Just yesterday while I was performing a Maple Grove, Minnesota home inspection I found another free standing range without the required anti-tip brackets installed. Anti-tip brackets are included in the installation kit with every new gas or electric range and are designed to prevent the range from tipping forward. These are normally attached to a rear leg of the range or screwed into the wall behind the range. Image this scenario, you’ve got one or more pots of boiling food on cooking on the range, your youngest child is curious what we’re having for dinner but can’t see up that high and mom is not around to ask. He opens the oven door to stand on, steps up and the entire range tips forward not only crushing him but dumping boiling liquid all over him.
This is an inspection item that you can do.
- With the range off first take a look at the rear of the range near the counter top, sometimes the anti-tip bracket can be seen there.
- Next, grasp the range and try to tip it forward towards you. It may tip for a couple of inches but should stop.
- That’s it, it is that simple.
I would be willing to be that your range does not have this installed based on what I’ve seen. If no anti-tip bracket is detected you should contact the dealer or builder who installed the range and request that they install a bracket. If this is not an option then you can go to your local hardware or home improvement store to purchase a set of brackets and install them yourselves or have your favorite appliance technician do it for you. If you have a General Electric range they will provide these brackets to you free of charge.
There have been 143 recorded incidents caused from this from 1980 to 2006 of which 33 resulted in death. Remember, these are only the recorded incidents not including all of the close calls. I have inspected several ranges that have appeared to have damage to them from tipping forward, I guess these folks got lucky. Remember folks, this is a simple and inexpensive safety improvement that you can do yourselves to protect your family.
Certified Minnesota Home Inspector
763 442 4039