If I die, who will empty the lint?

Empty Dryer Lint Blog PostI am the only person in the house that knows how to empty the lint from the dryer. It is something that comes easy to me. I pull the grooved plastic part out of the compartment and slide my finger under all the old fibers, dead dust mites, dog hair, and whatever else makes up lint, scoop it up and put it in the trash.

I have tried to teach household members this skill. I leave notes but I don’t think anyone else has taken the plunge and learned the intricacies of this task. Or maybe they do and we just don’t talk about it. Maybe they are in a parallel universe having this same experience, “I am the only one in the house who knows how to do this and what will happen when I die.”

I feel bad about this situation for two reasons. One, I myself do not have a proper system in place for emptying the lint. I do it rather haphazardly. It is always remarkably full when I think to empty it. Who knows how much this is affecting our household budget. I imagine the dryer runs better when there isn’t a bunch of lint clogging up the exhaust valve. This thought causes me to start worrying about money, which is an auto play tape in my mind.

The other reason I feel bad about the lint removal is that it feels like an area of parenting where I have really failed. We have told our boys to avoid drugs, use condoms, be honest, be kind, enjoy art, play loud music, and laugh as much as possible. We have taught them to cook, do the dishes, clean their rooms, and do laundry, but I totally missed the boat when it comes to lint. We just never had the talk.

Of course, there are things I don’t know how to do, like the trash.  I walk by, it is always rather full, but this is not my area.  I prefer to leave the trash to experts, like my husband.  I am confident he has trained the boys in this art form as I often hear him yelling out, “Take out the trash.”  Together they do the recycling.  It’s a nice thing, so I stay out of it.  I need to focus on my own issues and come up with a plan for the lint.


  1. Because I too ponder this grave issue, I painstakingly taught both cats to empty the lint filter. Our lint is, after all, 95% cat.

  2. when they add cleaning a bathroom to their repertoire they will be set for life. I’m still working on that one with my kids. I swear they do a crappy job (pun intended) so I’ll do it instead.

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