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13 Everyday Things That Could Start a Fire If We’re Not Careful Enough

Our home is a space where we can all feel safe and welcome, but the truth is that we can find hidden danger where we least expect it. More than 300,000 house fires occur every year and learning which products or objects have a tendency to burn is important to prevent this from happening to us. We couldn’t imagine that a simple ping pong ball or that everyday flour was a fire hazard until now, for example.

Bright Side wants to spread the word and let you know exactly what items you should be careful with.

1. Creamers and jams

Powdered non-dairy creamer contains sodium aluminosilicate which can cause fire when dispersed. However, this is no reason to ditch your favorite creamer. Just remember to make your cup of Joe away from the kitchen stove. Most jam jars are made of glass which makes them a fire hazard too. So, to be on the safer side, keep all glass jars away from direct sunlight.

2. Nail polish and remover

Nail polish and nail polish remover contain isopropyl alcohol and ethyl acetate in their composition, and both main ingredients are flammable. It is recommended that you store your nail products in a cool, dark place with a consistent temperature.

3. Flour particles in the air

When hanging in the air, little particles of flour can cause rapid combustion. This is called a dust explosion. So it’s better to be careful when turning on the stove while making that perfect homemade pizza.

4. Cooking on a dirty stove

It’s very important to keep your stove clean. Old oil, grease, and grime can catch fire in a matter of seconds and, in fact, this has been one of the main reasons why house fires start.

5. Your laptop and its charger, battery, and cables

We know that letting a laptop charge overnight is a common habit, but it’s also very dangerous. When batteries are over-charged, wet, or damaged, they can be a fire hazard, and leaving them plugged in for long hours could elevate the problem.

6. Glassware under the sun

Glassware, mirrors, or even fishbowls and glasses of water can magnify the sun’s rays and lead nearby objects, like curtains, paper, or clothing to catch fire. To prevent this, keep these objects out of direct sunlight.

7. Massage oil left on a towel

Nothing is better than a good massage, but be careful when washing your oily towel. Several fires have started in the dryer because the laundry detergent and cold water didn’t remove all the oils from the fabric. It’s better to hang them out to dry than to dry them in the dryer.

8. Mothballs in the closet

Mothballs are often made with naphthalene or 1.4-dichlorobenzene, both of which have a high rate of flammability. Besides that, exposure to mothballs is linked to anemia, blindness, and they are also carcinogenic. A good alternative is to use red cedar wood.

9. Aerosol cans in beauty and kitchen products

Aerosol spray cans are often used for deodorants, cooking sprays, and cleaning materials. They are filled with hydrocarbon compressed gas, and its boiling point is slightly lower than room temperature. These cans should never be stored near fire or hot places.

10. Ping pong balls exposed to high heat

Although the official material of ping pong balls changed from celluloid to plastic a few years ago, you might still find an old ball made with celluloid here and there. This material is highly flammable, so be careful when playing ping pong under the hot sun and make sure they are stored in a cool area.

11. A laundry room full of products

Most household cleaners are not only toxic, but can also ignite a fire. It’s important to pay attention to its labels and to not use fire near them. Also, replacing them with natural alternatives is a good way to keep your house safe.

12. Clogged bathroom exhaust fans

If bathroom exhaust fans aren’t cleaned and maintained properly, they can become a fire hazard. The accumulated dirt can make the motor malfunction and overheat. Another cause of overheating is leaving it on for hours.

13. Hand sanitizer with alcohol

It doesn’t matter if you have a liquid or gel form of a hand sanitizer, every type is highly flammable. Both are composed of ethyl alcohol and can easily be ignited with a lighter. So you shouldn’t apply hand sanitizer and then go cook or use anything fire-related.

Were any of these a surprise to you?

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