Saturday, December 21, 2013

Review: Lint Lizard

Before we offer our review of the Lint Lizard, let's review what this product is supposed to do:

Short version of the video: The Lint Lizard is an attachment to your vacuum cleaner that reaches down into your clothes dryer (the lint trap and other hard-to-reach areas) to remove built-up lint. A build-up of lint inside the clothes dryer (and the dryer vent) really is a problem; it can clog, cutting off air flow; it can even catch fire. So it's important to remove as much lint as you can.

Getting to all that lint - beyond what collects on the lint screen - has always been an issue, however. There are even some companies that offer to clean your clothes dryer for a fee, to address the possible fire hazard.

So if the Lint Lizard works, it's a product that certainly meets a needs. Does it work?

Yes, the Lint Lizard really does work - not perfectly, not without some issues, but it works better than some other products we've seen for cleaning out lint built-up in a clothes dryer.

The Lint Lizard comes in a modestly sized box, and comes out of the box in three pieces: one piece attaches to your vacuum cleaner's hose; and a clear plastic tube fits onto the end of the first piece and is what you feed down the lint trap, up the dryer exhaust and around the drum to suck out excess lint. A third piece is a telescoping extender that fits onto the hose attachment.

We'll first tell you what happened when we got the Lint Lizard hooked up to our vacuum and working: it cleaned out quite a bit of lint from our dryer. A surprising amount of lint, really. We were impressed with the performance and happy with the result.

So is there a catch? Well, the clear plastic tube is coiled up inside the packaging, so when you take it out of the box it is very curved and does not want to straighten. And it's quite stiff - not rigid, but semi-rigid, and difficult to work with. The Lint Lizard instructions say that you can use hot air or hot water to soften the tube and make it easier to work with. We tried that, but it really didn't work that well. So maneuvering this semi-rigid plastic tube - a tube that kept wanting to coil up - was a chore.

Now, when we store the Lint Lizard, we store it outside of the box and use heavy books placed around the plastic tube to prevent it from curling up again. Yet, it doesn't seem to get any more flexible over time.

So that's a bit of a pain, and a bit of a drawback. Because of it, the Lint Lizard might not fit all that well into your clothes dryer, or at least into certain areas. But: If you can handle fighting a bit with the tubing, then the Lint Lizard really does remove built-up lint from your dryer. It's inexpensive and worth giving a try.

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