For bedroom and bathroom domestic appliances...
1. Sounds obvious, but read the instruction manual before you use the appliance
2. Don't block the air vent of a hair dryer by placing it on a soft surface and clean the vent regularly to avoid a risk of fire
3. Switch off and unplug all appliances when not in use
4. Hair straighteners and curlers can get as hot as an iron – taking up to 40 minutes to cool so place them in a protective pouch after use and don’t leave them unattended around small children or pets
5. Only use extension leads for temporary connections - a lead may have four sockets but altogether it should not use more than 13amps or 3000 watts of energy. Check the allowance on your particular leads
6. Don’t cover electric heaters or fans - for example by drying clothes - or leave them close to curtains or furniture
7. If you use a dehumidifier in the bedroom make sure you leave plenty of open space around it so that it works efficiently
8. Never use electrical equipment in wet conditions and don’t use appliances in the bathroom unless the instructions permit
9. Only use appliances for their designated purpose
For small kitchen appliances...
10. Don’t wrap the cord around an appliance such as an iron or toaster when storing as this can weaken the cord making it dangerous
11. Using the top of a standalone microwave may help with additional storage in a small kitchen, but ensure you don’t cover any ventilation holes as it might overheat
12. Don’t leave anything on top of a toaster in case it is accidently turned on and catches light
13. Keep children away from appliances that get hot in use.
14. Don’t overfill your kettle as the water may spill when it boils and it also wastes energy!
15. Only use kettles and toasters in the open and on a stable surface, and never when they are in a cupboard
16. Most appliances cannot be submerged in water. Ensure that all switches, plugs and sockets are kept dry
17. Some appliances don’t have an on-off switch such as an iron, so make sure to unplug at the wall when you have finished
18. Check your appliance hasn’t been recalled. Appliances up to 12 years old can be registered at www.registermyappliance.org.uk enabling manufacturers to contact you if a repair or recall is required.
Thanks to AMDEA (The Association of Manufacturers of Domestic Appliances) for sharing these tips.