Can Hair Dryers Overheat? (Explained)

Have you ever used your hair dryer and felt like it was getting too hot?

If so, you’re not alone. This blog post will explain what causes a hair dryer to overheat and how to avoid it.

Read on for helpful information about keeping your hair dryer in good condition!

Here’s Why Hair Dryers Overheat:

Hair dryers overheat. Since it is an electric device, it tends to overheat like all other electric devices. A hairdryer is overheating when the surface of the hair dryer becomes too hot to touch, and a burnt smell emerges. Over-use, blocked filters, and faulty wiring can cause overheating.

Can You Prevent A Hair Dryer Overheating?

While an overheating hair dryer is not that uncommon, you can prevent it from happening. To prevent a hair dryer from overheating, you should know why these devices overheat.

There are four main reasons that hair dryers overheat:

  • The hair dryer is being used for a prolonged period.
  • The air circuit of the hair dryer is blocked.
  • The filter or the ventilation grilles of the hair dryer are clogged.
  • There is a component failure in the device, such as a fault in the thermal fuse, thermostat, fan, or resistor.

Here is what you can do to prevent your hair dryer from overheating:

Use your Hair Dryer As Recommended

On average, it takes roughly 15 to 20 minutes for your hair to be completely dry when using a hair dryer.

You should not run your hair dryer longer than 20 minutes if you want to prevent it from overheating.

Use your hair dryer only for your hair, and avoid using it to dry clothes, shoes, or other items that take a very long time to dry. Using your hair dryer for purposes other than drying and styling your hair can increase the risk of it overheating and breaking down.

Clean the Air Vent

A dirty air vent is one of the most common causes of overheating on hair dryers.

This is why you must check that these vents are not regularly clogged.

You can find the air vent at the back of most hair dryers. You can clean it by dusting it off using a soft, dry brush or a soft, lint-free cloth.

Clean the Filter

A clogged filter is another one of the most common causes of overheating on hair dryers. It can also cause the internal components to break down.

Regularly check that the filter is not clogged. Over time as you use your hair dryer, debris such as dust, dirt, hair, and styling products can clog the filter of the hair dryer.

You can find the filter under the air vent of the hair dryer. Some hair dryers can easily remove this by twisting it on and off. In some hair dryers, you have to use a screwdriver.

To clean the filter, you need to remove it and place it under running water until all traces of dirt is removed. You can also use a small toothbrush to clean it.

Then dry it using a clean, lint-free cloth. Ensure the filter is completely dry before attaching it to your hair dryer.

If your hair dryer keeps overheating and becoming a recurring problem, it is best to contact a professional. There may be something faulty with the components that are causing it to overheat.

How Long Can A Hair Dryer Run Before Overheating?

A hairdryer normally takes 15 to 20 minutes to dry your hair completely.

Good quality hair dryers can overheat and shut off automatically after using them for around 15 minutes. Low-quality ones can overheat and shut off in just 7 to 10 minutes.

When using a hair dryer, it is important not to use it continuously for a prolonged period to prevent it from overheating.

When drying your hair, it is recommended to use your hair dryer for up to 10 minutes and then give it 2 to 3 minutes to cool down and rest. If your hair is still not dry, you can turn on the hair dryer and use it again.

Giving it a few minutes of rest in between uses is important.

Do All Hair Dryers Overheat Eventually?

In general, all hair dryers tend to overheat eventually.

All hair dryers have an internal thermal safety device. This device cuts off the current whenever it detects an abnormally high temperature.

This is why your hair dryer automatically shuts off sometimes when in use.

Suddenly shutting your hair dryer helps prevent overheating, which can cause irreversible damage you can no longer fix.

If your hair dryer is used properly and is well-maintained, it may not overheat even when it is a few years old.

What Hair Dryers Are Known For Overheating?

For some types of hair dryers, overheating is quite common.

There are four types of hair dryers:

  • Ionic hair dryer
  • Ceramic hair dryer
  • Tourmaline hair dryer
  • Titanium hair dryer

Out of these four types of hair dryers, ionic hair dryers are the ones that are more prone to overheating.

Ionic hair dryers are hair dryers that give off a negative ionic charge. These negative ions counteract with positive ions in the hair.

Titanium hair dryers also tend to overheat frequently. Titanium hair dryers can dry hair fast, but they also make for very hot hair dryers, so they can be prone to overheating.

Ceramic and tourmaline hair dryers are less prone to overheating than the other two. These hair dryers use infrared heat, and they work by distributing heat more evenly.

Do Hair Dryers Have an Overheat Reset?

Most hair dryers have a reset button. If you regularly use a hair dryer to dry and style your hair, you would have probably noticed a button on it that says “reset.”

Modern hair dryers are equipped with Appliance Leakage Circuit Interrupters or ALCIs, and the reset button is part of this feature. Using this feature is quite simple.

When the thermal safety device of your hair dryer detects an abnormally high temperature, it will shut off. This is good as it prevents your hair dryer from overheating any further, which can cause irreversible damage to your device.

After your hair dryer shuts off, you may be unable to turn it on again immediately. Please wait a few minutes for it to cool down, and then press the reset button, and your hair dryer should turn back on.

Additionally, the ALCI can detect when something causes some changes in the electrical current. For example, if the hair dryer gets wet, the ALCI can detect that, immediately cutting the power supply to your device.

This is a good safety feature, especially if you have kids in the household, as they are more susceptible to danger and accidents.

Can Hair Dryers Catch Fire?

Generally, any device that is run by electricity can catch fire. And given that fact, hair dryers can catch fire.

Any electric appliance that can generate heat can catch fire regardless of size. When a hair dryer overheats and a component malfunctions, it can catch fire.

If you leave your hair dryer plugged in, it can catch fire even if you are not using it. This is because as long as it is plugged into an electrical socket, it will still draw current even if it is not turned on.

This is why it is important to unplug your electric appliances when not using them. Apart from helping you save on electric bills, it will also help keep your household safe.

To summarize, hair dryers do tend to overheat. It is normal for all types of electric devices, but it is something that you can easily prevent.

Just make sure to use your hair dryer properly and as prescribed, maintain and clean it regularly, and keep it unplugged when not in use.


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