Dryer Vent Debacle

Discussion in 'General Home Improvement Discussion' started by WishIKnew, Feb 24, 2009.

  1. Feb 24, 2009 #1

    WishIKnew

    WishIKnew

    WishIKnew

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    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:

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2009
  2. Feb 24, 2009 #2

    WishIKnew

    WishIKnew

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    Here is an image that better describes the situation

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Feb 24, 2009 #3

    WishIKnew

    WishIKnew

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    Here is a picture that better describes it

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Feb 24, 2009 #4

    CraigFL

    CraigFL

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    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.
     
  5. Feb 24, 2009 #5

    WishIKnew

    WishIKnew

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    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.
     
  6. Feb 24, 2009 #6

    travelover

    travelover

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    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.
     
  7. Feb 24, 2009 #7

    Hube

    Hube

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    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" ?
     
  8. Feb 24, 2009 #8

    WishIKnew

    WishIKnew

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    de⋅ba⋅cle   /deɪˈbɑkəl, -ˈbækəl, 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.
     
  9. Feb 24, 2009 #9

    glennjanie

    glennjanie

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    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.
    Glenn
     
  10. Feb 24, 2009 #10

    Blue Jay

    Blue Jay

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    Another idea would be to use a register boot on the bottom of the box to transition back to the round pipe.
     
  11. Feb 24, 2009 #11

    WishIKnew

    WishIKnew

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    I just looked up a register boot. It looks like the way to go as it has a built in L and would convert the easiest. I think over time it could accumulate debris, but should not be near the mess that is taking place right now.

    For my particular case that only has the square duct with a hole a the base side - do i cut the square base and then slide this boot on? Is there some trick to it?
     
  12. Feb 26, 2009 #12

    porchtalk

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    Here's another approach. I don't like the dryer hose "trap" that's created by this configuration. Chances of cleaning it out on a regular basis is questionable (no offense) and it is a potential "lint collector fire hazard " let alone putting more stress on the dryer if it gets clogged. Why not run the hose directly into the closet and along the wall to the outside. Build an insulated cover over the hose to cut down on noise and to conceal it. It won't take up hardly any usable space in the closet, will be hidden, and you'll have a direct line to the outside. Connections can be tight and you don't have to work in the crawl space!
     
  13. Feb 27, 2009 #13

    rowdy48

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    I think the register boot is the way to go. I do maintenance on several four plexs that have long pipe runs to the outside. I used a store bought vent brush on a 3/8 plumbing snake to clean them every six months. I just attach it with small hose clamps. It seems that tenants never empty their dryer vent traps
     

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