Hot water from the home's faucets and sinks can cause serious injury to members of the family. Underestimating the risks posed by burns and scalding wounds only makes members of the household more vulnerable to injury. The following facts about scalds and burns can help illustrate the dangers of improperly heated water in the home.
1. Kids and seniors face the highest risk
Seniors and kids under the age of 5 are especially vulnerable to serious scald injury. A thinner dermis poses an extra threat of deeper burns in children, while limited flexibility can sometimes put seniors in danger with regards to nearby hot water.
2. Overheated water is a common problem at home
Ironically, many homeowners that balk at the idea of burn-related injuries in the home are at the greatest risk. Over 40 percent of inspected urban homes were found to have water heaters set at or above 140 degrees.3 Setting water temperatures to 120 degrees will increase safety and heating efficiency simultaneously.4
3. Serious burns can occur in seconds
Burn wounds caused by a home's water supply can occur quickly. In fact, 140 degree water can cause a third-degree burn after just five seconds of exposure.1
4. Cool water is better than ice for temporary treatment
Resist your instinct to ice a serious burn or scald, as treating the injury with ice actually risks worsening the burn. A wet compress or a flow of cool water will do the trick until you can schedule a medical visit.
5. Scalding injuries are mostly preventable
While hundreds of thousands of scald wounds occur each year, 75 percent of burn injuries in children are preventable.2 Families taking a proactive approach toward preventing burn injuries will see rapid results in the form of fewer burn accidents.
6. Going tankless can eliminate scald injuries
Often performing maintenance on an aging water heater simply increases risks of a scalding accident. Electric tankless water heaters have more precise, reliable heat controls to help prevent burn injuries.