Great Gadgets for Seniors Who Forget the Stove On

It can be a frustrating yet terrifying experience to realize that your loved one is becoming forgetful. Furthermore, seniors who are left at home alone may sometime have to prepare a meal and this can get dangerous. Due to their forgetfulness, seniors will often leave stoves on, which can be a huge risk for fire. The Good news is that, on this post, you will find some essential gadgets for these seniors who forget the stove on. So keep reading!

What are the New Gadgets Protects Seniors Who Forget the Stove On? There are some new smart gadgets that are the perfect choice to ensure the safety of a senior. Besides, some of them come with the embedded mechanism to shut off the gas or electricity, timers and other benefits that can be also useful for the elderly.

While you could swap the gas stove for an electric one, this would just reduce the risk but not completely eliminate it. The problem is that when people start to age, they become more forgetful. So if they are still making their own meals, they may at times leave the gas left open.

Besides, these devices are not only recommended for seniors living alone. While you can always arrest the situation in time if you are around, sometimes you may not be there when they forget to turn off the stove. The truth is, you never know. And it’s better to be safe than sorry. Therefore, to be safe, try to get a new gadget that can really protect seniors who forget the stove on.

* Since memory loss is a hot topic on our website, we’ve been writing a lot about this issue and we even have a whole session dedicated to it. If you want to check our other posts about this subject, click here.

What are the Results of Forgetting a Stove On?

According to experts, a stove is designed to run indefinitely unless you have activated the automatic shutdown. Nonetheless, while a stove can run indefinitely, it is never recommended leaving an open flame unattended. This can pose a very real danger of your house burning down.

Most stoves are designed and engineered for thermal stability. The burners are checked and tested at high temperatures to ensure that the burner and the stove will not catch fire, even if they are left on for a long time. As such, leaving the stove on would likely not cause any damage and will remain stable for a long time.

However, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA website), the leading cause of house fires is people leaving their cooking unattended. The US Fire Administration recommends to never leave any cooking appliances on and unattended.

What Causes Kitchen Fires from Unattended Stoves?

While you can leave your burner on for hours and not necessarily have a fire burn down the house, things are very different when you leave something cooking unattended.

Plus, here is an important fact: unattended cooking ranges are the #1 cause of home fires in the U.S. Moreover, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA website), people over the age of 65 are two and half times more likely to die in kitchen fires as compared to the general population!

So if you are dealing with forgetful seniors and need to protect them from fires while allowing them to make meals as they please, you need to have a stove with a shut-off device. Many modern stoves with automatic shut off devices are fairly inexpensive, and come with many features and are easy to install.

How New Technology can help to Solve this Problem? Smart Gadgets to Protect Seniors Who Forget the Stove On and Enhance Kitchen Safety

1. Induction Cooktops

If using a stove is too dangerous, and you decide to get rid of it, there are a couple of devices that might not substitute the stove bet can do the trick for preparing some basic meals: the induction cooktops.

This is a somewhat radical way of cooking that does not use hot surfaces, flames or gas but rather magnetic fields. You only heat the pan and the food inside it while the cooktop surface never rises in temperature by more than a few degrees. This significantly reduces the risk of kitchen items igniting from high temperatures from the stove.

Duxtop Portable Induction Cooktop

Duxtop Induction Cooktop is lightweight and compact for easy handling and storage. The device has a digital control panel. Built-in count-down digital timer with 1 minute increments up to 170 minutes; 10 temperature range from 140 °F to 460 °F; 10 power levels from 200 to 1800 Watts.

Pros:

  • No open flame or heating element, food does not burn-on the glass cooktop so this induction burner is easy to clean.
  • It features a durable 7-blade fan rapidly dissipates heat to ensure a longer product life.
  • The auto-pan detection shuts the unit automatically after 60 seconds if no cookware is detected;
  • equipped with diagnostic error message system, low and high voltage warning system.
  • ETL approved.

