Mom says TikTok laundry hack may have set her dryer on fire: “Lucky to be alive”
Mom says she and her family are lucky to be alive after trying a DIY reusable drying sheet hack she saw on TikTok, and she shared a warning about it on the app .
Hailee Clarke from the UK posted a video on TikTok in early November claiming a fire broke out inside her dryer the same night she tried the laundry hack.
“I just wanted to raise awareness. I tried this trick yesterday with a cloth, fabric softener and water like dryer sheets in my dryer,” Clarke explained in her video. “This is my first time using it. I have never had a problem with it in any form.”
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Clarke’s video then shows her destroyed dryer and laundry, which were badly burned.
“We were woken up this morning in the smoke-filled house,” Clarke continued. “The dryer had smoked, it was on fire from inside all night. It was absolutely terrifying. We are lucky to be alive… Be careful which hack you try.”
Fox News has contacted Clarke for comment. It is not immediately clear whether the sponge and fabric softener combo is the direct cause of the alleged fire.
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Several TikTok users have left comments indicating that it’s obvious something like this could happen because most commercial fabric softeners have flammability warning labels. However, many of these warnings refer to fabric softeners with the ability to degrade flame retardant chemicals in clothing and not the product itself, as shown in safety data documents released by Procter & Gamble’s Downy, Henkel’s Snuggle. and SC Johnson’s Mrs. Meyers.
Clarke defended herself from criticism in a follow-up video Thursday to show how she missed the flammability warning label printed on her fabric softener bottle, which is not as conspicuously visible compared to her others household products she owns.
The American Cleaning Institute (ACI) does not recommend “this [fabric softener, water and sponge] homemade brew, ”but the organization’s spokesperson told Fox News that families don’t have to worry about the safety of these laundry products on an individual basis.
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“Liquid fabric softeners – as used in the washing machine – and dryer sheets are used safely by millions of people every week. You don’t have to worry about liquid fabric softener residue after taking out. your clothes from the washer, ”the ACI spokesperson said. written in an email. “It’s important to use these products as directed and read the care labels for the clothes you wash. You should not use dryer sheets with flame retardant clothing or children’s sleepwear. “
The Diluted Fabric Softener Dryer Sheet Hack has been used for decades by people who want to save money or avoid dryer sheet waste, and the hack has gained popularity on TikTok thanks to a number of number of viral “CleanTok” videos.
Fox News spoke to cleaning influencer Cary Colón in September when her DIY dryer sheet video reached 10.8 million views on her Pairs Well with Whine.
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Colón learned the hack from his grandmother and used the method intermittently for years. So far, she has not experienced any hot clothes or fires while using the dryer sheet in her dryer. When asked to review Clarke’s video, Colón said she noticed a few mistakes.
“The individual who attempted the hack cut the sponges into tiny pieces, which can get stuck in the lint collector. In all fairness, what the individual did was not the hack I posted. I haven’t posted a video with tiny sponges. [Also,] The solution didn’t look very diluted, ”Colón told Fox News. “If all of the solution is squeezed out completely, the sponge is not ‘wet’. It is wet with an odor. The way the person handled the sponges in their video tells me that they didn’t fully squeeze them out before putting them in the dryer. “
“A clothes dryer should never be left on overnight and unattended. Just like a stove or oven should not be left on overnight unattended,” Colón continued. “Your dryer should be deep cleaned every month inside and out and the lint collector should be clean after every cycle. No one knows if this was done correctly. The fire may have been started for various reasons. reasons and not necessarily the sponge but if done right it will NOT happen. “
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Colón reiterated that she shared her DIY dryer sheet hack as an available laundry option, but she doesn’t do it all the time.
“It’s an option that I use if I don’t have drying sheets,” Colón said. “If you look at the comments, many people who have been doing this for years have never experienced such a thing, including myself.”
She added, “A hack is a method that someone uses to do something that works for them. Each individual has the full and full authority to make a conscious decision to attempt to test something to see if it works or not at all. . “
While some bleachers have been successful in creating DIY dryer sheets with diluted fabric softener, this is not a method approved by linen manufacturers or ACI.
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“Please pay attention to any advice that recommends unproven chemical mixtures in the home,” ACI told Fox News. “You should not use liquid fabric softener in the dryer, only as directed in the washing machine. We strongly recommend that you only use laundry appliances and additives as intended and according to the manufacturer’s instructions.”