Many people think of dryer vent covers as unnecessary, because they “only serve a cosmetic purpose.” However, this is a common misconception. Energy efficient dryer vent covers play an important role in the ventilation of your dryer, and can also save you significant amounts of money. Most people don’t realize that installing a cover has a significant impact on their home energy cost. Let’s take a look at exactly why you need an energy efficient dryer vent cover.
Block Outside Air
Air from outside can easily enter your home if your dryer vent isn’t covered. This means during the winter, cool air can enter your home and cause your heater to work harder. The opposite happens in the summer; warm air makes its way in through the uncovered dryer vent and causes your air conditioner to run longer. As a result, you’ll end up wasting energy and spending more money on heating and cooling costs. Luckily, this problem is easily avoided by installing a dryer vent cover to prevent air from getting into your home.
Uncovered vents can also develop clogs that decrease your dryer’s energy efficiency. Some of these clogs are caused by lint buildup, but other things like rodent and bird nests can also block vents. Animals seek shelter in the vents during winter because they’re covered areas that provide warmth and protection. An energy efficient dryer vent cover blocks animals from coming inside while also reducing lint buildup, and thus lowers the chances of developing a clog.
Because clogs lead to reduced energy efficiency, you’ll lose money if your dryer vent is blocked. In fact, it’s estimated that a clogged vent can add $18-$25 to your monthly utility bills. Many homeowners make the mistake of assuming a dryer is broken when it has a clogged vent, and end up buying a new unit that sets them back hundreds of dollars. Even if you recognize the clog, hiring a professional service to fully remove it can easily cost into the hundreds of dollars as well.
Choosing the Right Dryer Vent Cover
Now that we’ve discussed the importance of using an energy efficient dryer vent cover, it’s time to figure out which cover you should choose for your home. There are several different types of covers, but experts typically recommend a wall vent cover designed with a magnetic door. The door remains closed when the dryer is not in use, but automatically opens when the dryer is turned on. Though this style is a bit more expensive than others, it’s a smart investment that will help you increase your home’s energy efficiency and save money in the future.
Fortunately, there are resources online that can help you install a dryer vent cover without the help of a professional. As long as you carefully follow the instructions, you shouldn’t have any trouble attaching your new dryer vent cover so you can start to save money and reduce your energy use. Sometimes the smallest changes can have the largest impacts.