Our dryer caught on fire!

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SleepyBug
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Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 1097
   Posted 3/19/2009 5:46 AM (GMT -7)   
We had a very scary incident happen yesterday afternoon! I put a load of clothes in our dryer (which we bought used 4 years ago-it's probably about 25 years old) at around 3:30 yesterday, and at about 4:00, I got a whiff of something that smelled like melting crayons. I turned the dryer off and told my hubby that something was wrong and he came in and took the top off of it and saw that it was smoking. Soon after, our smoke detectors started going off, so hubby unplugged the dryer and we opened up all of our windows. He then realized that the dryer was smoking even more after he unplugged it, so he called his dad and told him to bring down a fire extinguisher (yes, I know we need one of our own-we'll definitely be picking one up asap!!) and his dad recommended that my hubby load the dryer onto the hand cart and take it outside. Well, apparently there was some paper or something under the dryer, because as soon as hubby lifted it up, it just went WHOOSH! and flames started shooting up all over the place! At this point I realized we had a definite situation on our hands, so I got our kids and the dogs and grabbed the cordless phone and took everybody outside and called 911. Hubby stayed inside to beat the flames down with a damp towel (Fortunately, I had towels in the dryer when the whole thing started. I had pulled them out as soon as it started smoking, so hubby was able to grab one quickly.) The fire department showed up about 3 minutes later, but by this point hubby had gotten all of the flames out. They made him go outside, too, so they could check things out. They took the dryer outside and sprayed the floor down with foam and went down into our basement to make sure there weren't any elecrical lines smouldering or anything. After about 15 minutes they came out and told us everything was fine and nothing else was burning. The guy that wrote the report told us that it was probably lint buildup that had started smoking, which created just enough heat to catch the paper undearneath on fire when the oxygen hit it. Luckily, the only major damage was to the dryer itself (the bottom of it is all burned and black) and some minor damage to the floor underneath it.

So fortunately everything turned out ok-we were VERY lucky that this happened during the day when everyone was awake and we were home and could call 911 very quickly. Also, it is a very good thing that hubby smacked the flames out with the towel, because the flames were so big that it could have turned into a HUGE house fire in a very short period of time! It was a scary experience, but I am so so thankful that everyone is ok and there wasn't any major damage! Yes, we lost our dryer, but that is a-ok with me! Better to lose a dryer than a loved one or a pet or a whole house!

So today I am feeling very thankful and blessed. Just thought I'd share our scary experience with all of you and remind you all to make sure you clean the lint out of your dryers really thoroughly!!! :-)

Hope you are all having a good day!
love and hugs
~danielle


fibromyalgia, ibs, gerd, anxiety

We either make ourselves happy or miserable. The amount of work is the same.~Carlos Castaneda

I wish you all the joy that you can wish.~William Shakespeare

Housework, if you do it right, will kill you.~Erma Bombeck


moonmatrix
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 178
   Posted 3/19/2009 6:05 AM (GMT -7)   
Wow I am so glad you and your family are OK. Near miss fires or any are very scary. I had a neighbor who fell asleep with a candle burning. If I didn't smell the smoke and bang on her door she would have never woken up. It may be a good idea to get that fire extinguisher now. Also thank goodness for fire alarms right?

SleepyBug
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 1097
   Posted 3/19/2009 6:10 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks, Moonmatrix! Yes, I am going out to buy a fire extinguisher TODAY!

The really scary thing about all of this for me was that last Saturday night, my daughter's best friend's boyfriend (follow that? lol) showed up at our house at 10:30 at night looking for dd's friend (who was spending the night at our house) because he had just gotten home after they'd all gone to the movies, only to discover that his house had burned down completely! Fortunately, no one was home at the time, but the family did lose everything they own. The poor kid was crying and shaking-I felt terrible for him. Then we had this happen yesterday and I realized just how incredibly lucky we are. Makes you count your blessings, you know?