Cons:

  • Lacks fine temperature control. That means you often can’t “set and forget” it. 
  • Some reviewers complain about poor quality (i.e. It’s not reliable after a few uses)

Check this example of induction cooktops on Amazon.

Duxtop Portable Induction Cooktop with LCD Sensor Touch

If you are looking for something a little more elaborated, there induction cooktops can also have some interesting features such as this one below (same brand, just a newer model): digital timer programmable up to 10 hours, 20 power levels (from 100 to 1800 Watts), and 20 temperature settings (from 100℉ to 460℉).

Check this example of a safety burner on Amazon.

2. Lower Temperature Safety Burners

If you need to prevent fires while using electric stovetops then you need to get these burners. They are energy efficient burners with cast iron plates that go over each burner. You will essentially be cooking using the burners which can get hot enough to prepare your meals, but not hot enough to ignite common household items.

Check this example of induction cooktops on Amazon.

3. Automatic Fire Extinguishers

The indoor extinguishing system can be connected to a fire detection device and activates automatically in an emergency.

Check this example of induction cooktops on Amazon.

4. Stove Shut-Off Devices

These devices come with a sensor and timer and will automatically shut off the stove when no movement is detected after a set amount of time. Timers are typically installed under the stove hood. They are usually small nozzles or cans that will automatically spout fire suppressing agents into the fire and in some instances also turn the stove off.

Simple Touch C30004 Auto Shut-Off Safety Outlet

An affordable and simple shut-off device that works with small stoves of less than 1000 watts. It comes with a 30-minute countdown before it shuts down. As such, you can save on energy costs and prevent the risk of fire when the elder in the house forgets to turn off the stove. It is also easy to set up a solution that also works with a variety of household items that include curling irons, habitat lighting, and UV lamps among many others.

Pros:

  • Costs less than $15
  • Quick and easy to install: No tools required; it takes less than 10 minutes!
  • Easy to set with one simple touch
  • No dials to mess with
  • Save energy and shuts off appliances when you forget
  • Use with all plug-in appliances and electrical devices
  • Safety Certified: UL Safety Approved
  • Compact size : 3.3 x 2.4 x 2.2 inches

Cons:

  • You can’t set the length of countdown time (i.e. Counting down from 20 minutes)
  • Works as advertised (but doesn’t look as advertised)
  • Some reviewers complain about poor quality (i.e. It’s not reliable after a few months)

Click here for more details on Amazon.

Fire Avert Auto Stove Shut-off Device

A revolutionary product that works as both a smoke detector and a prevention device. Unlike many other shut off devices that react too fast, this one comes with a half a minute delay so that you can attend to the smoke from the burnt food while minimizing false alarms. Plus, it comes with a sound synchronizer feature and will activate at the sound of the smoke detector so that you do not have false alarms. The only shortcoming is that you will have to get a fire alarm system for it to work.

Pros:

  • Quick and easy to install: No tools required; it takes less than 10 minutes!
  • Easy to set with one simple touch
  • No dials to mess with
  • Stops Kitchen fires: Through smoke alarm sound detection, FireAvert cuts the power to your stove, safeguarding you and your home.
  • Syncs to smoke detectors: FireAvert syncs to your smoke detector and activates in response to the audible signal of an existing smoke detector through our patented syncing feature.
  • Compact size: 7.5 x 3.7 x 2.5 inches

Cons:

  • Costs around $150.
  • Some reviewers complain about poor quality (i.e. It didn’t syncronize to the smoke detectors)

Click here for more details on Amazon.

Wallflower’s Smart Monitor

One of the best devices if you have an elderly person in the house who has Alzheimer’s or dementia. It comes with an app that will inform you anytime the stove is left on by your senior citizen. Plus, it sends out alerts and notifications to your phone and also from behind the device, in case you forgot to carry your phone with you and are in another part of the house. The device monitors your habits and will inform you when the cooker has been on for too long.

