The leading cause of home clothes dryer and washer fires is failure to clean them.
Dryers and washing machines were involved in one out of every 22 home structure fires reported to U.S. fire departments in 2006-2010.
Facts and figures
In 2010, an estimated 16,800 reported U.S. non-confined or confined home structure fires involving clothes dryers or washing machines resulted in 51 civilian deaths, 380 civilian injuries and $236 million in direct property damage.
Clothes dryers accounted for 92% of the fires; washing machines 4%, and washer and dryer combinations accounted for 4%.
The leading cause of home clothes dryer and washer fires was failure to clean (32%), followed by unclassified mechanical failure or malfunction (22%). Eight percent were caused by some type of electrical failure or malfunction.
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Source: Clean My Dryer Vent