The Dryer Vent

Several years ago I purchased a 1970’s tri-level house that was in need of remodeling. I didn’t pay much attention to the house itself because I had chosen the property for its 9,000 square foot back yard. I was eager to begin gardening in earnest. But after moving into the house I soon realized that I needed to get underway with a major remodeling job. The old stove and refrigerator, that the previous owners had left, did not physically fit the space in the kitchen. I wanted a new refrigerator with an icemaker and a gas range instead of an electric one.

I hired two carpenters who quickly gutted the kitchen and started remodeling it to my specifications. As they would be updating the plumbing, doing some rewiring, and adding a gas line, they had to cut two twelve inch holes in the basement ceiling.

My laundry room was in the basement. The next day I decided to do a load of laundry. While the clothes were tumbling in the dryer I could smell their fresh clean scent. It was a nice scent but unless the vent from the dryer to the outside of the house had become disconnected I knew I shouldn’t have been able to smell the clothes drying. Concerned, I switched off the dryer and peered behind it. The vent hose was attached and I could not see a problem.

When the carpenter arrived the next day, I explained the situation to him. We were both puzzled and he too checked the dryer vent. Then I had a thought and I said to him, “Pull down some of the drywall ceiling in the hallway by the dryer.” He did as I asked and what a mess we found! Dirt and piles of clothing lint tumbled down on his head. Curious, he climbed the ladder to see if the vent pipe had become detached in the ceiling. There was no pipe! That couldn’t be right. We both went outside to check the new vent that had been attached on the siding next to the old one. To our amazement, it was a dummy vent that the previous owner had tacked onto the house. It went nowhere and serviced nothing. His dereliction had allowed all the lint from the dryer to collect between the basement ceiling and the upper floor where the kitchen was located. Then when the furnace or air conditioner was on, it blew the accumulation into the rest of the house. My house was in violation of an international fire code!

The carpenter took photos of the lint nightmare and the place where the pipe should have been and soon began the repairs. I composed a letter to the former owner telling him of our findings and enclosed a bill for the full cost of repairs. I also sent copies of the letter to his realtor and his lawyer. The owner had failed to make the disclosure during the sale of the house. He did pay the bill but was very unhappy with me for uncovering his deception. His statement to me was, “I can’t imagine how that happened!”

It is so easy for mankind to be deceitful to some or to GOD and then to think that no one will ever be the wiser. We seem to forget that the ALMIGHTY GOD sees and knows everything at all times no matter how we try to cover or hide our sin. Numbers 32:23 the last part of the verse reads: . . . and be sure your sin will find you out.God knows our thoughts and our intentions. The apostle Paul wrote in Hebrews 4:12 For the word of GOD is alive, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing in two the soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

I am grateful that the dummy dryer vent was exposed so that which was hidden could be repaired and would no longer be a health and fire hazard.

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