After a house fire in Houghton this week, the fire service is reminding homeowners to practice safety when operating kitchen appliances. Here are a few tips to reduce and eliminate the risk of kitchen fires:
Turn off appliances when you’re not home
It may be tempting to put on a load of washing or leave your dishwasher running when you’re at work – but, it can be a serious safety hazard. If you want to save time while doing chores, leave the washers running while you cook or carry out other chores around the house.
“Running a washing machine, tumble dryer or dishwasher overnight or while you are out is a fire risk because of their high wattage, friction and motors,” says Steve Davies, head of the Community Safety for Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service.
Clean lint from your dryer regularly
Be sure to clean the lint filter in your tumble dryer after every use. A build-up of lint can lead to a fire, so it is important not to neglect this task. If you can’t remember the last time you cleaned your lint filter, then it is certainly time to give it a scrub.
Clean your cooking appliances frequently
In the same way that a build-up of lint can cause a fire in your tumble dryer, the accumulation of grease in your oven, grill or hob is also a fire risk. While these do not need to be cleaned out after every use, it is wise to schedule their cleanings at least twice a month – possibly more often, depending on how much you cook.
Double-check your wiring
Faulty wiring is a very dangerous fire risk in your kitchen, so you should check on your wiring several times a year. Ensure that your wires are not damaged in anyway and be sure to inspect them closely. Do not run electrical leads underneath carpets or flooring, as this prevents you from noticing damage. Also, be sure to keep any wiring and plug sockets at least 30cm away from the sink.