I am very glad that you were able to smell that candle and alert your neighbor! Scary to think what might have happened had you not been around.
love and hugs
~danielle


fibromyalgia, ibs, gerd, anxiety

We either make ourselves happy or miserable. The amount of work is the same.~Carlos Castaneda

I wish you all the joy that you can wish.~William Shakespeare

Housework, if you do it right, will kill you.~Erma Bombeck


pattipanda
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 1014
   Posted 3/19/2009 6:26 AM (GMT -7)   
OMG Danielle!!!!!  Thank God you and your family are ok.  Oh man, that must have been TERRIFING!!!!!  Someone on my street had a dryer fire about 2 years ago and lost half of the house.  I always worry about dryer fires.  After your story I think I'll take the shop-vac out and do some serious cleaning.  I hate the dryer I have now, it really stinks, takes forever to get anything dried and it's hard to clean to lint trap.  I never leave the dryer going when I'm not home or at bed time. 
 
I can't say it enough, I'm SO glad you're ok & you hubby was home to help handle the situation. 
 
Big Big HUGS.. so happy you're alright!!!!!
 
Patti
 
Fibormyalgia, 4x Lyme Disease Survivor, Depression, Anxiety Disorder, Dyslexia, 2 Lumbar Disk Herniations, Allergies, Bi-lateral Carpal Tunnel, Psoriasis. 
Meds = Elavil, Tramadol, Xanax, Lipitor
"Shoot for the moon, even if you miss, you'll land among the stars" - author unknown


GamJill
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 1279
   Posted 3/19/2009 6:50 AM (GMT -7)   
WOW Danielle, happy to hear everyone is OK and the house didn't start on fire! I know one of my co-workers where I worked had his dryer do the same thing, and thank God his wife was home and able to call 911 right away. I was pretty good about emptying my lint trap, but since that happened to him, I empty it all the time now!   
 
GamJill
 
 
 
 
Fibromyalgia, Depression, Anxiety, TMJ, Arthritis/neck, SAD
 
Zoloft, Tylenol 4000 mg., Darvocet  


SleepyBug
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 1097
   Posted 3/19/2009 6:55 AM (GMT -7)   
Patti-lol. Believe me, if I still HAD a dryer, I'd be cleaning the heck out of it today. haha.

I talked to my mom this morning, and she said that apparently dryer sheets can create a chemical buildup on the lint trap and even though you can't see anything on it, it causes a filmy substance to stick to the lint trap, which makes it harder for oxygen to move through it, which creates a fire hazard. I vaguely remember hearing something about this on tv once several years ago, but I never thought much about it. She said it's good to pull it out and wash it with gentle soap every couple of weeks or so to make sure and get that chemical filmy stuff off of it. I'll tell you what-when we get a replacement dryer, I'll be washing that thing off like every other day!! I will not take anymore chances!
love and hugs
~danielle


fibromyalgia, ibs, gerd, anxiety

We either make ourselves happy or miserable. The amount of work is the same.~Carlos Castaneda

I wish you all the joy that you can wish.~William Shakespeare

Housework, if you do it right, will kill you.~Erma Bombeck


MT Lady
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 955
   Posted 3/19/2009 7:02 AM (GMT -7)   
Danielle, thank goodness you are all okay! I had a very close call, similar to your experience, but thankfully, no fire. My dryer stopped working, clothes were coming out damp and long story short found out that the lint that was on the trap was partially falling off of it and collecting in the exhaust thingy. Yes, my fault for not cleaning the trap after EVERY load. I'd doi it after every wash day. Now, I do it after every single load. I could have had a fire, like you. I am VERY grateful for the warning.
I am so happy you are all okay,
take good care,
Miriam

Fibromyalgia, Osteoarthritis, scoliosis, back problems, hypothyroidism.


Marlee2
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 6067
   Posted 3/19/2009 7:47 AM (GMT -7)   
Danielle, I'm so glad everything is okay and all you lost was an old dryer. We will be pulling the dryer out this weekend and cleaning under it, it hasn't been moved for almost 4 yrs.
 
luv and hugs
Marlee
Forum Moderator Fibromyalgia
 
Fibro,Sjogrens, Anxiety, Gastroparesis, IBS, Gastritis, Allergies, High Blood Pressure, Low Blood Sodium and Osteoarthritis
 
Amitriptyline, Celexa, Xanax, Synthroid, Zyrtec, Micardis, Spironalactone, Tylenol, Reglan, Lidoderm Patches and Tramadol
 
