Another Reason to Unplug the Coffee Maker

Posted on December 1, 2008 by Allie

I was chatting with a good friend yesterday.  She mentioned that there was a major house fire in the house next door to hers.  The cause?  A malfuntioning coffee pot.  It hadn’t been left on, but it was still plugged in.

A friend of her family works for the fire department and mentioned that coffee makers that are turned off but still plugged in are often the cause of home fires.

We know we’re supposed to unplug appliances and chargers when we’re not using them to save energy, but taking an extra 10 seconds to unplug your coffee pot could save your home too.

Of course hearing something from a friend of a friend is not direct information, but better to be safe than sorry, right? And if you do a google search of coffee maker fire, you’ll get more than enough reports to convince you to pull the plug when you’ve finished the pot.  Nothing about a house fire is eco-friendly, and the results are devastating.  Plus, do you really need to use electricity to keep the clock on your coffee maker running all day?

Also, if you have a Kenmore brand coffee maker, you’ll want to review this recall.


  1. A house fire is one of my biggest fears. I already unplug the coffee pot every day, but now I have one more reason to keep it unplugged.

    December 5th, 2008 at 4:25 pm
    Comment by Katie
  2. I pretty good about unplugging my kitchen appliances since the plugs are at counter level but I need to be better about unplugging our office equipment when not in use. I tend to forget about it since those plugs are along the floorboard. I should probably move the power strip to my desktop. It’s not pretty but I would be much more likely to turn it off with it right there.

    December 5th, 2008 at 5:06 pm
    Comment by N.
  3. I have OCD when it comes to unplugging all of my appliances for that VERY reason – ESPECIALLY the coffee maker. I’ve been known to trek all the way back home to recheck if there’s even an ounce of doubt in me. Now I live with a boy that likes to leave his computer on AND his cell phone charger plugged into the wall. Post-its that read: “unplug this, DAMMIT!” adorn many of our electronics now.

    December 5th, 2008 at 6:23 pm
    Comment by kir
  4. Hairdryers are second behind coffee makers in house fire culprits. The switch most commonly used on the handle of the dryer can easily cause a short leading to a fire. I unplug almost everything when not in use and double check when I leave. A house fire is high on my fear list.

    December 5th, 2008 at 10:55 pm
    Comment by Vanessa
  5. V- I always freak out about unplugging my hairdryer, and J thinks I’m being silly. But I guess I’m not.

    K- Love the Post-It idea.

    N- I’m starting to worry about function over form with things like power cords too.

    Katie- It’s one of my biggest fears too. I have to do a check of the house before I leave to make sure everything is off that needs to be off.

    December 6th, 2008 at 4:16 pm
    Comment by Allie
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    December 6th, 2008 at 4:49 pm
    Pingback by This Week’s Tips
  7. I have the same OCD problem, when in the middle of the day, I can’t remember if I unplugged it or not. I’m having that problem right now.

    Usually, I can solve it by saying to myself, “It is Monday morning and I am unplugging the coffee maker.” If I can remember saying that, I’m good. But I usually forget to remember to say it.

    December 8th, 2008 at 4:30 pm
    Comment by Noelle
  8. I always double check that my coffee maker is unplugged before leaving the house. I have heard about fires started by faulty coffee makers before so it’s part of my ritual of making sure everything is off (stove, lights, etc.) before leaving the house.

    March 24th, 2009 at 11:42 pm
    Comment by Kim
  9. Yeah, maybe coffe pots from the 1970′s but todays coffee pots are not fire hazards. Besides what are you suppose to do with coffee pots that have clocks and timers on them,reset them very day for one use? What about coffe pots that such as the K-cup machine that has heated water all the time. it is funny how people will unplug their coffee pots but don’t consider the other heated appliances such as your REFRIGERATOR!. Why don’t you unplug it.All it is is just a big heat pump. Oh don’t forget to unplug your furnace,hot water heater,washer and dryer. Come on people.Quite the paranoia and get out of the 70′s.

    May 11th, 2009 at 1:01 am
    Comment by FirefighterJoe
  10. Found this doing a web search for coffee maker fire. Had to comment because FirefighterJoe is an idiot. My new Cuisinart coffee maker caught fire this morning. So it is possible and it does happen.

    October 31st, 2011 at 8:59 am
    Comment by Nnjagurl

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