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Appliances kitchen

Published on September 5th, 2013 | by Terry Spencer


How safe is your kitchen?

Here are important reminders about kitchen appliance care to keep you and your family safe :


modern range


  • An anti-tip, mounting device should be installed to secure the range/oven to the floor so that if pressure is applied to the door, there’s no risk of tipping.
  • Keep a fire extinguisher stored in an easily-accessible location.
  • Never use spray oven cleaner in ovens with a self-cleaning feature.
  • For important air circulation, regularly check the vent hood’s filters and fan blades and blower to ensure proper operation.
  • Periodically check the oven door, paying close attention to the way it closes. The gasket (door seal) should be free of tears. If the door does not close or seal properly, excessive heat near the front panel controls can cause unit damage or burns when touched.

Related information
Range cleaning 101
13 easy ways to get your home ready for fall
Range Maintenance Tips
Range/Stove/Oven Repair Help
Range Vent Hood Repair Help



Microwave oven

open microwave oven

  • Broken internal components should be repaired only by a technician, due to risk of electrocution. However, external components like broken latches and handles may be easy, inexpensive DIY part replacement jobs.
  • Heating liquid in a microwave oven is not advised due to risk of burning when touched. It’s better to heat water on a stove-top kettle.

Related information
7 ways to keep your microwave working well
Microwave Repair Help
Microwave Maintenance Tips




Garbage disposal

3 myths about garbage disposals

  • Never place hands near the garbage disposal (a.k.a. disposer). Before attempting to clear a disposal jam, unplug or disconnect the disposal from the circuit breaker. With care, use a broom handle or similar tool to clear jams. It’s best to avoid jams entirely by loading food slowly and carefully into the disposal. Do not load fibrous food like celery and corn husks into it.
  • Replace a torn or worn rubber splash guard located in the mouth of the disposal. Damaged splash guards can allow food particles to be catapulted out of a running unit. Some splash guards are removable and easy to replace. Others are more permanently affixed and require more work for replacement.

Related information
Three garbage disposal myths
Garbage Disposer Maintenance
Garbage Disposer Repair Help

Learn something from this post? Please share with family and friends! Anything you’d add to this list? Let us know in the comments below.


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Since 1999, three and a half million people have purchased replacements parts and accessories from RepairClinic and saved more than $260 million in repair costs by fixing appliances, lawn equipment, power tools, and heating & cooling equipment on their own. From the beginning, RepairClinic has provided free troubleshooting and how-to resources on its website.

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About the Author

Terry Spencer is an in-house appliance and HVAC expert for He has 29 years of expertise in appliances and HVAC equipment repair. Prior to joining RepairClinic in 2011, Terry was a respected, well-known technician at one of metro Detroit’s top residential appliance and HVAC repair businesses. Enthusiastic about fixing things and helping people, Terry enjoys his position with RepairClinic. He has a leading role in the development of RepairClinic’s how-to repair videos and repair help content. He’s also frequently called on for technical advice and press information for journalists and bloggers. He regularly completes extensive manufacturer training for appliances, HVAC equipment and outdoor power equipment. Terry has a refrigeration license and holds multiple certifications for an array of products. As a child, Terry was known to take appliances apart simply to see how they worked. While growing up on a farm, he taught himself how to repair small engines. Terry enjoys creating content that reaches and helps so many people solve problems on their own. In collaboration with colleagues, he develops and leads frequent Customer Care staff training programs for appliances, HVAC equipment and outdoor power equipment. When he’s not at RepairClinic, Terry spends time with his wife and children. An avid outdoorsman, Terry also enjoys Michigan’s seasons. He and his family reside in the Ann Arbor, Michigan area.

8 Responses to How safe is your kitchen?

  1. Tanya says:

    great ideas! It is always really important to keep your kitchen appliences maintained thoughout the year.

  2. Mindy says:

    Great tips! Now that we have a Keurig, we no longer heat water in the microwave. I never thought about it being dangerous but it’s better to be safe than sorry.

  3. Erinn Smith says:

    I never knew that I could not use oven cleaner in a Self-heating oven. I would like to know why exactly. I will quit cleaning with the cleaner so that I don’t hurt anyone or anything… thanks!

    • Jody Lamb says:

      Hi Erinn,

      You should not use an oven cleaning solution to clean an oven with a self-cleaning feature because the chemicals in the solution can damage or erode the special layers of the oven’s interior that enables the self-cleaning feature to work. Thank you!

  4. Susan says:

    Thanks for the reminder on the fire extinguisher. I have one in the kitchen however it has not been used (Thankful for that) since I purchased it in 1985. It still reads in the green. How do I know when it is time for a new one. Also, really what type of fires should I use this on. Thanks for your help.

    • Jody Lamb says:

      Hi Susan,

      Residential fire extinguishers are said to last up to 15 years. If the needle is in the green area, as you say, it should be functional. To be safe, though, you might consider purchasing a second one, too, as a fire extinguisher manufactured nearly 30 years ago may not last much longer. In kitchens, fire extinguishers are most commonly used to stop cooking fires. Thanks for reading!

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