The PuroClean Blog

5 Little Known Causes of Home Fires

Although most household fires start in the kitchen, there are many unexpected ways a fire can start in a home or property. Some objects that may seem harmless can sometimes start a fire in particular situations. To help homeowners prevent unexpected fire hazards, here are five uncommon ways fires can start in homes:

1. Glass Objects

It is well-known that light passing through a magnifying glass can start a fire if pointed to a flammable object. However, in very rare cases, fires can start due to light passing through an empty jar, crystal ball or another glass object. When the light is refracted by these objects towards curtains, paper or another flammable source, a fire can start if given enough time. To avoid this, glassware should be kept in a shaded area.

2. Dishwashers

While some household appliances are known to start fires, not many people are aware that dishwashers can also pose a fire risk, although small. A fire can be caused by a faulty dishwasher when water drips onto the machine’s internal wires. Have your dishwasher maintained and repaired once a year to prevent any fire hazards, as well as water leaks.

3. 9-Volt Batteries

Although unlikely, fires can start due to improper disposal of 9-volt batteries. When the battery’s posts come in contact with a piece of metal, and that piece of metal touches a flammable object, such as a piece of paper, a fire can start. Therefore, discharged 9-volt batteries should be stored away from metals. Information on how to safely dispose of batteries for recycling is usually found at local city websites.

4. Laptops

Laptops produce quite a bit of heat when operating for several hours. If a laptop is put directly on a bed, couch or another soft surface, there is a slight chance that the heat produced by the laptop will start a fire. Laptop fires can be prevented by using laptop stands and cooling pads or by placing them on a non-flammable surface.

5. Dust

It may sound strange, but the dust bunnies under beds and furniture can be a fire hazard if they are close to wall sockets, heating appliances or electronics. Dust bunnies can ignite if sparks fly towards them, possibly spreading fire towards nearby furniture. Vacuuming under beds and furniture on a regular basis helps eliminate this small fire hazard.

Since most home fires start in the kitchen, here are several important kitchen fire safety tips to know. Electrical fires are also common in homes or properties. Here is a list of the top 5 causes of electrical fires with tips on how to prevent them. The PuroClean team stands ready to provide professional restoration services to any property affected by fire, water or mould damage.