Tumble dryer fires: 10 ways to make sure your appliance is safe to use

We look at what you can do to look after yours.

Many of us leave them going overnight, knowing they’re working away drying our clothes while we sleep. But how safe is it to leave a tumble dryer on while you’re in bed or out of the house?

Here, charity Electrical Safety First shares how to make sure yours are safe.

1.  Register your appliance

Always register a new appliance with the manufacturer.

That way you can be contacted easily if a safety recall is required.

While the chances of a faulty product causing serious damage are small, the risk is still there and returning a faulty product or ordering its repair is very easy to do.

2. Check online for recalls

Use the charity’s free online checker to see if you have any recalled electrical items. 

3. Think before you fit

If you're concerned about fitting a new tumble dryer yourself, ask a qualified electrician.


4. Keep it clean

Make sure you clean out lint and fluff

Make sure you clean out lint and fluff from the filter and around the door after every use.

5. Check marks

Watch out for scorching or burn marks, and check for loose or worn wires.

6. Get it serviced

Be sure to have your dryer serviced annually by a qualified engineer.

7. Don’t overload it

Never overload your tumble dryer

Never overload your tumble dryer. Avoid this by taking large or bulky items such as duvets to the dry-cleaners.

8. Complete the cycle fully

Always allow each drying programme, including the "cool down cycle", to complete fully.

Don't stop the dryer before the end of the cycle unless all items are quickly removed and the door is left open to dissipate heat.

9. Watch out for combustible substances

Be sure to leave clothes contaminated with combustible substances such as solvents, grease, oils or fats out of tumble dryers.

10. Turn it off overnight

Don't leave dryers, dishwashers and washing machines on overnight.

If possible, unplug or switch off appliances at the socket overnight and when going out to avoid the risk of an electrical fault causing a fire.

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