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Fire Prevention: How to avoid a tumble dryer fire?

Here are some simple fire safety tips for the safe use of your tumble dryer.

In August 2019, a fire broke out in an 18-storey tower block in Shepherd's Bush. Fortunately, the fire was caught early enough, and all residents were safely evacuated.

The cause of this near-disaster? A tumble dryer that caught on fire.

After the fire, London Fire Brigade revealed they "attend nearly one fire a day involving white goods". And that is just in London.

Here are some simple fire safety tips for the safe use of your tumble dryer.

• Removing the lint from the tray/ trap after every load, the lint can easily catch fire if it’s not removed.

• Do Not cover the vent or any other opening. Your tumble dryer needs to have a good flow of air around the machine.

• Ensure the vent pipe is free of kinks and it is not crushed or flattened, as the hot air will not be able to escape.

• Only ever use the recommended vent pipes for your tumble dryer. Never improvise. (Refer to the manufactures manual).

• Only vent the warm air to the outside of a building.

• Never put rags or materials into your tumble dryer if they have been used to soak up flammable liquids.

• Sweep around the dryer regularly, as lint and dust around the dryer can increase the risk of a tumble dryer fire.

• Do not overload your tumble dryer, split into smaller loads, so the hot air can circulate more freely.

• NEVER run a tumble dryer when you are asleep, or if leaving the house. NEVER leave your tumble dryer unattended.

Signs your tumble dryer is not ventilated properly:

• Clothes take a very long time to dry, especially heavier items such as towels or jeans.

• Clothes feel hotter than usual at the end of the cycle.


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