Out-Of-Work Student Now A Green Entrepreneur

The Orange County Register:

The work is a lot like being a chimney sweep.

The business model invented by Chris King, 19, a freshman at USC living in Huntington Beach, Calif., with his parents during summer break, is pretty simple: extract built-up lint from long, winding clothing-dryer ducts, and charge $39 for the service.

It’s a low-cost way to immediately boost energy efficiency and dramatically cut drying time for clothes.

“One neighbor said it took like an hour and 20 minutes,” King said. “Now it’s down to 20 or 30 minutes, tops. He’s super happy. He said, ‘Call me back next summer.'”

King said he got the idea after trying, unsuccessfully, to find a summer job.

“One weekend, my mom was complaining about how long it took to dry her laundry,” King said. “My dad tried to fix it. I was helping him.”

Like many others in his neighborhood, their house has a laundry room in the middle of the house. The duct that releases warm air from the dryer must be 18 feet long to reach an outer wall.

A kind of light bulb, perhaps with a greenish tinge, went off in King’s mind. A lot of his neighbors had the same floorplan.

The cleaning method – King wants to keep it secret for now – works most dramatically on long ducts. In only two weeks of offering the service door to door, he says he’s already picked up about 25 customers.

Photo by Orange County Register.

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