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By Siobhan Cheshire

Landlords are being reminded they are required by law to ensure electrical appliances in their rental properties are safe, working and properly maintained.

The Country Fire Authority reportedly attends to more than 1,000 house fires every year inVictoria.

While many fires start from well-known causes such as cigarettes, faulty appliances and sockets, few landlords realise that poorly installed halogen downlights are also a risk.

When installed near insulation, roof timbers or floor beams, halogen lights can reach 250 degrees Celsius and on a hot day, they can smoulder and ignite a ceiling fire.

Melbourne-based LED lighting supplier cherryLED has recommended landlords replace halogen downlights with LED lights as a safer alternative to traditional energy-hungry halogens.

According to Ben Wright from cherryLED, “LEDs only use 15 per cent of the energy of a standard halogen and are cool to touch, making them a much safer and more affordable alternative to traditional lighting such as halogens.

“Our lights are tested by the Melbourne Metropolitan Fire Brigade for heat safety. They also meet, and in many cases exceed, the requirements of Standards Australia.”

Due to their increased longevity, LEDs require very little maintenance. Boasting a lifespan rating of more than 13 years, compared to just 3,000 hours with conventional incandescent globes, property investors can spend less time up ladders and more time enjoying the summer.

“We want to see everyone making the most of cost-efficient, ‘cooler’ LED lighting this summer – and working towards a more sustainable society,” Mr Wright said.

Source : Residential Property Manager (11 November 2013)

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