Your stove is possibly one of the most useful appliances in your home, but it can also be the most dangerous if you aren’t careful. It´s something that most people don´t think about much, but your stove can be the scene of many accidents. It pays to be careful whenever you use your stove to avoid injuries and possible problems.
General Safety Precautions
Whether you have a gas, wood or electric stove, there are certain safety tips that should always be followed to keep your family safe.
o When cooking, turn the pots so the handles don´t stick out over the edge of the stove where small children can grab them and pull boiling hot food on top of themselves.
o Always keep a fire extinguisher handy near the stove, already if there is a sink nearby, grease fires will just spread if you throw water on them, so it´s better to use an extinguisher.
o Only let children cook under adult supervision.
o Use oven mitts and potholders to manager hot pans and pots to prevent burns from the high temperature metals.
o Don´t use metal spoons to stir food on the stove and then leave them in the pot. They heat up quickly and can burn your hand the next time you touch them.
o Avoid using loose, flowing clothing or leaving dish towels near hot burners, since these can catch fire.
For obvious reasons, gas stoves need additional safety precautions. You want to make sure that there are no gas leaks, so anytime you hear a hissing or smell gas and can´t tell where it is coming from, turn off your gas at the source, open all windows and exit the house. Call the fire department to check it out. Here are some other things to keep in mind with gas stoves.
o If your stove doesn’t have a pilot light, be sure to light it closest after turning the gas on. You can cause an explosion by waiting more than a second or two. already minor gas explosions can seriously injure someone who is close to the stove at the time.
o Check regularly for gas leaks and if you notice any stove parts getting rusty or old, be sure to replace them.
o Gas tends to heat very quickly, so watch your pots carefully to make sure you don´t end up with soups boiling over or starting a fire in a pan. If you do end up with a fire, use your fire extinguisher, don´t throw water on the flames.
Electric stoves are the important of most kitchens. They heat uniformly with coils and electricity tends to be more stable than gas as far as safety goes. However, there are nevertheless some precautions specific to electrical stoves.
o Clean under the burners regularly to prevent fires. additional bits of food that fall under the burner into the tray can catch fire if the burner is hot enough.
o Since pots are placed directly onto the burner, it´s pretty easy to accidentally touch the hot component. Be careful when reaching across the stove, already if it´s turned off, since the component can store heat for a while afterwards.
o Take care and use protective equipment to put things in the oven. Electric stoves usually have elements at the top of the oven and this can really be a danger when you reach far into the preheated oven.
Stoves are very useful and can be a great appliance to have, but they do need to be treated with care in order to avoid injury. Cook carefully and follow the safety precautions listed above to get the best, safest use out of your stove.