The GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS™ title for the largest ball of lint!
After months of collecting lint from communities across the county, we constructed a massive, record-setting ball out of 690 pounds of lint - which, after weighing and being pronounced the largest ball of lint (by GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS™ standards) - we promptly did what anyone would do, we set it on fire!
This amazing feat began like many others, we found out there was not an official GUINNESS WORLD RECORD title for the largest ball of lint, and we knew that we were destined to create one. Not only do we have access to a copious amount of lint, but this would also give us the opportunity to showcase how dangerous and flammable lint buildup is by setting it ablaze! Beginning in April, we put ourselves and our fellow 95 franchisees to work, saving the lint collected from cleaning dryer vents. Over the next five months, the lint poured in, totaling in at a massive 1,300 pounds!
This is where we had to ask ourselves, how do we take 1300 pounds of lint and turn it into the world’s largest lint ball?
Before we could get the ball rolling, we first had to assess the rules. In order to be considered for an official record title, our lint ball would have to weigh in at over 99lbs, be made entirely of lint, and be able to maintain its ball shape. The first two were easy. The 1300 pounds of lint was dried and safely stored in our shipping container. During this process, we also removed all the socks (there were so many socks!), licenses, toys, and other personal items that had been trapped in the lint.
Now it came down to the curveball - taking all this loose lint and turning it into a compact ball. Over the course of this process, we used some of the lint to complete several practice runs that would showcase just how difficult this challenge was going to be. After a few failed attempts, we had the idea to create a special box with curved sides that the lint could be compressed into and shaped. Once in the box, several grown adults would have to put a large board over top of the lint and jump. When all was said and done, between removing all the non-lint items, performing multiple practice tests, and losing some lint in the shaping process, the 1300lbs of lint turned into a record setting, 690-pound ball of lint!
When the big day rolled around, September 19th, 2019, we flew an official GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS adjudicator from New York to Farmington Hills, Michigan to witness our attempt. We also had to have a fiber expert and a surveyor on site as experts to certify the lint was from clothing fibers and to measure the size of the ball of lint. We worked with the Farmington Hills fire department to secure a location to assemble the ball of lint and to light it on fire. The ball was assembled, measured, weighed on a crane, and it smashed the record. Our ball of lint officially measured in at 19 feet 6 inches in circumference, a massive 4 feet 4 inches tall, and weighed 690 pounds - an official GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS title!
Then, we promptly set it on fire - extinguishing all doubt that dryer lint is a fire hazard! The firemen on site hosed down the ball. The exercise was to highlight how the lack of proper dryer vent cleaning not only shortens the life of a dryer but can be a severe fire hazard to your family and home.
We are excited to say we had a ball...of lint! We not only raised awareness of the importance of dryer vent maintenance, but we are also now the proud title holder for the GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS™ largest ball of lint.