Tips for how and when to clean a hair dryer

Modern dryers are fairly hardy and require minimal upkeep. But that little bit of maintenance is essential. A dryer with a debris-choked filter can overheat. It will perform poorly and possibly even damage your hair. To keep it blowing properly, plan to clear its filter every three months if you use it daily.

Tips for how and when to clean a hair dryer

1. It’s all about the flow

  • Dryers work by fanning the surrounding air, directing it through the appliance's heating mechanism and blowing it out through the nozzle as a stream of hot air. But the dryer also pulls in dust and lint along with the air, and those particles can lodge in a screen that filters the air before it hits the heating coils.
  • Over time, enough debris can accumulate in the filter and block air from flowing through. That's when things start to overheat. Don't be surprised if you detect a warning odour like that (not surprisingly) of burning hair.
  • When a dryer overheats, its thermostat attempts to cool things down by turning the heating coils off and on. You feel alternating hot and cold air blowing out, which won't provide the styling effects of consistently warm air.
  • Extreme blockage may trigger the dryer's non-resettable shutdown device. However, this dryer demise is something you can avoid by cleaning your dryer's filter.

2. To clean your dryer filter

  • First unplug the dryer.
  • Premium dryers have a filter cover that lifts off, giving easy access for cleaning. Scrub the filter with a dry, soft-bristled brush or toothbrush to get out the lint, dust and hair.
  • Or, use a vacuum cleaner with a crevice attachment.
  • Pull out any stubborn bits with tweezers.
  • If your dryer doesn't have a filter cover, you'll need to brush, vacuum or tweeze the filter from the outside.

3. To clean the dryer body and accessories

Just wipe with a damp rag (not a wet one, which could drip water into the heating element). Even the stickiest, slipperiest hair products are generally water soluble, so a damp cloth should remove them.

The material on this website is provided for entertainment, informational and educational purposes only and should never act as a substitute to the advice of an applicable professional. Use of this website is subject to our terms of use and privacy policy.
Close menu