Keeping Your Kitchen Safe
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Kitchens are under attack in all directions – from water (leaks can cause loads of damage to the rest of the house, or the guy downstairs if you’re in an upstairs apartment), thieves (yes, you might not be the only one who fancies a few new appliances), from dirt, grime and bacteria. So what can you do about it?
Preventing Leaks – lots of kitchen appliances use water, particularly dishwashers or washing machines, so it’s important that all of the flexible hoses are kept in good order so that they don’t spring a leak and cause a flood. If you do notice a pool of water on the floor and you don’t have a puppy, then you need to sort it out immediately. Has a connector come loose, is there a crack in the pipe – it’s a good idea to turn off the water supply at the top tap and see if you can sort it out yourself, and if not, turn it off and call in a professional. Washing machines in particular are best if they are placed on a concrete floor, surely you’ve heard the racket when they get into a spin cycle and wooden floors don’t have the same stability as concrete.
Preventing Unwanted Visitors – we’re not talking about the in-laws here, we’re talking about those visitors who call in through an open window or take a chance through the door while you’re in the bathroom. It’s really important that you fit your windows and doors with security locks and don’t leave doors carelessly open in the summer time. A noisy dog or alarm is a good deterrent. In any case, you should have a record of all of your appliances including makes, models and serial numbers, and write your zip code with an invisible marker pen onto everything. Your pen should come with a few stickers for you to put into the window and tell all of the neighborhood burglars what you’ve done, that should put them off a bit.
Socket to ’em – it’s important that you have enough electricity sockets in your kitchen, overloading with adaptors and too many plugs in one socket really is a safety hazard. If you’re lucky enough to be designing your kitchen from scratch it’s something which needs serious consideration (your designer will help you, it’s surprising just how many you might need).
Child-Proofing Your Kitchen – kitchens are full of dangerous stuff, even when you’re not cooking or chopping veggies. Poisons lurk everywhere, well, it’s actually cleaning products to you and me but potentially deadly drinks or candy for toddlers and small children. Make sure that all cupboards are fitted with child safety locks, particularly those at ground level.
Keep it Clean – even if they look relatively clean, a kitchen is often the dirtiest room in the house, yes, even dirtier than the bathroom, amazing isn’t it. You wouldn’t dream of preparing food in the lav, but you do need to make sure that the kitchen is clean and hygienic just the same. Hobs and cookers can quickly become covered in a layer of grease, a real dust magnet (and germ) that, so make sure that you clean everything down regularly with hot water and soap.