laundry room with washer and dryer
Photo: Andrea Rugg
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Maintain Your Washer and Dryer

Left unattended, a burst washing-machine hose can spill hundreds of gallons of water an hour. Likewise, a dryer can erupt in flame if lint is allowed to build up inside the machine or its ducts.

Preventing such mishaps is as easy as replacing a washer's old rubber hoses, ideally with steel-jacketed ones that can't split open. Or discarding the dryer's flimsy—and flammable—vinyl duct and putting a metal one in its place.
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