Co Q 10, Super B Complex, Extra B12, Multi vitamin


leemadd
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 532
   Posted 3/19/2009 8:57 AM (GMT -7)   
Wow that must have been really scarey. I take the lint out every use just a habit however I have never washed it. My aunts neighbors husband passed away about 2 years ago, the lady called my aunt over too see if she knew what was growing on the top of her dryer, It was the lint she did not know that you had to empty it her husband did the laundry for her. My aunt cleaned it and vaccumed it up and showed her how to do it and told her to do it each time I wonder whats under that ladies dryer???
I am glad that you are safe and that you still have your home,
LeeAnn

pattipanda
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 1014
   Posted 3/19/2009 11:15 AM (GMT -7)   

Hey Danielle,

I don't use dryer sheets that often anymore.  I got some of those dryer balls.. they're hard plastice with big nubby things sticking out all over them.  They roll around in the dryer, they make your clothes nice and fluffy and there's no chemicals.  I'm allergic to anything with fragrance so doing something that doesn't have chemicals or fragrance is a no brainer for me.  If I do use dryer sheets I'll use the same one about 2 or 3 times.  Thanks for the warning on the dryer sheets and the lint trap I'll be cleaning mine from now on.. hopefully it will help my dryer work alittle better, it take about 2 hours to dry a load, pathetic!! 

Speaking of laundry.. I guess I should do some.. Yippie!! NOT!! turn

Hugs till later..


Patti
 
Fibormyalgia, 4x Lyme Disease Survivor, Depression, Anxiety Disorder, Dyslexia, 2 Lumbar Disk Herniations, Allergies, Bi-lateral Carpal Tunnel, Psoriasis. 
Meds = Elavil, Tramadol, Xanax, Lipitor
"Shoot for the moon, even if you miss, you'll land among the stars" - author unknown


Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17101
   Posted 3/19/2009 11:35 AM (GMT -7)   
I'm so glad you all are alright!  I am so careful about fire since my mother had her childhood home burn to the ground.  She told me about it when I was 9 years old and I'm pretty obsessive about it now.  I won't even use the crockpot unless I'm home all day long!
 
I have the lint cleaned from the dryer and the venting.  I hadn't done that in many years and hired someone to come out to do it.  He went on the roof and shoved a tool down the vent and then used a tool inside in the vent.  I couldn't believe all of the lint he got out...a huge amount...and I always clean the lint filter with every load!  He said you should have the vents cleaned once every two years.  It only cost $85 and my dryer dries things much faster too. 
 
Sherrine
Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
***********************
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7


jewelrylady
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 717
   Posted 3/19/2009 12:37 PM (GMT -7)   
Danielle, Wow, that was close. Your so right, since it did happen, at least it happened when both of you were home & able to do what was necessary to save your house. That is so scary!!!! I had my dryer catch on fire in the middle of the night once. It was about 30 years ago & I hadn't thought about it for awhile. The element was going out & got really hot & started the clothes on fire. My husband & his brother packed it outside. Thank goodness they were still awake. It talught me a lesson & I never leave my dry on if I am not going to be home or when I am asleep. I turn it off & try to remember to turn it back on when I get home. With Fibro fog I do have surprises when I go to do a load of laundry sometimes. But I think that's better then losing my house. You take care, many gentle hugs going your way, Denise

 I have:  Fibromyalgia, ME/CFS, Holt-Oram Syndrome, nasal allergies, food allergies, depression, TMJ, anxiety  Married to a wonderful supportive husband & between us we have 4 children & 7 grandchildren As apples of gold in silver carvings is a word spoken at the right time for it.    Prov. 25:11


donnaeil
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 1156
   Posted 3/19/2009 3:11 PM (GMT -7)   
Keep your hubby, what quick thinking on his part. I am so glad the damage was limited to the dryer. Houses go up in flames quickly.

Thank goodness all of you are safe and the only thing lost was the dryer.

