Gas Stoves are used in most of the kitchens and preferred by the majority of chefs worldwide. But gas stoves pose some major safety concerns – how do you deal with these?
The reason for gas stoves being widely used is that it provides a plethora of benefits for professional chefs as well as household cooks. They offer enhanced initial heating speed, better temperature control, visual monitoring of flames, compatibility with an array of cookware, and ability to use diverse cooking methods.
To make the most of gas stoves and ensure they keep providing these benefits in the long run, it is imperative that you take care of a few important things and keep safety a top priority in the kitchen. The most significant gas stove safety issues and the way to combat them is discussed in this list.
Read on to know the 11 gas stove safety tips you should know!
Gas Stove Safety Tips
- Gas Stove Safety Tips
- Managing the Flame
- Maintaining the Stove
- Using the Right Utensils
- Monitoring Carbon Monoxide
- Proactive and Careful Cooking
- Preventing Gas Leaks and Fire Hazards
- Keeping Inflammable Objects Away
- Access to Emergency Equipment and Services
- Personal Precaution
- Installing a Smoke Alarm
- Choosing the Right Range Hood
- Safety First!
Managing the Flame
The flame in gas stoves can be easily controlled by turning the knob and changed between low, medium, and high. It should never reach out from under the cookware put on the burners, as that may expose your fingers to the heat.
It is essential that the burners are turned on only for the duration of cooking. Leaving the flame unattended or while not cooking may lead to accidents and fire hazards. If the spark does not light up as soon as the burner is turned on, you must turn it off and wait for a few seconds.
If there is a recurring delay in the flame lighting up, the burner might be blocked and may need to be cleaned.
Maintaining the Stove
The gas stove is widely used, and it lasts for a long time. But for it to provide a long and hassle-free useful life, it must be maintained in a certain way. The most significant cause of safety concerns with gas stoves is carelessness and improper maintenance.
It is crucial that you clean your stove on a daily basis – take out the burners and heavy grates, and wash them with soapy water. If the burner’s holes are blocked by food debris or other waste, use a toothpick or other sharp object to clear it.
You must ensure that the burners and grates are not removed right after cooking and give them time to cool down.
Using the Right Utensils
An essential prerequisite to ensure safety while using gas stoves is to use the right utensils or cookware. A necessary check is that the bottom of your cookware or utensil must cover the flame when it is turned to high, in essence, the fire should not escape from the bottom to the sides of the appliances. So choosing the right size of utensils is of utmost importance.
The material of the cookware should be anti-corrosive and non-inflammable. Do not use any plastic, melamine or glass utensils with your gas stove. The utensils should be properly cleaned and dried before putting them on your stove to cook.
Copper is an excellent material that makes cooking utensils. If you’re looking for the right ones, check out this copper pots and pans review to know more.
Monitoring Carbon Monoxide
One of the most significant adverse factors of using a gas stove is that it emits harmful carbon monoxide. Being colorless and odorless, it is impossible for you to detect carbon monoxide emissions unless you experience the detrimental effects of it.
Exposure to Carbon Monoxide emissions can lead to dizziness, headaches, nausea, and vomiting. If you experience any of these symptoms while cooking, it is highly likely that you are inhaling toxic carbon monoxide being emitted from your stove. Purchasing a carbon monoxide detector and installing it in your kitchen is the best way to monitor this harmful gas and prevent it from adversely affecting your health.
Proactive and Careful Cooking
The kind of attention you pay to small details when you are cooking can be a huge determinant of how safely you are using your gas stove.
Keeping the handles of cookware to the side or using the back burners to prevent the handles from protruding beyond the counter-top eliminates the risk of knocking the utensils over and spilling hot food everywhere.
Turning off the burners immediately after use, paying attention to the flame, and not leaving the stove unattended while it is in use are some of the essential points to be kept in your safety checklist for proactive and careful cooking.
Preventing Gas Leaks and Fire Hazards
Being aware of your surroundings and observing even slight signs of probable mishaps is key to ensuring safety while using gas stoves. The most significant cause of concern for gas stoves is the highly flammable nature of gas and the potential for devastating fire hazards.
If you feel that the gas is leaking and you can smell its odor, turn off the burners and do not turn it back on until the scent is wholly expelled out of your home. If you still face issues and feel the gas is leaking, check the burners, pipe connection, and the gas cylinder.
If you are unable to find the leakage source and fix it, do not use your gas stove unless you get experts to come and fix the problem.
Keeping Inflammable Objects Away
The heat from a gas stove burner can burn inflammable objects that are held close to it. Any plastic utensils or jars, foil paper wrappings, and air-tight glass containers must be kept at a safe distance from the gas stove, primarily when it is being used.
One common mistake most of us make is placing things on adjacent burners that are not being used. The safest option is to keep absolutely nothing on the burners and keep inflammable objects far away from the stove.
Only utensils and cookware that is safe to be used on a gas stove should be kept near it, to avoid careless and unintentional use of inflammable appliances.
Access to Emergency Equipment and Services
Keeping a fire extinguisher handy is a must in kitchens that have a gas stove. It is a widely believed myth that water should be used to put out fires. However, in case of a fire hazard in your kitchen, water is not the best way to put out the fire. You should only use a fire extinguisher should the need ever arise.
Keeping a fire extinguisher and ensuring that you know how to use it is crucial. Getting expert help in case of gas leaks is always advisable, so keeping emergency contact numbers noted down on a stick-it note on your refrigerator door is a good way to go about it.
The adage “God helps those who help themselves” is true regarding gas stove safety too. You need to take a few simple precautions to avoid mishaps. A couple of things to do is to ensure you do not wear clothes that are too loose or made from a material that can quickly catch fire. Women should tie their hair while cooking to be on the safer side.
You should keep children out of the kitchen while cooking and teenagers should not be allowed to cook alone. Taking these steps are not enough to ensure total safety, but they guarantee that you do not experience an accident that leaves you feeling silly and reckless.
Installing a Smoke Alarm
Most of the newly built homes come equipped with smoke alarms and in-built fire safety mechanisms. In case your home was not purchased or constructed in recent years, you might need to get these safety features installed, and they are definitely worth the cost.
A smoke alarm is ideal to prevent fire hazards, especially in the kitchen. In case of occasional cooking for long hours to prepare food for a party or at a festive time, it is possible that you leave the stove burning longer than you should.
As soon as the flames start cooking the food, the smoke will trigger the alarm and help avoid a fire catastrophe in your kitchen. Although it may not be used at all, a smoke alarm adds a stable layer of defense.
Choosing the Right Range Hood
Gas stoves use gas or propane to ignite flames in the burners. The fire releases fumes when it comes into contact with the cookware. It is vital that the fumes are vented outdoors immediately. If your kitchen does not have windows in strategic places, it can be difficult to ventilate the fumes and smoke.
Installing an efficient range hood chimney that is as large as your stove is an ideal way to ensure the outward ventilation of the fumes and smoke. Nobody wants to cook in a kitchen that gets filled with smoke while using gas stoves and the right chimney will ensure that your kitchen is not like that.
The multitude of benefits of using a gas stove makes it a must-have in almost every kitchen. These 11 safety tips will help you use your gas stove in the best possible manner in the long run.