Most common cause of house fires that you can't put out

Discussion in 'General Survival and Preparedness' started by oil pan 4, Aug 17, 2018.

  1. oil pan 4

    oil pan 4 Monkey+++

    And we likely all do it.
    I would also extend this to something you probably shouldn't do before going to sleep.

    A leading cause of house fires is people leaving their clothes dryers running when they are not home and the damn thing catches on fire while you are away.
    And you can't put it out of you're not home.
    This kind of falls in line with the personal shtf stuff I'm always talking about.

    I have some experience with this. Right before my last trip to Afghanistan in 2016 I dragged the clothes dryer out side. Pulled the back cover off it so I could blast out all the lint with compressed air. Which I have done before.
    We got this dryer in 2010 and I had cleaned it before at least 2 other times. Last time was probably 2014.
    Well upon removal of the back cover I found some of the lint in the bottom had caught on fire fairly recently from right near the heater coil air intake. This little fire burned it self out for what ever reason.
    So I haven't put a whole lot of faith in them since.

    Apparently this is not an isolated incident.

    Possible counter measures.
    Put a smoke detector above the dryer or in your laundry room.
    Locate the dryer outside.
    If you go to the store turn it off.
    Don't dry the laundry right before you go to sleep.
    Mountainman, Ura-Ki, Zimmy and 9 others like this.
  2. duane

    duane Monkey+++

    Its the little things that get you, dryer fires, slip and fall in tub or getting in or out, fall on ice getting out of car, fall off steps or a ladder, fire due to wood stove ashes, over heated wall, etc. A couple years ago in a near by town, a family had a wood stove in a garage, put a blower next to it and ran a heat duct to a bed room above the garage, wood stove set fire to wall, blower forced smoke into bed room 30 feet away, grand father and son died of smoke inhalation. We all read the warnings but it a rare thing and seldom happens, but if it does you have had it. Death like pregnancy does not come in percentages, all or nothing. Things that you have to do if you live in the country, clean your chimney, pump your septic tank, clean your dryer vents, clean your cook stove hood, check you well, water, and its quality, check brush and debris near buildings to prevent brush fire from burning buildings, check eve troughs and down spouts, and so it goes. In my lifetime the major thing destroying tractors, farm trucks, etc, has been freezing due to adding water in the summer and not adding antifreeze, running out of oil and locking up the motor, not repairing oil or fuel leaks and have a fire start, have tree, building, etc fall on it during a storm. Good idea to have a book somewhere to keep track of the "routine" things that you should be doing.
  3. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    Guilty on doing both. I think every week, at least once I go to sleep with a load of clothes in the dryer. That is stupid. I rent an older home and the dryer hose runs up through the walls. It is the dumbest design. Our old dryer vent was under the house so you could easily replace the dryer hose every few years. I did clean what I could from this current dryer because no air was coming out of the vent.
    Ura-Ki, Gator 45/70 and chelloveck like this.
  4. Bandit99

    Bandit99 Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    We never run the dryer at night (mainly because I am a light sleeper) and never when were gone due to chance of fire. But, I never knew that one should dragged it outside to blow it out also - until now. Of course, we clean the lint catcher/basket every time we use the dryer but didn't realize that they needed to be cleaned so mine hasn't been for 3+ years now. Well, there is another damn job that has to be done before winter...sigh.
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  5. GOG

    GOG Angry American Site Supporter

    Thanks for the tip. Everything helps.
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  6. 3M-TA3

    3M-TA3 Cold Wet Monkey Site Supporter++

    Just added cleaning my dryer to this weekend's chore list.
  7. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    I dare say I'd use a lint sock instead of continuing to use the hose in the walls. (AND make sure your renter's insurance has you covered.)
    Ura-Ki, Zimmy, Gator 45/70 and 2 others like this.
  8. DKR

    DKR Raconteur of the first stripe

    Locally, the FD stats say most house fires are caused by:

    Installed equipment

    Unattended cooking

    Cooking meth in the basement....
    GOG, Motomom34, Ura-Ki and 4 others like this.
  9. Lancer

    Lancer TANSTAFL! Site Supporter+++

    Agreed w all.
    I rip our apart yearly and pretty much fill a 5 gal shop vac. There's enough leakage around the vent flow path that the entire chassis gets covered. And this is a high end device less than five years old. The vent system that was installed is idiotic as well. Into the wall, drop through a hole cut in the bottom plate of the wall, into the crawl space. The does a 180 and runs 15 feet under a bedroom, and part of the kitchen until it finds the vent in the foundation wall. Originally it was that flimsy flex tubing.
    I changed all the tubing along the run to the four inch triple wall used for wood stoves. Nothing I can do about the wall plate section except change it to solid steel tubing.
    Motomom34, Ura-Ki, Zimmy and 2 others like this.
  10. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    I have a clothes dryer but never use it. I use a clothes line when the weather is dry, and clothes horses when the weather is inclement.

    My only suggestion is to never move or assemble or disassenble a clothes horse naked...some dangly bit is sure to get entangled. :eek:
  11. Lancer

    Lancer TANSTAFL! Site Supporter+++

    Haven't seen a clothes horse since my grandmothers house...
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  12. Ura-Ki

    Ura-Ki Grudge Monkey

    We use a leaf blower to clear the exhaust! Be really surprised at how much crap you blow out!
    chelloveck, Mountainman, GOG and 2 others like this.
  13. Gator 45/70

    Gator 45/70 Monkey+++

    Had mine opened last week changing the belt, Looks good I had cleaned it out 6 months ago due to a shuttle valve crapping out.
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  14. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    I had heard it was the toaster that was #1 for causing fires. Years ago someone said to always make sure your toaster was unplugged.
    chelloveck likes this.
  15. Zimmy

    Zimmy Wait, I'm not ready!

    I was going to guess the water heater.

    I put a 300 degree rated sprinkler head on the cold water inlet on mine years ago.

    My house may end up flooded but it wouldn't burn down
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  16. oil pan 4

    oil pan 4 Monkey+++

    I found a melted wire and thermal switch cover in my water heater closet that came off the water heater.
  17. arleigh

    arleigh Goophy monkey

    I have a thing for electrical wiring and "fuses."
    Building my own solar array and adding DC 12 volt and 6 volt wiring to the house I added fuses to any potential line on the batteries and other parts of the system .
    Living in the country we have rats, rabbits, and ground squirrels that chew through any thing even wiring( even plastic buckets) so taking extra precaution pays off .
    chelloveck, Gator 45/70 and Zimmy like this.
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