out. It will blow lint at you but it's a 15 minute job and costs me nothing.
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Old 02-07-2011, 08:21 PM
 
36,533 posts, read 56,076,262 times
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if this vent went through the wall--behind the dryer--I would be cleaning it out as well--

I asked for recommendations of people who had serviced such a problem--not why you would do it yourself--
the run is more than 20ft through the second floor onto the roof which is steep and the area in the attic is tight--
in our other house the stack went through that attic to the roof but was easy to get too because the attic had tall roofline itself--was easy to pull apart and vacuum out...
this is very different
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Old 02-09-2011, 11:34 AM
 
Location: Flower Mound TX
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This is a timely ? for me also - being from the northeast and midwest, our dryer vents have always been directly out to the nearest wall, whether the laundry room was on the 1st of second floor... in my leased home I found typical dryer lint, from our 1st floor laundry, out in the driveway while shoveling last week and could not figure out where it came from... then I looked up on the roof of the garage and saw a standing vent pipe on the roof with lint on it - why would a builder choose to run it up to the roof when s/he could easily have ran it to the side wall? Is this something that is standard in TX?

In my prior home in the midwest, I have the entire HV/AC vent system cleaned out when we moved in - it appears it was the 1st time it was ever done in 15 years - they also did the dryer vent - I watched them work over 3 hours and saw a lot of "crude" and even a few dried-out mice, along with various nut casings and nails and other bldg debris from when the house was built... it was disgusting

Thanks
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Old 02-09-2011, 12:08 PM
 
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in this area many utility rooms are built on inside locations--not along an outer wall--
it is considered better design I guess to have all the venting done via roof like the plumbing vents
in a well designed placement--there should only be two short bends--maybe just one--when the tube goes into the wall cavity--
unfortunately there are issues at times with where other second floor rooms/walls come into play--where the roof angles are--
since most HOA home design rules say that no venting is supposed to be visible from the front of the house/roof--venting like for bathrooms in front of the house have to be directed to a side or rear roof wall...

it is not practical to clean some of the older HVAC vent tubes made of plastic--because the brushes sued in the cleaning process will tear up the interiors and destroy the tubing

with a newer system when the homeowner changes the filters timely I don't know that the HVAC tubing needs to be cleaned--but dryer vent don't have good filters strong enough to stop the lint from traveling past into the main vent runs
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Old 02-09-2011, 03:19 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
16,787 posts, read 46,881,523 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loves2read View Post
Had someone come out today to do mine and he said the outside vent cap--square brown aluminum cover--needs to be replaced--
that this one--original to house far as we know--had a screen that blockes the lint from flowing outside freely--
that you can't take off the cap w/o taking up roof shingles and he did not have enough room in attic space (it is pretty constricted back there because of the roof's slope) to pull the vent stack and clean it out in attic

I don't want to spend 150 bucks to replace this if it can be cleaned from the inside...

any people used someone in FTW area or had someone tell you YOUR cap had to be replaced
We recently had a similar flue cleaned out on our house. I picked a chimney sweep out of the phone book who came and did ours in Austin. Fortunately there was room in the attic where he could remove a section of the pipe so he could get at it thoroughly. The 7' long section of pipe was so full of lint you could hardly see from one end through to the other. And it was all wet from condensation that had accumulated. It probably would have been impossible to clean from the inside if there had not been room in the attic to remove that section of pipe, with a 90 degree bend at the bottom I don't think there are any cleaning tools flexible enough to make the bend yet stiff enough to extend all the way up to the cap.

It sounds like we might have a similar metal cap on the roof. It is solid on the uphill side to shed rain, but is open on the sides and downhill side, with two strap-like legs supporting it on the downhill side. It looks like it might be possible to cut the two straps so it could be folded back for cleaning. Then a strip of metal and sheet metal screws could be used to fasten it back together.

If yours is a solid sheet metal cap like one of these that would not work.
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Old 02-09-2011, 05:02 PM
 
36,533 posts, read 56,076,262 times
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that is not what mine looks like--mine is almost flat to the roof if it IS the dryer vent cover--and square-

something like that is what I was told to replace mine with--something that looks like the outside vent on restaurant grill...

have someone coming out Friday to see what can be done
I did not walk around the attic to see the vent stack so don't know how much room is there--
frankly I would not care if the guy cut the vent stack and used mastic tape on the outside afterward to seal it back--would make it that much easier to clean next time--
should really be done once a year to avoid possibility of fire
the guy who is coming said it might be possible to just cut the screen w/o removing the cap--
but if there is no damper then you run risk of having birds or something get down into the pipe
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Old 02-15-2011, 12:44 AM
 
36,533 posts, read 56,076,262 times
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the second guy came and cleaned the dryer vent stack--cut the louvers from the sides of the vent cover and the dryer is working so much more efficienty

he said that if it were his house he would not replace the vent stack cap unless the roof was being reroofed and that cutting away the louvers would allow much more of the lint to pass outside the stack

said that vents should be cleaned about once a year--as preventative maintenance--like chimney cleaning--and guess you use a dryer more than a fireplace...
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Old 02-15-2011, 07:01 AM
 
574 posts, read 1,579,384 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loves2read View Post
that is not what mine looks like--mine is almost flat to the roof if it IS the dryer vent cover--and square-

something like that is what I was told to replace mine with--something that looks like the outside vent on restaurant grill...

have someone coming out Friday to see what can be done
I did not walk around the attic to see the vent stack so don't know how much room is there--
frankly I would not care if the guy cut the vent stack and used mastic tape on the outside afterward to seal it back--would make it that much easier to clean next time--
should really be done once a year to avoid possibility of fire
the guy who is coming said it might be possible to just cut the screen w/o removing the cap--
but if there is no damper then you run risk of having birds or something get down into the pipe
From your initial description, and this one, it appears that the original vent cap was not the proper type to begin with. Did you have a home inspection when you bought this house? If so did the inspector not tell you about this?
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