Donnaeil

SleepyBug
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 1097
   Posted 3/20/2009 8:50 AM (GMT -7)   
Hey Patti-where do you get these dryer ball thingys? I've never heard of them and won't need one for awhile (not sure when we'll be able to afford a new dryer..so it's clothes line city for me for awhile!), but when we do get a new one, that sounds like a safer way to go!
love and hugs
~danielle


fibromyalgia, ibs, gerd, anxiety

We either make ourselves happy or miserable. The amount of work is the same.~Carlos Castaneda

I wish you all the joy that you can wish.~William Shakespeare

Housework, if you do it right, will kill you.~Erma Bombeck


pattipanda
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 1014
   Posted 3/20/2009 9:52 AM (GMT -7)   

Danielle ..

I think I got them from either Walmart or a catalog called, Whatever Works www.whateverworks.com I get alot of stuff from there.  I got 'em about a year ago so my feable little brain isn't sure where.

LOL.. you could come over here and use my dryer till ya get one.. but my takes forever to dry a kleenex, so you'd have to bring a sleeping bag with you cause it would take a week to get YOUR family's laundry done!

Hugs for now,


Patti
 
Fibormyalgia, 4x Lyme Disease Survivor, Depression, Anxiety Disorder, Dyslexia, 2 Lumbar Disk Herniations, Allergies, Bi-lateral Carpal Tunnel, Psoriasis. 
Meds = Elavil, Tramadol, Xanax, Lipitor
"Shoot for the moon, even if you miss, you'll land among the stars" - author unknown


SleepyBug
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 1097
   Posted 3/20/2009 10:46 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for the link! Those dryer balls are neat-actually the site seems to have lots of cool stuff for the home..

And I'm afraid it would take me more than a week to do my family's laundry! My sons have this lovely habit of changing clothes several times a day, depending on their mood lol.

The sad thing is though that it would probably be cheaper for me to pay for the gas to drive my laundry down to your house than it would be to go to the laundromat down the street!
love and hugs
~danielle


fibromyalgia, ibs, gerd, anxiety

We either make ourselves happy or miserable. The amount of work is the same.~Carlos Castaneda

I wish you all the joy that you can wish.~William Shakespeare

Housework, if you do it right, will kill you.~Erma Bombeck


jewelrylady
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 717
   Posted 3/20/2009 12:49 PM (GMT -7)   
Danielle, Is there a Freecycle.com in your area? People put items on there that they want to give away, good stuff only, & each freecycle is locally run & free to join. Here there are several around us. FreecycleFlathead & FreecycleLibby, etc. My daughter got a wonderful dryer, practically new that a lady gave away. Her daughter had moved & left it stored at her mom's & then didn't need it so the Mom put it on Freecycle. Just google freecycle.com & see if one is in your area, it is a great place to get rid of stuff to, give it to people who really need it. I got my Muffin (pekenese) off of FreecycleFlathead. Kalispell , MT. I just had to go get her. I also put my other dog, Mocha (very high spirited & lots of energy) on there & found her a wonderful new home with people who also, had lots of time & energy for her. I'm glad it was only the dryer that lost the battle with the fire. Scary. Hugs, Denise

 I have:  Fibromyalgia, ME/CFS, Holt-Oram Syndrome, nasal allergies, food allergies, depression, TMJ, anxiety  Married to a wonderful supportive husband & between us we have 4 children & 7 grandchildren As apples of gold in silver carvings is a word spoken at the right time for it.    Prov. 25:11


pattipanda
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 1014
   Posted 3/20/2009 12:54 PM (GMT -7)   

LOL... Probably!!!

I hate laundrymats, I used to have to go to one all the time, till I moved here.  I don't envy you! shakehead I think there's some free websites, like Denise mentioned for our area.  I know the local radio station WLKI has a free classified section on their website (its not that far from you).  Maybe you could put a classified on there under Wanted -Dryer.  Ya never know!! Its worth a try.

Later gator,


Patti
 
Fibormyalgia, 4x Lyme Disease Survivor, Depression, Anxiety Disorder, Dyslexia, 2 Lumbar Disk Herniations, Allergies, Bi-lateral Carpal Tunnel, Psoriasis. 
Meds = Elavil, Tramadol, Xanax, Lipitor
"Shoot for the moon, even if you miss, you'll land among the stars" - author unknown

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