Air Freshener Fire Concerns

By: Rayne McKenzie
By: Rayne McKenzie

There may be a fire hazard in your home that you aren't aware of. Fire officials are reporting that air fresheners may be causing fires.

The reports contain warnings about the air fresheners with gel inserts, the kind filled with oil and the newer versions with fans.

The good news is that if you properly maintain your air fresheners, you can greatly reduce the fire hazard.

Most of us have them in our homes, but did you know these small devices could be the cause of a house fire? Fire officials are learning that air fresheners can be serious fire hazards.

Captain of the Dothan Fire Department Chris Etheredge said, "The traditional air freshener plug in with the heating element with the gel do have the potential to be dangerous."

And, the reason these air fresheners are catching on fire is simple.

Etheredge said, "The gel packet will dry out and the plastic with the heating element has potential to start a fire."

While there are fire dangers associated with air fresheners, fire officials say they are safe to keep in you home as long as you take the time to care for them.

Etheredge said, "We don't discourage having these if there maintained; you need to change [them] on a regular basis."

Fire investigators say many times it is hard to prove that air fresheners caused a house fire, and that's why there aren't many statistics about the number of fires caused by the devices.

There is some misleading information out there about how easily fires can start from this type of air freshener. And, while the information dramatizes how frequently fires occur from the air freshener, the information is still valid and there are dangers associated with them.

No fires in Houston County have been directly linked to air fresheners.


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