Pros:

  • Easy to install: No tools needed.
  • Claims to be the only smart plug designed for your cooking stove: Gives you peace of mind by warning you if the stove has been left on accidentally or has been turned on without you knowing.
  • Connects any existing electric stove to the Internet: Monitor your stove from anywhere, anytime using the Android or Apple app for smartphones and tablets. Requires wireless Internet at home.
  • Safety Certified: UL Listed & ETL Certified – Rigorously tested for safety and rated for 50 Amps.
  • Compact size: 2.3 x 2.6 x 4.7 inches

Cons:

  • Costs around $150.
  • The Wallflower’s Smart Monitor can’t turn the stove off from your phone if it was left on. It’s a simple monitor, but some reviewers complain that the product could be smarter than it is.

Click here for more details on Amazon.

HomeSenser Automatic Stove Turn-Off

The HomeSenser is a preprogrammed device that will automatically shut off the stove if it detects that there is an unattended stove and no one in the kitchen. It is usually programmed to shut the stove after 8 minutes in case no one is in the kitchen. If someone does not get back within the programmed six minutes, it will begin flashing and beeping. And If you do not get into the kitchen at the end of the eight minutes, it will turn off the stove.

Click here for more details on the Home Sense website.

Comparison Between Stove Shut-Off Devices:

If you are thinking about which product to buy, it all depends on which features you really need. We created this very straight-forward table below to try to help you to decide, based on 4 main features (price, timer, warning, and auto shut-off).

Device namePriceTimerWarningAuto shut-off
Simple Touch C30004 Shut-off LowYesNoYes
Fire Avert Shut-offAvgNoNoYes
Wallflower’s Smart MonitorAvgNoYesNo
HomeSenser Turn-OffHighNoYesYes

Surely, all these are all very good products. It’s up to you to decide which one would be your pick!

Related Questions:

Do Gas or Electric Stoves have Automatic Shutdown?

Most gas and electric stoves nowadays come with an automatic stove shutoff, a motion sensor, and a timer. Modern units will allow you to set the number of minutes you intend to leave your food cooking on the stove unattended. Therefore, once the stove is automatically shut down after the expiry of the time that you set, you will have to manually turn it back on just walk into the room to get it working again.

The best units typically come with an automatic feature that will shut off the stove several minutes after the last person leaves the kitchen. These will typically shut off the stove after much less time as compared to manual timers. The feature will also record automatic shutoffs over time, so you track the memory changes of the elderly person over time.

Do Ovens Shut Down Automatically?

Most modern ovens come with touchpad clock controls that automatically shut off the oven after it has been on for a maximum of twelve hours. You can thus have peace of mind as the oven will shut off automatically after a given amount of time.

These new ovens also have the override feature which allows you to deactivate the 12-hour shut down so that you can cook for longer without interruptions.

Does Insurance Cover the Damage if Seniors Forget the Stove On?

Fires are among the most common types of claims made on home insurance policies. And they have many causes, including lightning, electrical problems or malfunctioning appliances. In some situations, your home insurance policy can cover the damages that occur as a result of the fire. However, this depends on the underlying cause of that fire. In some cases, your policy will not provide you with the protection you need.

Insurance, for the most part, is about providing compensation for non-preventable and unexpected reasons. We can give you some examples. Most insurances will pay if your house is struck by lightning, since this is something you could not avoid. They will also pay if the electrical wires are short-circuited and burn down your kitchen, since it is impossible to see faulty wires inside the walls to repair them.

Insurance Policy and Appliances

Appliances are treated differently though. If you happen to have an appliance that malfunctions and burns down your house, the insurance will cover it. In fact, they will be eager to help you file your claim against the manufacturer of the appliance.

However, if it shows that the appliance caught fire because of incorrect operation, negligence or poor maintenance, the insurer may reject any claims for compensation. For instance, if a forgetful senior leaves the stove on, the insurer may reject the claims. This is because the insurance may believe that the fire was preventable.

As a result, you should carefully analyze your insurance policy to understand just what is covered and what is not. Moreover, having such information will urge you to take steps to protect your home from fire risk, if the insurance policy may not cover you in the instance of an incident.

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