braided steel washer hose and adjustable wrench
Photo: Shaffer Smith
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Keep It Safe

Washer mishaps are among the leading causes of home floods, and dryers account for thousands of fires annually. But with some key supplies, you can avert disaster and save thousands. Here's what you'll need:

• Braided steel washer hoses, shown left, that can't split open like rubber ones.

• Metal dryer-vent pipe sealed with foil tape, rather than a plastic flex hose, which is a fire hazard.

• A washer box that's recessed in the wall so that water valves are easily accessible and hoses don't loosen or get damaged by getting squished behind the machine.

Oatey Washing Machine Outlet Box, $23; The Home Depot
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