Your home is your sanctuary, your place of entertainment, your getaway. It’s a place to unwind and relax after a hard day, a place to store all your important items, a place where you’re joined by friends and family during all those special occasions. It’s your place. But your home is also a place that’s full of deadly dangers. Chances are, you have no idea how truly dangerous your home really is, or how many things in it can seriously harm you. There are probably at least 10 things in your home that could kill you right now.
You think you’re safe in the bathroom? You think that furniture of yours isn’t slowly killing you? You believe it’s better to get rid of germs than it is to avoid toxic fumes? You may think differently when you find out the truth about all these dangerous, potentially deadly things that are in your home right this very minute. In fact, you may start thinking about your home in a whole new way.
Find out the truth about your dangerous bathtub, that outside deck that’s waiting to kill you, the poison gasses drifting all over your living spaces, and all those other hidden dangers that you don’t know about. You think your home is safe. Find out how safe it really is, and take a closer look at these dangerous things that you’re exposing yourself to every single time you come back home at the end of the day.
10. Toxic Chemicals
You’d be surprised at how easily the stuff under your kitchen cabinet can kill you. Always use chemicals in a well-ventilated room. Inhaling bleach can cause fluid to fill your lungs, which can be fatal. Simple upholstery shampoo may contain a corrosive chemical that can cause respiratory problems when inhaled. Dishwasher detergent is a leading cause of poisonings among small children. That’s really just the beginning.
Oven cleaners, toilet bowl cleaners and even furniture polish are all toxic and dangerous when you swallow them, inhale them or get too much on your skin. In other words, nothing in your home is safe. This is a wonderful excuse to just stop cleaning altogether.
9. Deck of Death
There are deck horror stories everywhere. Collapsing decks can result in severe injury and death. Even a well-built deck can be subject to wood rot and structural changes due to erosion. Over time, the deck may become weaker and weaker until it literally collapses under your feet. It’s a frightening way to go.
To prevent it, inspect your deck every year for signs of rot. Replace weakened areas and add additional supports as necessary to keep the deck safe. Decks are mostly used during gatherings, get-togethers and parties where everyone is outside and standing on the deck. This is one of the best times for weak wood to give way, and one of the worst times for the people who are standing on top of it at the time.
8. Toilet Terror
Your toilet is a time bomb waiting to explode… literally. If your toilet, or any part of your plumbing, is hooked up to a sewer system, you can potentially be exposed to deadly methane gas. Also known as sewer gas, methane can kill you in more than one way. If it begins leaking into your home, you should call a professional right away. Otherwise, your toilet could explode. Seriously, it can.
Methane is both toxic and explosive in nature. It can ignite a fire or even create an explosion in your home. Even if it doesn’t get rowdy, methane gas can kill you anyway because it’s capable of suffocating you. It will replace the oxygen in the air. You’ll know you have a methane problem if you detect the odor of rotting eggs. That’s sewer gas, and it’s bad news.
7. Dryer of Doom
Oh sure, it looks innocent sitting there in the laundry room. You only think about it when there’s something sitting in it waiting to be folded. But one day, and one day soon, your dryer just may kill you… with lint.
Over time, lint from your clothes builds up in the dryer. It’s soft, it’s fluffy, it’s incredibly flammable. If your dryer is close to your water heater, like most homes, you’re brewing up a little recipe for disaster and doom. Take highly flammable lint and mix it with a burning pilot light, and you can figure out the rest.
Cleaning out the dryer isn’t looking like such an unnecessary chore now, is it?
6. Chimney Death
A chimney is one of those details the realtor always points out, like it’s a huge benefit to the home. It’s an accident waiting to happen. Unless you actually have Dick Van Dyke and his band of merry chimney sweeps flying up and down this tower of brick and stone, you could have a house fire on your hands any day now.
Flammable deposits build up in the chimney over time. They release deadly carbon monoxide into your home. This odorless gas could kill you and you won’t even know about it. If enough build up lines the chimney and a spark gets close enough to it, your home could go up in smoke.
5. Hot Water
Hot water is one of those everyday luxuries that no one really thinks of as dangerous. You use it to bathe, to brush your teeth, to wash your face. But the CDC says that two children die of burn injuries daily. You’d be surprised how many of them are caused by ordinary tap water that comes right out of the faucet.
Statistics show that around one hundred people die per year due to tap water burns. It’s preventable. Your water heater shouldn’t be set higher than 120 degrees F. Otherwise, that water could be fatally hot. The young and the elderly are most at-risk for hot water burns.
4. Pressed Wood
It’s in your best interest to buy real wood furniture, and not just because interior designers suggest it. Pressed wood furniture may actually be killing you. Pressed wood paneling reached its heyday in decorating in the 1970s, but you can still find it today.
Some of these pressed wood products are made with a type of glue that uses urea-formaldehyde. That’s where things get a little sticky. This stuff can give animals cancer over time, and may do the same to you. Luckily, pressed wood begins to emit less formaldehyde as it ages. Keep a dehumidifier in your home and keep it cool with air conditioning. A hot, damp environment will cause more emissions to be released into your home.
3. Tub Time
You have a killer lurking in your home right now: the bathtub. People die daily from accidental drowning. Swimming pools, hot tubs and even bathtubs can be dangerous. Water is most dangerous for young children, but even an adult can accidentally drown. Stay safe in and around pools and tubs of water by adding no-slip mats near wet walking and standing areas.
The bathtub is more dangerous than people think, and not just because it’s a drowning hazard. Water conducts electricity, and that’s always dangerous. Don’t use any electronics while you’re in the bathroom, and don’t habitually keep anything plugged in near the bathtub.
2. Extension Cords
You probably use them everywhere. You probably couldn’t do all the daily things you do now without them. And everyone knows the holiday season wouldn’t be the same without lots of them. But extension cords send about 4,000 people to the emergency room every single year. They’re a dangerous tripping hazard, and that’s just the beginning of the trouble they cause.
Extension cords are a big fire hazard that kill about 50 people annually. Over 3,000 house fires are started by extension cords every year. That makes them incredibly dangerous to your home. Do you even know how many of them you have hiding behind the television?
1. Air Conditioners
Summer wouldn’t be the same without air conditioning to pump cooling breezes throughout your living spaces. Sitting in the air conditioning is a great way to beat the summer heat, until it turns deadly. It will, if your AC springs a leak. The refrigerant used in air conditioning is a type of tasteless, odorless gas that can be fatal if you breathe in enough of it.
If you inhale too much refrigerant, also known by the brand name Freon, you can experience dizziness, heart palpitations, organ damage and death. That’s all pretty yucky stuff. It’s almost enough to make you want to swelter in the summer heat instead.