Maintaining Appliances Helps Reduce Fire Risks

While keeping your appliances in good working order helps you save money, energy and aggravation…did you know it could help save your life? 

The National Fire Incident Reporting System reveals that an estimated 9,600 residential appliance fires occur annually, resulting in 25 deaths, 525 injuries and $211 million in property loss.  
One of the most common ways appliance fires get started is through faulty wiring. TotalProtect® home warranty technicians recommend several maintenance and safety tips that can help you reduce your risk.
Clothes dryers are one of the most common appliances at risk of causing a fire. You can reduce the odds of a potentially hazardous situation simply by following some easy maintenance tips: 
  1. Have your dryer installed by a professional so you are confident it has been properly set up for use.
  2. Clean the lint filter before every use. Also clean any loose lint that accumulates near or around the lint filter area. 
  3. Never leave your dryer running while you are sleeping or out of the house. 
  4. Never dry clothes that have been in contact with flammable substances such as gasoline or alcohol. 
Another hazardous spot is the kitchen, given its potentially volatile combination of electrical appliances, high heat, grease and even natural gas:
  1. Inspect all cords and plugs on microwave and toaster ovens, coffee pots, personal grills, deep fryers and other electrical appliances. 
  2. If you cook with natural gas, inspect your gas connection periodically to make sure it has not loosened over time. 
  3. Keep ovens, stovetops and microwaves clean and clear of any food debris that could catch fire. 
If you ever notice sparks or sputtering from ANY electrical appliance…even if only one small part or feature on the item is faulty…unplug it immediately and have a professional inspect the appliance or discard it. This goes for blenders, mixers, hair dryers, curling irons, electric blankets or any other item used in your home. There may be serious wiring problems or other malfunctions you cannot see inside that could be very dangerous.
For the bigger, more complex home systems -- your electrical, plumbing, heating, air conditioning and major appliances -- it helps to have experienced home repair technicians on your side. With home warranties from TotalProtect, you're covered against major expenses due to unexpected breakdowns. Plus, you have 24/7 access to a network of 40,000 pre-screened, qualified service technicians and a 6-month guarantee on covered repairs.
The information in this article is intended for the proper maintenance and care of systems and appliances in the home. Not all of the topics mentioned are intended to indicate coverage by our home warranty or service plans. Please review your contract carefully to understand what your product coverage entails.