Home and Fire Safety Buying Guide: Kitchen
Lowe's is happy to provide this information as a service to you.
More on Fire and Safety
- A fire extinguisher is a must for every kitchen the place where so many house fires start. There are different extinguishers for different types of fires. You will notice labels on the units marked A, B and C. These letters refer to which types of fire the extinguisher is meant to fight:
- Class A extinguishers are made for fires involving paper, wood, textiles and plastics. The material inside smothers the fire, putting it out by cutting off the oxygen that feeds it.
- Class B extinguishers are made for fires involving flammable liquids, such as grease, oil, gasoline and paint. Two kinds of material are used: one to smother the fire and one to create a chemical reaction that puts it out.
- Class C extinguishers use non-conductive materials to fight fires in live electrical equipment.
- Each extinguisher also has a rating number indicating what size fire it can handle. Some units are rated for all three types of fires, but they have a larger size rating for one type than for another. Choose a fire extinguisher that is right for the types of fire that might break out in a particular area.
- A first-aid kit prepares you to treat minor injuries. Keep it stocked with clean supplies and fresh medicines, as well as phone numbers for the local emergency services, poison control and your doctors' offices.
- Do not store cooking utensils and dish towels too close to the range. They could melt or catch fire.
- Make sure that plugs near the sink are GFCI outlets, which are designed to monitor the current going to and coming from the receptacle. If electricity started flowing through an improper channel to the ground for example, your body there would be a drop in the current on the proper path. Within a fraction of a second of detecting that current imbalance, a properly installed GFCI would shut that circuit down. You might get shocked, but you should be safe from electrocution. Most local codes now require these outlets in new construction, but older houses might not have them in place. Test the GFCI outlets monthly (using the test button) so you can be sure they will work when they are needed.
- Store knives safely:
- If they are in a drawer, store them with covers to keep someone from being cut while reaching in the drawer.
- If they are on a magnetic strip, make sure that the magnetic force is strong enough to hold them and that the strip is fastened tightly to the wall.