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Preventing Air Conditioning Fires

Many individuals and households use air conditioning units and systems to keep their property or premises cool, especially in summer season. According to the fire statistics, there were 99 air conditioning fire cases in the last three years, including 52 cases of air conditioning outdoor units, 20 cases of air conditioning indoor units, 11cases of window type air conditioner, and 10 cases of central air conditioning system, and 6 cases of others. Further investigation of these air conditioning fires, the most common cause of fire was short circuit of power cord (74.7%), followed by overheated and tracking.
A window type air conditioner fire occurred in Zongshan District last month. The cause of this case was short circuit due to the deterioration of power cord. Fortunately, no one was injured. Taipei City Fire Department appeals that air conditioners are seasonal household appliances. Before use, check whether the power cord is degraded, damaged, or the plug is polluted. In particular, the air conditioning outdoor units require extra attention because they were installed outdoors which is easy to ignore. When using the air conditioners, one should pay attention to the followings:
1. Regular Maintenance
  Having regular air conditioning maintenance carried out will help to ensure the system or unit clean and fully functioning. The air filter should be cleaned regularly. Other inspection of condenser, evaporator, and circuit board should be carried out by professional technicians to avoid danger.
2. Beware of warning signs
  Stop the AC and call for help if it is not working properly, giving out only hot air or burnt smell, or some abnormal sounds.
3. Look for professional inspection
In case of AC failure, it should immediately stop running and turn off (unplug) the power supply, and have it repaired by professional maintenance service. Do not continue to use it or disassemble it by yourself to avoid danger.
4. Proper wiring and placement
The Air conditioning outdoor units are installed outdoors. Pay attention to the ventilation conditions of the installation site. Poor heat dissipation can easily lead to power consumption of the air conditioning unit, and deterioration of the electrical parts.
5. Keep it clean
  The air conditioner is a seasonal household appliance. The power supply should unplugged in the season when it is not in use, and it should be cleaned and inspection before the season of use.
In addition to pay more attention when using air conditioners, residential fire detectors should be installed and battery power should be tested regularly to buy more time for fire response and evacuation, and reduce the chance of casualties.