6 Innocent-Looking Household Items That Could Accidentally Start a House Fire
Sometimes, even the most innocent-looking household items could be responsible for starting a housefire — things that we would never think could cause so much damage.
We are careful to abide by all the safety rules like having a fire plan, checking our smoke alarm batteries twice a year when daylight savings switches (heads up, everyone, that’s this weekend!), and never leaving a candle or open flame unattended. But while we might feel at ease that we have all our fire prevention under control, we could have some of these everyday items in our homes ready to start a fire without realising how dangerous they could be.
1. Makeup mirrors
Makeup mirrors are surprisingly efficient fire-starters, especially the ones with a magnifying lens. Never leave these mirrors on a window sill or anywhere that is in direct sunlight. A house was badly damaged after sunlight reflecting off a mirror caused curtains to ignite leading to fire and smoke damage. This is most likely to happen during the day when everyone is out of the house and unlikely to be able to put the fire out quickly.
2. Snow Globes
Like angled makeup mirrors, snow globes can capture the sun’s rays and act like a magnifying glass. They concentrate the sunlight to a specific point which can then start a fire. Who would have thought?
This fun flamingo snow globe burned a line in the child’s curtains as the sun passed across the window throughout the day.
3. Phone Chargers in Drawers and Under Pillows
Electronic cables can become warm and overheat easily. Keeping them in drawers or within bedding is a fire hazard that could definitely start a blaze. Another issue is that these items are often right next to us while we sleep, putting us in further danger. It is important to check where your children are charging their devices to ensure a safe night’s sleep for the entire family.
4. Candles in Glass Containers
While most candles are completely safe if not left unattended, some types of candles that come in non-heat-resistant glass jars can pose a risk of exploding unexpectedly. The glass can break or crack when heat is applied unevenly or concentrated on one particular area, causing hot wax and glass to shatter everywhere.
5. Crystal Balls and other Glass Ornaments
Owners of crystal products are advised to keep them covered when they are not in use as they are another item that could cause a housefire. Similar to snow globes, crystal balls and glass ornaments magnify sunlight to an intense ray that can become a fire hazard.
Batteries, particularly those big rectangular 9 Volt ones, pose a potentially serious fire risk. We tend to leave them lying around in a junk drawer when they’re not in use, but this is a definite no-no.
The design of 9V batteries, which feature both the positive and negative poles on the same side of the battery, can be a real fire hazard. Something as simple as a paperclip or coin coming into contact with both poles can be enough to overheat the battery and cause a spark, which can turn into a fire.
Is it time to conduct a fire hazard safety check around your home?