A 'Lint Lizard' may help prevent laundry-related fires

FRESNO, Calif.

A fire started in the dryer vent of one home and another was destroyed by a fire that started in a clothes dryer. Fire officials say lint had built up in the dryer's ducts and caught fire.

To prevent tragedies like these from happening in your home, it's essential to clean the lint from your dryer's ducts and lint trap.

Consumer reports tested a new infomercial product called the Lint Lizard that promises to help. The Lint Lizard attaches to your vacuum cleaner. You thread the tube through the opening of a dryer's lint trap.

Bernie Deitrick checked to see how much lint it could remove from the dryer.

Consumer Bernie Deitrick said, "The Lint Lizard worked really well. It removed more lint than any other technique that we tried."

But one drawback, the Lint Lizard may not fit easily into very narrow dryer openings, and its sharp tip could damage flexible foil or plastic ductwork. However, consumer reports doesn't recommend these kinds of ducts anyway.

Consumer reports says metal ducts are far better; either flexible or solid. You want to clean those at least once a year. And clean your lint trap every time you use the dryer.

Taking these precautions can help prevent a tragedy.

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