An estimated one million tumble dryers still pose a fire threat in UK homes, according to manufacturers.
Whirlpool, manufacturer of Hotpoint and Indesit tumble dryers, have said that it has been difficult to communicate to owners of the remaining faulty machines as many have failed to register their appliances since purchasing. If you have not registered your appliance, the manufacturer has no way of contacting you.
In August 2016, a fire at an 18 storey block in Shepherd Bush needed 120 firefighters and 20 fire engines to extinguish. 100 families were evacuated. It was allegedly started by a faulty Indesit tumble dryer, which was due to be seen by an engineer. Six months later, Whirlpool began advising customers to unplug the appliances and stop using them until they were repaired.
According to Which? Magazine, 12% of UK house fires are started by tumble dryers. Whether or not your tumble dryer is subject to a safety notice, there are still things you can do to reduce the risk of a tumble dryer fire in your home:
•Clean out lint and fluff from the filter and around the door after every use.
•Watch out for scorching or burn marks, and check for loose or worn wires.
•Have your tumble dryer serviced annually by a qualified engineer.
•Never overload your tumble dryer. Take large or bulky items such as duvets to the dry-cleaners.
•Always allow each drying programme to finish, including the "cool down cycle".
•Don't stop the dryer before the end of the cycle unless all items are quickly removed and the door is left open to dissipate heat.
•Leave clothes contaminated with combustible substances such as solvents, grease, oils or fats out of tumble dryers.
•Don't leave dryers, dishwashers and washing machines on overnight. If possible, unplug or switch off appliances at the socket overnight and when going out to avoid the risk of an electrical fault causing a fire
A safety notice has been issued for Hotpoint, Indesit, Swan, Proline and Creda tumble dryers manufactured between April 2004 and September 2015 due to a risk of fire caused by fluff coming into contact with the heating elements.
If you believe you have an affected appliance please stop using it immediately and visit one of these websites to confirm and arrange a free visit from an engineer: