10 Things You Can Do to Make Your Kitchen Safer
The kitchen is often the hub of any home. We start our day brewing coffee and pouring cereal, run through in the afternoon to whip up a sandwich or smoothie, linger in the evening to prepare and enjoy dinner and sneak in throughout the evening for a relaxing cocktail or sweet treat. With all of the focus on food and fun, the safety of this popular area is often overlooked.
These 10 tips will help you keep this high-traffic area of your home safe.
1. If you don’t consider the heat, you’ll lose the kitchen.
If you cook often, you are more likely to have a small kitchen fire at least once in your lifetime than not, so be prepared. Make sure you have at least one smoke alarm with working batteries and a fire extinguisher within reach. Many cooks forgo the smoke alarm because they constantly set it off from the heat and smoke of routine cooking. This model uses a photoelectric sensor which limits nuance alarms so you can keep your kitchen safe and cook in peace.
2. Beat the chill.
A build-up of ice can completely ruin what’s in your refrigerator and freezer, as well as lead to a hefty repair bill. Make an effort to defrost the freezer and fridge once a month to ensure your units can continue to work efficiently, hold the correct temperature, and keep your food fresh.
3. Sweep the room with more than a glance.
It’s a good practice to sweep or vacuum the kitchen floor each night before bed. This not only keeps your kitchen looking fabulous but it also reduces the risk of attracting ants, mice and other pests than can wreak havoc on your pantry.
4. Handle with care.
When cooking on a stovetop, it’s critical to turn the handles to the side to prevent accidental spilling. When running around to get dinner on the table, it is easy to bump into a handle and knock it over. Curious children can also pull on the accessible handle to take a peek at what’s for dinner, leading to serious injury.
5. Refresh the fridge.
When you gather up the garbage for trash day, make it a habit to also clean out any old food and condiments from your refrigerator. This will help prevent foodborne illnesses and keep your icebox mold-free.
6. Protect your great wall of china.
Anchor down your breakfront, china cabinet or any other heavy kitchen shelving to prevent serious injury and breakage of valuable china, stored food and priceless serving pieces.
7. Sanitize, sanitize, sanitize.
If you must use a sponge to clean your dishes, zap it in the microwave for a couple seconds to kill off any lingering germs or bacteria and make sure to use a fresh dishrag each time you do the dishes. Also, keep antibacterial wipes around to wipe your surface area when cooking with chicken, meat and other products that can carry salmonella, e-coli and cause food-borne illnesses.
8. Control the cupboards.
The kitchen cupboards are a treasure trove of food, cleaners, baking supplies, oils and a ton of miscellaneous items. Childproof your cabinets so that your little ones can’t access the goods, protecting your stash and their health. While you’re at it, it’s critical to cover electrical outlets and oven dials too.
9. Lock up.
It may seem like common sense, but many homeowners forget to lock their kitchen windows and sliding doors at night because they are so busy worrying about locking the main access points of the home. Include closing up the kitchen in your nighttime routine to keep unwanted kitchen guests and critters out of your home.
10. Clean the oven.
While a daunting task, it is important to clean your oven periodically throughout the year. Old food and spills can cause flare ups, even potentially causing harmful smoke or even fire. Make sure your home is equipped with smoke detectors, which often come with a security system. Many ovens now have a self-clean function so it makes the job pretty painless. Just be sure to crack a window and lock the oven as the temperature for the cleaning function is extremely hot.
Keep these tips next to the shopping list on your fridge to ensure you keep your kitchen filled with family, friends, good food and love without harmful risks.