While any homeowner or apartment dweller needs to ensure the safety of everyone living in the home, there are some areas which are more likely to cause safety issues than others. When it comes to the kitchen, this can be the greatest cause of concern. Look around you for just a moment. How many of your appliances are electric? Is your range gas or electric, or a newer combi range that uses both (or either) gas and electric? If you want to ensure that your kitchen is safe, there are three important ways to safeguard your family.
1. Bring in an Appliance Repair Specialist
The one thing to be careful of when hiring an appliance repair specialist is to understand that not any company will do. If the repairman has a vested interest in selling new appliances, you can never be sure whether they are simply making problems worse than they are. Always use a company like Service Force that offers fully trained and manufacturer approved engineers who are qualified to make the right determination as to what is safe and what is not.
One area of concern with kitchen appliances is the potential to cause electrical fires. That is what these licensed appliance engineers are looking for. Also, many families worry about radiation leaking from old microwaves with questionable seals on the door. Some studies have shown that the amount of radiation leaking from microwave ovens isn’t sufficient to cause health concerns and others show that there is the potential to be exposed to too much radiation through cracked doors and broken seals. To avoid catastrophic losses, always have your appliances checked regularly – at least every year or two if they are older or there is any question in terms of safety issues.
2. Undergo an Annual Fire Safety Inspection
In many apartment buildings the maintenance team comes around once or twice a year to inspect fire and smoke monitors. Some homes even have gas detectors, which are important if you use any gas appliances. From boilers to gas ranges, a small leakage could cause a major problem. Not only could a small spark cause an explosion due to gas leaking into the kitchen, but people can become ill (or worse!) from those toxic fumes.
3. Refer Often to a Kitchen Safety Checklist
Every home should have a safety checklist they refer to often. This one developed by Rutgers University in the United States is quite comprehensive. The four areas on the checklist include:
- Kitchen Facilities
- Perishable Foods
- Arrangements for Personal Hygiene
The list details every aspect within those categories you should check often. A monthly inspection would do nicely, but as you begin using your checklist, some things will stay in your conscious mind as you continue to use your kitchen each day. For example, the “Kitchen Facilities” section talks about countertops, cutting boards and the cleanliness of appliances used throughout the kitchen. Make sure everything is free of debris and build-up of spilt foods. Your electric can opener can easily become built up with foods splashed up when opening cans.
When it comes to food storage, there are two main areas of concern. The first is your freezer and refrigerator. Are they clean and sanitary? Is your refrigerator set at the right temperature for safe storage of perishable foods? Is your dry good storage area free from excess humidity which can quickly cause mould to build up in foods which are not tightly enclosed in plastic or glass containers? It is essential that you protect the health and wellbeing of all occupants within your home. These inspections should be conducted at least once a year to ensure your kitchen does not have any serious safety issues.
Do you have any tips for maintaining a safe kitchen? Let me know in the comment box below!
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