Feature

Tip of the week: How to prevent house fires

Hire an expert; Monitor appliance recalls; Live clean

Hire an expert. Have an electrician inspect your home’s wiring. In an older house, you might choose to add arc-fault circuit interrupters, which detect electrical arcs caused by damaged wires or faulty appliances and cut power before an arc ignites a fire. Though a comprehensive upgrade “might cost several hundred dollars,” remember that 30,000 fires a year are caused by arcing faults.

Monitor appliance recalls. Register appliances when you buy them so you’ll be notified of any safety recalls. For older products, look for your appliance at Recalls.gov and SaferProducts.gov. You may be able to sign up to be alerted about recalls.

Live clean. Clean your dryer’s exhaust duct regularly to prevent lint buildup. “Grease buildup in range hoods is another fire hazard,” as are wires hidden under carpets or rugs.

Source: Consumer Reports

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