Ahead of the heatwave predicted to hit the UK, experts highlight garden furniture fire risks and share their top tips on keeping your garden furniture and yourself safe in your own garden.
Investing in the best garden furniture for your outdoor space not only serves a visual purpose but of course, is practical above everything. As the sun finally decides to make an appearance this week, teasing the onset of summer, it's safe to say that our outdoor living room ideas will finally be seeing us more frequently – therefore, it pays to be clued up on how to ensure your safety when lounging outside.
Garden furniture warning – and 5 tips to avoid garden fires this summer
During last year's heatwave (which I'm sure many of us remember all too well), there was a staggering 28 per cent increase in reports of garden furniture set on fire in 2022, with 185,437 incidents reported according to GOV UK.
As temperatures are predicted to soar this summer once again, UK furniture component expert, GB Foam, and gardening expert, Calum Maddock at HomeHow.co.uk share their top tips on how to ensure your garden furniture stays risk-free of any potential fire hazards.
1. Check for fire safety labels on furniture
Before buying any garden furniture, make sure to look for fire safety labels that indicate legal compliance with UK standards. If you're uncertain, consult your furniture supplier for clarification.
2. Keep garden furniture away from flammable materials
When curating your garden furniture ideas, it's important to consider your placement of everything. Keep your furniture away from any potentially flammable materials.
Calum Maddock at HomeHow.co.uk warns: 'This can include things like paper, dry leaves, and plants. Keep your furniture a safe distance away from anything that is potentially flammable to minimise the risk of accidental fires.'
3. Remove glass tops from furniture in extreme heat
If your garden seating ideas include a table with a glass top as a focal point (especially in any outdoor kitchen ideas), be sure to remove it if you know that it's going to be a particularly hot day.
This is because glass can intensify heat in direct sunlight, potentially leading to melting or burning.
4. Avoid having open flames near your furniture
Although the best BBQs and fire pits are a notable addition to spruce up any outdoor space and give it that 'wow' factor – especially if you're looking to entertain guests this summer – make sure your furniture is at a safe distance from any open flames and that they're never left unattended.
Always keep an appropriate fire extinguishing source at hand.
5. Source replacement cushion filling responsibly
Most garden furniture seating will typically have outdoor cushions that come with the set. It's natural that they may grow tired after some wear and tear, but don't opt for just any regular filling.
'If replacing the filling for your outdoor cushions, ensure the materials are obtained from a reputable supplier. Fillings should comply with relevant fire safety standards to help reduce the risk of ignition and improve the overall safety of your outdoor space,' explains an expert at GB Foam.
Commenting on the garden furniture fire risk, a spokesperson at GB Foam says: 'We're determined to help improve furniture fire safety in any way we can. Overall, the UK maintains a high standard when it comes to furniture, but unfortunately, some lesser quality pieces can still slip through.'
'In addition, many people also choose to make their own furniture by recycling wooden pallets, which can be a cost-effective way to furnish your garden but may pose unexpected fire risks. Proper safety practices, combined with sourcing the right furniture materials can help to mitigate these risks.'
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Jullia Joson is Ideal Home’s Junior Writer. She’s always loved all things homes and interiors, graduating with a bachelor's degree in Architectural Studies from the University of Nottingham in 2022. Previously, she was an Intern Editor for ArchDaily. Now focused on news stories, Jullia can be found down the TikTok and Pinterest rabbit hole scrolling through any new and upcoming trends, hacks, and home inspiration.
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