It’s Electrical Fire Safety Week from the 20th to 27th of November 2017. To help you stay safe this winter, we’ve come up with a guide to how to safely use and maintain your electric blankets. Electric blankets are a common cause of fires and burns in the home, so follow these simple steps to keep you and your property safe.
Follow the manufacturer’s instructions closely
It’s important that you only use your electric blanket according to the manufacturer’s instructions. You should read these in detail and follow all of their guidance.
Never use an electric blanket for a purpose that isn’t what the manufacturer intended, such as by using under-blankets as a cover blanket.
Make sure you use the blanket safely
It’s essential that you follow all of the instructions to use your blanket safely. Don’t use the blanket when it’s folded or creased or use pins to hold the blanket in place. Don’t use electric blankets at the same time as hot water bottles, and make sure you don’t touch the blanket with wet hands.
Be careful when using an electric blanket. Make sure that it’s safely and securely fitted onto the bed, and isn’t going to move or slip off.
Be careful when children are using an electric blanket
When using electric blankets on children’s beds, make sure that the controls have been pre-set to the appropriate level. Make sure that the electric blanket is set to switch off on a timer, or ensure that you will switch it off when it’s warmed up.
For older children, check that your child is able to use the electric blanket safely. Take time to explain the instructions, and explain that the blanket should only be operated in a safe manner.
Carry out routine visual checks
You should inspect your electric blanket regularly to make sure it’s still in good condition. You should replace your blanket with a new one if the fabric is worn, frayed, or discoloured or if any wires are poking through the fabric. Also, if there is any damage to the cable, plug, or control, or if the control is making a buzzing noise or giving off a smell.
If you think your electric blanket may be damaged or faulty, don’t use it. Contact the manufacturer for advice, or speak to a professional electrician to check the blanket.
Store and dispose of your blanket safely
You should store your blanket according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Don’t use mothproofing chemicals or store anything heavy on top of it, as this may damage the electric blanket.
When you’re disposing of a blanket, don’t simply throw it away with general domestic waste. Electric blankets should be disposed of safely. Use your nearest recycling facility which accepts electrical appliances.
If your blanket is older than 10 years, you should consider disposing of it and purchasing a new one. The electrical standards for electric blankets have changed over the years, so it’s worth looking into how the standards have changed.
Stay safe this winter! Use Electrical Fire Safety Week as an opportunity to make sure your electrical appliances are safe and properly maintained. If you’ve got any tips about keeping your electrical blankets safe, let us know @Quotatis.
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