There are so many places in your kitchen that you need to clean (or, in the case of sponges) replace regularly, like your cutting boards and sink. But as it turns out, there’s more to be afraid of than germs in your kitchen. As a man in Florida recently discovered, your fridge can actually explode.
He happened to be home when he heard the explosion from the kitchen. Thankfully he and his family were unharmed, but the explosion was so powerful it caused cracks in the ceiling, broke a window in the master bedroom, and completely destroyed his fridge. Turns out, the coils in the back of the fridge had become clogged, trapping hot gas, which resulted in the explosion. Yeah, I didn’t even know there were coils in the back of my fridge.
Okay, to be fair, it’s a rare-enough incident that you shouldn’t rush home from work to clean the coils. But as Realtor.com reports, apparently the problem originates in the fridge’s compressor, which pushes gas through said coils — gas that keeps your food cool. However, if the fridge gets too hot as the gas moves through the compressor, the coils can sometimes contract, trapping the gas and causing a potential explosion. This type of explosion is extra dangerous because it can happen “spontaneously,” unlike a toaster or oven fire which will set off your fire alarms, warning you of the danger.
There is a way to make sure this never happens to you: As a Sears appliance expert told Realtor.com, pay attention to the sounds your fridge makes. “Choppy” noises, or complete silence could be a sign your coils are clogged; a steady humming noise is normal. Obviously not everyone has the resources on hand to simply buyer a newer fridge, so you can at least make sure to clean the coils every six months. Thankfully, it’s an easy task, and Realtor.com has a complete guide on how to get it done.