Don’t sacrifice safety for efficiency
Greetings! In reading this particular edition (December 2023), I came across something that concerned me greatly.
The section of this edition on page 26–27, “Home Energy Q&A,” contains a caption for one of the photos encouraging energy customers to “start it (dishwasher) right before you go to bed.”
My concern stems from a family friend who followed this advice only to have a house fire begin while they were asleep at night. Their dishwasher malfunctioned while running during the night, causing a house fire. They awakened, fortunately, due to the sounding of their home fire alarm, but matters could have turned out much worse.
It is just my opinion, but to prioritize decreasing energy consumption over the safety of human lives is reckless. I don’t know many who would ever suggest running household appliances while one sleeps, especially one that utilizes high heat to dry dishes.
Many unsuspecting customers may not critique this article and look to the author, understanding the author’s position. The desire of the author is not safety but efficiency.
The December efficiency column, “How energy efficiency contributes to a better grid,” included tips to save energy during peak energy hours. One of the efficiency tips recommended running major appliances, including clothes dryers and dishwashers, before going to sleep. While running energy-intensive appliances during off-peak hours can help you save energy, we do not recommend running them while you sleep. Newer models with advanced safety features and being sure your appliances are well-maintained and in good working order can reduce the risk of fire, but for maximum safety, it is best to only run appliances when you are home and awake.
Thank you for the important safety reminder.
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