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WishIKnew 02-23-2009 08:24 PM

Dryer Vent Debacle
I was in my crawlspace and noticed there was dryer lint in one area. I looked up and see that I have my duct that serves as my dryer vent connected to the piece of duct that runs up to the laundry room via duct tape. That duct tape gave out over time and the pipe was really just hanging there kind of connected to the duct.

Now, to make it a little more bizaare the piece of duct that comes down from my laundry room is some sort of square 90 degree box thing. From underneath it looks like a register going up (only no duct work).

So, I have a duct taped galvanized pipe butted up against this square piece of duct. The pipe has a tabbed end with the tabs bent out. and the pipe is just against the square and then tape holds that.

This is obvioulsy not a permanent or even good solution. Please help me out on how to fix this in any way that does not involve me ripping out all the crap that is there now.

I cannot put the tabs into place as that would be like screws in the pipe and that is not allowed as it would catch lint and clog or catch fire. I can't replace the tabbed end with a normal duct perferated end as sticking the end into the square piece would also cause a lint trap.

What a mess :(.

I will try to create a picture to demonstrate this, but if anyone can interpret what I have spelled out please help me.

Here is a picture:

WishIKnew 02-23-2009 08:54 PM

Here is an image that better describes the situation

WishIKnew 02-23-2009 08:55 PM

Here is a picture that better describes it

CraigFL 02-24-2009 05:37 AM

We don't have an idea about the length of the system but I don't like that transition box in the wall behind the dryer. It would be too easy for lint to collect in it so I would rather see a smoother transition to the lower exit piper. If it were a long run, you might find it easy to just add a booster(sucker) fan on the outside end. They can be set to sense when the dryer is on and turn on the booster automatically.

WishIKnew 02-24-2009 06:16 AM

Craig - i tend to agree 100% with you that the transition box is stupid.

If I wasn't under the house I would have never known because what comes out to the dryer is a 4 inch regular piece of duct. In the wall it must hit this transition box from one side and then come out in the crawl space. What I would expect to see is 2 90's (elbows) in the shape like a Z to make this a smooth transition.

I am just not shure the amount of effort required to get this box out of there and replace it with all duct (piping). If it is just loosely in there then i could easily do that, but I guess I assumed it was fastened in the wall really good and I am not in the mood to rip sheetrock and flooring to fix this - guess I could though.

travelover 02-24-2009 06:24 AM

One option to joint the duct to the box would be to put a couple of small machine screws in each with the round heads on the inside and a nut on the outside. Use the portion of the screw sticking out past the nut to attach some "L" brackets with a second nut. This will give it a firm support. Use foil tape to seal it.

Make a note to pull the dryer out and reach in and clean out this box on a regular basis.

Hube 02-24-2009 06:59 AM

You would be best to remove this stupid arrangement and install a couple of 90 elbows.Depending on the overall length of this run it may be somewhat restrictive if over 20 ft, but at least this "z" shape(air trap) will not allow any cold air from the outside to come back into the dryer/home. Make tight joints ,no screws, use a metallic duct tape on the joints.
By the way, just what is a "debacle" ?

WishIKnew 02-24-2009 08:24 AM

de⋅ba⋅cle   /deɪˈbɑkəl, -ˈbękəl, də-/ Show Spelled Pronunciation [dey-bah-kuhl, -bak-uhl, duh-] Show IPA Pronunciation

–noun 1. a general breakup or dispersion; sudden downfall or rout: The revolution ended in a debacle.
2. a complete collapse or failure.
3. a breaking up of ice in a river. Compare embacle.
4. a violent rush of waters or ice.

My instance here is more of the variety of #2.

I will look into creating the 2 90's. As long as it does not involve huge amounts of sawing floors or sheetrock it would be the best option.

glennjanie 02-24-2009 10:18 AM

Hello WishIKnew:
The square duct is used in the wall because 4" round pipe will not fit in a 2 X 4 space like the duct stack will. If you decide to use all 4" round pipe, you will have to cut the floor or wall to get the space needed.
The easiest solution to your problem is to leave the dryer scooted out from the wall about 6" and come straight off the dryer with an Ell pointed down, cut a 4" round hole in the floor and use the metal pipe from there on. The adjustable ells are just as much a lint trap as the box; you need the fixed Ells that are used for wood burning stoves which are smooth inside. They will slip together with the pipe and make good joints.

Blue Jay 02-24-2009 11:33 AM

Another idea would be to use a register boot on the bottom of the box to transition back to the round pipe.

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