Most Common Causes of Home Fires

Top Five Fire Risks Within Your Home

Most Common Causes of Home Fires

February 8, 2019 10:00 am Published by

The risk of fire within our property is something that we often take for granted. We assume that it is not something that will happen to us until it does.

In this blog article, we will outline some of the main risks that you need to be aware of as well as some steps you can take to offset the risk of a fire starting.

If you require a fire alarm to be installed within your home, or for your current system to be maintained, give us a call today on 0808 164 0280.

Top Five Fire Risks Within Your Home

Of the numerous different ways that a fire within your home can begin, what follows are the top five most common reasons:

  • Candles
  • Electrical Failure
  • Cooking
  • Smoking
  • Malfunctioning Alarms

Top Five Fire Risks Within Your Home


Candles are one of the biggest culprits when it comes to fire within the United Kingdom. In 2003, there were 1791 house fires that were a direct result of candle use. However, candle sales have been steadily on the rise, which means the rising trend of candle fires is likely to continue.

It is absolutely vital that people who use candles around their home treat them with the respect they deserve so as to avoid tragedy. Here are our top tips:

  • If you need to leave the room for longer than a few moments or are about to go to sleep, blow the candle out.
  • Make sure that any candlesticks you use are not at risk of falling over.
  • Keep candles well away from anything flammable, at least 12 inches.
  • If pets or children are likely to be moving around, put the candle out or at the very least remain vigilant.

Electrical Equipment

Electrical devices are a fire risk because they can easily shortcircuit, therefore causing a fire. Although there is very little you can do to anticipate these issues; it is something that you will always need to be aware of.

Here are some crucial steps you will need to follow in order to minimise the risk of disaster:

  • If you spot that a wire is frayed, or a device is malfunctioning, make sure to stop using it.
  • Always use heating devices sparingly and never leave them unattended.
  • Don’t overload plug points; consider having more installed rather than relying heavily on extension cables and such.


Cooking is, above all else, the most significant fire risk within the home. In fact, it is responsible for around 60% of fires within UK homes each and every year. However, there are some steps you can take to make sure that you can keep your home safe while cooking.

By following these simple steps, you can minimise the risk of a fire starting:

  • Don’t leave food unattended when cooking. When you have to leave the kitchen, switch the hob off.
  • Make sure your sleeves stay well away from open flames.
  • If a grease fire does start, smother the fire with a damp cloth or pan lid. Do not throw water on it.
  • Ensure that your toaster is kept clean and away from flammable objects.


Many people underestimate the risks associated with smoking in regards to home fires. Stray ashes can quickly cause a fire, and you will not always be able to get the blaze under control immediately.

If you are intoxicated, for example, it is crucial that you do not smoke in your home. Many people will fall asleep with the cigarette still lit. Eventually, the ash will burn down and may well result in a fire.

Similarly, never smoke in bed. Not only is falling asleep a risk, but you are surrounded by incredibly flammable fabric which might well set alight.

Malfunctioning Fire Alarms

Although a broken fire alarm will not directly cause a fire, the absence of an alert can allow a fire to get out of control quickly. Alarms might be your only line of defence in the event of a fire, so you need to make sure that you can depend on it fully.

At SSH Fire & Security, we offer not only fantastic solutions in terms of alarm installation but also fantastic maintenance services to ensure that they are always ready for action.

Give us a call today on 0808 164 0280 to schedule in a visit or for more information.

Alternatively, complete our contact form, and one of our personnel will be in touch as soon as possible.