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How to prevent kitchen fires

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- Published 13th June 2019

Almost two thirds of residential fires break out in the kitchen. Whether it’s leaving your cooking unattended or storing your tea towels too close to the oven, kitchen fires occur far too often. To help safeguard your home, here are some essential, easy-to-follow tips on how to prevent kitchen fires from ever occurring.

Install a heat alarm

If you’ve ever had a smoke alarm in or near your kitchen, you’ll know just how annoying it can be when it’s triggered every time you burn the toast. When this becomes too much, you may even be tempted to remove the battery, rendering your fire detection system useless in the event of an actual fire.

A heat alarm can prevent this from happening since it will only trigger if it senses a rise in temperature. What’s more, with the Sentinel Heat Alarm, you can even connect a smoke alarm elsewhere in your home, as a part of the same circuit, safeguarding you against all of the major warning signs of a fire.

 More about heat alarms

Don’t store your tea towels on your oven

This is a mistake almost all of us make – we’d wager that you’re currently making it now. Materials such as tea towels or oven gloves can be highly flammable and cause any localised fire to spread in seconds. Keep tidy – store them in a drawer.

Keep your hobs clear of grease

While we’re on the topic of good housekeeping, make sure that you wipe down your hobs regularly and never cook on a dirty stove. It goes without saying that grease is highly flammable – don’t take any chances.

Be mindful of old appliances

It’s estimated that 18% of accidental household fires are caused by old or faulty wiring in electrical appliances, so it stands to reason that you should make sure that everything you use is in tip top condition.

Ensure that everything you buy adheres to UK safety standards. If some of your appliances are past their best, consider upgrading to a newer model. When it comes to fire safety, old isn’t always better.

Finally, bear in mind that kitchen appliances continue to draw electricity and generate heat even after they’re switched off, which brings us to…

Ensure that electric appliances are unplugged when not in use

Toaster ovens, hand mixers, coffee makers… they’ll all remain active even after you’ve switched them off. The only way to ensure they’re not a fire hazard is to either unplug or switch them off at the wall.

Okay, so this is easier said than done. Of course, it’s impossible to unplug some of your larger appliances such as fridges or ovens every time you go out. But take the time to unplug the smaller items when they’re not in use. Do a spot check before you go to bed to make sure that everything that can be unplugged, is unplugged.

Adopt a going-to-bed routine

It’s estimated that 75% of all casualties from domestic fires occur between 6pm and 6am, which isn’t surprising. After all, at night, we’re at our most vulnerable and unable to react to the signs of a fire as quickly as we should.

Incorporate these kitchen fire prevention strategies as a part of your bedtime routine. Spend a minute or two checking that your appliances are switched off and everything that’s flammable is stowed away accordingly.

If you’re a smoker, check that your cigarettes are properly extinguished. Likewise, if you use candles. Ultimately, it’s your responsibility to safeguard your home from fire. Follow this advice and you’ll drastically reduce the likelihood of fire breaking out in your home.

To ensure your home is fully protected, purchase the Sentinel Heat and Smoke Detection system.